The Sports Turf Research Institute (STRI), an ESSMA Stadium Partner, organised its annual research meeting on 20-21 September, at the STRI Headquarters in Bingley (United Kingdom). The event was open for all ESSMA members, with specific attention to our group of pitch professionals, including the Groundsmen of Twickenham Stoop and Leicester City FC, as well as Pitch Partners such as Tarkett Hybrid Grass and Campey-Imants.

Venues and Venue Management have evolved significantly. ESSMA’s Corporate Partner 3D Digital Venue builds 360-degree 3D interactive ticketing solutions that aim to enhance fan experience which will increase season ticket holder renewals and provide special viewing experiences for potential VIP consumers. By using the technology, fans are able to experience the view in 3D of their allocated seats in the stadium.

On the 24th of September the Camp Nou stadium of FC Barcelona turned 60. In 1957 the first home game in Camp Nou was played in the unfinished stadium with over 90,000 fans present. Since then Camp Nou, an ESSMA Stadium Member, has been the site of FC Barcelona’s significant success including 18 Primera Division titles, 16 Copas Del Rey and 5 Champions League and European Cup wins.

On the 5th and 6th of September, the Deutsche Fussball Liga (DFL) organised a pitch workshop for pitch managers of the first and second German professional leagues. The event aimed to exchange knowledge and discuss upcoming trends and technologies as well as to award the best pitch of last season in first and second division. The Allianz Arena was host for the event, welcoming 58 participants from 32 Bundesliga and 2. Bundesliga clubs. ESSMA was invited by the DFL to explain the services Groundsmen could benefit from and invited Reece Watson, Head Groundsman at Emirates Stadium, to share a presentation on data gathering and management. 

After residing over 50 years in the Estadio Vicente Calderon, Atletico Madrid’s home games will be played in the new Wanda Metropolitano, located in the north-east of Madrid. Construction started in 2011, on the grounds of the old La Peineta, an athletics stadium.