Tottenham's new stadium.
Nick Hill

Tottenham Hotspur call on Sheffield engineering firm to supply world-first retractable pitch for new stadium

SCX, the Sheffield-based engineering firm, has been selected as the Retractable Pitch Supplier for the brand new stadium of Tottenham Hotspur.

The company is set to produce a grass pitch that sits directly above an artificial surface, making the Premier League club’s stadium the first of its kind in the UK to have two pitches inside the same bowl.

The fully retractable grass surface will be used for football matches, whilst the artificial pitch underneath will be used for NFL matches, music concerts and a range of other events.

SCX will design, engineer, build and install the real turf football pitch, which will sit in three pitch-long steel trays, weighing more than 3,000 tonnes each.

The surface will split into three sections to show each tray before retracting under the South Stand to reveal the artificial playing surface underneath.

The process of switching from one surface to another is expected to take approximately 25 minutes.

SCX Special Projects, the bespoke precision engineering arm of the SCX Group, is preparing to install the movable grass pitch over a 12-week period from October.

Tottenham Hotspur’s new stadium, the largest of any football club in London with a capacity of more than 61,000, is set to open in 2018.

The supplier agreement with Tottenham Hotspur follows SCX’s success in using similar engineering technology to win contracts for the retractable roofs over Centre Court and Number One Court at the All England Lawn Tennis Club at Wimbledon.

Matthew Collecott, director of operations and finance at Tottenham Hotspur, said: “We are pleased to confirm SCX as our official Retractable Pitch Supplier.

“SCX has a proven track record in delivering innovative solutions and this bespoke pitch mechanism will allow our new stadium to host a range of major events in addition to Tottenham Hotspur matches, as we strive to create a venue that is a hive of activity all year round.”

Simon Eastwood, SCX managing director, added: “We have a solid reputation for problem solving in bespoke circumstances that involve moving and lifting huge structures at sporting venues. All of the mechanical and control system engineering skills are in-house and genuinely world class.”

Danny Pickard, SCX’s lead engineer, also commented: “Our expertise and heritage enables us to push the boundaries of moving structures and precision engineering.

“This latest pitch technology embodies everything we strive for and care about - delivering precisely what the client needs, with the engineering flair that has become a hallmark of SCX. We are so very proud to deliver this engineering world first.”

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