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Black Isle District Annual report 1956
Forestry Memories
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No: 3732   Contributor: Norman Davidson   Year: 1956
Black Isle District Annual report 1956

The document is courtesy of Inverness, Ross and Skye Forest District and is the PDF. See button on bottom right of image.
The annual report for year ending September 1956 most likely written by District Officer Mike Long appears to now cover the individual forests areas located on the Black Isle peninsular only including Millbuie, Kilcoy Findon and Kessock. Perhaps with growing workloads here particularly in the larger nurseries new district boundaries had been assigned?
The report is set out in headings and under:
The year’s Work – comments on the year’s weather include a summary of annual rainfall at 34.8 inches against 21.7 inches the previous year, a mild winter, a dry warm spell of weather from mid February until early June when most nursery and planting work competed well on time.
The summer is described however as an open winter with periods of heavy rain and no real warmth. The weed growth in the nurseries proved to be a real challenge and only the frequent use of Shell W and TVO (Tractor Vaporising Oil) saved the day. (Must have been the early use of these methods?)
Operations seem to have gone smoothly and no significant variations or failures noted. However special emphasis is reserved for the comments on the fire season which ended with a loss of 16.5 acres of trees and in one period towards the end of the burning season gorse fires were seen from one end of the Black Isle to the other!

A quote from the report perhaps describes the frustration and pressure on the staff during a particularly long dry and dangerous period.

‘It is quite certain that the Black Isle is really and annex for Craig Dunain (Psychiatric hospital). During the spring the fire happy farmers and crofters were showering lighted matches about like confetti at a wedding’ A really marvellous quote!!
Picture added on 22 August 2017 at 15:27
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