LJN Blog Posts

PRO Supplier

SISIS success at Shrewsbury School

Andy Richards, grounds manager at Shrewsbury School, has reported excellent results from using a range of SISIS equipment to maintain the School’s widely praised sports pitches.

Shrewsbury School is one of the country's leading co-educational independent schools for 13-18-year-olds and attracts boys and girls from all over the country. It is one of the original seven public schools as defined by the Public Schools Act 1868, and its impressive list of previous pupils boasts a certain Mr Charles Darwin. In line with the work of its most famous "Old Salopian", the school continues to evolve in a dynamic way, achieving both outstanding academic and sporting results.

“We have a good blend of academics and sports at Shrewsbury School,” says Andy. “Sport is a massive part of the School and there is a very strong house sport system – in fact the students are willing to run through a brick wall for their school and their house in sporting competitions!”

It is for this reason that Andy and his team leave absolutely no stone un-turned when it comes to preparing and maintaining sports pitches of the highest standard. In fact, cricket-writer Sir Neville Cardus once famously described them as "the most beautiful playing fields in the world, spreading and imperceptibly mingling with the pasture land of Shropshire". However, these truly wonderful facilities don’t come easily.

Andy and his team work tirelessly throughout the year to provide sports pitches of the highest quality, and when it comes to his cricket wickets he puts his faith in the SISIS Auto Rotorake MK5

“We use the Auto Rotorake specifically for cricket because it does such a good job,” says Andy. “The amount of material you can take out of a wicket with the brush reel and the verticutting reel sometimes needs to be seen to be believed. We use it all the way through the cricket season. In summer we do 30 match wickets a week and it will be part of the preparation for every one of those. From the middle of April through to the last cricket match in August we play host to approximately 250 matches and the Auto Rotorake is used on every one of those.”

The SISIS Auto Rotorake MK5 is a powerful self-propelled heavy duty scarifier designed for the removal and control of thatch on fine turf. It features a contra-rotating reel with specially designed tipped blades for clean, consistent cut and maximum thatch removal. As Andy says, a variety of maintenance tasks can be carried out due to a selection of seven different interchangeable reels.

In further discussing his maintenance procedures, Andy pin-pointed aeration as one of the most vital.

“We have one of the highest pitch usages in the country. On each pitch we average 10-15 hours per week and we’ve got limited drainage. Therefore, one of the most important things we do is aeration and we aerate pitches all of the time. Grass lives and needs air like anyone else,” he says.

Breathing life into Andy’s grass is his newly purchased SISIS Javelin Aer-Aid tractor mounted aerator, and he had no problem in running it past the School’s bursars – as he explains.

“It was the machine I wanted because I had previously trialled it and had good results. For example I Clegg hammered the pitches before and after using the Aer-Aid and had noticed a massive reduction in hardness. I know that the Aer-Aid had recently undergone extensive Sports Turf Research Institute (STRI) trials and it came out with excellent results – which always gives you confidence and makes it easier to explain to the bursars why you want to purchase it.”

The Javelin Aer-Aid recently gained rave reviews from the STRI following a three month period in which extensive trials led by Dr Christian Spring were carried out. Described by Christian as “a very useful tool in a greenkeeper’s or groundsman’s arsenal,” the Javelin Aer-Aid is indeed becoming the number one choice for many turf managers looking for the best aeration results. 

With 10mm diameter ‘tipped’ tines working at 75mm (3ins) spacing, air is introduced from the Aer-Aid at a rate of 88 litres (3cu.ft.) per minute. These air injection tines are specially designed to use the maximum air available from the compressor and produces clean, fresh air, while also ensuring that surface disturbance is kept to a minimum. The cam trigger mechanism ensures that the air is always expelled at the bottom of the tine penetration, enabling treatment to be targeted precisely and consistently.

“It’s a really good machine,” says Andy. “It’s easy to use and we can see significant improvements since using the Aer-Aid.

“For me, SISIS signals simplicity and reliability. It may be a cliché but the equipment does what it says on the tin and that’s what I expect. The machines are built to last and I’ve never had any problems with SISIS equipment.”

For further information or a no obligation demonstration, please contact SISIS on 01332 824 777 or visit www.sisis.com

You need to be a member of Landscape Juice Network to add comments!

Join Landscape Juice Network

Highlighted blog posts

Open forum activity

Dave F replied to Dave F's discussion Spongey grass
"Thanks both - it’s a pretty big lawn so a big job across the full area. 
 "
55 minutes ago
Progreen Weed Control replied to Dave F's discussion Spongey grass
"Its got to be a heavy duty scarification in my book.
to play safe, half depth now, rest in spring  & ensure a harsh winter doesn't knock it back ....or, ....you have a decent root depth if you wanted to go for it all now & top dress/ fertilise......…"
1 hour ago
Chris Roberts replied to Dave F's discussion Spongey grass
"More scarifying 2-3 passes . regular aeration and reduce your nitrogen application dose."
1 hour ago
Dave F posted a discussion
Hi, looking for some advice please. Been looking after a lawn for a couple of years now and it has always been spongey underfoot and whilst the lawn has always looked good there’s been no appetite from the customer to tackle this.......however it’s…
1 hour ago
Dave F replied to Dave F's discussion Starting out - part time to full time
"Thanks for the replies everyone - reassuring to know all this is do-able!! Think I’ll sit tight for this winter and see what next year brings with a view to winter 2019 being my first.
Thanks all "
2 hours ago
Darren posted a discussion
Hi all,I have a job coming up soon and the customers wants railway sleepers all around the perimeter , however the garden raises up slightly towards the back.Not sure what this will look like. I want to do a higher bed at the back of the garden. Ple…
2 hours ago
Progreen Weed Control replied to Lee Edwards's discussion Is it too late to over seed?
"gooey ball...? ...are you sure your wife didn't give you one of those fat balls for birds ?
Did you stick some fertiliser down at the same time ? "
4 hours ago
Andrew Trevor and Odette Walden joined Landscape Juice Network
5 hours ago
Anthony Toop updated their profile
7 hours ago
John Powley replied to Harry@VWGS's discussion Weibang Pro 48 BBC roller mower review.
"Mine (56 pro) runs on very occasionally and it really catches you by surprise, it's more when you give it a little spurt of drive rather than after a long run and you have to give it a spurt of drive sometimes as it's so flipping heavy it's a joke s…"
19 hours ago
matt day replied to matt day's discussion secure storage, workshop needed
"Hi david, used to work from the quarry years ago but it was cash only and no access after 5!
The local farms are no good either, no joy at ones I've called in and one near the quarry has already had problems with the planners due to neighbour compla…"
20 hours ago
John Fulton replied to matt day's discussion secure storage, workshop needed
"It doesn't surprise me Matt , Its a nightmare just now , I will keep my eyes peeled , I am mostly around Harrogate , you will have most likely  tried East Leeds , not sure if the units on Stanks lane north stil exist and there could be some near Bar…"
22 hours ago
David Benson replied to matt day's discussion secure storage, workshop needed
"have you tried asking at the quarry on kings lane, or som of the farmers round and about 
i used to know a bloke near golden acre but he died a bit back and i do not know whome now owns the land 
you could ask if you can park them at emerdale plenty…"
22 hours ago
matt day replied to matt day's discussion secure storage, workshop needed
"Live in Adel ,so idealy within 20 mins in any direction. I am thinking of buying a couple of containers and renting a yard but in the perfect world would like secure storage with some parking for van and trailer."
23 hours ago
matt day replied to matt day's discussion secure storage, workshop needed
"thanks luke, yes i have mate"
23 hours ago
matt day replied to matt day's discussion secure storage, workshop needed
"ha ha, thats the one being developed!!"
23 hours ago
More…

Spongey grass

Hi, looking for some advice please. Been looking after a lawn for a couple of years now and it has always been spongey underfoot and whilst the lawn has always looked good there’s been no appetite from the customer to tackle this.......however it’s…

Read more…
3 Replies · Reply by Dave F 55 minutes ago