Group Meeting Minutes 20/06/2019


  1. Apologies
  2. Previous minutes
  3. Nominations and voting for office bearers
  4. Campaign against neonicotinoids on Mull and water testing (Pennyghael)
  5. Future groups throughout Mull
  6. Native woodland business
  7. Kew Gardens seed bank
  8. Native woodland visit to Helen Mackay and Jenny Smith
  9. Update on sub committee
  10. AOCB
  11. Date of next meeting



Chair: Caroline Wood, (standing in), Minutes: Jo Austin, Jean Laura, Pippa Gatty, Mike Shilson, Peter Leach, Andy Mortley, Tricia Evans, David Clowes, John Austin, Andy Robinson,

  1. Apologies: Ann Evan, Nick and Catherine Evans, Bill and Suzanne Patterson, Kirsty Shilson, Mathew Reade, Moray Finch, Matthew Burgess.
  2. Previous minutes AGM 3rd May: The aim of MNWG is to be a facilitator involved in issues such as planting of native broadleaf trees, mapping archaeology within woodland areas, developing footpaths for public access within woodlands and mapping of private water supply sources (or watersheds) within forested areas. Ideally we would like to link up with others throughout Mull who have an interest in woodland areas. Also, we would welcome input from individuals who live further afield but have a love for the island (and its wildlife).
    1. CW reminded the group of Mike Russell’s wise comments: The world is not bounded by Argyll and Bute Council and a community can agree how they want things to be, using three golden rules when setting out to do something:
      1. You don’t have to seek permission.
      2. Somebody else won’t do it.
      3. Nobody else will do it unless you tell others about it
  3. Nominations for office bearers
    1. Chair: nominated Ann Evans, seconded by Caroline Wood and Jo Austin
    2. Vice Chair: nominated Mike Shilson, seconded by Tricia Evans and John Austin
    3. Minutes secretary: nominated Catherine Evans, seconded by John Austin and Mike Shilson
    4. Treasurer: nominated Jean Laura seconded by Andy Mortley and Tricia Evans
    5. Website: Craig Whittaker
  4. Campaign against the use of neonicotinoids on Mull and water testing (Pennyghael):
    1. Very little news from other areas on Mull, the water testing at Pennyghael couldn’t take place, the Greenpeace representative has left, once the new person is appointed J L has the bottles ready.
    2. Tiroran are moving forward and trialling wax treatment on 50% of trees to be planted, the remainder to be left untreated. AR recently visited Tighnabruaich near Inverness and suggested we should see what they are doing, it’s a good set up with the woodland next to the village.
    3. Following a concern MNWG will make changes to some of the wording on the website
    4. It was suggested several small reports for MNWG website should be written to include the Ulva midsummer event, to congratulate MICT on their success at gaining funding to purchase Ardura and about the progress made with the plans for Tiroran.
  5. Future groups throughout Mull:
    1. To hold over until the next meeting
  6. Nature Woodland nursery:
    1. MS suggested each member of the group could grow native tree plants in our own gardens, we will need a number of fish boxes, perhaps through buy and sell Mull, and plant the seeds in the box. AR explained this is a challenging occupation particularly on his Croft when battling with the elements, rabbits, deer and sheep. Ideas to promote this include visits to schools, have a seed collecting day, to have a chart to work from in order to know the right time to collect seeds from each tree species.
    2. Collecting and successfully growing seeds can be tricky, AR recommended we buy Reforesting Scotland, a handbook of Scotland’s Trees, a good book to guide us. Seeds recommended to collect included hazel, oak, aspen, and to look at the Atlantic Woodlands where hazel and downy ash grow.
  7. Kew garden seed bank:
    1. To hold over until the next meeting
  8. Native woodland visit to Helen Mackay and Jenny Smith
    1. Sunday is a good day to visit, to arrange a visit with HM , and JS
  9. Update on sub committee
    1. The forest design plan sub committee has not met recently, JL will set up a meeting, he told us NWMCWC are subdividing the Woodlands and Ulva in the near future


  • JL has raised a concern about the damage cows are causing on the machair at Langamull, they are causing erosion which in turn is affecting the area where sandmartins nest.
  • AR raised concerns about sheep roaming around Langamull, recently removed he now learns they are to be brought back affecting planting on the Croft. An email to be sent to NWMCWC
  • AR has given us another name for useful reading, Croft Woodland Handbook by Bernard Planterose, available in pdf.

Action points

  • Make changes to the website – AM
  • To set up a Forest Design plan meeting with NWNCWC – JL
  • To write several small reports for the MNWG website:
    • the midsummer event on Ulva – CW
    • congratulate MICT on gaining funds to purchase Ardura Forest – MS
    • write about progress made by the Tiroran group – MS
  • To source books recommended by AR
    • Reforesting Scotland, handbook on Scotland’s trees – JA
    • Highland and Islands Woodland Handbook Bernard Planterose available pdf 280 pages – JA
  • Contact Helen Mackay – JA
  • Contact Jenny Smith – MS
  • Source Fish boxes – as many members as possible
  • Contact NWMCWC re sheep in Langamull – PG
  • Send an email of congratulations to MICT on the success of acquiring funds to purchase of Ardura. – ask AE as chair

Date of next meeting 18th July 7.30 at Nick and Catherine’s