British Horse Loggers BHL
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Welcome to our website

We are an independent group formed to represent those either working horses in forestry or anyone interested in the art of horse logging and supporting the skill. The British Horse Loggers is also the only national body representing those working in the industry.

Our aim is to promote horse logging as a viable and sustainable option within modern forestry, showcasing the benefits to both our woodlands and our horses. We are also continuing to use a traditional and important skill.

Horse logging offers an efficient flexible approach to timber extraction with a wide range of both traditional and modern equipment available. The horses can work through the full range of woodland operations from first thinnings through to extracting the final crop. They are a low impact and sympathetic tool particularly when it comes to the management of ancient woodland and archaeologically important sites.

Working horses are ideally suited to steep sites, wet sites and environmentally sensitive areas where mechanical extraction is either not welcome or cannot access without excessive damage. Horse logging can work efficiently alongside a tractor operation if necessary. The use of horses can minimise damage to existing crops, coppiced stools and areas of regeneration. They also have the option to work in small areas where felling to provide an extraction route can be kept to a minimum. It also reduces compaction and damage to the woodland floor whilst giving no pollution from fossil fuels.

We offer practical support in many forms both to members already working horses in woodland environments and to those wishing to begin. We hope that this also offers opportunities to non-working members who seek us out purely for the pleasure of seeing the horses worked as they can be and supporting the industry.

As you look through our website you will see that we strive to offer excellent learning opportunities through a variety of courses, an industry based insurance scheme for working members and a market place for the buying and selling of horses and related items. We also try to organise progress events around the country giving opportunities to all to visit woodlands being worked with horses. With all of these benefits we hope to encourage more of you to join us and support the use of horses in forestry which could either be your own or those belonging to others.

For those of you seeking this website to find a horse logging contractor we have both a Professional Register which offers a list of approved working members and a list offering the details of other working members.


Corporate Members:

bhl news
Doug Joiner
It is with much sorrow that we announce that Doug Joiner, our long time Chairman, died on the evening of Monday 8th September. He had dealt in a practical way with ill health for a long period of time, focusing always on getting back to work and pushing on with promoting horse logging and supporting the BHLCT Apprenticeship scheme. His death nevertheless seems untimely . He will be very much missed by many, networking was one of his special skills. 
UPDATE:  A celebration and tribute to Doug's life will be held on 25th October in Childer Wood.  Details can be found by clicking here.
The family have suggested that any donations to mark your appreciation can be given to British Horse Loggers Charitable Trust. To donate please go to http://www. britishhorseloggerscharitablet
APF 2014

This premier Forestry Show is being held this year on the Ragley Estate, Alcester, Warwickshire B49 5PS, from 18th-20th September. The BHL will be demonstrating with horses on a small working site over all 3 days and volunteers to man the 'front of house' would be very welcome. This is an important opportunity to showcase working horses in Forestry so we aim as always to make this a really good demonstration on behalf of all our members.  Look forward to seeing you there. 
Further information on this years courses are now available in the Members Area
British Horse Loggers Charitable Trust - Review of Horse Logging in Wales
All horse loggers in Wales (and in the rest of the UK) please complete the questionnaire for a BHLCT research project to gather information about horse logging. For more information and access to the questionnaire click here

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