Photo tour — St. George’s Park, England

August 16, 2013  - By
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Got to start off big — here’s a photo of Alan and his royal highness, Prince William, planting a ceremonial tree together at St. George’s. Alan has an amazing story from that day, which I won’t even try to tell here. I’ll just tell you it involves a helicopter.

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Here are some of the details, from the plaque in front of the tree.

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Alan and, as he calls it, the most important tree on the property.

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Here’s their artificial indoor pitch.

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A shot of their weight room. It looks out on to the main field.

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Same shot, looking the other direction.

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A lot of historical England jerseys and what not spread around the facility.

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A close-up of the main pitch, which has Desso GrassMaster artificial turf weaved into it. For more on Desso, visit http://www.dessosports.com/hybrid-grass

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Alan showing me the Desso up close.

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In the main entrance, they have this three-story wall filled with all the Umbro jerseys ever made. They’re going to change this out soon, I’m told, because Nike is doing away with the Umbro brand. (I remember wearing Umbro as a kid playing soccer… I loved that brand! Why get rid of it, Nike?)

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This sign is at pretty much every pitch at St. George’s. I like it!

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Another shot of the Umbro jerseys.

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The man of the hour — Scottsman Alan Ferguson, head groundskeeper at St. George’s, and one of the nicest gentlemen you’ll ever meet.

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Locker room.

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Punching one of the fields.

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One of the 12 pitches at St. George’s. They all are named after famous English soccer players.

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Some blind soccer players in action. The ball has a bell in it.

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The main pitch at St. George’s, made to be a carbon copy of the field at Wembley Stadium.

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Alan and his better half, Carol, who is also is executive assistant.

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Another shot of the locker room.

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I don’t know if this shot will turn out… it’s a model of the St. George’s. In the area in the foreground, there are plans to add a 9-hole golf course.

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That’s a wrap! Game on.

For more on St. George’s Park, visit http://www.thefa.com/st-georges-park

And don’t forget to watch our video interview with Alan here: http://www.golfdom.com/englands-national-pride/

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Seth Jones

About the Author:

Seth Jones, a 16-year veteran of the golf industry media, is Editor-in-Chief of Golfdom magazine and Athletic Turf. A graduate of the University of Kansas School of Journalism and Mass Communications, Jones began working for Golf Course Management in 1999 as an intern. In his professional career he has won numerous awards, including a Turf and Ornamental Communicators Association (TOCA) first place general feature writing award for his profile of World Golf Hall of Famer Greg Norman and a TOCA first place photography award for his work covering the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. In his career, Jones has accumulated an impressive list of interviews, including such names as George H.W. Bush, Samuel L. Jackson, Lance Armstrong and Charles Barkley. Jones has also done in-depth interviews with such golfing luminaries as Norman, Gary Player, Nick Price and Lorena Ochoa, to name only a few. Jones is a member of both the Golf Writers Association of America and the Turf and Ornamental Communicators Association.

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