VIDEO: Nornay Shire Horse demonstration at Sherwood Forest reserve

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THE Nornay Shire Horses have been back working in Sherwood Forest National Nature Reserve over the half-term break.

The Shire Horses belong to Mike Bingham, who lives at Blythe, and he uses them to demonstrate how timber used to be extracted from the woodland environment.

Country Park managers have invited Mike to provide three demonstrations for visitors to the National Nature Reserve during half-term.

Ted Wooddisse, Nottinghamshire County Council Land Management Officer, said: “This is the third year we have had Mike and his Shire Horses working in Sherwood, and they have been very popular with visitors to the National Reserve. It’s fantastic to watch Mike and his team work with these impressive animals, removing felled timber in the traditional manner, as has been practised in Sherwood for hundreds of years”

Mr Wooddisse added that as Sherwood is a National Nature Reserve, the County Council insist that during the winter felling operations that specialist machinery is used to prevent damage to the forest floor and to avoid any compaction of the ground as the root systems around the veteran oaks need to be protected.

Nottinghamshire County Council is five years into a ten year programme of works under a Higher Level Stewardship Scheme to restore wood pasture to the forest, and improve conditions for the veteran oak. Oak and birch are being selectively removed, to open up the woodland, and the veteran oak are having young trees removed from around them to give them light and space to encourage them to flourish. The work has been agreed with and specified by Natural England, who are also funding the works.