Nominations are now being accepted for the 2018 Institute of Groundsmanship (IOG) Industry Awards, with 21 categories of entry recognising the passion, dedication and challenges faced by grounds staff in both grassroots and professional sports at clubs of every size and from all corners of the UK.
This year’s awards - the 10th in the series and being held on October 31st at the Hilton Metropole hotel at the Birmingham NEC, on the evening of the first day of SALTEX, includes the introduction of new awards and enhancements to existing categories.
To celebrate the anniversary, the IOG is planning some exciting changes to the awards event which has continually grown in status for acknowledging the achievements of volunteer and professional grounds teams, as well as community clubs and national stadia.
Commenting, IOG chief executive Geoff Webb says: "We are planning some exciting developments for the awards presentations to mark the 10th anniversary. We have added new categories and enhanced the entry criteria, opening up the awards to more potential winners from all sectors of society, at all levels of the sporting spectrum.
“The awards continue to provide the only national stage for the achievements of everyone involved in groundscare across all levels of sport, whether professional teams at stadia or, indeed, the lone volunteer groundsman at a small village club.
“Importantly, applications to every category are encouraged from Scotland, Ireland and Wales, as well as England.”
He adds: “These are the only awards for groundsmen that are judged by groundsmen, and we are lucky to have a dedicated group of volunteer judges with a range of backgrounds that encompass the diversity of the industry and profession today.
“Please take the time to nominate as you must know many deserving candidates and great examples of sports turf management at every level.”
The IOG Industry Awards categories include:
IOG Rigby Taylor/Top Green Young Grounds Person
This award is open to anyone who is aged 30 years or under at the time of submitting their application. Young grounds staff are the future of our industry, so if you know a young person who deserves this award, perhaps a friend of colleague, nominate them today. You'll also help improve the status of grounds people in the UK.
IOG AMS Volunteer Sports Grounds Team/Individual
This award recognises the extremely valuable work of all those who voluntarily work on either grassroots or professional sport surfaces, in a local community or world-class sports stadium. This award raises the profile of volunteers, who devote their spare time to maintaining and improving our playing surfaces.
IOG NGB Community Sports Club Grounds Team/Individual
Open to all community sports clubs. This award will highlight the skills and quality of pitch maintenance by both willing volunteers and paid professionals. Has your local sports ground faced a recent challenge and gone over and above to win? Your good deed for today – say thanks, nominate now.
IOG Public Sector Sports Grounds Team
Open to all sites owned and operated by Councils, Metropolitan through to Parish. For parks or state schools, leisure centres or small rural settings – contractors, client-side management, trusts or community groups. There should be a visible improvement in managing sports capacity, through reduced cancellations and integrated management.
IOG Best Managed Artificial Surface
For those who apply essential maintenance work to effectively manage an artificial surface, enable frequency of use and meet the desired standard. This award is open to all levels of sport, whether volunteer or paid professional and takes into account the usage level, grounds budget, surface condition and available resources.
IOG Ransomes Environmental and Ecology Strategy
This award is for those who intend to, are currently in the process of, or have recently completed a key project – considering topics such as vegetation, wildlife, habitats, sustainability and the environment as a whole. This award is open to all areas of sports turf and all sectors. Do you know a grounds team who shows responsibility for green management?
IOG SISGrass Professional Football Grounds Team (A)
(For English Leagues 1 & 2, National League, National League North/South, Scottish Championship & Leagues 1 & 2, Ireland & Wales Professional Leagues). This award highlights the very best in sports turf management at a club, inside the professional football leagues in England, Scotland, Wales and Ireland. The venue will host paying spectators.
IOG SGL Professional Football Grounds Team (B)
(For those in the Premier League, Championship and Scottish Premier League). This award highlights the very best in sports turf management at an elite football club. The winning team should 'mostly' be paid on a full-time basis as employees of the club, and work at the stadium and/or training ground. The venue will host paying spectators.
IOG University/College Grounds Team
This award is designed to recognise excellence in the presentation of playing surfaces and green space at any university or college in the UK. Nominate a grounds team and help the IOG, and the wider grounds management industry, to congratulate the effort that goes in to maintaining the facilities at these learning establishments. Take part, vote now!
IOG Growth Products Independent School Grounds Team
This award is designed to recognise excellence in the presentation of playing surfaces and green space at an independent school in the UK. Nominate a grounds team and help the IOG, and the wider grounds management industry, to congratulate the effort that goes in to maintaining the facilities at these learning establishments. Take part, vote now!
To make your nomination(s) click here, or for more information and to view the full list of categories visit www.iog.org/awards.