One of my most common questions is will a big heavy marquee damage my garden/grass?
QUICK ANSWER: Ours don’t, no.
The marquee itself despite its weight does not impact the ground it sits on at all. They have large foot plates which means its able to spread the pressure of the weight of the structure across a relatively large surface area meaning they don’t sink into the grass or crack patios etc.
The marquee hard flooring is what could potentially damage grass.
Hard Flooring is what goes into most marquees and what provides a stable base for people to walk on. It ensures that the floor stays dry, insulates the marquee during the winter events and gives a flat perfect finish.
Most marquee companies use a wooden hard floor which consists of big 8’ x 4’ wooden plywood sheets you find at most building material shops with 3” wooden patterns along the bottom to raise the wooden sheet off the ground itself. The battens raise the wooden sheet off wet ground which prevents the wooden sheet from rotting over time. Its these wooden battens that dig into the soft ground which can cut up the grass if its wet.
The wooden battens on old wooden hard flooring like this photo shows is what damages soft ground.
You’ve got the weight of potentially 30-150 people digging into these wooden battens. It creates dips in the grass when everything is removed. The damage isn’t permanent but it might look messy for a few weeks.
Make sure the marquee company you use is using a more modern flooring system. Something like what we use – which is a 1.5” thick plastic flooring which doesn’t have the battens on the other side. Because it is made from plastic is can be laid straight on to wet ground therefore the battens aren’t needed. This then spreads any pressure across the whole surface area of the floor rather than 3” wide pieces of wood!
Before the carpet goes on – plastic hard flooring keeps your grass protected.
Can I do away without hard flooring then?
You can but I wouldn’t recommend it. It’s always the first recommendation any marquee hire company would make. For the below reasons:
- It ensures the ground is solid for people to walk on
- Chairs & tables don’t dig into the ground
- Carpet stays taught as you can staple the carpet down to the floor… (pegs straight on grass do not keep carpet tight for a long time)
- During winter the hard floor & carpet insulates the ground retaining most of the heat inside.
- If installed on a patio the hard floor raises the carpet off the ground ensuring the floor doesn’t get wet – which your guests would bring moisture & dirt back into the house without having the hard floor.
Worried about your grass?
Grass needs light in order to photosynthesise and stay alive. The grass that is being covered by the marquee will start to turn yellow after being up for 4-5 days. Grass is resilient stuff (it grows through cracks in pavements, it can survive without light for a few days!). When the marquee is removed the yellow grass turns back to its normal green colour after a week. We regularly are used for asian weddings when sometimes the marquee stays up for 2 weeks. When we dismantle there is a perfect yellow square however after around 7-10 days the grass has returned back to normal.
Will the marquee damage my patio?
Because the feet of marquees are quite large it means it isn’t putting lots of weight onto a small point which would create a lot of pressure on a patio. It spreads the pressure over a large area so your nice new patio is safe!
Obviously we can’t drive stakes into the ground and we will not screw into patios ruining them afterwards. Most marquee companies use heavy weights to ensure the marquee stays put and exactly where they left it. There are calculations from marquee manufacturers that need to be made that all reputable companies adhere to.
Do you drill into my walls when “attaching” the marquee to my house?
No! The term attached means installing the marquee right up to the house, usually over a set of doors to give you more space for a party at home. A good marquee company will use weights to pull the marquee against the house, or you ratchets to do the same effect. By having the marquee under tension, it can still be touching the house without the need to get the drill out and make half a dozen unsightly holes in your wall after we leave!
If you have any further questions please email me at [email protected] or call me on 01462 262012!