A cut above the rest

Four members of the TRAMPS group recently attended a Lantra small tree felling and crosscutting course run by Phil Dunford Chainsaw Training.

The team were keen to gain the Lantra qualifications so that they would be able to quickly and safely remove dangerous and fallen trees on the canal for Canal & River Trust. They had to fund the course fees themselves but felt it was worth doing for such a very valuable qualification.

The TRAMPS volunteers had been using chainsaws for over 40 years and were concerned that bad habits would be difficult to unlearn. However under the expert tuition of Phil Dunford they reported that they learned a huge amount and quickly became proficient at using safe working practices achieving a very high level of competence – for old folk! Phil calculated that the joint age of the trainees was 295 years – the oldest group he had ever trained. Chris Bushnell, Phil Davies, Robbie Marshall and Graeme Slack said that the course was expertly conducted, very practical, extremely informative and most enjoyable.

Small Tree Fellers Qualified: Chris Bushnell, Phil Davies, Robbie Marshall and Graeme Slack with Phil Dunford, front.

Said Chris Bushnell: “If the canal is left untended it is soon overgrown and is unusable for walkers, cyclists and boaters. The Welshpool Adoption Group alias TRAMPS (Thursday Restoration And Maintenance Project Support) supports the Canal & River Trust in maintaining the navigable section of canal from the Refail bridge through Welshpool to Bank Lock on the Pool Quay flight of locks as well as some of the cut off sections towards Newtown.

“We are a group of enthusiastic volunteers who enjoy getting together to care for the canal. We meet every Thursday to carry out a variety of maintenance tasks: Litter picking, hedge cutting and hedge laying, strimming the tow path, clearing weed from the channel, removing fallen trees, repairing fences and gates, painting and maintaining the locks and picnic areas – in fact we tackle anything that’s required. Volunteers spend as much time each we (or as little!) as they can spare and there is no commitment to volunteering every week.”

Interested in joining us?
Contact Chris Bushnell – chris.bushnell3@btinternet.com