Gifford Community Woodland comprises Speedy and Fawn Woods at the end of Station Road in Gifford, East Lothian. They were purchased in 2017 on behalf of the whole community, and we welcome feedback or input - you can contact us at any time on

Tuesday, 16 May 2017

Project Manager appointment, and next Public Meeting (Tue 13th June, 7:30pm)

Gifford Community Woodland has appointed village resident, Neville Kilkenny, as their first ever Project Manager. 

Nev was pleased to be chosen to manage the practicalities of putting the charity’s ambitions for the woods into action.  An expert in fungi who also works as a carpenter, Nev leads identification forays in a variety of settings.  He enjoys explaining the important role that fungi play in the life of the planet, and in our everyday lives.  His work has taken him all over the world, giving the opportunity to share his enthusiasms which include bushcraft.

As soon as the purchase was completed in April, Nev started work on drafting up a full Management Plan for the future of the woodland.   As he explains:
“The number one priority is to make the area safe for public access and already I’ve identified what needs immediate attention so some important tree works have started. The trees needing work have been marked, and contractors commenced work on Monday 15th May for a period of a few weeks. They are removing some diseased, fallen or damaged trees to make it safe for us all to use the woods.  It was essential to get on and do this now to protect members of the community that use the woodland.”

Nev shares the vision of preserving the naturalness of the woods as the key to what happens in these ancient woods now that they are owned by local people.  Like the volunteer management team, Nev is keen to get input from the community to guide those next steps.  And it is also time for a modest celebration to mark the completion of the buy-out!

There will be a public meeting on Tuesday 13th June at 19.30 in the Village Hall with cakes and refreshments to mark the significant achievements to date, as well as updates from Nev and the project team - and plenty of time for discussion on what is planned for this point forwards.  John Wrinn, the charity’s Chair, explained:
“More opportunities to meet Nev and contribute via local meetings and events will be announced soon.  Meantime we hope people can come along on June 13th to celebrate their new role as the proud owners of this important local area, and to let us know what they’d like to see happen here.  We’d like to thank everyone for their support and contributions to date too”. 

The appointment of a Project Manager has been made possible with grant funding from the Scottish Land Fund.  The project is also funded by Fallago Rig Environment Fund and East Lothian Council Partnership funding.  Local people and supporters from further afield have donated and volunteered time for the project too.

To see the event on Facebook see:

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