On a sports turf operative apprenticeship you’ll help upkeep and improve sports surfaces so that public and private sports facilities may be utilised.
A sports turf operative, also known as a groundsperson or grounds maintenance operative, oversees public and private sports facilities.
As a sports turf operative, you will be responsible for the maintenance, restoration, and overall appearance of one or more sports turf surfaces in accordance with the needs of the particular sport. It will be your duty to maintain an appropriate playing surface that reflects the surface’s purpose.
You may work in a number of sports and settings, such as athletics, bowls, cricket, croquet, football, hockey, horse racing, rugby league and union, and tennis, and in settings ranging from simple park-type sports fields to world-class stadiums.
What you’ll learn
On a sports turf operative apprenticeship, you’ll learn to:
- Maintain and repair grass surfaces in a safe and appropriate way. This will include the safe use of a range of tools and equipment, including mowers, scarifiers, aerators, and other specialised lawn care equipment, as well as hand tools, ride-on, and tractor mounted implements.
- Calibrate equipment for material requirements and apply a range of goods at the appropriate rates, including grass seed, fertiliser, and heavy top-dressing.
- Use combined preventative and management methods to reduce the incidence of diseases, problems, pests, and weeds on grass.
- Set up and mark off sports zones in accordance with the rules of the Governing Bodies of Sport.
- Maintain and renovate tools, equipment, and machinery to ensure their safe and effective use.
- Maintain and repair basic drainage and irrigation systems on a regular basis.
- Communicate well with others and offer great customer service
- Work safely, efficiently, and effectively, whether under supervision, as an individual, or as part of a team.
What you’ll do
Your day-to-day tasks on a sports turf operative apprenticeship could be to:
- Prepare the ground for grass lawn installation
- Cutt grass
- Line up pitches and greens, cut holes and move markers
- Drain the water and scrub the surface of the ground
- Keep weeds, fungal diseases, and pests at bay, use lawn treatments.
- Use equipment like strimmers and ride-on mowers
You’ll usually need:
- some GCSEs, usually including English and maths, or equivalent, for an intermediate apprenticeship
The Final Assessment will contain two components:
- One multiple choice paper will be of 60 minutes duration and will consist of 15 questions each
with 4 options (3 distractors) and 15 questions each with 6 options (5 distractors).
- One written answer paper will be of 90 minutes duration and will consist of 15 questions.
You might be employed in a school, a park, or a sports field.
Your working environment may be outdoors in any weather.
Career path and progression
With time and experience, you may be promoted to supervisor, team leader, or section head.
You may be able to get training from the Grounds Management Association.
Duration: 18 months
Relevant school subjects: PE
Entry requirements: Depend on employer, but likely GCSEs or equivalent qualifications or relevant experience
Achievement upon completion: Level 2 (Intermediate)—equivalent to GCSEs
Potential salary upon completion: £18,000 per annum
More information about the Level 2 Sports Turf Operative Apprenticeship standard can be found here.
Apprenticeship End Point Assessment
For more information about the End Point Assessment Process, please read the Institute of Apprenticeships’ information page.