Chainsaw instructor recommends HAIX boots


n the previous issue of Forest Bioenergy Review, the Editor advertised that he was looking for a forestry worker to ‘test drive’ a pair of the new HAIX Protector Ultra boots. In the promotion, it was said that being sturdy and strong, yet light in weight, they may be particularly suitable for a lumberjill. Cometh the hour, cometh the woman in the shape of Abby Lamb, Chainsaw Instructor on the Forestry and Arboriculture courses at Plumpton College in East Sussex, England. The report she carried out for this magazine is as follows:

“I was lucky enough to be given a pair of HAIX boots to trial for Forest Bioenergy Review magazine. As a chainsaw

Abby Lamb receives her HAIX Protector Ultra boots from David Young, Editor of Forest Bioenergy Review.

instructor, I spend many long hours on my feet and it is vital that I have appropriate Personal Protective Equipment.

“The first thing that struck me about the boots was how light they were for chainsaw boots. I

know from my previous life felling trees in Scotland that lugging your feet around in heavy boots makes your legs tire faster, especially on hill work, so I was pleasantly surprised to find that they were incredibly light.

“I don’t climb (some people just should NOT get off the ground and I am one of them), but I have no doubt that their lightness would make them ideal climbing boots. The ankle support is superb and probably my favourite feature of them is the neoprene cuff at the back of the ankle, which made them super comfortable and prevented sawdust getting into the top of the boots when working. The lacing points are durable and I can see these boots lasting me for a long, long time.

“I often get asked by students to make recommendations for which trousers and boots to buy. I will definitely be pointing people in the direction of HAIX based on this experience.”

Forestry courses at Plumpton College

Since the original 400-acre College farm was bought back in 1919, Plumpton College has certainly seen a lot of changes. Now farming around 2,500 acres in conjunction with several landlords, its outstanding estate has grown to become one of the leading centres for land-based education in the UK.

The College welcomes more than 800 full-time plus several thousand part-time students to its excellent range of land-based courses. There are also 120 stu- dents living on-site in high quality accommodation facilities. Those looking for a successful career in forestry and woodland management can take a foun- dation degree in this leading land-based environmental sector. Developed with the employment needs of the industry in mind, it’s a highly popular course, provid- ing an opportunity to gain an understanding of current forest management practice, both nationally and internationally.

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Plumpton College is situated on an 800 hectare site with excellent indoor and outdoor facilities.

During the first year, students are given a thorough grounding in both the scientific principles and course-specific subjects. They can also gain supplementary qualifica- tions through practical training for industry-related certificates of competence in chainsaw use, practical forest management and tree felling.

In the second year, students are introduced to areas of specific in- terest through specialist modules and by undertaking a research project. They also complete a work placement, which will de- velop their practical hands-on and networking skills.

Developed in conjunction with the industry, there is also

a foundation degree course in arboriculture, with emphasis on a holistic approach to tree care. During the first year, those choos- ing this course gain a broad-based knowledge of related science and course-specific subjects. They also enjoy practical training, which will enable them to gain industry- related certificates of competence in chainsaw use and modern tree climbing techniques. In the second year, they focus on industry standard tree management and related scien- tific research. They can also look forward to hands-on industry involvement and networking. The duration of both these de- gree courses is two years full time or four years part-time.

Plumpton College also offers 30 bespoke and short courses that cover various aspects of forest management and harvesting that can be completed in periods rang- ing from half-a-day to one week. More information from

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