Firewood and Coppice Merchant – Increasing Mechanisation

Mark Howards new log splitterA firewood and coppice merchant based at Crondall near Farnham was the first business to win funding from the previous Loddon and Eversley LEADER Local Action Group.
A grant of more than £4000 made to firewood and coppice merchant Mark Howard has enabled him to buy a new machine to process firewood. Production of firewood accounts for up to 65% of his business.
Upon receiving his grant, Mark Howard said: “The funding has certainly helped my business, it has allowed me to up date my firewood processing machinery and invest in a larger tipping trailer, so effectively I can now deliver more orders more quickly and consistently throughout the year.”
Mark explained the need to update his machinery: “The increased demand for wood fuel has developed because consumers are looking for a green or carbon neutral alternative to fossil fuels, or to supplement their heating bills by installing log burners. As a result our firewood business has grown by almost 100%. We promote our business as ‘local wood for local people’, as all our timber is sourced from local estates either from managed forestry or coppiced woodland”.
Mark is also a hazel hurdle maker and coppice product supplier. His business supplies thousands of pea sticks to London which are used primarily to support herbaceous plants, as well as hurdles, pea sticks and bean rods. He also offers woodland and countryside conservation services, including hedge laying, coppicing and tree and hedge planting. Mark summed up: “Supplying hurdles from coppiced woodland and converting locally grown timber into woodfuel means every customer is helping to conserve Hampshire’s ancient woodland heritage, which is a prime motivator behind our business!”