Leading groundcare company, Premier Pitches, have completed their work with the pitch now re-seeded in preparation for the new season and the first home game against Arsenal XI on July 30th.
The Yorkshire based company, who have been responsible for renovation work at top clubs across Europe, including Chelsea, Fulham and Newcastle, completed the re-seeding process on Thursday evening (June 6) after just over a week of work on the pitch at the Matchroom Stadium.
After removing the top layer of the playing surface, extensive work began on installing extra drainage across the pitch which saw a series of trenches being dug around 50cm apart. These were then filled with 240 tonnes of sand to a depth of 22.5cm that will connect the upper root zone with the existing lateral drains that were previously in place on the Brisbane Road pitch.
120 tonnes of new fibre sand was then spread on top and levelled, which will give the soil a firm structure, helping hold the pitch together during wet conditions.
The surface was then seeded and flat rolled with the groundstaff watering and covering with germination sheets on Friday morning to protect from any wildlife. The new seeds are expected to germinate in around a week, before the first cut with rotary mowers in approximately three weeks time.
Head Groundsman Colin James, said: “After last year’s trouble with the pitch and the bad weather, we have had a number of experts and consultants come in and offer their suggestions. We believe this method will provide the best solution for the pitch within our budget.
“We had the fibre sand integrated into the pitch last season and that played a key part in the turf holding together, not cutting up too much and playing better than it looked after the bad weather last year. With addition of the sand bands connecting to the pitches main drainage system and once again investing heavily in the pitch, we are hopeful that we will be able to produce a much better playing surface for next season.”
Meanwhile the top layer of the pitch that was taken off the Brisbane Road surface has been distributed to a number of local community pitches, with Hackney Marshes one of the benefactors.