Sports & Play Surface Installation and Maintenance Specialists Call us on - 01332 292 202 or email

Technical Specification for Surfacing Base Construction


Ground conditions can have a profound influence on the cost of a project and proper information is needed before meaningful cost estimates can be prepared as each project is different.

The first stage of any pitch is an individual survey to determine the suitability of the site. Varying topography, drainage, geological factors and planning constraints make each site unique, it is essential that an experienced civil engineering team carry out an evaluation.

The standard base construction may have to be adapted to meet site requirements. As with all building work it is essential to ensure a good quality foundation, which will provide stability and maintain porosity throughout the life of the pitch.

Nova Sport Ltd recommend the use of engineered bases utilising a permeable bitumen bound macadam, laid to strictly controlled tolerances, installed over a frost reistant, free draining crushed stone sub base. Many pitches require the inclusion of a drainage system to assist in moving water away from beneath the playing area. Often, existing surfaces are readily upgradable with the correct preparation.
Site Survey for surfacing
Ground works for surfacing

Impact Absorbing Play Surfacing


Base construction is vital to any synthetic surface installation and our surfaces can be laid on a variety of base specifications to suit local site conditions. In all cases the base should be prepared to ensure all existing surfaces adjacent to the safety surface are at the same height to prevent trip points.

Our surfaces are porous, it is important that the base is free draining or laid to permit surface water to run off.

An adequate sub-surface draining system may be required in some cases which can be evaluated by an on-site inspection and the foundation materials should be placed on an approved formation or sub-grade.

No fines porous concrete base – ideal for areas requiring depths of surfacing below 40mm
Macadam Base – ideal for areas requiring depths of surfacing below 40mm
Stone Base – ideal for areas which are currently grass or soil minimum rubber thickness is 40mm
Ramped Edges – for existing tarmac or concrete surface

Surfacing Free Fall Heights

The depth and area of a safety surface is determined by the height of the play equipment it surrounds. The higher the equipment, the deeper the depth and the greater the area needs to be.

To ensure the correct depth and area of a surface surrounding play equipment, the Free Fall Height must be calculated.

The height of the equipment is known as the “Free Fall Height” or FFH.

  • FFH 3.0m depth = 130mm
  • FFH 2.82m depth = 120mm
  • FFH 2.62m depth = 100mm
  • FFH 2.60m depth = 90mm
  • FFH 2.47m depth = 80mm
  • FFH 2.24m depth = 70mm
  • FFH 2.04m depth = 60mm
  • FFH 1.65m depth = 50mm
  • FFH 1.36m depth = 40mm
  • FFH 1.26m depth = 30mm

All our wetpour has been tested to EN 1177:2018.

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