AFH

Last Light Lindridge

While finalising a previous blog with Ian Ravenwood on the evolution of aerial operations on Surrey Hills, I was reminded of the tragic plane crash on Daisy Nolan Hill, near Hampshire, in 1983, which killed the sole occupier, pilot John Lindridge. I researched what I could about John and quickly discovered he had a remarkable …

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Airtruks to Squirrels – the evolution of aerial operations on Surrey Hills

Surrey Hills has a long history of aerial operations such as spraying, fertilising, controlled burns and fire fighting. These grew as the plantation estate expanded. An airstrip was built at Basils Road in the 1980s to improve the efficiency of aerial work on Surrey Hills and adjoining land, but by the late 1980s, fixed-wing aircraft …

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My AFH Experience

This month’s guest blog is by Leigh Titmus, who worked at Surrey Hills between 1978 and 1986. Leigh grew up as a kid in Devonport through the 1950s and 60s. His father built one of the earliest shacks at Sisters Beach, so almost every weekend, the family would head off there, and they would drive …

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Resistance fighter, unconventional forester, family man and mentor – the life of Dick de Boer (1922-94)

This month’s guest blog is written by David de Little. In my book “Fires, Farms and Forests” I outlined the pivotal role Dick de Boer played in the development of eucalypt plantations on Surrey Hills. David was fortunate to work with Dick from 1975 to 1983 and got to know him very well. There was …

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Nursery times – the development of new technologies and practices

Les Baker and Ian Ravenwood write this month’s guest blog.  Chapter 11 of my book “Fires, Farms and Forests” provides the story of how AFH and North Forest Products were instrumental in developing an industrial eucalypt plantation estate on Surrey Hills. This blog offers specific details of improved nursery techniques and the creation of a …

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Heading for “The Gates”: memories of the old Hampshire gatehouse

I didn’t provide any coverage of the gatekeepers in the book “Fires, Farms and Forests”, as I had limited information at the time. And yet, you couldn’t tell a story about Surrey Hills and AFH without mentioning the gatekeepers.  Back in the 1950s, the Ridgley Highway didn’t exist. You could only get to Waratah via …

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The radio electronics maestro

This is a story about a quietly spoken Dutchman who had responsibility for setting up and maintaining a radio communication system in the early days of AFH when access to Surrey Hills was much more limited than today. The radio system was the only form of communication between the administrative office in Burnie and the …

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Reminiscing about working on Surrey Hills from the 1950s to the early 1970s

In my book “Fires, Farms and Forests”, Chapters 8 through to 10 cover the development of forestry operations on Surrey Hills. Barry Graham worked in the pre and post-industrial forestry era on Surrey Hills during four separate stints. Endnote 819 on page 248 of the book summarises his career. Barry is only one of two …

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