Two Toro powerhouses for Pangbourne college

. minute read

Pangbourne College is one of the first customers to snap up the latest powerhouse from Toro to tackle all terrains: the new Toro Workman UTX 4×4 utility vehicle. Joining it is Toro Groundsmaster 4300 rotary mower to lead the venue’s growing fleet of machines. 


Head groundsman Ian Osbon says the Toro machines are an ongoing investment he’s proud to make in the grounds maintenance of the 234 acre independent school which includes hockey, rugby and cricket pitches as well as woodlands and gardens in Berkshire.

From the moment Ian arrived in 2010, he was faced with projects requiring machinery muscle including levelling out the grounds and incorporating new drainage systems: “It’s been so important to get the right machinery,” he says. “I had a few machines that weren’t strong enough for our needs.”

Ian Osborn, head groundsman at Pangbourne College, with the new Toro Workman UTX utility vehicle.

Toro’s Workman UTX is strong enough for all of Pangbourne College’s utility needs.

Determined not to face similar issues going forward, Ian opted for Toro’s robust four-wheel drive, full-sized utility vehicle which has 25 percent more cargo capacity than that of others in its class and a towing capacity of up to 2000lbs.

Ian comments: “I was instantly impressed with the machine’s strength and stamina. The electric tipper is noticeably stronger than the piston system we had in our previous utility vehicle which wasn’t strong enough for grounds maintenance. It has great manoeuvrability for working in our woodlands and getting around tree stumps and logs, but with the option of higher RPMs it’s powerful enough to haul heavier loads up hills and inclines and get over wet areas and hillsides easily.”

First up on the Workman UTX’s to-do list is helping out with a wildflower meadows project, landscaping and lots of planting, explains Ian: “We have big plans for our wildflower meadows and there are beds, borders, rewilding and planting work to do too, as well as transporting tools and lugging soil. The UTX ticks all the boxes for getting this work done.”

Plus, it’s road-ready, which Ian says has been convenient for the multi-site venue: “It’s been so handy being able to tow and transport to the school a little way away.”

Also involved in the order with distributor Reesink Turfcare is Toro’s Grandmaster 4300 rotary mower, which after proving itself to Ian and his team of three over five years of leasing it, Ian has decided to buy.

“Originally, I wanted a cylinder mower, but I knew the grounds here wouldn’t suit it, we’d risk ruining the blades, so we went down the rotary route,” he explains. “It was the right thing to do for both productivity and cost savings for maintenance and servicing.”

But it’s not just Ian and his team who approve of the Toro machines, the students’ parents do too! “Sport is a major aspect of life at college and there are students on high performance pathways,” explains Ian. “We’ve got the cricket square up to the same level of any professional cricket club and it’s good for the parents to see where investment into the college goes. When we have sporting events or open days and line up all the machines so they can see, the dads are always asking if they can have a go!”