Record number of volunteers from Oatridge help at heritage site

Published Tuesday, 28th March 2017 in Study at SRUC news

The SRUC Oatridge students working at the Flanders Moss site.

Countryside Management and Rural Skills Students from SRUC's Oatridge Campus got their hands dirty by enjoying a day volunteering with Scottish National Heritage (SNH).

The students helped out at the SNH site at Flanders Moss - an area of raised bog lying in the Carse of Forth in west Stirlingshire.

SNH said the day was a major success - with a record number of 54 volunteers working on the site to maintain the lowland raise bog by removing trees.

Students worked alongside the site manager and Amee Hood - an Oatridge student, who is on her internship with SNH. Amee explained that it is quite common for trees to grow on lowland raised bogs in continental Europe. They seed onto the bog and begin growing slowly in the poor, waterlogged soil. However, when they reach a certain height, they tend to blow over because their roots don't provide them with a good grip in the soggy, almost liquefied peat.

Amee said: “If we can make the Flanders Moss site as wet as those continental bogs, we hope that we can recreate that vision here. We are working to keep trees and scrub in balance with the bog vegetation, forming a patchy, open tree cover. We want to keep a place for trees - but, at the same time, to keep trees in their place!”

John MacGregor, Countryside Lecturer at Oatridge, added: “The response that we got from our students wanting to contribute to this project has been overwhelming. In turn the students have gained first hand experience in the work what is involved maintaining this type of habitat.”

SRUC offers courses in Countryside and Environmental Management from National Certificate Level to Higher National Certificate/ Diploma and Degrees. Details of the courses could be found via www.sruc.ac.uk/study.

Open Days are a fantastic opportunity to visit the campuses where these courses are available. For information on our Open Days please visit www.sruc.ac.uk/opendays.

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