MWC 4650A major educational initiative designed to enlighten young people about the benefits of a career in groundscare will be staged at this year’s SALTEX (Sports Amenity & Landscape Trade Exhibition) at Windsor Racecourse.

The IOG Young Groundsmen’s Conference will also bring head groundsmen up to date with advice on how to attract youngsters into the industry by offering expert advice on apprenticeships, for example.

Young people will gain invaluable career-shaping advice from head groundsmen at high profile, international sports venues. They will also learn about the benefits of working in the industry from young groundsmen who are currently progressing their careers across a wide range of sports facilities.

The event will be staged from 13.00 to 15.30 on Tuesday 2 September on the Institute of Groundsmanship (IOG) Live Stage in the centre of the SALTEX showground.

Chaired by 28-year-old John Ledwidge, head groundsman at Leicester City FC, the ‘Our Career, Your Future’ programme will include a question and answer session with Keith Kent from Twickenham Stadium and England & Wales Cricket Board pitches consultant Chris Wood, as well as Neil Stubley from the All England Lawn Tennis & Croquet Club.

These industry experts will provide first-hand advice on the wide-ranging opportunities that exist across all types of sports venues. They will also offer head groundsmen timely advice on the rewards of having apprentices, for example, as part of their teams.

IOG representatives Geoff Webb (CEO), Jason Booth (national manager), Chris Gray (head of education) and approved trainer/assessor Gary Armstrong will then take questions and discuss the numerous training pathways available before Ryan Golding, head groundsman at Leeds Rugby, takes to the stage.

Ryan, aged 27, will provide some first-hand advice on how he has travelled the industry career path to become head groundsman at one of the country’s leading rugby stadia.

In addition, there will also be a question and answer session with the IOG Young Board of Directors (who programmed the event), a group of young groundsmen who are continually ‘spreading the industry word’ in schools and colleges, as well as to young people at public events up and down the country. 

Visit for full details of the IOG Young Groundsmen’s Conference, and the SALTEX show which you can visit for FREE.

[] SALTEX (, the Sports Amenities Landscaping Trade Exhibition organised by the Institute of Groundsmanship (IOG) and managed by Brintex Events, will be held on 2-4 September 2014 at Windsor Racecourse, Berks. Founded in 1938, the exhibition is attended by open space professionals and volunteers who design, construct, manage and maintain the UK's outdoor facilities - from sports grounds of every type to motorway service stations, and from stately homes to local council parks and schools. They visit SALTEX to meet suppliers of the machinery, tools, vehicles, turf, soils, seeds, aggregates, artificial or natural surfaces, playgrounds, landscaping equipment, street furniture, arboriculture, horticulture, safety, security, training and education services designed to help them do their jobs as effectively as possible.