A popular woods which was devastated by Storm Arwen has been cleared and replanted with more than 7,000 trees after a huge effort of work.
It was estimated more than 15,000 trees were felled across the city during the 26 November 2021 storm and the City Council recorded more than 450 tree incidents on that day – one incident could have been dozens of trees felled or a single one.
There was a particularly devastating impact on Carnie Woods, at Hazlehead, and the woodland surrounding Aberdeen Crematorium and work is continuing in Hazlehead and at the Crematorium.
The work to clear Carnie Woods of the fallen trees and impact to surrounding flora included a digger being brought in to push the brash into piles so the planting could happen.
The trees planted at Carnie Woods are mostly native species and three people planted all of them, sometimes in bad weather. As part of monthly patrols, the Countryside Rangers will remove any tree guards that are not possible to salvage and missing guards will be replaced if required.
The species and numbers planted are:
Norway spruce – 1,400;
Scots pine – 1,400;
European larch – 1,507;
Gean – 800;
Silver birch – 800;
Rowan – 800;
Hazel – 275;
Oak – 100;
Total – 7,082.
The work at Carnie is part of the recovery and replanting of trees taking part across the city and is being coordinated by the council’s arboricultural and countryside rangers teams.
Aberdeen City Council Co-Leader Councillor Ian Yuill said: “Storm Arwen was a devastating storm which wreaked havoc across Aberdeen, damaging huge areas of woodlands, and blowing down trees which caused power cuts as well as damage to buildings. The effects of the storm will have long-lasting implications for the city’s woodlands - and some will never be the same again in our lifetimes.
“I want to thank the Council’s Arboricultural Team both for the vast amount of work they carried out at the time of the storm and for the huge removal and recovery effort since then.
“The work carried out at Carnie Woods has been a huge effort and I want to thank every single person involved.”
The council’s arboricultural team were out in the worst of Storm Arwen to ensure trees were made safe and that roads were cleared for safe access, working closely with the Scottish Rescue and Fire Service and Police Scotland with the immediate priority of clearing trees which were a danger to people’s lives or homes, and roads.
A large number of the trees blown down, many were uprooted, branches and limbs were snapped off, and several trees were left in a precarious and dangerous positions. Trees in schools, parks, play areas, open spaces, streets, and woodlands were equally badly affected.
The removal and replanting work continues to impact on the arboricultural team’s workload including dealing with Dutch Elm Disease and Ash Dieback.