The friction-coated road plates, strong enough to support a Pope-mobile, were among a range of site support equipment supplied by Kennards Hire for World Youth Day celebrations.

Lighting towers, temporary fencing, portable toilets and showers, trench diggers, all-terrain vehicles and mushroom heaters were also provided at various locations for the week-long event, which trapped 150,000 pilgrims to Sydney.

More than 150 road plates in two sizes – 2.4m long by 1.2m wide and 1.2m square were laid around Randwick Racecourse, where 400,000 people gathered for the closing Mass.

A significant request was for metal detectors, to locate screws dropped during construction work around the training track, which would have been dangerous for the horses once the venue reverted to normal use.

Kennards Hire’s site support equipment is more routinely used to meet the needs of small to medium size contractors.

No minimum quantity applies to the hire of temporary fencing, and a discounted rate is charged for a fencing-toilet package.