Horse logging at Coed Felenrhyd
During the last Winter season (2019/20) at Coed Felenrhyd, North Wales we carried out some PAWS (Plantation on Ancient Woodland Site) restoration work. This special and unique site, a true Celtic Rainforest managed by Coed Cadw since 1995 has gradually had mature conifer thinning to safeguard remnant veteran oak trees found at this Ancient Woodland Site.
Throughout the felling operations, protecting soils and special ancient woodland features were critical. Though a mechanical harvester was able to safely extract some timber, due to very wet conditions they finished early leaving processed logs in situ as not to damage the site.
Cue – West Wales Horselogging! As the weather improved, funding became available from Snowdonia National Park for conservation projects. Following a site visit with Polly Williams from West Wales Horselogging to establish if the site was workable, funding confirmation and an opportunity to share engagement and promotion a date was set in the diary.
Before this unprecedented situation with Covid-19 took hold, Polly and her team were able to extract over 25 tons of timber, up-hill! Using an Irish cob called Archie and a large Ardene called Hamish, along with support from veteran horselogger Nick Burton a successful result was achieved. We will hopefully carry out more in the future.
Ed Midmore, Site Manager (North West Wales)