Tales From The Wildwood BBC4

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Tales From The Wildwood BBC4

Postby Bulworthy Project » Sat Oct 13, 2012 10:12 am

Series comming out on BBC4 on 17th October about the restoration of neglected woodlands and the use of the resulting products. We're biased because we were involved in the programme in a small way, but having met some of the other people involved, it looks really promising.
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Re: Tales From The Wildwood BBC4

Postby Davie Crockett » Sat Oct 13, 2012 6:17 pm

Thanks for sharing! I'll look forward to watching that :D
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Re: Tales From The Wildwood BBC4

Postby Jane » Sat Oct 13, 2012 6:33 pm

That looks interesting. Thank you.
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Re: Tales From The Wildwood BBC4

Postby robin wood » Sat Oct 13, 2012 9:23 pm

sounds potentially good
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Re: Tales From The Wildwood BBC4

Postby Brian Williamson » Sun Oct 14, 2012 10:00 pm

They spent a day with me on coppice management/restoration and I have hopes for it. Should be way more interesting than 'Kevin's Shed'.

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Re: Tales From The Wildwood BBC4

Postby Bulworthy Project » Wed Oct 17, 2012 6:56 pm

With no TV and a dongle for our internet, we're not going to see it until tomorrow, so we'll have to see if it's as good as it sounds then.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b01ndkwq
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Re: Tales From The Wildwood BBC4

Postby Davie Crockett » Wed Oct 17, 2012 10:02 pm

What a fab little programme! Really enjoyed watching that..
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Re: Tales From The Wildwood BBC4

Postby ToneWood » Thu Oct 18, 2012 12:01 am

Excellent! I loved it. Very well researched, presented & put together. Thanks for posting the iPlayer link ;) Coppicing, pigs, horse snigging in Wales and "the Forest" (of Dean) - what more could a man ask for :) Sounds ambitious for a 1 year project. Very scenic and pleasant to watch.

Surprised and sadden to hear the Britain is one of the least forested countries in Europe :( Very surprised to hear that there were only 200 mature trees in the Forest of Dean at the time of the Civil War, most of the trees were planted since. Not surprised to hear that Rob finds woods to be his Prozac. They said the oaks could be valuable if they could be taken out (impractical), however, I saw a program a few years ago where they reckon a felled & snedded oak fetched only about £80.
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Re: Tales From The Wildwood BBC4

Postby Bulworthy Project » Thu Oct 18, 2012 1:03 pm

We watched it this morning. Really enjoyed it. For anyone who missed it, it's repeated this evening and on Sunday.
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Re: Tales From The Wildwood BBC4

Postby ToneWood » Wed Oct 24, 2012 9:07 pm

Just went to watch episode 2 on: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b01nj48s
And it said "now showing", so I watched the end on the TV instead :)
It's good, surprisingly poignant tonight. I think it will be shown again at midnight and again tomorrow at 00:20 (20 minutes past midnight), BBC4.
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Re: Tales From The Wildwood BBC4

Postby robin wood » Thu Oct 25, 2012 12:00 am

ToneWood wrote:Excellent! I loved it. Very well researched, presented & put together. Thanks for posting the iPlayer link ;) Coppicing, pigs, horse snigging in Wales and "the Forest" (of Dean) - what more could a man ask for :) Sounds ambitious for a 1 year project. Very scenic and pleasant to watch.

Surprised and sadden to hear the Britain is one of the least forested countries in Europe :( Very surprised to hear that there were only 200 mature trees in the Forest of Dean at the time of the Civil War, most of the trees were planted since. Not surprised to hear that Rob finds woods to be his Prozac. They said the oaks could be valuable if they could be taken out (impractical), however, I saw a program a few years ago where they reckon a felled & snedded oak fetched only about £80.


Not watched it but whilst Britain is low on total area of forest it is increasing from 9% 50 years ago to over 11% today. Also this gives no idea of quality. We have more ancient trees than any country in Europe. You can travel from here to the med and see few trees over 150 years old where we have thousands of 300+ yr old trees. What constitutes a "mature" tree varies over time, in the medieval period it was an 8" diameter oak maybe 40 or 50 years old. The big trees we know today are the result partly of growing for large powered sawmills (you don't want 30" diameter trees if you are making 8" square beams with an axe) and partly the result of having an empire full of huge trees and cheap labour. Forests are not historically very wooded places, they were normally more open areas for hunting, think Exmoor, Dartmoor our modern use of the term to associate it with trees is more recent. An oak can be worth anything from £8 to £800, I have sold one oak for £1500 and that was 20 years ago but it was very big.
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Re: Tales From The Wildwood BBC4

Postby JonnyP » Thu Oct 25, 2012 8:16 am

Really enjoyed watching that. Thanks for the heads-up.. :D
I would love to of had a nosey around that wood before they started. I bet its brimming with wildlife
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Re: Tales From The Wildwood BBC4

Postby ToneWood » Thu Oct 25, 2012 1:04 pm

robin wood wrote:... We have more ancient trees than any country in Europe. You can travel from here to the med and see few trees over 150 years old where we have thousands of 300+ yr old trees. What constitutes a "mature" tree varies over time, in the medieval period it was an 8" diameter oak maybe 40 or 50 years old. ...
I know of several trees over 1000 years old, some over 1100 years old - presumably documented as mature trees after the Norman Conquest (1066) and/or sampled & ring-counted since. I think scientists are only just coming to terms with how old trees can be. Many people are surprised that trees can live more than 150 years, let alone 1000+ years.

robin wood wrote:...Forests are not historically very wooded places, they were normally more open areas for hunting, think Exmoor, Dartmoor our modern use of the term to associate it with trees is more recent. An oak can be worth anything from £8 to £800, I have sold one oak for £1500 and that was 20 years ago but it was very big.
Are you sure about that? Exmoor & Dartmoor are known as moors rather than forests (although I saw a program last year that made some mention of Dartmoor once being more wooded). I suppose the New Forest - designated a Royal hunting forest of the Norman invaders - is heavily wooded but also has large areas of open scrub land too (gorse :( ). Oh, I see, you mean like Royal Forests rather than forests, interesting.

I read somewhere that the large ancient trees that we sometimes see are the product of a working forest, rather than just nature. The thinking being that forests left to their own devices become cluttered with stems (which are not thinned out), thick undergrowth and a thick, dense canopy which will eventually kills off undergrowth. The, often very large, ancient trees have been left alone but also given room to grow by foresters/woodsmen. An old friend, long dead now, once pointed out to me that the English countryside that we see now is almost entirely the product of human management (for farming, forestry, fishing, hunting, travel, etc.).
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Re: Tales From The Wildwood BBC4

Postby robin wood » Thu Oct 25, 2012 9:01 pm

ToneWood wrote:
robin wood wrote:... We have more ancient trees than any country in Europe. You can travel from here to the med and see few trees over 150 years old where we have thousands of 300+ yr old trees. What constitutes a "mature" tree varies over time, in the medieval period it was an 8" diameter oak maybe 40 or 50 years old. ...
I know of several trees over 1000 years old, some over 1100 years old - presumably documented as mature trees after the Norman Conquest (1066) and/or sampled & ring-counted since. I think scientists are only just coming to terms with how old trees can be. Many people are surprised that trees can live more than 150 years, let alone 1000+ years.

No trees documented in Doomsday, I think the first properly documented individual tree is Gilbert White's Yew at Selbourne. How do you know your tree is 1000 or 1100 years old?

ToneWood wrote:
robin wood wrote:...Forests are not historically very wooded places, they were normally more open areas for hunting, think Exmoor, Dartmoor our modern use of the term to associate it with trees is more recent. An oak can be worth anything from £8 to £800, I have sold one oak for £1500 and that was 20 years ago but it was very big.
Are you sure about that? Exmoor & Dartmoor are known as moors rather than forests (although I saw a program last year that made some mention of Dartmoor once being more wooded). I suppose the New Forest - designated a Royal hunting forest of the Norman invaders - is heavily wooded but also has large areas of open scrub land too (gorse :( ). Oh, I see, you mean like Royal Forests rather than forests, interesting.

er yes Royal forest is what a forest is as far as I am concerned it's a Norman word and had a specific meaning for nearly 1000 years, we have a slightly different modern understanding of the word today meaning trees, it never used to mean that most forests were mostly moorland or lowland heath with areas of wood pasture and pollards.

ToneWood wrote:I read somewhere that the large ancient trees that we sometimes see are the product of a working forest, rather than just nature. The thinking being that forests left to their own devices become cluttered with stems (which are not thinned out), thick undergrowth and a thick, dense canopy which will eventually kills off undergrowth. The, often very large, ancient trees have been left alone but also given room to grow by foresters/woodsmen. An old friend, long dead now, once pointed out to me that the English countryside that we see now is almost entirely the product of human management (for farming, forestry, fishing, hunting, travel, etc.).

Ancient trees are mostly pollards which ancient trees don't grow in woodland they grow in wood pasture, woodland shades them out. All UK habitats are the product of man, in fact that is the case for the whole of Europe.
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Re: Tales From The Wildwood BBC4

Postby ToneWood » Thu Oct 25, 2012 9:29 pm

robin wood wrote:...]
Ancient trees are mostly pollards which ancient trees don't grow in woodland they grow in wood pasture, woodland shades them out. All UK habitats are the product of man, in fact that is the case for the whole of Europe.
I just watched the start of episode 2 on iPlayer. The 2000 year old pollarded lime wood at Westonbirt arboretum, is quite thought provoking. The thought that it was first pollarded when the Romans were in Britain & every 27 years since is hard to take in. Interesting that the process of pollarding/coppicing has the effect of indefinitely prolonging the life of an otherwise fairly short lived tree, and that it now appears to be two rows of trees rather than a single tree. I believe there is some plant or fungus that covers acres of woodland floor in America that was recently found to be a single organism, that is thousands of years old - I think they claimed it is the longest living organism known (or perhaps it was the largest?).

However, the trees of which I wrote are not such pollarded/coppiced organisms, they are huge individual trees, mainly oaks, and exist is proper (managed) woodland - forest in the modern sense. [BTW those highlighted "Royal Forest" & "Forest" phrases, above, are links to wikipedia]
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