Anfield hosts 'Schools into Stadia' initiative

Liverpool FC ground staff helped give local school children a unique insight into the art of creating a world-class pitch during a special event at Anfield last week.

The Schools into Stadia initiative - run by the Institute of Groundsmanship (IOG) - introduces youngsters to the craft of groundsmanship through a series of one-day workshops, showcasing the profession as an ideal opportunity to work in an outdoor environment within sport. 

Pupils from three local high schools - North Liverpool Academy, Alsop High School and Notre Dame Catholic College - were invited to Anfield through Liverpool's Red Neighbours programme and were hosted by the club's ground staff together with members of the IOG's Young Board of Directors. 

The interactive event covered all aspects of a groundsman's role, including use of equipment, pitch construction, maintenance and match-day procedure.

Anfield staff and the IOG group, alongside a representative from Myerscough College for Horticulture and Land-based Studies, also provided practical advice on how to pursue a career in the industry and explained the link between groundsmanship and academic subjects such as biology, maths, geography and technology. 

David Roberts, grounds manager at LFC, said: "It's been fantastic to have the Schools into Stadia initiative here at Anfield.

"We're really pleased to be able to showcase our profession to the students and give them a real insight into what it means to be part of a grounds team." 

Geoff Webb, CEO of IOG, added: "Liverpool FC is an iconic club and the standard of sports turf at both the stadium and training grounds is world class. 

"The IOG is helping local students, aged 14 to 15, to better understand the many facets of grounds management and to encourage young people to consider a rewarding career in groundsmanship. 

"Schools into Stadia is aimed at GSCE-level students by taking the principles of sports turf management and linking it to the school curriculum. It's a great initiative and we thank Liverpool FC for hosting this event and helping to showcase careers in groundsmanship."