This was the improver's day (where our trainees get the chance to showcase their skills). We had 9 enter, and the all cut individually (which might have been a bit of a surprise to some), a couple of people from previous years also entered.
The other cutters worked half alone, and the rest in 2's (or more), which was amusing as the real novice cutters were doing more work than many of the experts, such is life.
Most sections were pretty reasonable, but there were patches of rose which irritated everyone as it was a pig to deal with in places. two sections has a LOT Of bramble, and as is now traditional David Dunk had one of them.
The day progressed nicely and we had a few visitors, including the landowner. I was paired with Michael Bentley and we had almost finished our pleaching while David was still pulling rubbish from his section. Mind you by the time it came to laying there was so little left he made fast work out of it, even root laying most of the rose (we did wonder at one point if he was trying to do the entire hedge without a single pleach, be he managed a couple later on)
I picked up a huge amount of tips on hedge building from Michael, which I hope to put into practice.
All to soon it was lunch which was provided by the landowner and family, most of the experienced cutters were on stake and binders, so restarting for them was not an issue, but the novices were still mid hedge.
Everyone finished pretty much at the final (virtual) bell, and there was some pretty good hedge laying from everyone.
There can of course be only one winner for the improvers' trophy and our judges selected Andy Delves
Pictures as always