One of the biggest challenges when planning outside events in the UK is preparing for the condition of the surface. Whatever is being planned, the prospect of either very wet or very dry conditions has to be taken into account for the smooth running of the event.
After periods of heavy rain, a big outdoor summer party can turn into a nightmare of people slithering in the mud as they churn up wet grass. Similarly, during very hot and dry periods, hard and rutted ground can be uncomfortable to walk on. Moving heavy machinery on soft or hard and rutted ground can be difficult when setting up a funfair on a dry or wet meadow.
Weatherproof temporary surfaces are a popular and effective choice for event planners who want to make sure their grounds can be used safely and efficiently.
What is a Weatherproof Surface?
Usually in the form of mat-like structures, various types can be specified depending on the use they are required for. For example, for heavy weight-bearing applications such as protecting a construction site entrance from being churned up by heavy machinery and lorries, a heavier duty plastic or metal type would be used.
On the other hand, a walkway to preserve damp grass from being churned up at, say, a garden party or outdoor concert might be made of lighter plastic that is easier to lay down and dismantle when the event is over.
Some come in tasteful colours and are designed to be both practical and aesthetically pleasing. For example, creating a dance floor in an outdoor setting – perhaps on a lawn under a marquee – would likely be formed from access mats in suitable shades.
Along with protecting surfaces, all weather surfaces specifically designed for the purpose will also distribute weight across their width to stop concentrated wear on the ground underneath.
Where can all Weather Surfaces Help?
Weather surfaces have a variety of applications in leisure and in work-related environments.
Outdoor Sports or other Large events
when preparing an area for, say, a concert or sports day thought has to be given to setting things up and dismantling, and the movement of people during the event itself.
All weather mats to protect grass and give a reasonable foundation for heavy machinery to be sited, a roadway for lorries and maybe cranes to enter and leave the site, and matting to protect grass from the wear caused by possibly thousands of footsteps might be required.
outdoor weddings are very popular but there is an obvious need to protect vulnerable surfaces from attendees. Smartly dressed guests don’t want to be slipping and sliding on wet and muddy surfaces!
muddy conditions are common in temporary areas such as construction sites. Until roadways and hard standings are constructed, then all-weather protection of unmade surfaces is important so machinery and lorries can access the site safely and efficiently.
Walkways and paths
along with providing protection, they can also be a good way of showing people exactly where to walk. For example, using all weather matting to make a path can re-route people to safely by-pass a particular area such as a dangerous building site.
Heavy use Entrances and Exits
gateways obviously attract heavy, concentrated traffic and can churn up in no time if the conditions are wet. An entrance to, say, a temporary outdoor car park on a stretch of grass could soon wear down if a weather proofing surface isn’t used.
Ease of use
Another attribute of all-weather matting is its ease of transportation and use. It can be delivered on the back of a small flat-bed truck or – if not too much is required – in an estate car or a pick up. While many suppliers can provide personnel to lay it down and remove it when finished with, it’s possible for the organisers to handle all matting requirements themselves.
All weather matting can be hired or purchased outright depending on whether the requirement is long-term or just for a short period. With the purchase option, a saving can be made by buying pre-used matting which is still in good condition but available for less than the cost of new.
Henry Savage is the Director of All Weather Access, a ground protection and Trakmat hire company. Henry is an expert in ground protection and is skilled at matching the best ground protection solutions to his customers’ requirements.