Sports pitch and facility upgrades at Oundle School

Upgrading hockey, cricket and rugby facilities to support students’ sporting success

As part of a three phase project, CLS Sports were selected to transform the sporting provision at Oundle School in 2016.

Phase one involved the refurbishment and reinstallation of a new drainage system to an existing hockey pitch due to an existing drainage design failure which had caused the ground to become saturated and undulations to appear in the pitch.

CLS took a fresh approach to drainage and put forward a posidrain and geo grid system bespoke to the ground conditions. This trenchless system allowed the water to flow in both directions and avoided settlement within the drain lines, whilst the geogrid ensured additional strength.

Phase two then involved the construction of a state-of-the-art ten-bay natural and ten-bay synthetic cricket training facility. The facility was installed to meet ECB standards, with the ten synthetic lanes having different make-ups to create varying wicket speeds.

Former England international John Crawley, who heads up the cricket programme at Oundle, described the facility as ‘one of the best facilities [of its kind] in the world.” The provision is a beacon of excellence on a scale rarely, if ever, witnessed in the first class game, let alone within education.

Following this, phase three involved the construction of two new full sized hockey pitches alongside the recently refurbished pitch. With a CBR rating of less than 1%, ground conditions were again extremely soft and due to planning consent this phase was pushed back into winter, when cold temperatures and wet weather were unavoidable. Again, a bespoke posidrain and geogrid formation was installed and low ground pressure equipment used to ensure the works progressed.

CLS then exceeded client expectations and created a high standard natural rugby pitch from the surplus excavated material on an area of the school grounds that was previously unused.

This project represents CLS Sports’ diverse range of skills and expertise in constructing world class natural and synthetic facilities for a number of sporting disciplines.

Best practice installations

We took an adaptive and phased approach to ensure the highest standards were achieved in very challenging conditions.

CLS Sports

Project overview


Cleveland Land Services (Guisborough) Ltd

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Project type
Sports pitches