The Streets of London: Resilience of People, Resilience of Place

Institute of Chartered Foresters 2016 National Study Tour

Sharon is playing a large part in this years ICF Study Tour, which will involve tours across many interesting London sites. Named ‘The Streets of London’ (ask Sharon why, and certainly get her to sing the first couple of lines), the event starts on the 5th October, and will feature Environmental Advisor and Broadcaster Prof Chris Baines, Peter Massini MCIEEM of the Greater London Authority, Mersey Forest’s Paul Nolan OBE MICFor, John Parker of Transport for London. A dinner on the 5th will be held, and there is an opportunity to download the full programme here.  Great chance to meet up with like-minded colleagues, and a rare opportunity for many to hear the MD of a respected practice cover one of the most famous ‘trad’ songs ever written (if enough money changes hands).

Places are limited! Visit the ICF website to discover further information and book today.

Holland TR radar – What’s more important – size or frequency?

Ground Sucking Machine Meets Tree Radar (the return)….Utrecht, Holland, August 2016.

Ground sucking machine makes the pavement ready for the results of the radar scan
Air spading the pavement

Following fairly swiftly on from the original visit to Eindhoven in February this year, Sharon returned, with Ian Lee, to investigate further the Tree Radar to see if results correlated after removal of soil around three new, target trees.

The return visit came after refining the methodology following the trip in February. The weather was 32 degrees all over Europe, but at least we were outside. The hospitality of our friends at TerraNostra, who own their very own ground sucking machine, was fantastic, with half-time oranges, ice-cold water, and our own mobile toilet hired especially for the occasion!

The Objective:-

  • To test the accuracy of the Tree Radar and provide data on the rooting diameter of roots found.

The Subjects:-

  • One mature Acer saccharinum (sugar maple), two mature mature Pterocaya fraxinifolia (Caucasian wingnut), and one Ulmus x Hollandica (Dutch elm).

The Methodology:-

  • We carefully marked the scanning lines and detailed reference points. we scanned with 400Mhz & 900 Mhz antennae, using different dielectric settings, and revealed what was beneath using the ubiquitous ground sucking machine. and air spade.


  • Excellent results in grass for Acer and Ulmus. Good results with Pterocaya, but very surprising dense matt of fibrous surface roots. Careful refining of settings to achieve results for concrete over 100% pure sand. An academic paper is being prepared, written between Sharon, Ian Lee and TerraNostra, and will follow.

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Hampstead Heath OAKs – how ‘AOK’ are they?

Hampstead Heath welcomes Ian and Sharon to examine 4 Oaks

On Tuesday the 3rd May, Sharon and Ian arrived at the venerable setting (and postcode) which enables Londoners to wonder at all things green all year round.

David Humphries and the team at Hampstead Heath wanted the Tree Radar unit to examine 4 oaks after a failure of one near a footpath on the Heath, and so Ian and Sharon duly obliged at 9am, and were afforded fantastic hospitality by all of the Hampstead Heath Arb team, for which we were all very grateful.

Hampstead Heath cruiser

At 10am, members of the LTOA arrived for a demonstration of radar, and whilst Sharon described what was going to occur, Ian set the unit up, against a backdrop of the London skyline which currently adorns the LTOA website logo. More to come, including a short film of the day, soon. (One day we may get to examine Sevenoaks, which is where this particular reporter hails from).

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New Radar affiliation announced with Lloyd Bore

Lloyd Bore On Board As SHA Gets Back On The Radar

We are absolutely delighted to be able to announce our new affiliation with Lloyd Bore Landscape and Ecology Services, based in Canterbury. Sharon was contacted by long-term friend and one-time colleague Ian Lee, a very respected arboriculturist, with the news that Lloyd Bore were purchasing the latest Tree Radar equipment, making them the first in the UK with the upgrade. With the news that Gary Raffel below, of Dynamic Tree Systems based in Bloomfield, New York, was arriving to conduct the training on the new equipment, we met up and discovered that, over three days of training, many improvements have been made to the software application, not least the replacement of the old computer module replaced with a tablet (and wireless, to boot), whilst we also introduced Gary to some English pleasantries, which included a ‘pub’ which was older than America, on a street which was also older than America. Thanks Gary for taking that in the spirit in which it was intended!

Gary adjusts his tartan Tam’o’Shanter before demonstrating the new equipment
for the first time ever on UK soil

 Gary Raffel


Lloyd Bore, in association with SHA, is keen to offer this improved version of the equipment to as many clients as possible. Having worked with Ian on the earlier version, the doors of Lloyd Bore were opened to SHA in December for a detailed run through which everybody thoroughly enjoyed.
It would be fair to assume that the ‘Queen of the well-heeled arbs’ had a lovely time, and is working with the new equipment in liaison with Lloyd Bore, and thoroughly looking forward to the new setup, whilst also helping in the CPD of another arboriculturist consultant, Jo, who is learning the technology.
To say nothing of the fact that Canterbury is a damn site nearer haute-couture in Paris than Chelmsford is.