Work to prepare the pitch for the start of the 2016-17 season is underway.
Contractors arrived on site early on Monday morning to start an extensive overhaul of the playing surface. The work will take around six or seven days to complete and will see Dale’s ground staff and the contractors working long days and into the night to get the job done.
As well as the usual renovation works which sees the existing surface removed before new fibre sand, fertiliser and seed is added, new drains will also be installed in the area of the pitch from the half-way line to the Sandy Lane this summer.
Day one of the process sees the top surface removed to ensure a clean bed for the rest of the works to be carried out.
Next up is the installation of the new drains, before fibre sand, which will keep the pitch knitted together when the new seed establishes, will then be added. The surface will then be seeded and rolled.
The ground staff will then use the sprinkler system to keep the surface watered, along with plenty of fertiliser to get the seed coming through as quickly as possible.
You can check out the progress of the pitch over the next few days by following us on Twitter - @officiallydale - We'll be tweeting images of the work as contractors go through the different phases.