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SISIS Brush-Pro passes test at King Edward's School

The SISIS Brush-Pro has become an invaluable tool helping the team keep the three hockey pitches in excellent condition
The SISIS Brush-Pro has become an invaluable tool helping the team keep the three hockey pitches in excellent condition

The SISIS Brush-Pro ride-on brushing system has gained top marks at King Edward's School in Birmingham, where head groundsman Garry Watson uses it for all of his synthetic surface maintenance.

Two esteemed independent schools sit in the 50-acre site in Edgbaston Park Road, Birmingham - the boys' school, founded by King Edward VI in 1552 and the girls' school, established in 1883.

Both attain extremely high academic standards and are highly placed in national league tables on a regular basis.

They also make a huge effort to offer a wide range of opportunities for extra-curricular activities, including several sports. Facilities for athletics, cricket, football, hockey, rugby, and tennis are all included at the school, and Watson oversees the maintenance of these pitches along with his eight-strong staff team.

Three of these synthetic surfaces are used solely for hockey - two at the girls' school and one recent sand-based construction at the boys' school. All three get plenty of use, from the schol teams in the day and local clubs in the evenings and at weekends.

Contrary to a popular misconception, synthetic turf surfaces need to be carefully looked after - just like turf pitches and facilities, and the need to be maintained as soon as they are ready for play so the perform as they should.

Regular, periodic maintenance is also required to keep the playing environment safe, retain performance characteristics and prolong the life of the surface.

When Watson knew he needed an upgrade on his previous machine to make sure the surfaces still fitted the bill, he turned to the SISIS Brush-Pro.

The SISIS Brush-Pro is a ride-on brush system that consists of two mid-mounted oscillating units and three rear-mounted brush units that have been designed specifically for the maintenance of synthetic surfaces.

After seeing a demonstration of the Brush-Pro in action, Watson was impressed enough to purchase two of the machines.

"Jason Briggs, (area sales manager for Dennis and SISIS) brought it in, gave us a demonstration and straight away I knew that I wanted one," Watson says.

"I brought Douglas Parkes, our synthetic surface specialist, out to have a look and he said 'Wow, can we have one please?'

"The original plan was to just buy one and drive it from the boys’ school to the girls’ school, but because we were so impressed we bought two so that we’ve now got one at each site.

"We’ve always done our own synthetic surface maintenance in house and we’d normally use the standard, flatter brushes.

"Don’t get me wrong, they were good and worked well but the SISIS Brush-Pro is just so much better."

The Brush-Pro has been designed to give operators maximum manoeuvrability and comfort, featuring - among other innovations - an electric start, hydrostatic drive for forward/reverse and its brush combinations which oscillate for thorough or periodic work while the rear-mounted brushes are used for routine frequent work, causing less compaction using conventional drag brushes.

"The oscillating brush is the best feature because it lifts the pile of the carpet up," Watson explains.

"The problem with synthetic surfaces is that you get a lot of flattening but the SISIS Brush-Pro brings the fibres back up leaving it in great condition.

"I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend this product," he added.

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