A ‘fruitful’ days work for Branston volunteers

Posted: 05 March 2013
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Volunteers from Branston's Scotland site, rolled up their sleeves today to help plant fruit trees for the Woodland Trust Scotland. The team of eight helped out at the trust's Moncreiffe Hill Wood - which lies just a few miles away from Branston's Perth-based factory.

The Branston volunteers helped the national conservation charity to widen paths for walkers and clear old grow tubes. The keen volunteers also got to grips with the planting of 10 apple trees and four plum trees.

The charity has formed a strong partnership with the UK's largest potato supplier over the years. Branston has not only given more than £7,000 in cash donations to help improve the popular woodland landmark, but it has provided many volunteers to help out on the land. This will be the fourth time that Branston volunteers have helped out.

Jill Aitken, site manager for the Woodland Trust Scotland, said: "It's great that Branston has helped us again. We are really grateful to Branston for all their help; it's good to see that they recognise the work we do.

"This time we widened a narrow path on a steep slope, which will make the area safer for walkers. The work that Branston does is much appreciated and it's great to have that local contact with businesses."

The Branston volunteers planted several local varieties of apple trees including: Scots Dumpling, Arbroath Oslin, Lass O'Gowrie and White Melrose. Over the years, Jill estimates that Branston has planted well over 100 trees for the trust.

"These are older apple varieties which are aren't so common these days," added Jill. "They are eating varieties and will be there for people to help themselves in the future. We also planted two Victoria Plum trees and two Damson trees."

Jim Aitken, senior field manager at Branston, said: "We are always keen to help local environmental causes or charities where we can. We have worked with both the Woodland Trust Scotland and the Scottish Wildlife Trust on similar projects before and always look forward to working with them again.

"When we heard they needed some more help at Moncreiffe Hill, I threw the idea open to Branston staff and once again they jumped at the chance to help."

Photo shows: (front) Caroline Carson with Woodland Trust’s Jill Aitken. Others from left – Iain Moss (WT), Scott Sharp, Tessa Aitken, Will Pocklington, David Thomson, Jim Aitken, Emma Ruxton and Euan Page.