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AA renewal urgent message!

All members who returned their renewal forms before 31 January should now have received their new membership cards. Unfortunately we have had a problem with the Royal Mail not delivering some of the pre-paid return envelopes to us. So, if you sent back your renewal form in one of our reply-paid envelopes before 31 January and you have not yet received your new membership card, then it is quite likely that yours is one of the items of mail affected.

The Post Office has assured us that all of the affected items will be returned to their original senders but this may take some time. Therefore in order to keep your membership up to date, please can you send us your payment again as it is probably sitting in a sorting office in Dublin waiting to be returned to you! If you are unsure whether your membership renewal has been received by us, please check your bank statement first to see if we’ve taken any money from you and if in doubt, please call us. Don’t forget that unless and until we have received and processed your membership renewal, you will not receive any more ARB Magazines, Journals, eNews mailings etc., you won’t be eligible for any of the discounts in the Membership Benefits Catalogue and if you are a Technician, Professional, or Fellow member, you will not be entitled to use your post-nominals. So, don’t delay – renew today!!!

If you have any queries regarding your renewal or would like to join, call our membership officer on 01242 522152 or email membership@trees.org.uk.

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Dr Thomas Hall

Dr Thomas Hall

We are sad to announce the death of Dr Tom Hall, a much respected and venerable arboriculturist, who died on Saturday 12 January 2013. Tom was very well known to older members of the Association and was widely regarded within the industry as one of the pioneers of progressing arboricultural knowledge, working as he did with such pioneers as Dr Alex Shigo, Henry Arnold and others. From the AA perspective, he was respected and revered as the editor of the Arboricultural Journal – a role he carried out for some 24 years, up to 1997. A full obituary will appear in the spring edition of the ARB Magazine (out 22 February).

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Branch meeting at The Malthouse, Stroud Green, Standish GL10 3DL

AA branches to meet

On 12 February all of the AA’s branches will meet near The Malthouse. The objective is to share ideas for meetings and events but also for co-ordinating events locally and with other branches. Various topics are on the agenda, including how the branches are supported by HQ in terms of administrative support and provision of promotional equipment and how this will vary for locally organised events compared to the very successful AA roadshows. READ MORE in the new ARB Magazine (out 22 February).

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AA Registered Consultant Pack

The updated Registered Consultant scheme

The AA Registered Consultant scheme has been operative for 30 years and is the pinnacle of excellence in arboricultural consulting. In order that the scheme remains current it has undergone a major overhaul to produce the best version yet. In addition to revised prerequisites, the scheme seeks a broad cross-section of reports and measures them against clearly identifiable competencies and criteria. That process is now conducted by a panel of assessors under the moderation of a newly appointed Lead Assessor, Peter Annett. DOWNLOAD THE PACK

More information about the scheme and what it’s like to work as a professional arboriculturist is available through the AA’s fifth Arboricultural Consultancy two-day course in March. READ MORE >>

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Tackling the threat to London's trees, Guildhall, City of London

Tackling the threats to London’s trees

Held on 24 January at Guildhall, City of London

The conference attracted nearly 200 delegates to hear from eminent speakers. The opening address was by Sir Harry Studholme, Forestry Commission Chairman. For PDF copies of the day’s presentations follow the links:

  • Martin Ward – the plant health legislative framework DOWNLOAD
  • Dr John Morgan – the current and future range of tree pests & diseases DOWNLOAD
  • Jake Tibbetts – Biology of Massaria and Islington Borough experience DOWNLOAD
  • Jago Keen – City of London survey and management of Massaria DOWNLOAD
  • Dr Joan Webber – Acute Oak Decline DOWNLOAD
  • Nigel Straw – Oak Processionary Moth DOWNLOAD
  • Sue Ireland – The Oak Processionary Moth Advisory Group DOWNLOAD
  • Dr Joan Webber – Biology of chalara and distribution DOWNLOAD
  • Bruce Rothnie – the Chalara interim control plan DOWNLOAD
  • Jim Smith – Biosecurity in the urban environment DOWNLOAD
  • Tony Kirkham – What tree do I plant next DOWNLOAD
  • Dr Linda Davis – Public awareness and involvement DOWNLOAD
  • Peter Massini – Can’t see the wood for the trees? DOWNLOAD

Key messages emerged from the event:

  • The need for cross-sector collaboration to tackle these threats
  • The need to engage the public, by awareness raising and volunteer involvement in pest & disease issues
  • The need for political engagement and adequate resources to tackle the threats
  • The need to develop greater resilience in our tree and woodland population to pests and diseases through action such as research, silviculture and increased diversity


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Blue Book consultation

Blue Book consultation

On Friday 21 December the DCLG announced its open consultation seeking views on the conclusions and recommendations of the review of planning guidance led by Lord Taylor. The report, the consultation document and contact details can be accessed through planningguidance.readandcomment.com, which also provides the opportunity to make and read public online comments. The report recommends that guidance should only be provided online and be reviewed every year. It suggests that the bulk of this work should be completed by July 2013. The consultation seeking comment on the government proposals closes on 15 February 2013. READ MORE >>

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Ride for Research 2013

Ride for Research 2013

The Ride for Research is heading to Glasgow and will take place on 30 April 2013 and it has been timed to coincide with the Institute of Chartered Foresters’ annual conference: Woodlands and the Green Economy Capitalising on Ecosystem Services. READ MORE >>. The two rides last year raised over £2,500 and the aim is to increase this total in 2013.

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Ash Dieback update - spotting Chalara fraxinea available on YouTube

Ash dieback updates

The Forestry Commission has released a short video for the identification of ash dieback through the winter months. Steve Scott, Area Director for the Forestry Commission, illustrates how to spot the tell-tale signs of ash dieback (Chalara fraxinea). The video was shot on location at Wayland Wood in Norfolk, courtesy of the Norfolk Wildlife Trust. For further information or to report a suspected case please visit www.forestry.gov.uk/chalara >>

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Explore the Ancient Trees of Africa

Explore the Ancient Trees of Africa  

A small team made up of an international group of professional tree climbers, a pro photographer and a top film-maker have travelled to South Africa. In association with South Africa’s Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry they aim to find, climb and record the country’s remaining unprotected ancient trees. All lovers of the natural world and working at height, the team share a wealth of experience in all aspects of tree climbing and rope access. The team includes two UK climbers Stephen Fry and Geoff Pugsley, Drew Bristow who studied arboriculture at Myerscough College, Greg Parker, Rob Fisher and Vince Jolin. The exploration can be followed at the Explore Trees website or on Facebook. A full report of the expedition will appear in the summer edition of the ARB Magazine.

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Action to protect iconic trees from disease

Tighter controls on the import of native species of trees have been announced by Environment Secretary Owen Paterson as the latest action to guard against tree pests and diseases. The new regulations to track the import of oak, ash, sweet chestnut and plane trees from countries within the EU came into force on 17 January. This will allow plant health inspectors to target their inspections and to track saplings if there are any suspicions that they carry a pest or disease. READ MORE >>

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The Coalition mid-term report

Coalition mid-term report highlights tree planting and new future for forests

On pages 39-40 of their mid-term report, Prime Minister David Cameron and Deputy PM Nick Clegg agreed to the planting of a million trees by 2015 and to put English forestry on a more sustainable footing, building on the report by the Independent Panel on Forestry headed by the Bishop of Liverpool. Furthermore they have committed to implement the Ash Dieback Control Strategy and consider the findings from the Tree Health and Plant Bio-security Expert Taskforce. READ MORE >>

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Ian Gambles, new Director England of Forestry Commission England  

New Director at Forestry Commission England

Forestry Commission England has announced its new Director England who will take charge on 11 March. Ian Gambles, previously Director of National Infrastructure at the Planning Inspectorate, has experience from both the public and private sectors, including HM Treasury and as a management consultant. READ MORE >>

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The Westonbirt Project Logo

The Westonbirt Project

Westonbirt, The National Arboretum, has begun an exciting new venture entitled the Westonbirt Project which is to develop a new car park, Welcome Building and restore a Grade 1 Registered Downs landscape. Follow the progress of the work and project at the Friends of Westonbirt Arboretum blog spot, click to READ MORE >>


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West Sussex County Council Logo


£26,276 – £28,636

West Sussex County Council have a vacancy for an Arboriculturalist, based predominately at Southern Area Office, Nr. Worthing but will be required to travel throughout the county.

Closing date: 1 March 2013

CGM Ltd Logo

Experienced arborists required

CGM Ltd is a multi disciplinary company with an Arboricultural Association Approved Contractor department providing Arboricultural Services to its diverse client base throughout East Anglia. We are looking for qualified and experienced arborists to join our existing teams.