The Ring of Gullion Landscape Partnership are proud to announce the launch of a comprehensive traditional woodland management training course, running this autumn and winter. The course will give participants an insight into all aspects of traditional woodland and hedgerow management from growing your own, through to managing mature ones and the products you can get from them.
Woodlands and hedgerows make up a vital component of our modern landscape, from field boundaries to acting as vital wildlife corridors and habitats. This landscape is the result of thousands of years of careful development and management by skilled woodsmen. Sadly, though, the skills necessary to maintain our diverse hedgerows and woods are slowly being lost, resulting in hedges becoming straggly and moribund. These hedges are often then torn up and replaced by barbed wire fencing. Woodlands, once maintained by woodsmen, deer and pigs, are becoming choked with invasive native and non-native plants, causing a loss in biodiversity and productivity. “This diverse course will give participants a vital insight into all aspects of hedgerow and woodland management and will help achieve the project aim of reducing the biodiversity loss in the Ring of Gullion area.” said Des Murphy, Chairperson of the Ring of Gullion Landscape Partnership Board.
The one and two-day modules will be mostly outdoors and will take place at sites across the Ring of Gullion, mainly Jonesborough, Glassdrummond, Slieve Gullion Forest Park and Mullaghbane. Topics will include growing trees from seed, tree identification, removal of invasive species, hedge-planting and hedge laying, coppicing, establishing and maintaining living willow structures, and using forest products to create hurdles and other items. “This is a fantastic opportunity to share old knowledge and keep these traditional skills alive, it could also lead to some new rural businesses.” said Rosin Mulgrew, Chairperson of Newry, Mourne & Down District Council.
More than eight full days of training will be involved and people should only sign up if they can commit to the majority of these days. The cost of the course is just £50; however, volunteers who have built up over 75 hours volunteering with the Landscape Partnership will be offered this training for free, while those who have completed 35 hours will qualify for a 50% reduction in fees.
Please visit or phone the office on +4428 3082 8594 for further information.