Hedging in the Borders

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THE Scottish Hedge Laying Championships take place in the Borders on Saturday.

Anyone interested is invited to go along to Furlongs Farm, near Ancrum, between 11am and 3pm to watch the craftsmen at work.

The competition, with trophies and prizes up to £100, is sponsored by Peebles-based Farm Environment, which offers farm-based conservation advice.

Next month, those interested will have the chance to learn how to lay hedges at a free training day on the same farm on November 10.

The course will be led by retired professional hedge layer Mike Wade and a spokesperson for the training said: “Hedge laying is a very useful skill as it helps rejuvenate old hedges.

“Laid hedges can be very effective stock proof barriers as their bases are usually very thick and impenetrable to stock. They can provide much-needed habitat for wildlife and act as significant wildlife corridors for small mammals as they forage for food around the countryside.

“In areas where there are few woodlands, thick hedges can act like a linear woodland attracting a whole range of wildlife to the farm, including butterfly, bird and bee species.”

Those interested in attending next month’s training day should contact landowner Jamie Scott on 01835 830228 or email: J-G-scott@supanet.com. Those attending are advised to take their own packed lunch, leather gauntlets, peaked hat, sturdy leather boots, 16-inch bow saw, small hand saw, safety glasses and bill hook.