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May 2, 2024 Press Release

Sustainability committee

Written by ryan

The recent gathering of the FW Thorpe Sustainability Committee marked a significant milestone in our journey towards a greener future. For the first time since its inception, members convened face-to-face for a two-day learning and sharing event. This invaluable opportunity allowed us to pool our diverse experiences and insights from individual businesses, fostering a collective vision to amplify our sustainable efforts across our multiple enterprises.

Sustainability committee face to face for the first time

A highlight of the event was our visit to the heart of our sustainability endeavour: the Carbon Offset Project in Devauden, Monmouthshire. Acquired by FW Thorpe in 2009, this 215-acre parcel of land serves as a tangible manifestation of our commitment to environmental stewardship. With a focus on afforestation, our goal is to harness the natural power of trees and plants to absorb CO₂ through photosynthesis. Since its inception, a staggering 179,412 trees have taken root, each one contributing to the creation of a vital “carbon sink.”

At the core of our reforestation initiative lies a dedication to native broadleaf species, including oak, hornbeam, birch, willow, and wild cherry. This deliberate selection not only optimizes the site’s ecological potential but also fosters connectivity with adjacent ancient woodlands, enriching the local ecosystem. Through sustainable forest management practices, we ensure the thriving growth of these trees while strategically harvesting them to support wood-related products, thereby securing carbon storage well beyond the lifespan of each tree.

Variety of native broadleaf species

Adhering to forestry principles, we recognize that the journey to maturity for each tree requires the planting of 4-5 saplings. By balancing faster-growing species with their slower counterparts, we maintain an ecological balance while maximising CO₂ sequestration. This meticulous approach is overseen by a committed and skilled silviculturalist, whose expertise ensures the project’s long-term sustainability and accreditation by esteemed bodies, such as the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) and the Woodland Carbon Code (WCC).

Whilst the maintenance of the planted woodland and surrounding land will be a lifelong endeavour by both FW Thorpe and our silviculturalist, after just shy of 180,000 trees, Devauden is effectively full, so FW Thorpe group have purchased another 170 acres of land, just outside of Hereford on the Welsh border.

The last of the saplings planted at Devauden

Brook Farm is set in a valley, looking out towards the Brecon Beacons, the elevation and micro climate will offer up a different challenge for the silviculturalist’s to design and maintain, but having spent the day with them, it is clear to see their passion for the project matches ours. Plans for the site are being drawn up as you read and will be submitted to the relevant authorities in the coming months, with plans to start planting in early 2025.

The valley at Brook farm before the planting begins

In essence, our journey towards sustainability is not merely a corporate obligation but a collective endeavour fuelled by passion, innovation, and a steadfast commitment to preserving our planet for future generations.

The view out towards Gospel pass

Finally special mention has to go to the team at sister company TRT, not only have they innovated with their Oaken, a streetlight made from a European Oak housing and 90% recycled steel gear tray, but they have just been awarded the highest ever TM66 score of 3.1 under the esteemed LIA/CIBSE certification scheme TSD-012, congratulations to all at TRT for leading the way.

For more information on our Carbon Offsetting

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News

Sustainability committee

The recent gathering of the FW Thorpe Sustainability Committee marked a significant milestone in our journey towards a greener future. For the first time since its inception, members convened face-to-face…

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