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A Forestry Commission woodland officer from Cumbria has succeeded in felling the opposition to become the highest-placed UK entrant at this year’s World Loggers Championships.
Peter Fox, 39, from Workington, came 27th in the individual class category against 84 of the world’s most skilled loggers.
The prestigious competition, which tests loggers’ chainsaw skills, was held in Belarus and drew entrants from 30 countries including Ecuador, Russia, Germany and Spain.
Entrants are judged for speed, skill and safety in five disciplines - tree felling, fitting a new chain, combination cross cutting, precision cutting and limbing which involves removing the branches from a fallen tree.
Peter also competed alongside fellow foresters Richard Elliott and Matthew Thomas in the team event. The UK finished 16th out of 28 countries.
“It was an amazing experience to see Belarus and get a feeling for the support they have in their forestry sector. We were made to feel very welcome by everyone and we were constantly being asked to pose for photographs with people.
“The competition was very fierce but the results were quite variable as one of the days for the tree felling element was very windy, but luckily we competed in this event on a still day.”
Peter, who has worked in the Forestry Commission for 17 years, who does not use a chainsaw in his day to day job anymore trained for 12 weeks in the run up to the competition. During the last two weeks before the championship he trained every day.
Earlier in the year Peter came second in the 2012 UK Loggers Championships which took place in North Wales. The top three competitors at the event qualify for the world contest.
Peter, who also competed in Estonia in 2010, says:
“I’m determined to keep competing and training in the hope that I’ll qualify for the team again. I really enjoy the challenge, the exercise and meeting different people working in forests around the world.”
The next World Logging Championship will take place in Switzerland in 2014.
It is hoped that the 2013 UK logging competition will be held in Cumbria
For more information about the Forestry Commission in the Lake District visit www.visitlakelandforests.co.uk