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Memories of life on a woodland estate

Adrian Hill says that he got into forestry by ‘circumstance’ having come from a farming family. He left school at 14 and started work milking cows on the Eartham Estate but filled time doing estate work such as fencing, tree limbing and small amounts of tree thinning. When the estate stopped farming he became self-employed.

Adrian told us:

Why he won’t thin trees of two different species when they’re growing closely together.

“It’s just a magic thing, that’s what it is. And I’ve got a piece of, which I brought back from one of the woods, a piece of ash that I brought back from one of the woods. A piece of ash that’s about two, three foot in diameter and through the middle of it is a yew branch.”

About the impacts of elm disease but that the roots of the trees live on.

“It seems to me that the root survives and puts out fresh suckers and they get up so far and then they get the disease, they die, perhaps this goes on, seems to me they only get so high before they get clobbered again.”

He told us about the challenges of replanting trees and protecting them from fallow deer following the 1987 storm.

“It was total wipe out…”

He also talked about the different species of trees in the woods.