Taxing times as accountancy team tackle Brownsea Island

Cuts and pruning took on a new meaning when staff from a Dorset accountancy firm gave up their spare time to help clear land on Brownsea Island.

A 24-strong group from Princecroft Willis (PcW), led by Managing Partner Mark Johns, were tasked by the National Trust to remove blackthorn and scrub which was encroaching onto heath.          

Picture caption: Taxing work:
The Princecroft Willis team celebrate clearing a large area of invasive scrub on Brownsea Island

Using bow saws and loppers the work party won the praise of Brownsea’s Head Ranger after clearing a large expanse of land on the island in Poole Harbour.

Reuben Hawkwood estimated the group had done the equivalent in a day as a member of the National Trust staff would have taken a month to achieve.

He added: “What a great team. They worked really hard, bravely ignoring all the cuts, bruises and aching muscles which are an inevitable by-product of clearing blackthorn.

“Dodging the rain showers they powered through a large section of invasive scrub which was gradually encroaching onto the heath block. This area will now be re-colonised by heather and gorse which is a key habitat on Brownsea.

“I’d like to thank Princecroft Willis for all their help and goodwill on what was a very enjoyable day.”

The PcW group included partners in the firm as well as friends and family members, some as young as seven.

Picture caption: Cutbacks: Mark Johns, PcW’s Managing Partner, gets to grips with pruning on Brownsea Island

Mark Johns described the day’s work as “enjoyable, exhilarating but exhausting.”

He added: “The team really put their back into the work, quite literally giving blood in the process.

“There was a palpable sense of achievement at the end of the day and I’m really grateful to everyone who gave up their spare time to take part.”