THE clock is ticking and APF 2022 is getting inexorably closer. I am getting excited! That’s official!

When we are answering the phones to potential exhibitors and visitors there is a definite buzz of excitement about the event. The myriad of threads that have been out there during months of planning are beginning to come together. Sometimes it feels like wading through treacle (sending emails, waiting for quotes and replies) and then things start to slot into place. Worries and concerns about the availability of site infrastructure and fears that exhibitors and visitors might not book are being replaced by real excitement. May and June have seen very strong demand for tickets.

As I write, an order has just come in for 32 tickets and 32 campsite pitches. People are booking in their droves. Exhibitor bookings continue strongly, with around two to three new exhibitors per day.

By the time you read this we will have held our last site meeting before the show and I confidently predict we will have pretty much sold out on the demonstration circuit. If you don’t believe me, just look at the latest demo map on the website! June has seen new exhibitors signing on from as far afield as Japan and America.

What is particularly exciting is the huge range of competitions, features and events you will be able to enjoy as a visitor. Far more than we have ever had before. In the next month you will see details of these appearing on the Competitions & Events page on our website in the Visitor section.

Here is just a taster. The traditional woodland crafts area will be even larger than ever and in a prime spot near the south visitor entrance. Here you will be able to see some fantastic craftspeople demonstrating some rarely seen skills such as charcoal burning, hazel hurdles, oak-swill baskets, willow weaving, clog making, a wheelwright, pole-lathe turning, rake making, chair making and constructing a dug-out canoe. Entries and booking forms are now available for the Husqvarna World 25 m Poleclimbing Championships and the Harkie UK Open 3ATC tree-climbing competition. We have a fantastic line-up of 25 of the best carvers around for the A W Jenkinson and Tilhill European Chainsaw Carving Championships.

The UK Open Fencing Championships are already fully subscribed with competitors. The Forest Worker Zone will see a collaboration between FISA, the FCA and MWMAC with a whole range of demos. There will be a Komatsu harvester simulator, winching demos, chainsaw maintenance demos, updates and discussions on chainsaw competency and the infamous chainsaw holdout competition. If you think you can beat three minutes, give it a go (if not, get down the gym)!

Simon Richmond from the Arb Association has been doing sterling work pulling together a great programme for our new Arb Worker Zone. Expect Husqvarna to be comparing battery and petrol tools, Stihl to talk about its new Hexa chain, talks on HAVS and how to measure and avoid it and Lantra explaining how to become an instructor, amongst much more. Fancy chancing your arm? Try the throwline competition.

In the tree-climbing area, along with the 3ATC UK Open competition will be the team competition, with details to be announced soon. If you think your team is good, look out for the entry forms to compare yourself against the UK’s best. There will be a very rare, possibly unique, chance to watch daily tree-dismantling operations using a crane and talk to the experts about it.

READ MORE: APF 2022: Warwickshire forestry show hits 280 exhibitors as Approved Hydraulics signs up

I am sure I have forgotten something... oh yes! You can try your hand at horse logging courtesy of the British Horse Loggers Association. I am sure that is enough to keep you occupied and interested in addition to around £80 million of shiny new kit on show! In fact, you are never going to see all of this in one day, so come for a couple of days and stay overnight at our campsite only 200 m from the showground.

The demo team are now getting right down to the fine detail. Suppliers we have spoken to and who booked equipment a few months ago need to be contacted to ensure there have been no misunderstandings with quantities, dates, etc. Tickets and wristbands need to be designed and printed, credit card machines sourced, adverts designed and advertising placed. When I write out a ‘to do’ list it can seem a bit daunting, but I have always found the trick is to prioritise and just do one thing at a time, ‘deal and delete’ as I call it. I do hope you are looking forward to the event as much as we are.

Book your tickets and camping now whilst you remember at