Skip to main content



05 Oct 2023

SALTEX Learning LIVE Programme 2023: Bringing People Together for the Greater Good of Grounds

SALTEX Learning LIVE Programme 2023: Bringing People Together for the Greater Good of Grounds
SALTEX’s comprehensive and extensive Learning LIVE programme for 2023 is now live
Designed to bring people together for the greater good of grounds, SALTEX’s comprehensive and extensive Learning LIVE programme for 2023 is now live

Months in the making, all of the industry’s hottest topics are covered across the three stages over two days.

On the Spotlight Stage on Wednesday 1 November, the ‘Messi of mowing’ John Ledwidge, head of grounds and landscapes at Manchester City FC, Nick Taylor, managing director of Greycircle and Adrian Kay, York Racecourse Grounds Manager, host a discussion on skillful leadership best practice and the importance of team culture.

How do you deliver a major sporting event? Grounds managers at England's most iconic cricketing venues talk about that and overcoming the challenges in hosting this year's Ashes tournament on the Main Stage. Visitors can also meet the team behind the Women's Ashes' pitch delivery. These female pioneers will discuss how they got involved in this initiative and how they'd like its legacy to help promote grounds management as a career option for women and girls.

Also on Wednesday, attendees will get the chance to take part in an interactive panel discussion on the Main Stage with GMA consultant, Tim Nicholls and the Rugby Football League’s, Pat Clusky. The topic of discussion will be the GMA's newly launched Grounds Management Framework which offers new and existing grounds staff a clear career pathway aligned with the necessary tools and qualifications needed to improve pitch standards and progress within the industry.

On day two, the Main Stage is busy celebrating volunteer heroes. Wes Matthews from Cranfield FC & Luton Town FC, GMA award winner Dean Gibbons from Wantage Bowls Club and Liam Murgatroyd from Queensferry ARLFC talk about working around the day job, finding funding opportunities and making the all-important budget spread further.

The requirement to reduce non-household water usage by nine percent by 2037 has created the perfect storm for leisure turf irrigation, resulting in requirements to reduce both abstraction volumes and mains use at the same time. At Learning LIVE visitors can find out how water availability will change and what should be considered in the search for alternative sustainable water sources.

Tony Hanson, Planet Mark Associate and Golf Environment Organisation Sustainability Associate, who is hosting a session on this subject says: “Water availability is changing – historically high personal consumption, population growth, climate change, increasing incidence of drought and flooding, over abstraction and pollution have all contributed to problems we now have to solve around water resource and quality. The leisure sector can protect future water sources and be part of the solution at SALTEX.” 

Speaking of climate change and what comes next, over on the Spotlight Stage on day one, an important audience participation event concerning where we were, where we are now and where we are going with concern to UK weather under the umbrella of a rapidly changing world is hosted by Jim Dale – senior meteorological consultant, British Weather Services.

While on day two, the Spotlight Stage shines a spotlight on building relations with key stakeholders and justifying capital expenditure. The seminar is delivered by Callum Allsop from Leicester City FC, Adrian Kay from York Racecourse and Niall Hazelhurst from Warrington Wolves.

And finally the Eco Stage, on day one an update on sustainable installation and maintenance of synthetic turf, the current EU regulations on rubber crumb and recycling solutions is hosted by Alistair Cox from Loughborough University, Colin Corline from SAPCA, Chris Barry from Football Foundation and Eric O’Donnell from Sports Labs.

Following the sustainable theme, on day two Dr John Dempsey discusses non-pesticidal disease management. The independent turfgrass researcher says: “With all the restrictions on pesticides and the ambition of turfgrass managers to maintain their facilities and control disease in a sustainable manner, non-pesticidal disease management presents ways in which to do this without recourse to pesticides and by utilising the turfgrass’s own defence mechanisms.

“My seminar covers several research projects carried out over the past three years and presents results on surfactant effects on soil moisture and turfgrass quality, rootzone amendment’s effect on turfgrass growth, reduction of earthworm casting and the uptake and accumulation potassium phosphite.”

All Learning LIVE sessions qualify for both BASIS and BIGGA CPD points with 2 BASIS CPD points gained for attending SALTEX this year and a point for each session attended (up to four per day). BIGGA Networking Credits are also available with one for attending SALTEX and a one BIGGA education credit per hour for each Learning LIVE seminar attended.

More information about the SALTEX 2023 Learning LIVE programme can be found at

Free visitor registration is now open. Visit or register here.