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Veterans Complete "Red Listed" Skills Training as part of their Land Management Course

Jez, Darryl and Fi loving the connection with nature!

As part of the Land Management and Wildlife Conservation course the Secure Forests CIC team have been working with the Cornwall Rural Education and Skills Trust (CREST). A Cornish based rural skills charity are dedicated to protecting some of the UK’s “red listed” skills. The team from CREST have been delivering a “Cornish Stone Hedging” Foundation course to 4 of our veterans who are currently conducting a 7- weeks Land Management package at Mount Edgcumbe Country Park.

The Cornish stone hedging is an essential part of the management of the rural landscape to ensure that livestock are managed and also that these hedges create their own eco-systems which support biodiversity also act as corridors for wildlife. Mature hedging provides an incredibly rich and diverse habitat for many species. The plan is to build about 100 metres of Cornish hedging to protect the formal gardens and to provide a creative and beautiful traditional Cornish hedge at Mount Edgcumbe Country park.

Andrew getting to grips with the masonry tools and the stone

These skills are passionately passed on by the CREST trainers Diggary and Darryl. Diggary having an incredible expert knowledge spanning over 30 years and wants to pass onto this knowledge to the next generation of Stone Hedgers. Please see article below from Cornwall Heritage trust:

The Cornwall Rural Education and Skills Trust, known as CREST, has been founded to address the need for training in the craft of Cornish hedging and raise awareness of the rich value of hedges in the landscape.

The project centres around the Barn Pool area of the lower park and the hedge will eventually extend to connect the existing historic wall surrounding the historic formal gardens and protecting tree species.”

Fiona loving this skill

From Left to right: Jez (RAF), Fiona (RN), Diggary and Darryl + Andrew (RM) Ryan(Army)

Course 001: Land Management and Wildlife Conservation, complete 5 days of learning. The candidates plus 2 others completed this section over 5 days of instruction form the CREST team. The 4 candidates will now complete the wall with and end Stone pillar with a further 5 days training and will receive a LANTRA qualification on completion of 10 days of Cornish Stone hedging.

Jez, Andrew and Ryan really enjoyed the focus and skill delivered by the CREST team, Fiona one of the veterans who is an ex Royal Navy Engineer said, "I really enjoyed the tactile nature of Cornish Stone Hedging, I felt that I really connected with the environment and the process of the build, I can't wait to do more!"

The course was carried out in the beautiful Landscape at the Mount Edgcumbe Country park, Torpoint Cornwall. You can find the wall and see the teams work in the Lower park and at the Barn pool. This will be an ongoing project that each course will complete a section of Wall as part of the course syllabus.

This phase of the refurbishment of the Grade 1 listed landscape will be funded by the Friends of Mount Edgcumbe, a charity that supports Mount Edgcumbe (FOMECP) a registered charity consisting of like-minded people who love the Park and wish to see it preserved and improved for the enjoyment of all. Thank you to the FOMECP for your support and the Country park for your support!

I think the hard work has really paid off and the wall looks absolutely beautiful!

For more information, please contact the Secure Forests CIC team at:

To learn more about Secure Forests CIC and the Veterans and Blue Light Services Land Management Courses contact the team in the office on 01752 823601.

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