Photo caption: Craig Whitham, Contracts Manager for Dales Sports Surfaces taking delivery of their new Turf Stripper and BLECavator from Scott Trestrail of F G Adamson & Son

Dales Sports Surfaces are the world’s leading suppliers of indoor and outdoor bowling surfaces. With an increasing number of clubs looking to convert over to artificial greens, recent investment in the required equipment has seen them take delivery of a BLECavator from Charterhouse Turf Machinery. Their new BV145 works hand-in-hand with other equipment from the BLEC stable to speed up and improve the accuracy of installing the foundation layers.

“We’re getting an ever-growing number of enquiries from clubs who are wanting to install artificial turf because of the costs involved with maintaining natural turf, and a lack of skilled greenkeepers to look after them” explains Managing Director of Dales Sports Surfaces, Richard Steadman. “Knowing we needed to invest in a couple of pieces of machinery to make this work easier and more efficient, I spoke with Charterhouse Turf Machinery who suggested we look at the BLECavator.”

The BLECavator is a one-pass ground preparator – levelling, raking and rolling simultaneously. The BV145 model has a 1.5m working width and cultivates the ground to depths of up to 18cm, using adjustable tines to lift and screen stones and debris. Burying the undesirable material and raking the ground level, the soil is then compacted by the rear-mounted roller ready for the next stage of preparations.

Richard purchased the BLECavator, together with a Redexim Turf Stripper, in June 2019 through their local dealer, FG Adamson & Son. The pair of new machines were recently put to use on a conversion project at Malmesbury Bowls Club in Wiltshire. “The first thing we did was remove the existing surface with the Turf Stripper before we installed the new drainage system. We then used a BLEC Laser Grader to grade the base level and followed up with the BLECavator to apply a stone/cement layer. Finally, we re-graded the base to a level tolerance ready for installation of the green.”

“The BLECavator is a well-built multifunctional tool that is nice and easy to set up and does a fantastic job of stabilising the soil and stone.” Richard concludes, “With the increase in conversion projects we’re seeing, we now have a fleet of machines that work really well together to speed up the process and improve the accuracy and quality of the finish.”