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Traditional horse-power helps in tree-felling operations across Aberdeenshire


By David Porter

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Aberdeenshire Council is continuing its efforts to tackle the devastation caused by storms Arwen and Corrie.

Traditional horse power is being used in felling and clearing operations in Aberdeenshire
Traditional horse power is being used in felling and clearing operations in Aberdeenshire

Tree-felling and clearing at Haddo and Aden country parks have now been completed and a commercial forestry contractor is now preparing to clear additional areas of damage across the region.

Work will soon begin at Battlehill, Huntly next week followed by Lucylaw Woods and Duff House Banff and sites at Alford and Rhynie.

Gauchill Woods at Kintore, the Meadows at Huntly and Clearhill Wood at Aberchirder also feature in the programme with a final completion date in the autumn.

But it’s not just heavy machinery which is being brought in to help with the clearance operations.

These large vehicles are often unsuited to smaller, inaccessible sites so a specialist contractor has been drafted in who uses more traditional means of horses to extract the timber and clear fallen wood.

Traditional horse power is being used in felling and clearing operations in Aberdeenshire
Traditional horse power is being used in felling and clearing operations in Aberdeenshire

Ewan Wallace, Head of Environment and Sustainability, explains: “This approach is being used on sites which are inaccessible to the commercial contractor or where we need to minimise any damage to our paths or bridges.

“It has also been used to very good effect where the affected trees are close to residential properties or were the flora and fauna is sensitive and would be adversely affected by the heavy machinery.”

Public safety continues to be the council’s over-riding concern during these ongoing tree-felling operations across Aberdeenshire and they do appreciate patience during these works.

The council would urge the public to take notice of all closures and stay away from areas where there are trees down and where felling operations are being undertaken.

Teams and external contractors are trained, qualified experts and undertake careful risk assessments at every site – so please keep yourself safe and don’t try to cut down fallen trees or remove wood for firewood.


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