Small Woodland Owners' Group

SSSI woodlands

Paperwork, grants, legal issues

Postby Woodland63 » Thu Oct 15, 2009 2:04 pm

Hello, we purchased a 63 acre woodland approx 1 year ago. It is mainly made up of birch, a few oaks and a couple of very old yew trees.

The woodland when purchased hadnt been worked since the 1950s and is very overgrown and the birch seem to have taken over. There are a few footpaths that run through it and also a bridleway. We have cleared most of the fallen trees, mainly birch which has grown very tall and gangly due to the amount of light that reachs them.

The woodland is classed as sssi and we have had a visit from them to discuss what we can do with the woods, they have suggested to take all the scragly birch away to give room for the older trees and genrally tidy up.

We would be hoping to sell the trees that we cut down, can anyone recommened anywhere that will purchase the wood?

Thank you :D


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Postby tracy » Thu Oct 15, 2009 2:11 pm

Hi woodland63, welcome to swog!

Where in the country are you? - that might help people to know where you could sell your birch.

Birch is good firewood. burns hot, (but fast) so I suspect that is what you would sell it for. You make the best returns on it if you burn it yourself to heat your home. Second best is to sell it directly to people who use it for firewood. We just asked around people who knew and now have loads of customers.


Unless you have a lot, you might find little interest in firewood suppliers coming to pick it up....


Others may have better advice though!


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Postby Woodland63 » Thu Oct 15, 2009 2:15 pm

Hi, thanks for your reply!

We are in shropshire, there is alot of the birch around.

We do get alot of logs from the fallen trees alone and use this ourselves.

Somebody in the area has offered to buy some of our oaks, they too own a woodland. Arnt oaks protected though? and if not how much can i expect per oak?

Thanks


Woodland63
 
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Postby tracy » Thu Oct 15, 2009 4:17 pm

That is a good question.

You need a felling licence for things like oak - if you take more that 5 cubic metres per quarter.... rather complex. As you are in a sssi I would get advice and permission before felling them. The oaks may well be protected.


Some people think they should never be felled

some think that thinning them out is a good idea. More room means better crowns on the oaks left behind (better for bugs and birds) but every woodland is different and has different needs.

I suggest you have a variety of experts walk around with you and discuss the matter. All of them will have slightly different opinions - but will know the law, things like needing to check for bats!


It is good to take a lot of different opinions and then make up your mind based on the information given! For example, the guy who wants your trees might want all the lovely straight ones - but if you are thinning you might want to leave the most stable trees to stand for another 100 years and for him to thin the wonky ones that are leaning over precariously.


The price is tricky. If you fell them and extract them yourself you will get 3 or 4 times more than if someone buys them standing. The person buying them standing is taking a bit of a gamble about what the timber will be like inside. They also have to do all the work... and extract them.

The price will also depend on how easy it is to get them out. If your wood has ditches and mud everywhere the price will drop as extraction is difficult.


I suggest you get a few different quotes before you sell them. Also, make sure you are clear on a number of issues

Time of year to fell

Who clears up the brash

If they have a fire, where will they site it and how big it will be

What weather can they extract in? (wet weather and tractors don't mix well)

Do they have insurance and chainsaw ticket?

Can you get recommendations from other people for their work?

If they make a mess, how can you force them to clean it up? (remake tracks etc)


Your felling license also might require you to replant. This will need some thought too.


I hope this doesn't put you off - it is a big decision, take your time with it!

Tracy


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Postby Woodland63 » Fri Oct 16, 2009 12:17 pm

Thanks for your reply - We have the machinery to cut the trees ourselves, we are looking for someone to buy the timber that we cut.


Woodland63
 
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Postby tracy » Fri Oct 16, 2009 4:58 pm

Cool, that will mean you can get more for it!

Just remember to check you are allowed ;-)


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Postby Woodland63 » Mon Oct 19, 2009 12:30 pm

Hi the SSSI have been out and are quite happy for us to thin the wood out and take quite alot of the trees to allow room for the bigger ones to grow.

We have been in touch with someone who is going to be doing the job for us and they say we need a thinning licence - just looking in to now. Does anyone know how long it takes for it to come through?

Thanks


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Postby wood troll » Mon Oct 19, 2009 12:58 pm

Hi Woodland63,

Going back to your asking about advice in Shropshire... where in the Shire is your wood (nearest town will do) as I known a couple of contacts up there but they are in the north of the county.

wood troll


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Postby Woodland63 » Tue Oct 20, 2009 7:57 pm

Hi, its near bridgnorth :D


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