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Knockmary Oak Woodland

The Knockmary Oak Woodland is an attractive native Oak Woodland on Drummond Estate which had overtime developed an understory of non-native Sycamore. RTS undertook the removal of 500t of Sycamore from within the woodland in order to enhance the woodland and improve the opportunity for Oak regeneration. Due to the sensitivity of the site the trees were chainsaw felled and then removed utilising a low-impact light timber forwarder. The majority of the resultant timber is being utilised at the RTS woodfuel depot for delivery to homes in the local area.

Archerfield - Golf Course Construction

RTS were engaged to provide forestry advice to the landscape architects and course designers for The Renaissance Club At Archerfield’s new course located next to Muirfield on the East Lothian coast.

Following consent RTS were engaged to undertake detailed surveys and clearance following their long-term Management Plan. This involved the felling and clearance, including destumping, of over 40ha of mixed pine and broadleaved woodland.

The first clearance involved the harvesting of >49ha of woodland and developing a unique de-stumping methodology. Stumps were then moved to planned infill areas and using a tub-grinder comminuted to 50-100mm and the topsoil reinstated over the newly shaped profile.

The site was left cleared of all material, branches, roots, stones drains laid and ready for hand-over to the golf course contractors for final shaping and formation of bunkers, and finally, grass seeding in August 2006.

The final result transforms the work-in-progress to something rather special.

Tree Hazard Management

Both under UK law and Forestry Certification it is the duty of all landowners to ensure the hazard posed by trees on their land is managed reasonably. In the case of Drummond Estate RTS has produced a Tree Hazard Management System to ensure the Estate fulfils this duty of care. Once target areas have been prioritised surveys are scheduled and undertaken on an annual basis by qualified RTS staff. These surveys are utilised to produce a budgeted and a prioritised work program.

The roadside trees on Drummond Estate are an important and appealing feature in the local landscape, notably the mature Lime and Chestnut avenues. Any work which is required on these trees is undertaken in a manner which retains the trees and their aesthetic appeal yet ensures discharge of the Estate's liability. RTS Ltd undertakes an annual program of works which includes securing the appropriate permissions and supply of traffic management as well as ensuring a high degree of work is achieved.

Penmanshiel Windfarm

In conjunction with our Joint Venture Partner, MW Herdman Forestry Solutions Ltd of Hexham (RTS/MWH), RTS/MWH undertook the removal of over 200 hectares of forestry from Penmanshiel Windfarm, Cockburnspath. This project involved the constructions of 2000m of roadline, the harvesting of over 20,000 tonnes of timber and the removal of 5000 tonnes of whole trees which were chipped onsite for delivery into the biomass supply chain.By deploying the excavator based “feller buncher” harvesting system for whole trees RTS/MWH ensured that the operation was completed without whole tree mulching, which was deemed undesirable on this site. The marketing of the resultant material into the biomass supply chain provided an income to the project minimising costs to the developers and meeting the exacting planning conditions.During this work RTS/MWH operated as Principal Contractor under the CDM regulations developing the high level of Health and Safety Managing Systems which working under these regulations requires.

Blacklaw Windfarm

In conjunction with our Joint Venture Partner, MW Herdman Forestry Solutions Ltd of Hexham (RTS/MWH), RTS/MWH undertook the removal of over 550 hectares of forestry from Blacklaw Windfarm Extension, Forth. This project involved the harvesting of over 100,000 tonnes of timber. At peak production seven timber harvesters were deployed to ensure that the operation was completed on budget and on schedule.

This project was the highest producing largest individual timber harvesting site in Britain at the time and involved an integrated harvesting/dispatch and marketing approach to meet the crucial turbine energising date.Circa 30ha of smaller areas of checked poor quality timber was mulched in situ utisling a LGP excavator based system. RTS took the lead in securing the appropriate permissions to undertake these activities.

Woodland Creation

RTS was instructed by the owners of Auchineden Estate to investigate the potential for tree planting on the Estate. The resultant plan was for two phases of Woodland planting. The first was a commercial conifer woodland totalling some 250ha with broadleaf components in visually and ecologically important areas. This site had a number of constraints including the water environment and the inclusion of a private water supply. On attaining external input from hydrologists and Forest Research RTS was able to demonstrate that the new woodland design would benefit the quality and security of the supply.

The second phase of woodland creation was commenced in 2012 consisting of the creation of 100ha of new native woodland adjacent to a locally popular footpath. The design of this new woodland will provide an improved landscape feature with views maintained over Loch Lomond and Ben Lomond while adding to future sporting opportunities on the Estate. Once planned including design and attaining grant approval RTS undertook appropriate ground preparation, fencing and planting of the site. Both woodlands are now establishing well with RTS staff continuing to undertake maintenance operations.

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TIMBER HARVESTING

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