ETC Sports Surfaces completes new school MUGA for the children of Essex

In December 2018, Sport England launched its Active Lives Children and Young People Survey. The results reveal that only 1.2 million (17.5%) of UK children are active for more than the recommended level of 60 minutes per day. What’s more, the survey shows that schools have a vital part to play in fostering a love of sport, since it found that around half of children’s physical activities take place at school. For many schools where space is at a premium, a MUGA is the ideal solution to achieve exactly this aim.

ETC Sports Surfaces has installed hundreds of multi use games areas for clients across the UK. In particular, we are always delighted to help schools improve their facilities, so that every child has the opportunity to try out different sports in a safe, fun environment. Recently, we completed just such a project for Bishops C of E & RC Primary School in Chelmsford, Essex. As part of its mission to offer a wide curriculum to a high standard, the school has a strong focus on PE and sports and is an active member of the Chelmsford School Sports Partnership. Football, cricket, netball, dodgeball and basketball are among the many sports on offer – but the old grass field was prone to flooding in the winter and dusty, dry conditions in the summer, making it difficult to use all year round. According to the school’s Site Manager, Danny Clark, the new MUGA pitch has “created a whole new contained space for activity in all weathers, with no more ‘keep off the grass’ rules or muddy surfaces to worry about.”

Installing an artificial MUGA pitch and fencing for safe, all weather use

The school contracted us to design and install an artificial grass MUGA with fencing and associated works, creating a dedicated space for sports and play which, according to the school council, is a great hit with the children! After taking the time to survey the site and understand the school’s needs, we helped them to settle on a Matchplay II surface, manufactured by Playrite. This surface features a needle punch carpet with fast draining sand infill, equipping it to stand up to all weather usage all year round. It can be finished in a variety of colours and markings and is adaptable to many different sports – making it the ideal solution for a multi use games area.

We began work on the MUGA construction on the 23rd July 2018 and completed the finishing works in early October, allowing the heaviest works to be delivered during the school’s summer holidays. To ensure safety and security, we incorporated Duo6 MUGA fencing supplied by Zaun – a 6mm double wire system designed to minimise rattle noise for the convenience of neighbouring residents, whilst ensuring a safe playing environment with no sharp edges – ideal for primary school-aged children.

Installing multi use games areas to the highest accredited standards

A MUGA construction is a significant investment for any school, so we ensure that we design, install and maintain every surface to the highest possible standards of workmanship, health and safety and accreditation. That’s a commitment that’s reflected in our recent SAPCA membership renewal, a process which demands that we demonstrate the highest professional standards in every aspect of our work. Recently, we were thrilled that Danny contacted us to say: “The children and staff absolutely love our new MUGA. The product itself is very well made and professionally installed by ETC Sports Surfaces. From start to finish, ETC had everything seamlessly covered to create this great addition to our school.”

Now, Bishops C of E and RC Primary School is embarking on a further improvement project to build a new school hall, which will incorporate new changing rooms for the children – the perfect facilities addition that will enhance their enjoyment of all kinds of sports on their new MUGA pitch. We wish the school luck in this new endeavour and we are delighted to be a part of their continuous journey to improve sporting opportunities and experiences for Chelmsford’s children.

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Connect to our project partners: @SAPCA | @PlayriteSurface | @ZaunLimited