Thropton WI, October meeting

TIMBER TALK: At the beginning of Thropton WI’s October meeting, very few members had much knowledge about the history of the forestry industry.

An hour later, Bob Harrison, the former manager of the Duke of Northumberland’s forests, had given us a fascinating insight into this topic.

His talk, entitled ‘Serried Ranks and Bluebells’, explained how, historically, the Royal Navy, the Enclosures and population increase have all had a major effect on the development of our forests.

Bob took us through several centuries, tracing the ups and downs of forestry, illustrating how forests are an integral part of the British landscape.

He brought us up-to-date with the current emphasis on broad leaf trees and his own conviction that we should not destroy all the productive coniferous forests whilst there is a world-wide shortage of wood.

We were all amazed that Bob delivered this potted history without a single note or visual aid.

Our business meeting was got through quickly and members were informed about a thank-you letter from our twin WI, Southridge, the forthcoming County Day in Wooler, proposed Christmas activities and Win’s Walk on October 20. We were delighted to have raised almost £140 for the Macmillan coffee morning.

Our next meeting on November 2, will feature the Rothbury Bridge works and will be open to the general public, at a cost of £2 a ticket.