Storm Arwen - Aftermath and Return to the Scene. Today, it's all gone!

In 2021 I documented the damage done to local forests by Storm Arwen. I later returned to the location to see what the Forestry Commission was doing about the damage.

In May of this year, I lost a drone filming in this location so had not been back since then. Today, out of interest, I went back for a look.

I was shocked to find that the forests I had used as landmarks are not there any more. They haven’t just removed the fallen or damaged trees, they have wiped the entire forest. I gotta say, it was a shock.

This was the location at Chapel Road in November of 2020.

It was a lush and well established forest. I flew one of my first, tentative missions there with my new M2Z.

This is how it looks today.

And I saw the same scene of desolation at my Happas Road location. it used to be a full, thriving forest as here;

It looked bad after Storm Arwen, but there was still life in the forest.

But as of today, it looks like this;

I’m not sure what they plan to do with these sites now, perhaps replant, perhaps fence it off and give it to the sheep. But the effects of Storm Arwen continue to be felt. It was a seismic storm and certainly left its mark.

They’ll hopefuly replant with a native decidious forest that encourages wildlife and biodiversity. My brother is an estate manager/gamekeeper and this is what they are doing on his estate after the storms. The trees that were meant to be harvested for timber can’t be used now, there may be cracks and damage that won’t show up until processing time so the processors wont take them. All it is now, is firewood and kindling. It looks horrible now, but with careful management and replanting it will be gorgeous in 20 years.

That’s interesting to hear. To be honest, I didn’t think there were any trees here younger than 50 years, but I know nothing about the lifespan or growth rates of trees. I don’t think I will see them replenished to something like their former glory in my lifetime.

I guess this is what some would call “the circle of life” stuff.

They certainly wont be mature, but it will look a lot better than a plantation of pines that carpet everything underneath them in shadow. These plantations stop all growth underneath them, well apart from many fungi species which are also important too. But a nice, native, deciduous forest brings much more balance and in my opinion are better for our land and environment too. The plantations have their uses of course, but not at the expense of our natural habitat.

Actually, now you mention it, I see that that’s a new trend in burials. Put the body in the ground and insert a couple of mushrooms. In very short order you get turned into a giant mushroom feeding bag?