Entries are now being accepted for this year’s Institute of Groundsmanship (IOG) 2014 Industry Awards in partnership with BIGGA. The awards recognise the skill of groundsmanship across all main professional sports, as well as education, volunteer and grassroots sports at all levels, plus new this year are awards for excellence in greenkeeping.
Nominations can easily be made online for the Awards – the only industry-wide annual awards that acknowledge the important contribution made by groundscare and greenkeeping staff to the high standards of playing surfaces and the sustainability of British sport.
The results will be announced Oscar-style at the MK Dons Stadium in Milton Keynes on Thursday 4 December, following the IOG’s 2014 Sports Turf Conference.
The successful Awards will be the sixth in the annual series. They highlight the high standards of volunteer and professional grounds staff and facilities, from grassroots to professional stadia level. Covering categories such as sport, young people and the environment, the awards are judged by an independent panel on criteria that include effective use of resources, budgetary control, presentation and housekeeping standards, as well as environmental considerations.
In addition to revised categories that recognise the efforts of professional groundscare teams, plus additional awards that celebrate excellence at grassroots level, also new this year are three awards for the golf industry. The IOG has joined forces with the British and International Golf Greenkeepers Association (BIGGA) to introduce three BIGGA Awards that will recognise the achievements of greenkeepers the length and breadth of the UK, whether they are employed at large multi-course facilities or smaller venues.
Commenting on the revision of the professional award categories to recognise team effort in cricket, rugby union, rugby league, tennis, football and horseracing, IOG chief executive Geoff Webb says: “Each year we review feedback, and groundsmen who have previously won individual awards do point out how important their groundscare teams are. We hope this change of emphasis will further encourage employers to nominate and recognise the many great teams that exist across various sports venues.”
He continues: “A new award is the IOG Grounds and Natural Turf Improvement Programme Volunteer of the Year. This will recognise outstanding contributions to turf care by volunteers, a sector that the recently–announced £1.3 million Grounds and Natural Turf Improvement Programme’s new network of regional pitch advisors will be in touch with on a daily basis.”
Jim Croxton, BIGGA chief executive adds: “The IOG Industry Awards is a fantastic occasion during which we celebrate great achievement in the groundsmanship industry. I’m delighted that we are partnering with the IOG to introduce greenkeeping awards. The sponsors and supporters of the event see great value in the opportunity to bring the entire turf management industry together to reward the remarkable achievements of its practitioners.”
The three BIGGA Award categories are:
- The Sherriff Amenity/BASF BIGGA Young Greenkeeper of the Year
- Championship Greenkeeping Performance of the Year
- BIGGA Greenkeeping Achievement of the Year.
Visit www.iogawards.com to make easy-to-enter entries/nominations.