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Awards time for foresters of the future
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Students at nearly 30 colleges in England, Wales and Scotland have been receiving RFS Silky Fox Handsaw Awards for excellence in practical woodland and tree management skills.

RFS Education Manager Phil Tanner said: “We are delighted to see young talent come into the industry to help ensure that UK trees and woodlands are expertly maintained for future generations.“Forestry and woodland management are beginning to flourish once again in the UK, with slowly increasing woodland cover, increased emphasis on home-grown wood and new and emerging opportunities for viable forestry.


Capel Manor College Level 2 Arboriculture Apprentice Jack Hockley, centre, receives the RFS Silky Fox Handsaw award from RFS Education Manager Phil Tanner, right, and Sir William Stubbs

“With the generous support of Major David Davenport and Silky Fox – leading UK arboriculture saws’ supplier – we are delighted to be able to present a prize which will help give foresters of the future the very best start to their careers.”

Jack Hockley, a Level 2 Arboriculture Apprentice studying at Capel Manor College’s Enfield campus was among the first to receive an award. College tutor Derek McFarland said: “Jack’s ability to meet challenges head on and master them is a characteristic that will serve him well in his career and I feel that this award recognises and celebrates his commitment to his employer and his career.”

Others to have received RFS Silky Fox Handsaw Awards 2014 so far include:

  • Ben Hunt – Abingdon & Witney College
  • Conrad Robinson – Bicton College
  • George Tucker – Bridgwater College
  • Jack Hockley – Capel Manor College
  • George Ridgewell – Hadlow College
  • Michael Garratt – Coleg Cambria
  • Gethin Rowlands – Coleg Meirion Dwyfor
  • Andrew Senior – SRUC (Scotland)

An updated list of RFS Silky Fox Handsaw Award winners will appear in the October issue of the RFSQuarterly Journal of Forestry.