Apprentices to hand plant 42,000 trees across Derbyshire and South Yorkshire

Daniel Pincott, aged 24, left, from Mansfield and Jack Medlock, 20, from Cuckney, planting trees in Forestry Commission woods near Carburton, near Edwinstowe.  Picture: Doug Jackson.
Daniel Pincott, aged 24, left, from Mansfield and Jack Medlock, 20, from Cuckney, planting trees in Forestry Commission woods near Carburton, near Edwinstowe. Picture: Doug Jackson.
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IF you go down to the woods today you’re sure of a big surprise.

That is because a new generation of trees is being planted – by a new generation of forest workers.

A team of Forestry Commission apprentices are hand planting more than 42,000 trees across the East Midlands and South Yorkshire over the next few months.

The scheme will replace trees felled for timber and also form part of ongoing efforts to reshape forests to diversify wildlife habitats and make woodlands more resilient.

The rookie forest workers were recruited as part of a Forestry Commission apprenticeship initiative to tackle potential future skills shortages by training craftspeople to join the ranks of the lumberjacks and Jills.

Despite the march of mechanisation, tree planting still has to be done by hand.