Northampton Saints’ ground staff picked up some silverware of their own on Wednesday evening as they were recognised for their outstanding work over the last 12 months.
The hallowed, all-natural turf at Franklin’s Gardens is widely regarded as the finest playing surface in the Gallagher Premiership – and now head groundsman Andy Miller and his team have the award to prove it.
The Institute of Groundsmanship Awards acknowledge the passion, dedication and challenges faced by grounds staff across all levels of professional sport.
And after Saints’ own crew scooped the Professional Rugby Football Union Grounds Team of the Year gong at a glittering awards ceremony on Wednesday in Birmingham, the Club’s chief executive Mark Darbon offered his congratulations.
“It’s so pleasing to see Andy and his team getting recognised for the hours and hours of hard work they put in behind the scenes at Franklin’s Gardens,” he said.
“With the pitch getting mowed numerous times on matchdays alone, the guys cover hundreds of kilometres on foot every week, and battle through the elements – through stifling heat in summer, and driving rain or even snow in winter – to ensure that Northampton Saints’ players enjoy the finest pitch in the Gallagher Premiership.
“Our playing surface is the envy of every other team in the league, and so it comes as no surprise to me to see our team win this award. Everyone at the Club is thrilled for them!”