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Andrew Whiteford & family

Burnfoot Farm, Sanquhar

The Whiteford family farm at Burnfoot Farm, Sanquhar.  Which extends to 3500 acres, with 2500 acres being hill ground. The farm sits at 100m and hill rising to 400m above sea level, with average annual rainfall of 1000mm

They have a herd of 300 spring block calving pedigree Luings, bred pure or crossed with Aberdeen Angus, Charolais and Simmental, producing replacements, breeding heifers and stores. There is a flock of 1500 ewes made up of Scottish Blackface, bred pure or crossed with Bluefaced Leicester for replacements, breeding sales, crossing with Texel and producing fat lambs.

The farm already had 150 acres plus of woodland, riparian and shelter belts before, the new woodland creation of 50Ha was planted in two blocks. The scheme undertaken was Sheep and trees, this Forestry Grant Scheme enables application for both woodland creation and forest infrastructure. This scheme has which provided multiple benefits to the farm e.g. access to stock for feeding and monitoring,  creating areas for feeding allowing stock out for longer, gathering easier, provide access to excising woodland for felling and to new woodland when requires thinning in future years thus providing an income stream.

Key messages from Andrew

  • Understand your reasons for wanting to plant trees on your land and your business priorities
  • Do your research: evaluate your land and monitor your farm to find out what areas are under performing for livestock but could still be suitable for planting trees
  • Make sure you consider whether planting trees will complement your existing farm enterprises
  • Treat your woodland as another crop, making sure you are managing it properly