News - Kestrel Contractors


Hampton Rangers Junior FC becomes the first youth club to get a cork infill 3G pitch

Posted on January 5, 2017 by Tron

Hampton Rangers Junior Football Club based in SW London, courtesy of Kestrel Contractors their main sponsor, have become the first youth football club in UK to have a CORK infill 3G pitch installed at their training ground

post-3g-2Billy Martin who is Managing Director of Kestrel & Chair of the club took the decision to infill the artificial grass with cork, aided by feedback received from another of the companies’ installations at Swedish School in Barnes, London.

Kestrel tested the surface at the Swedish School, via LaboSport, to EN 15330-1 and it passed with flying colours.

‘The key driver as to which infill to use at Hampton Rangers was based on one major factor’ said Martin, ‘player comfort.’

‘Player comfort was the only consideration and being mindful of the fact the facility would be used in summer and that cork remains cool regardless of air temperatures, this was instrumental in the decision making process to choose cork infill’.

The benefits of cork are;

– Restitution results show greater player comfort , ie less energy lost through the body
– Does not radiate heat
– Cork does not give off fumes
– Can be recycled and accepted in landfills at end of life cycle
– Environmentally friendly
– Sustainable
– Does not contain heavy metals

spreading-of-infillFeedback from users of Swedish School pitches which has now been down for two years were strongly positive from Head of Sports through to end users. They mentioned that players who used professional club academy facilities nearby were reporting that they preferred cork. It was also mooted that the cork granules do not get trailed in on footwear to the same extent as alternative infills.

‘Hampton Rangers JFC being a training facility which would be used throughout the year, I was conscious that heat on 3G pitches can be an issue’, said Martin. ‘We had been keeping a close eye on the performance at Swedish School to ensure that it did indeed perform as expected. The school are more than pleased, to say the least’.

‘Cork is more expensive than other infills but we wanted to look at the bigger picture, ie player comfort. We were lucky that strata of the soil was gravel which meant we didn’t have to build the base up with tarmac, stone or drainage. These savings allowed us to install the cork.’

The club now hopes to go from strength to strength and has further plans to continue to improve its facilities. The original 3G cage Kestrel installed 12 years ago was the catalyst for the club to grow and improve its facilities for the benefit of the wider community. The new cork infill pitch will continue to do the same and plans are already underway for new changing rooms, toilets and disabled playing surfaces.

Cork Infill Artificial Pitch Completed at Northgate High School

Posted on December 20, 2016 by Tron

Summer 2016 saw Kestrel install their 3rd cork infill 3G surface, with Northgate High School joining Swedish School and Hampton Rangers JFC in being able to boast having a new top of the range 3G cork infill surface.

The client was looking to install a top of a range football surface to replace the existing 3G surface which had been down for nigh on 10 years.

Polytan’s Ligaturf Ultimate artificial grass was chosen as the client’s preference. In addition the client went with the option of more natural infill, with the inclusion of cork infill over SBR.

There are many benefits over the inclusion of cork infill in replacement to the traditional SBR, such as:

Ecological 100% Pure Natural
– 100% natural, no additives, no mixtures.
– 100% recyclable
– Creates absorption of CO2


Maximum Playing Comfort
– Odorless
– Provides a cooler pitch
– Excellent energy restitution

Once site was securely set up, Kestrel operatives commenced to excavate the turf using the Chaterhouse Eliminator machinery.

The machinery allowed the SBR to be carefully be removed from the surface and enabled future re-use of the SBR. This was again another example of Kestrel’s continue aim of being environmentally friendly.

Once the carpet was excavated and disposed off site, repairs to the existing shockpad were carefully carried out.

It was then the time for the 40mm 3G carpet to be installed, the installation included for one 7-a-side pitch and two 5-a-side pitches. The installation was completed with the installation of a specialist silica sand and the use of cork infill at rates of 12.5kg per m2 and 2.5kg per m2 respectively.

Upon completion the surface passed BS EN 15330-1 and meet the criteria to be in line with FIFA 2* accreditations.

New Training Pitches at Fulham FC Motspur Park Training Academy

Posted on November 1, 2016 by Tron

Following an extensive tender process via sports turf consultants STRI, Kestrel Contractors were awarded the project to build new hybrid grass pitches over 1.6 hectares at Fulham Football Clubs Motspur Park Training Academy in Surrey.

The build consisted of one single 1.6 ha field giving the club the ability to offset the pitches to spread the wear or turn them perpendicular to existing pitches.

This was a first for Kestrel working with SIS whose yarn injection system is taking the football world by a storm. The SISGRASS system has been installed this year for Chelsea, Derby County, and Hull City FC’s as well as the renowned St Georges England training camp in Burton on Trent.
The scope of works comprised of excavating 7400 cubic metres of topsoil and subsoil before installing drainage, a stone carpet to 125mm depth, lower & upper rootzone. A new irrigation system was also installed throughout the entire site, replacing an antiquated system that was showing the ravages of time.

Kestrels management team comprising of Richard Burden, Contracts Director, Mark Burrows Site Manager were ably assisted by Jamie Hooey, delivering the project on time to budget.

Usually the bigger higher profile projects are a real challenge in relation to adhering to programme, weather, delivery of materials and working with clients, consultants and a myriad of contractors working on site on other projects. Whilst the new state of the art natural grass pitches were being constructed FFC had embarked on an ambitious extension of the facilities including two new 3G pitches and a building extension all running concurrently.

It would be fair to say that this was one of the more plain sailing projects Kestrel have been involved in over the years.
Credit must be given also to the FFC management team were superb in the way they managed each project holding regular weekly update meetings with the project managers and daily meetings with Site Managers. Rory Ferguson who has recently taken on the role of Grounds Manager, had a real baptism of fire, not only having to oversee the new construction works but also the renovation works on the Academy pitches.

The first team squad have already had a gentle training sessions on each pitch and the response from the players has been positive. The real acid test will come in the depths of winter when the sandy roozone will be held firm by the 17,000 linear metres of yarn which will ensure a premier surface.

Demonstration Day At Fulham FC

Posted on September 27, 2016 by Tron

Kestrel are constructing 2 new full size pitches and a goalkeepers training area using the new SIS Grass Hybrid Grass system for Fulham Football Club at their Motspur Park training ground.
With the works now at the stage where the Hybrid Grass is stitched in, Kestrel are holding a demonstration to allow people to see how this is achieved and to see a before and after scenario.

The demonstration is due to take place at 14:30 on Thursday 29th September 2016 at Fulham Football Club, Motspur Park, New Malden KT3 6PT and should only take approximately 1 ½ hours.

For further details or to request to attend the demonstration day please contact Nigel Law on or Nancy Lee either on or 01256 884521.

demonstration day fulham


Building & Facilities News – Contractor of the Month September 2015

Posted on September 1, 2015 by Gary Smith

This month we have been nominated the Contractor of the Month by Building & Facilities News.

Read the full article by clicking here

Prestigious BALI membership awarded to Kestrel

Posted on September 1, 2015 by Gary Smith

Kestrel are delighted to announce that following an intensive audit and client visits, we have been approved British Association of Landscaping Industries accreditation.

Over the past eight years, Kestrel have been involved in significant and high profile landscaping projects including the pre and post event preparation work at Royal Hospital, Chelsea for the the Chelsea Flower Show and Masterpiece events as well as re-instatement works at Hyde Park following the Olympic Games.

Says Kestrel MD Billy Martin; ‘We are delighted to add the BALI logo to our portfolio of accreditation’s. BALI has a superb reputation and we hope that with our high profile experience at internationally recognised shows, we are able to help improve the quality of landscaping throughout the south.’

Kestrel have been working with Royal Hospital Chelsea since 2008.

For more information on landscaping project, please get in touch by clicking on here

New Arena Construction nearing completion

Posted on July 2, 2015 by Gary Smith

The final touches are being made to a new 60m x 40m outdoor riding arena in Hampshire. Using our own in house specialist equipment, Kestrel have installed a drainage system with lateral pipes going in at 6m spacings followed by 5 inches of track ballast. Using box graders, the surface was prepared to receive a geotextile membrane followed by a further 5 inches of specialist equestrian surface Daytrack  from Day Aggregates.

For further details on equestrian arena construction please call Kestrel on 01256 880488 or email at

Kestrel Arena

Making hay whilst the sun shines – Rugby, Football & Training pitches going in at Godalming College

Posted on June 15, 2015 by Gary Smith

We’ve been making use of the good weather on various projects this week. In particular, the 36,824m2 Godalming College natural turf rugby, football and training pitch project has been progressing at a rate of knots. With the lateral and main drainage installed in the football pitch, we began work preparing the ground for cultivation whilst our other in house gang finished off laying the lateral drainage pipes. Sand amelioration, final cultivation and seed bed preparation to follow

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