HORSE logging has once again been taking place in Strid Wood, at Bolton Abbey, where North Swedish forest horse, Ghalm, proved his prowess at forest work and moved timber his handler felled.

The process helps the environment as minimal disturbance is made to the wood, unlike modern machinery.

Ghalm was set to work over three days at half term in the area which is a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI), designated principally because of the sessile oak trees and flora and fauna that can be found there. Strid Wood is thought to be one of the largest remnants of sessile oak trees in the Yorkshire Dales.

A section of “halo thinning” has been undertaken to remove some of the semi mature beech trees which have encroached on the canopy of the oaks. The space created around them will safeguard them for many years.

It will allow light to the woodland floor and will see plants bloom which have laid dormant for many years, offering visitors to this semi-ancient woodland the possibility of an even more spectacular display of bluebells in years to come.

Strid Wood was opened to the general public in 1810 by the Reverend William Carr, agent on the Bolton Abbey Estate and the 6th Duke of Devonshire. Visitors today continue to enjoy the network of paths through the woodland. The many paths offer access for all making Strid Wood one of the most visited woodlands in the Yorkshire Dales National Park.