Turf Business welcomed more than 50 delegates to their Focus Group event at Manchester City FC’s Etihad Stadium on the 14th May.
The day was both productive and engaging with an eye-opening tour of the premier league champion’s stadium, which looked especially winning bathed in sunshine.
The Manchester City Focus Group was the first UK event that Turf Business has hosted since its successful Summit in Madrid last year, as Martin Smart, Turf Business Publisher, explained: “The Man City event went really well and was well received by everyone who attended. It was, as we hoped, another fantastic opportunity to share ideas and generate more fruitful discussions about issues affecting everyone across turfcare. A key part of all our events is to encourage professionals to work together to benefit our industry as a whole.”
The thought-provoking Focus Group event included open group discussions which threw up more ideas and suggestions for tackling issues across every sector, as Martin added: “delegates explored topics that had been identified during out first Summit, such as education and grassroots. In fact, most discussions led back to education and training, so these are clearly important areas. It was really good to hear from all our attendees and to pull out some constructive ideas from their discussions.”
Research Engine were on hand to steer the Focus Group on topics highlighted in Turf Business’ earlier ‘State-of-the-Nation (SOTN) Survey’ and the output from Madrid was also revisited as Research Engine’s Director, Chris Horne, explained: “I facilitated the focus group sessions at the Turf Business meeting at the superb Etihad Stadium. There was a good attendance of turf managers, groundsmen and green keepers who entered energetically into the discussions. We focused on two key topics which arose from the Turf Summit last October in Madrid: how we can better support grass roots sport and how to be more effective in educating all stakeholders into the importance of the profession plus the resources and skills needed to achieve the best results. We were also able to check the topics that will be explored in this summer’s pan-industry survey leading into the work at the next Summit in Portugal in October. This was a successful day in a great location and I’d like to reiterate my thanks to our hosts at Manchester City.”
The event also saw the launch of the Turf Business Summit 2019 App which was offered to all visitors. The App enabled visitors to download information, participate in polls, network and complete surveys while the day unfolded.
Championship pitch tour
During the day, a tour of the Etihad Stadium was a timely one, with Manchester City FC only recently winning the Premier League championship crown for a second consecutive season. Delegates enjoyed seeing the pitch first-hand with Lee Jackson, Head Groundsman on the side-lines to talk through maintenance programmes, renovations and tips for achieving perfection at such a world-class pitch, always under the glare of the media. An optional Training Facility tour proved equally popular.
Turf Business would like to take this opportunity to thank Manchester City FC Head Groundsman, Lee Jackson, everyone at the Etihad Stadium and our key Summit sponsors for helping to stage such a formidable event.
Following the success of the Manchester City Focus Group, Turf Business look forward to hosting a Question Time Event on Tuesday, June 25th at St George’s Park, home of the England’s national football team. This event will offer delegates the chance to be part of a live audience, with questions put to a panel with the aim of sparking lively industry discussions. The entertaining event will be broadcast on Turf Business TV. Visitors to St George’s Park will also tour the famous facilities.
Both Turf Business UK events are part of the Turf Business Summit’s ongoing drive to encourage turfcare professionals to work together to benefit the industry through shared and continued discussions.
This year’s Summit takes place at Portugal’s Quinta do Lago in October 2019. Like last year, the Summit will include working groups and open-forum debates alongside our key Summit sponsors.