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Inverliever Forest History 1951
Forestry Memories
 Open Document 
No: 4140   Contributor: Norman Davidson   Year: 1951
Inverliever Forest History 1951

The document is courtesy of Glenbranter Forest office staff with particular thanks to Ian Adams who has stored these old files for many years.

This appears to be an initial history written by J Chrystall (assumed to be Jock Chrystall who was later Assist Conservator in North Scotland) and is a very valuable insight into the forest which was initiated by the Office of Woods in 1912 and transferred to the Forestry Commission in the early 1920s. This may have been one of the early trial Forest Histories and was certainly used as an example by other District Officers although the format did change at a later point in 1951. Note that a second and more extensive version of the history appears in Record No 3425 but no author is noted.

This early government forest in Scotland was administered by Roy Robinson later to become chairman of the Forestry Commission but on the ground was the very experienced forester, John Boyd, who had previously worked for John Stirling Maxwell on his Pollock and Corrour Estates. John Boyd had worked for many years on growing suitable trees, preparing the ground and planting the high elevation forest of Loch Ossian on Corrour Estate and thus had unrivalled experience to take on the challenges of Inverliever.

In paragraph 4 possibly his most significant achievement is highlighted thus ‘It was at this Forest that the first attempt to correlate the choice of species (tree) with the existing vegetation types was made in this country.’ No doubt sanctioned or initiated by Roy Robinson, John was responsible for setting out the survey of the many different vegetation types in the plantatable areas of the forest and subsequently setting up species trials in each type later known as Boyd’s Experiments. Maps of the survey have been referred to but sadly, so far, none have come to light. Also referred to are numerous Inspection Reports but again the actual documents are not to hand.

The list of staff makes interesting reading as many in future years reached very senior positions in the Forestry Commission. The staff named are:
R L Robinson (Executive Officer - Office of Woods)
John Boyd (Forester – Office of Woods)
Under Forestry Commission management:
Conservators – A Watt, J E James
Divisional Officers: A D Hopkinson, J M Murray, O J Sangar, A H Gosling, J S B Macdonald, A Watt and H V S Dier.
District Officers: A Graham, W H Whellens, R J Waterman, H V S Dier, T E Edwardson and J Chrystall.
Foresters: H Cameron, J D McDonald, J Kennedy, R (Bob)Crozier

Picture added on 24 July 2018 at 19:34
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