AS a subscriber to your magazine, I have noticed the recurring topic of how difficult it is to encourage young people to consider a career in forestry broached on several occasions.

As a forestry student, these articles are somewhat encouraging, as they suggest the potential for many work opportunities upon graduation. However, judging by my recent experience of attempting to find a work placement for next year, the forestry industry is anything but encouraging when it comes to assisting those who wish to make a career in forestry.

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I have asked three private forestry companies, four different large private estates, Kielder and Grizedale (Forestry England), and the Northern Ireland Forestry Service, whether they could provide a forestry placement for the first six to eight months of next year. The ones who replied all gave me a negative answer.

Does the forestry industry truly need young people? Or have I just talked to the best-staffed operations in the United Kingdom? I will persevere.

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It would appear that either:
A) the magazine is looking for sensation,
B) the forestry industry is not in need of personnel, or
C) no one is prepared to take on a student for work placement.

Henry Gregory-Smith

P.S. If anyone knows of a placement opportunity as an assistant forest manager in the north of England or Scottish Borders area, please email me at