News & Events

eNews Current

This is Confor's March 2015 e-news, to keep you informed before members receive Forestry and Timber News in April.

Welcome to new members:

Altyre Sawmill, Moray
Cawdor Maintenance Trust, Nairn
Clifford Jones Timber Ltd, Denbighshire
Cracknell Timber Services, Hampshire
Dulnain Plant, Highland
Graham Gill, Northumberland
Grow Solutions Limited, Inverness-shire
Stakis Forestry LLP, Perthshire
The Forestry Partnership LLP, Perthshire

Final chance to book place at Westminster conference
There are only a handful of places left for the conference on 24 March in London. If you haven't booked yet, get in touch with Liz as soon as possible on 0131 240 1410 or email her.  With an impressive line-up of speakers, the conference will take the forestry and timber debate to the heart of Westminster, just weeks before the General Election. Have your say! Read more    

Presenting the facts
Confor will be publishing key pieces of research in the coming months to demonstrate the water, economic and carbon benefits of forestry and timber. Watch out for items in FTN and on the website.  

Sawmill relief
Confor's campaign for UK sawmills to be included in a proposed relief from the costs of renewable energy continues. Following meetings with MPs, officials and ministers, work is underway to establish whether the sector could meet challenging thresholds for electricity intensity by focusing on product lines. 

Confor dinner 2015: Night of the three doctors
On an evening when guests heard encouraging words from Scottish forestry minister Dr Aileen McLeod, Dr Jean Balfour and Dr Bob McIntosh were the 2015 recipients of awards for lifelong service to the forestry and timber sector. Read more 

First commercial woodland in England for five years
Following approval of a scheme in the Northumberland National Park, which Confor had briefed forestry minister Dan Rogerson to support, Paul Brannen MEP led a delegation on a fact-finding tour of Northumberland. Part of the tour saw Paul plant the first conifer tree planted in a new commercial woodland in England in five years. Read more  

Forest Industry film made in Wales
Confor has commissioned a short promotional film on commercial farm woodlands. The film will show the farming community how productive woodlands planted on parts of a farm can add significant extra income to the holding by providing good shelter for stock and an income from timber. 

English woodland capital grants now open for application
The grants cover three areas: woodland creation, woodland management plans and plant health. Get the latest information from Defra on their website or get a summary and practical information here. 

Scotland Forestry Grant Scheme 2014-2020 - deadline close!
You must register or re-register your business with the Rural Payments and Services, and submit any relevant Single Application Form (SAF) before 15 May to be eligible for FGS grants this year.  This applies for claiming ongoing Annual Recurrent Payments as well as for new scheme applications.  Even if you already have a BRN you need to re-register. Visit the website  

Building sector promoting home-grown timber
Construction Manager, the magazine of the Chartered Institute of Building, has highlighted the importance and relevance of home-grown timber for the UK building industry. The article, supported by Grown in Britain, touches on topics such as stored carbon, the usability of British timber in construction, persistent perceptions of its quality, and the need for increased planting in our country. Read the article 

Scottish Finest Wood Awards - be quick to apply!
The deadline for entries is 31 March 2015, with the Awards ceremony at the Royal Highland Show on Friday, 19 June.  There are Awards for Quality Timber in addition to the Schools, New Native Woodlands and Community Awards with something for everyone managing woods to the highest standard.  Visit the website  

UK softwood imports 21% up in 2014
TTJ reported in February that UK softwood imports for the full year 2014 had increased by 21% to a value of £1.14bn. Imports of hardwood into the UK increased by 13%, compared to 2013.  

Outcome of consultation on acute oak decline
Confor had responded to the AOD Pest Risk Analysis and Defra has released a response a month ago. The purpose of the consultation was to help inform decisions on the UK policy for the management of this pest. The letter included four main recommendations.  Read the letter 

Private investment in FERA
On 11 February, the Food and Environment Research Agency announced a £14.5 million investment in the agency through a joint venture with Capita and Newcastle University. This is part of Defra's ambitious science programme and recognition of the importance of cutting-edge research. Read the Press Release 


Read more on education and skills in the April feature in FTN.  

Call for participation in research
A final year Rural Enterprise and Land Management student at Harper Adams University is looking for forestry experts to help with research for the dissertation - "Scottish Forestry - are productive areas of forestry declining in Scotland and why?". If you have opinions on this matter, please take part in a short survey: Complete the survey 

Welsh Log building school campaigning for funding
The John Kearns School of Log Building has launched a campaign to raise funds for a new centre near Llandrindod Wells that will provide log building, hand hewing and other forms of traditional carpentry. The school will bring a new dimension to UK forestry, timber construction, the rural economy, and skills and training, while also providing a platform for outdoor learning and outreach work with disadvantaged groups in the local community. Help them promote the campaign! Read more 

UK PlantSci 2015 - last call for forest and tree abstracts
The UK Plant Sciences Federation (UKPSF) is calling for abstract submissions in the areas of trees and forests to present at UK PlantSci 2015, which will take place on 14 and 15 April at the Harper Adams University. The deadline for entries is 13 March! Read more 


North-east Scotland Forestry and Timber Regional Event
11 March 2015, Banchory Read more 

Mid Scotland Forestry and Timber Regional Event
18 March 2015, Stirling Management Centre Read more 

Confor's 2015 conference - book now!
Delivering Green Growth
24 March 2015, Westminster
Read more 

Forestry workers urged to sign up to safety event
HSE is holding two Forestry Safety and Health Awareness Days:
10th March 2015 at SRUC Barony Campus, Parkgate, Dumfries & Galloway
24th March 2015 at New Forest, Deorfrith Lodge, Lyndhurst, Hampshire
Read more 

Confor members open day at BSW Southampton
22 April, Southampton, book by 01 April
Read more 

Confor Woodland Show 2015
10-11 September 2015, Longleat Estate
Read more 

South-west AGM
10 September 2015, at Confor Woodland Show, Longleat Estate 

South-west autumn meeting
07 October 2015, Fingle Woods - date for your diary  

Woodland Communications Day
13 October 2015, Horringer - date for your diary

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