Conserving a Lake District wood

Scott Addison, Senior Business Analyst with The Cumberland
Scott is a Senior Business Analyst with The Cumberland. He moved from London to Arnside two years ago after a career working in banks. The move was a return home to Cumbria, as he grew up in Ambleside. Now, when he’s not at his desk, Scott is hard at work helping to restore a historic woodland in the Grizedale Valley near Coniston.

The 16-acre wood was purchased by Scott’s partner Kathy and her father Byron, and the family have been dedicating all their spare time to improving and conserving it. Although it was overgrown and neglected, the wood contains oak and yew trees which are thought to be more than 100 years old. It appears on a Victorian map and was used for coppicing for charcoal burning to make gunpowder and iron for ship building.

Scott says: “Some of the trees were choking the big yew trees so we cut them down to give the yews space to grow, and then chop up and process the wood.”

He is a newcomer to woodland conservation but has been learning from Byron and with the help of a local nature reserve warden.

“It is great, it is hard work,” says Scott. “It keeps you fit and you are doing a good thing for the environment. It gives you a great sense of pride.”

He adds: “The aim is to get the wood back to how it was. I don’t really dream of anything other than getting it right; not overrun with invasive species, and we want the traditional species of tree to reach their full potential.”

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