Services provided by Gordon Jaaback

Sports Pitch Consultant

Sport pitch consultant

Sports pitches are notorious for having drainage problems, making playing conditions poor. It doesn’t matter whether the pitch is for football, cricket, rugby, or any other activity, an essential ingredient is sound drainage. I have been working for many years with councils, schools, the private sector, and institutions, and my role ranges from consultancy on existing sports pitch challenges to full project management of sports pitch construction. Find out more…

Expert Witness

Expert witness

At times of heavy or persistent rainfall I have been regularly approached to advise on drainage needs – but more often called in to prepare a statement to assist in ending a dispute between the owner and the contractor who has completed drainage or construction works. This has often led to court appearance testifying as an expert witness. After more than 40 years in the turfgrass industry and being a contractor for half that period before confining my services to consulting, I have acquired knowledge on the causes of failure following drainage inadequacies, poor design or improper construction methods. As a qualified agronomist and specialising in soil science and drainage this experience in turfgrass projects enables me to give sound professional advice and defend my stance in areas of dispute. Find out more…

Site Assessment Feasibility Studies

Site assessment and feasibility studies

Site assessments

I find there is often a need to fully assess the conditions on a pitch before offering advice. These incorporate a detailed study of soil and vegetation characteristics, environmental conditions and limitations – and performance measurements where applicable. In specialised studies of sports pitches, observations and measurements are tabulated by rating from 1 to 4 so as to highlight strengths and weaknesses. This approach serves to initiate priority action as well as provide a summarised account that will enable future progress to be judged. Find out more…

Feasibility studies

In order to achieve the most cost-effective development of proposed outdoor sports facility it is vital to assess the existing topography, the vegetation present, the soil profile and other appropriate environmental conditions. With this information a concept design can be produced together with realistic estimates of construction and maintenance costs and the knowledge of the limitations that will exist. Find out more…

Design and project management

Sports pitch design and project management

Sound construction can only follow good and adequate design.  After many years in the contracting industry I have learnt – often from mistakes – the essential needs in implementing a construction project incorporating turfgrass establishment. I have come to realise the importance of in-depth preparation, detailed accurate design, well managed construction and ensuring vital establishment procedures. Preparing detailed working drawings and comprehensive specifications is of little value if the project is not properly overseen. Confining the final end price to the established budget hangs on rigid adherence to the agreed contract but more importantly to diligent research, completeness of the specifications and the immediate attention to unforeseen circumstances that are sure to arise. Find out more…

Advising and problem solving

Sports pitch drainage advice & problem solving

The main problem I am approached with concerns drainage – all the others generally involve standard maintenance management. As winter sports require sound playing surfaces after or during rain, provisions must be adequate to enable play in these conditions.  The main question would hinge on the degree of drainage required. The installation of drainage provisions and their maintenance is a costly exercise and it is not worth the investment if play can be postponed until dry conditions are restored.  If on the other hand, league fixtures or school commitments must not cancelled because of rain, a well maintained drainage system incorporating secondary slit drains is fully warranted.  Find out more…

Maintenance management

Sports pitch maintenance & management

It is impressive to see the quality of premier pitches today – expectations are so much higher than 20 years ago and technology is continually raising the standard.  But it all comes at a price – so much so that financial planning is vital – essential at lower levels.  In fact the annual remedial treatments needed on a standard local football club pitch including scarifying, over-seeding, de-compaction and sand dressing can amount to close on £7000. Allowing for 2-3 fertilisations, weed and earthworm control and regular brushing and spiking brings this annual total up to in the region of £10000. On top of this is the litter picking, divoting and weekly painting of lines – as well as attention to hedges and trees, access roads and parking facilities. Find out more…

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