Birmingham, England: The British & International Golf Greenkeepers Association (BIGGA) has unveiled a new outdoor festival and exhibition, to take place in June.
The event, called the Festival of Turf, will bring together the greenkeeping and turf management industry for two days of innovation, exhibition and entertainment.
Taking place in the Covid-secure setting of the Warwickshire Event Centre on June 8-9, the Festival of Turf will feature two full exhibition days with a wide range of trade stalls and opportunities to interact with vendors and meet face-to-face with industry peers for the first time since the coronavirus pandemic took hold.
Located on the outskirts of Leamington Spa, close to Coventry in the English Midlands, the venue enjoys easy access to all transport networks, along with 2,000 free parking spaces. The Warwickshire Event Centre can accommodate up to 200 exhibitors and is capable of welcoming 3,000 visitors a day.
Set in a 30-acre site with both indoor and outdoor exhibition areas, the venue provides countless opportunities to make the Festival of Turf an innovative and exciting new event for the greenkeeping and amenity turf management industry.
Throughout the Covid-19 pandemic, BIGGA has been in regular conversation with regulators, golf’s governing bodies and central government and there’s widespread confidence that a successful event can take place in June. Importantly, there is also a keen desire among commercial partners and industry professionals to provide an event that enables the industry to move forward and begin the process of rebuilding so many key relationships that have been eroded through the distance imposed by the pandemic.
BTME, BIGGA’s annual trade exhibition that was due to be held this month, has been cancelled with the event’s spiritual home, the Harrogate Convention Centre, continuing to be utilised as an NHS Nightingale Hospital.
BIGGA’s world-renowned education programme, Continue to Learn, has moved to an entirely-online format and will be held across two weeks during January.
BIGGA CEO Jim Croxton said: “I’m excited that BIGGA is finally able to launch the Festival of Turf to the industry and bring some much-needed hope for a brighter future. The Festival of Turf is a hugely welcome opportunity to reunite our industry, which will have been forcibly separated by the global pandemic for nearly 18 months by the time this event takes place.
“The industry has survived brilliantly despite all the challenges it has faced, due in no small part to the resilience and adaptability of BIGGA members and the network of commercial partners who have supported us all throughout the pandemic.
“There has been a clear groundswell of opinion that members, other turf professionals and commercial supporters want the opportunity to celebrate our achievements and put this whole terrible ordeal behind us – and that’s where the Festival of Turf comes in. The event will be an opportunity to reconnect at a time when personal connections have never been more vital.”
For more information about the Festival of Turf, please visit www.bigga.co.uk