SALTEX announces the first round of headline speakers at Learning LIVE 2024

SALTEX is renowned for its exceptional range of professional development opportunities, showcased through its industry-leading Learning LIVE programme.

This year, over 20 industry pioneers, technical specialists, and experts will speak across three stages, including the brand-new Community Sports Stage, over two days - making it the largest free live learning event in the sector.

Many visitors cite Learning LIVE, which also offers the opportunity to gain CPD points, as a key reason for attending the show.

The Main Stage will feature discussions on the latest hot topics and issues, engaging visitors in the big conversations of the moment. Day one highlights include Lee Guerriero, UEFA Stadium Operations and Pitch Expert, presenting the ‘UEFA EURO 2024 Pitch Quality Review’.

He said: "I'm excited to share the UEFA 2024 Pitch Quality Support Program with the visitors at SALTEX. My session will cover the program's strategy, findings, and learnings, offering insights from the main stadia to the training pitches used throughout this year’s tournament."

Also on day one, Robert Sullivan, CEO of The Football Foundation, will discuss ‘Funding The Future of Sport’.

Day two on the Main Stage will feature Professor David James, Group CEO at LABOSPORT Group, delivering the ‘FIFA Football Turf Quality Programme’.

He said: "I'm thrilled to be sharing my insights at SALTEX once again. Working closely with FIFA, I help shape new standards and test methods for football infrastructure. This talk will offer an exciting overview of FIFA’s innovative approach to enhancing the quality of football turf surfaces."

Additionally, Mark Ferguson, Agronomist at All England Lawn Tennis Club, will present on ‘Raising Tennis Surfaces Standards – From Grassroots to Major International Championships’. His session will cover the expanding grass court season, grass court characteristics, grassroots venues, preparation for Wimbledon, and the growth of grass court tennis.

SALTEX will also see the return of the Spotlight Stage, featuring crowd-pullers in an ask-the-experts-style forum. On day one, Paul Bannister, with 28 years of experience in commercial horticulture, landscaping, and sports turf industries, will deliver ‘How to Provide a Safe Working Environment - Are You Compliant?’.

Day two will see Professor John Moverley OBE, former executive chairman of the UK Amenity Forum, present ‘Principles & Practices of Sustainable Amenity Management’. This session will review policy drivers, key elements of sustainable management, and integrated approaches to management and operational practice.

Geoff Fenn, Research & Development Director at Origin Amenity Solutions, will also present ‘Independent Turfgrass Research – Latest Results’, sharing insights from his extensive experience in turf management.

Sarah Cunningham, Director of Commercial and Events at the Grounds Management Association, said: “We're incredibly excited about this year's SALTEX, especially the Learning LIVE schedule. It's always great to see so many industry-leading professionals come together to share their knowledge. Our aim is to create sessions where everyone feels welcome and can take something extra away with them, we believe this year's lineup of speakers and sessions will do just that. There's something here for everyone.”

For more information on SALTEX 2024 and to register for the event, please visit https://www.saltex.org.uk/.

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