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3G Artificial Pitches
To be suitable for contact rugby, synthetic pitches must meet strict requirements around ball-surface interaction, player-surface interaction and durability.
They must also meet the requirements of the International Rugby Board (IRB) regulation 22 and IRB Artificial Rugby Turf Performance Specification.
Operators wishing to check whether an older pitch may be rugby compliant should compare the design and specification of their pitch to the IRB requirements to determine whether it is worth having tested by an Accredited Test Institute.
Visit the IRB website for more about the synthetic pitch regulations.
A synthetic sports pitch may only be used for contact rugby training or playing where it meets all of the requirements below.
To find out more about the approval process for synthetic pitches, for advice on choosing suppliers and details of how to report any injuries that may occur, download our protocol for synthetic pitches (pdf).
You can also view a list of the synthetic pitches with conditional approved status (pdf), along with the date when this approval runs out. Only the pitches on this list are approved for contact playing or training.
Approved artificial pitches are designed to take the wear and tear involved in rugby, therefore (kite-marked) metal safety studs which are designed for rugby can be used on these pitches.
Facility development will be one of the most challenging projects any club can undertake. To ensure that a project delivers the benefit required, and complies with the varied requirements of planning regulations, health & safety, and funding bodies; it is vital that clubs utilise professional advice where possible. Large or complex projects involving large funding bids will also require clubs to provide detailed information on:
Pavillions: sportscotland provide a considerable amount of guidance on the design of changing rooms and pavillions in their "changing places" guidance.
Floodlights: Using a reputable contractor with expertise in sports field lighting is recommended. Contractors will generally provide a considerable amount of important information on how they will minimise light-spill, minimise running costs, and make most effective use of available budget. Such information is generally made available as part of a detailed quotation for a project and helps a club get the right lighting scheme for its site. It is important to remember that a lighting system needs a power supply and installing this must be factored into costs, or where there is an existing supply, this should be checked to ensure it is adequate for a new lighting system.
3G Artificial Pitches: 3G pitches are complex and very technical products and it is recommended that clubs use a reputable and experience pitch designer/consultant/contractor to enusre their project has the correct technical specification, dimensions, costings to meet their needs. The cost will vary dramatically depending on size of pitch and the ground conditions and levels. These pitches also have very specific maintenence needs which can cost in excess of £10,000 per annum, as well as a replacement cost in the region of £200,000 after 8-10 years. Therefore it is vital to get a project right at the start, and for it to function as a business in order generate enough revenue.
A range of sportscotland guidance is available to support any club developing its facilities:
The Sport and Play Construction Association (SAPCA) offers a range of technical guidance, as well as information for suppliers.