Think back to when your synthetic turf pitch was first installed.

Not only was it exciting, a new facility, but also the surface was pristine, often state of the art and designed to last for the next decade. Well a few years have passed, the pitch has been used and has aged, the time has come, or very soon, for it to be replaced.

CCGrass, football field

The risk if you don’t change at the right time is a loss of users to other nearby pitches, and this means revenue. Sometimes acting too late can kill a facility; it could be condemned and taken out of action. In some cases the surface may even become dangerous, with seams opening up, too much infill on the surface and bacteria forming where drainage has been impaired. Customers, are literally, driven away.

So what do you do? Well, the easy answer is to replace the surface, before it is too late. But can you afford to?

When the pitch was first built funding came from a variety of sources such as the Lottery, Football Foundation and even further back, the Foundation for Sports and Art. At the time all would have recommended putting money into a sinking fund. But take a look at the new changing room block, or science lab, that’s where your sinking fund has gone.

CCGrass, FIFA Preferred Produce

What you do have is a booking history. This may be in long-term contracts with clubs or schools that have used the pitch, or regular revenue from 5 a side leagues, that sub-hire the area. This, future, income, can be used to finance monthly payments to make the pitch replacement possible. The numbers add up easily.

  1. To replace a full size football pitch the surface will cost between £140,000 and £180,000. If you add a new shock pad you should add a further £40,000.
  2. A well-managed synthetic surface should generate between £5,000 and £9,000 per month.
  3. If some of this income is diverted towards paying off the pitch, the new surface could be funded easily over a 5 to 7 year period, and still leave sufficient funds to cover maintenance, management and marketing, not to mention contributing towards other facilities.

The danger is if you don’t look out for yourself and wait for grant monies, you may well have lost the most important people, the users.

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