Ellenbrook Sports Hub synthetic fields

Ellenbrook Sports Hub fields pitch outdoor soccer venue leisure centre

Over the 2018/19 New Year and summer period, the City became aware that the rubber infill on the fields at Ellenbrook Sports Hub (ESH) was sticking to users’ boots in a similar manner to the way mud sticks to boots when playing on turf in winter.

However, the difference is that the rubber is difficult to remove from boots. The City, along with specialists, visited the site to observe the issues first hand and investigate the cause of the issue. Investigations are continuing, however to sum up the issue, the rubber infill has become sticky and is collecting on players footwear.

Learn more about the issue below. We will continue to provide updates as they occur.

Investigations and research are still being undertaken into the cause of the issue and at this time, it is looking to be UV-related.

The City will be working with the supplier to replace all of the rubber infill in a staged approach.

The works will start on Wednesday, May 15. Replacing the infill will take several weeks for each field to complete. We're replacing one field at a time to allow for usage of the facility to continue as best we can.

An independent assessment was conducted in February 2019 and the assessor's report concluded that the fields can continue to be used as long as users continue to regularly check their boots during the game and remove build up, as one would do with the build-up of mud and dirt on a natural grass surface. Boot cleaners have been installed at the facility to assist with this.

For those who are in regular shoes, we have noticed that on the cooler days/nights, there doesn't seem to be an issue. However, we will continue to monitor this.

We recommend placing your boots in a freezer for 15 minutes, which hardens the material and makes it easier to pry off. To pry the material off, use a blunt instrument and gradually work your way under the material. Orange oil can also be applied once the bulk of the material has been removed to remove remaining residue.

The process to remove and replace the infill is expected to be completed by December 2019. One field will be completed at a time to reduce disruption to users.

The City had an independent assessment of the field condition undertaken in February. Their assessment and recommendations are in line with the approach recommended by our rubber infill supplier. The City will be implementing these recommendations.