New partnership launched to help meet skills gap in forestry

George McRobbie Managing Director of Tilhill Forestry with Llysfasi Head Iain Clarke

A LEADING agriculture college has joined forces with the UK’s largest forestry and timber harvesting company to meet a growing demand for woodland workers.

Coleg Cambria Llysfasi and Tilhill Forestry unveiled their new partnership – the first of its type – at the APF 2018 show held at Ragley Estate in Warwickshire today (Thursday).

The aim of the Tilhill Diploma in Forestry and Woodland Management is to bring the forest industry an increase to its next generation of managers and operators by way of offering a unique blend of education, industrial experience and bespoke training underpinned by the National Apprenticeship Scheme.

Llysfasi Head Iain Clarke said there is a skills gap in the forestry industry and a crucial need to develop a highly-skilled workforce to take the industry forward.

“With the continued introduction of new technologies to the already sophisticated and highly integrated timber production and supply chain, future managers need to have a broader range of skills than ever before,” said Mr Clarke.

He went on to say: “Whether it is forest operations, technical support or management, companies frequently have difficulties in recruiting staff with the necessary skills, knowledge and experience needed to manage and maintain the forests of the future.

“Unfortunately, not enough young people are choosing to train and work in forestry and the supply of new entrants has diminished leading to challenges when replacing retiring staff and to expand and push the industry forward.”
Lecturer Andy White, who will lead the programme, said forestry in the UK is a growing business and the union of these two pioneering organisations could not have come at a better time.

“This exciting partnership between Tilhill Forestry and Llysfasi aims to provide a direct career path into forest management in a way never offered before,” said Mr White.

“Training begins with technical knowledge and skills development at Level 3 and proceeds to management skills at Level 5, with opportunities to enter the work place at the end of each stage.”

Mr White added that learners will benefit from the technical input, support, mentoring, and vast amount of knowledge and experience of Tilhill Forestry staff, as well as tailored work placements, while studying at Llysfasi.

“With the backing of Tilhill Forestry we will be able to deliver the very best of modern forestry training and education. We are all extremely excited to be part of this new partnership and are encouraged by the interest and support already received,” he said.

Managing Director of Tilhill Forestry George McRobbie added: “We have been looking for a partner to drive this development for the industry for some time.
“In the past our new entrants have tended to be forestry graduates. By teaching people from an earlier age they can enter the sector sooner and, we hope, stay longer. It’s a win win.

“Our parent company BSW has invested heavily in apprenticeships at our mills and it makes sense to widen the opportunities to work for Tilhill through apprenticeships too. We will also be helping further by sponsoring some students through bursaries.”

The APF 2018 exhibition attracts more than 22,000 visitors to Alecester, Warwickshire, over two days every year for the UK’s largest forestry, woodland, arboriculture, fencing and biomass show.

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Tilhill press release

John Deere Celebrates 100 Years of Tractors

100 years of John Deere Tractors

100 years ago, on 14th March, Deere & Company entered the tractor business with a $2.25 million acquisition of the Waterloo Gasoline Engine Company in Iowa in 1918.

This was a much debated and controversial investment at the time, as many critics did not believe in the future of tractors and continued to rely on the use of traditional horse power. Nobody expected that the tractor business would develop into the key foundation of the company’s growth.

Today John Deere is the world’s leading manufacturer of agricultural tractors, and the company produces ‘intelligent’ tractors in 12 factories worldwide.

Today, the tractor is no longer just for pulling implements – instead, agricultural tractors, machines and implements can be effectively connected. For example, tractor implement automation enables a baler to ‘talk’ to the tractor for automatic adjustment of functions such as forward speed, depending on the workload.

The story of John Deere’s 100 years of success and innovation, from the Waterloo Boy to today’s ‘intelligent’ tractor, is being celebrated at the company’s worldwide tractor factories. Employees, their families and other guests have been invited to look behind the scenes of John Deere tractor production, and the Mannheim factory is holding a tractor parade through the city.

The John Deere Forum in Mannheim is featuring a display of vintage and classic tractors that have strongly influenced the company’s history, including an original Waterloo Boy, while the Forum’s shop is offering a variety of fan merchandise, such as a special edition 9RX tractor model, caps, shirts and mugs.

Tractors ordered by customers this year will also carry a 100 years anniversary badge, and in addition dealers will have a range of special offers at favourable prices.

The 100 Years of John Deere Tractors anniversary activities can be followed on, Facebook and YouTube.

News Source: John Deere Press Release

Arboricultural Association Forms New Women’s Group

Women in Arboriculture Working Group
In celebration of International Women’s Day 2018 the Aboricultural Association has announced the formation of a new ‘Women in Arboriculture Working Group’.

The new group will look at the best ways to encourage more women to get into arboriculture and address the gender imbalance that exists within the industry. It will aim to promote and engage women in Arboriculture at all levels, from contractors to consultants, academics, suppliers, Tree Officers and support staff alike.

In terms of representation and participation arboriculture is heavily weighted towards men, with only 13% of Arboricultural Association members being female, according the 2016 membership survey.

Although this has been slowly changing, with many more women proving that working with trees is not just for men, there is still much work to be done to help improve the current numbers and make it a more attractive career prospect for women.

If you’d like to be part of the working group or share your ideas with them, they will be meeting on Saturday 12th May at the ARB Show 2018. Please attend the open lunch forum in the Arboricultural Association HQ tent between 13.00 and 14.00.

If you are interested in contributing to the Women in Arboriculture Working Group please contact Emma Hall

News Source: Arboricultural Association

RWAS Woodlands Competition

RWAS Woodlands Competition

Closing date for entries 15th April 2018.

The RWAS Woodlands Competition is open to all owners and occupiers of woodland in Wales and aims to encourage good management practice in all Stand Classes of woodland (see schedule and regulations).

The Judges will award prizes to those entrants who can demonstrate both long term and short term management in their woodlands.

The competition has been in place for many years and as well as the Woodland & Stand class prizes there are a range of Special Prizes that have been instigated by supporters of the Competition which are awarded as well.

Tilhill’s George McRobbie wins Confor award

George McRobbie winning Confor award
George (left) receiving his award from Fergus Ewing MSP (right), the Scottish Government’s Cabinet Secretary for Rural Affairs and Connectivity.

George McRobbie, described as ‘a stalwart of the 21st century forestry and timber sector’ has been named as the winner of Confor’s Dedicated Service to Forestry Award for 2018.

Managing Director of Tilhill Forestry, George McRobbie who is also a Confor Board member and Forestry Commissioner – was presented with the award by Cabinet Secretary Fergus Ewing at Confor’s annual dinner in Edinburgh last Tuesday.

Stuart Goodall, Chief Executive of Confor, said: “George McRobbie has been a significant figure in the modern forestry industry. He has stepped up to the mark to serve the sector time and time again – and always brings a wide range of skills to the table. He has enormous knowledge of forestry and valuable attributes, including integrity, diligence and tremendous common sense.”

George has been Managing Director of Tilhill Forestry since 2012, a Board member of Confor since 2013 and a Forestry Commissioner since 2015. He is also a former President of the Institute of Chartered Foresters.

George said: “I am delighted and honoured to win this Award. It is a privilege to serve the modern forestry industry and a pleasure to see the sector making very positive progress towards a new era of productive planting.”

Mr Goodall said at the event: “At a time when society faces huge challenges, there is a big role for an emerging sector that can offer solutions and behave with integrity. But we have to tell the story – collectively get the message out there – and that means all of us working together.”

News Source: Tilhill Forestry

Migration Almost Complete

winter logs

Another busy few weeks here at Logshed. We’re really happy to announce that the front end migration of the website is now COMPLETE!

This means that every listing and every page is now fully mobile responsive and appearing under our newly developed website. As you can imagine, migrating a directory website is no easy task, so we are delighted with how this has gone and the zero downtime that it has been accomplished with.

Read moreMigration Almost Complete

Logshed Website Redevelopment Update


Firstly, thank you all for bearing with us during this transitional phase of development.

We have been working hard to update the Logshed website. With thousands of listings in place it continues to be a mammoth task!

We have now almost completed the first two phases of migration. You will notice that as of today we have a stunning new home page that is fully mobile responsive. We have also moved over all our directory listings, and almost all of our internal pages.

Read moreLogshed Website Redevelopment Update

Enter Now! Scotland’s Finest Woods Award 2018

Scotland's Finest Woods Awards

Scotland’s Finest Woods are now open for entries to the 2018 Scotland’s Finest Woods Awards.

This year sees the first ever category for farmers, as well as the usual categories for communities, new native and commercial woods, quality timber and schools anywhere in Scotland.

A short list of entrants in each category will be visited by a team of judges in April/May.

Community Woodlands Award

  1. Small community woodland groups
  2. Large community woodland groups

£1,000 to be awarded to the winner in each category.

In addition, the Tim Stead Trophy is also awarded to the overall Community Woodland Award category winner judged to be the best community project overall regardless of the size of woodland group.

Farm Woodland Award – New for 2018

The winner will be awarded the Lilburn Trophy and £1,000.

New Native Woods Award

The winner will be awarded the Woodland Trust Scotland Trophy and £1,000.

Quality Timber Award

  1. New commercial woods
  2. Single stand of trees or a compartment of a small wood
  3. Whole estates or forests

Trophy and £1,000 awarded to the winner in each category

Schools Award

For Scotland’s most fun-packed school woodland projects.

£500 will be awarded to the winner, and £250 for the runner-up. Both will also receive tree packs and a mag post.

News source:

Logshed is Under New Ownership!

Earlier this week Logshed transitioned to its new owners on the South Coast of England, in beautiful green Hampshire!

Logshed was set up in 2009. Since then it has grown in size and number, although the website has remained almost the same as the day it was launched. Technology has advanced so much in that time, and Logshed is in need of substantial reinvestment to modernise its online presence and best serve you – our valued customers.

We hope to continue the good work that Logshed’s founders started, and we aim to grow this site into an extensive online resource for all of the forestry industry.

We’ll be working hard to redevelop the website over the coming months, with a fresh new look set for later in 2018, and lots of exciting content updates and additions to follow.

Things will be a little quiet in the interim, but we have got a huge amount of work going on in the background.

Please bear with us while we update our website, and we really look forward to showing you all our new features next year.

View our updated terms and conditions.

Stronger Power Grabs in JCB AGRI Range Take a Bigger Bite


JCB Power Grab

A new range of JCB AGRI Power Grab attachments for muck handling and similar jobs has been designed to increase the productivity of JCB Loadall telescopic handlers, TeleMaster telescopic wheeled loaders, and Farm Master industrial-class loading shovels.

The re-design process has resulted in lighter but tougher implements, using Hardox 500 steel to improve the balance between weight and strength. Robot-welded folded steel adds strength to the grab, which also has stronger bosses for the forged tines.

The grab assembly now opens wider and closes with increased clamping force, so it will take bigger bites of bulky material. Improved geometry means less hand work is needed to finish clearing out a cattle yard because the attachment can work closer to walls.

Read moreStronger Power Grabs in JCB AGRI Range Take a Bigger Bite