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The 51st AA National Amenity Conference 2017 Protect and Survive Exeter University, 10–13 September 2017

CaptureMatthew is currently attending the 51st AA National Amenity Conference 2017 – Protect and Survive at Exeter University.

Run by the Arboricultural Association, the conference runs over 4 days. According to the planned programme for the event, ‘Protect and Survive’ will focus on Biosecurity, a subject of much concern to the industry and to the population at large.

To cover the variety of topics that affect Biosecurity, there will be a diverse array of 38 speaker sessions, including 10 prominent international speakers, to provide delegates with a comprehensive understanding of new research, developments and solutions. Tuesdays conference is presented in partnership with The Chartered Institute of Ecology and Environmental Management (CIEEM). This enables the chance for Expert speakers with a wider perspective than just the arboricultural view, to share their experiences from the ecology sector and the chance for delegates to network, discover new challenges, ideas and innovative solutions.

The sessions over the three days will cover Biosecurity: The challenges and exploring solutions, Diversity, Ecology and Tree Selection, Environmental Management in Practice, Pests and Diseases, Biomechanics and Morphology.

A Sunday field trip was also arranged before the conference at Killerton House & Gardens, where we have carried out various tree surgery works over over 10 years. Guest speakers to the group of Arboriculturalists were:

  • Horticulturist and Veitch Historian Caradoc Doy, introducing the Veitch seed collectors’ legacy.
  • Simon Toomer, National Specialist for Plant Conservation at The National Trust, who presented on the complexities of maintaining an historical tree collection for today’s public benefit.
  • Karl Emeleus, Head Gardener on the estate, explaining about the historical conservation site management and maintenance.
  • In the afternoon there was a talk on tree and plant propagation issues and biosecurity, from the Plant Propagation Manager for The National Trust, Chris Trimmer.

Matthew was asked to comment on the various works that we have undertaken there to the group of arboriculturalists from around the country. Killerton is one of Devon’s great estates, with a landscaped hillside garden and parkland. We have been carrying out work on the estate for over 10 years and it was great to be a part of the event yesterday.