Football Trade Directory

Finalists for IOG awards, sponsored by Rigby Taylor, announced


The finalists have been announced from a record-breaking entry to this year’s prestigious Institute of Groundsmanship (IOG) Industry Awards 2017.

The ninth year of the awards are sponsored by Rigby Taylor and Top Green. As well as sponsoring the awards Rigby Taylor also sponsor the young groundsman of the year award. 

“Once again we have enjoyed a record-breaking entry to the awards,” says IOG chief executive, Geoff Webb. “Nominations this year rose by 93 per cent, which illustrates the esteem in which our industry – from all corners of the UK - holds the awards. The judges, all of whom are groundsmen, were particularly impressed with the quality of the submissions. In fact, the standard of nominations improves year-on-year."

“Everyone who has been nominated should be recognised, regardless of whether they make the shortlist or, indeed, go on to be named as winners. It just shows the range and dedication of those working at both professional and volunteer level, day in and day out in all weathers to ensure our sports men and women, young and old, have available an increasingly higher standard of playing surfaces.”

Geoff adds: “The awards would not be possible without the generosity of our sponsors, and these companies and organisations have enabled the event to become a landmark event every year. “The industry’s support is invaluable and it has created the conditions for a sell-out event and one that enjoys national and regional TV, radio, social media and press coverage.”

Independent judging at each venue will now take place. The winners will be announced Oscar-style at the IOG Industry Awards dinner by host Mark Saggers from talkSPORT radio at the National Conference Centre, Birmingham, on Wednesday 1 November – the evening of the opening day of the SALTEX exhibition at the nearby NEC.

 The finalists are:

Best Maintained Artificial Pitch of the Year
Highfields Sports Complex - The University of Nottingham; Manchester City FC.

Ransomes Environmental/­Innovative Project of the Year
Arsenal FC; Forest Green Rovers FC.

Toro Most Promising Sports Turf Student of the Year 
Ollie Deeming, Bury St. Edmunds RUFC, Suffolk; Tara Massey, Manchester City FC.

SGL Professional Football Grounds Team or the Year(Premier League, Championship and Scottish Premier League)

Arsenal FC; Leicester City FC; Tottenham Hotspur FC.

SISGrass Professional Football Grounds Team of the Year (English Leagues 1 & 2, National, National North/South, Scottish Championship & Leagues 1 & 2, Ireland & Wales Professional Leagues) 

Bury FC, Greater Manchester; Dagenham and Redbrige FC, London.

Rigby Taylor/Top Green Young Groundsman of the Year
Alex Brierley, All England Lawn Tennis & Croquet Club, Wimbledon; Jake Messenger, Tottenham Hotspur FC; James Wood, Manchester City FC.

Two awards will be announced on the night; the Alex R Millar Ransomes/DLF Johnsons Groundsman of the Year Award and the Lifetime/­Outstanding Achievement Award.


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