This page explains the requirements and gives practical advice on building and maintaining playing fields and sports pitches as well as the design selection process of material for a range of outdoor sports surfaces.
Artificial sports surfaces
Our Artificial Surfaces for Outdoor Sport guide looks at the use of artificial grass pitches, needle punch play surfaces, and polymeric surfaces. It gives essential information used by national governing bodies (NGBs), developers and planners to meet quality standards for construction and maintenance of natural turf and typical pitch layouts.
We advise on a range of facilities, whether they’re located in new or existing schools, local parks, sports clubs or as part of larger regeneration projects. The guidance covers:
- The benefits of various surface materials
- Design concepts
- Common technical expressions
- Technical classifications of various playing surfaces
- Suitability of surfaces for various levels of sports at training or performance levels
- Other sources of information and more detailed advice.
Our guide on Artificial Surfaces for Outdoor Sport replaces our original design guide, Multi-Use Games Areas Volume 1.
You can access a simple, consistent methodology and approach to selecting the right type of artificial grass surface for playing hockey, football, rugby union and rugby league with our guidance on selecting the right surface below.
Natural turf sports surfaces
Our Natural Turf for Sport Design Guide will help you develop safe and sustainable pitches that are fit for their sporting purpose. It also gives practical advice on building and maintaining playing fields and sports pitches, including:
- Design guidance
- Standard pitch layouts
- Construction specifications
Groundsmanship for Sports Clubs
We’ve worked closely with the Football Association, England and Wales Cricket Board and Institute of Groundsmanship to develop guidance on the successful management of dual use cricket and football sites that identifies the key issues you might run into when creating sustainable pitches. The guidance also shows, through a series of useful tips and case studies, how football and cricket can continue to work together effectively.
Our Groundsmanship for Sports Clubs website also provides valuable support for volunteers, coaches, club officials and the 'hands-on' groundskeeper. With easy to follow advice, images and videos aimed at all club members, the site encourages a collaborative team approach to looking after sports grounds and creating great pitches.