South West Scotland

Welcome to the South West Scotland Team

The South West Scotland Team are based in Locharbriggs, Dumfries and are headed up by District Manager Robert Herbert, who has over thirty three years experience in the industry. His team consists of a broad mix of individuals, each of them with a passion for forestry and the environment we work in. Together they manage approximately 40,000 ha of predominantly commercial woodland for a range of clients. They provide specialist skills such as the preparation of forest plans and production forecasts, digital mapping and surveying, the protection and maintenance of young trees including deer management, restocking and new woodland creation. Each person brings a special skill set with them and, like the rest of Tilhill, the team has a balanced mix of experienced people, as well as new graduates, fresh from taking their forestry or related qualifications.

Eddie Addis

Regional Manager

Eddie grew up in a rural environment in Argyll where his family background was in forestry and farming, which led to a career in the forest industry. After graduating in 2000 he started working in forest management before moving to focus on harvesting. Eddie joined Tilhill in 2011 and returned to concentrate on forest management as part of the Central Scotland District team, before moving to the Scottish Borders in 2014 to take up the role of District Manager. Whilst the majority of his professional experience has been based in Scotland it covers most aspects of forestry practice from the rocky uplands of Argyll to the rolling hills of Southern Scotland.

Robert Herbert MICFor

District Manager

Robert started working in the Forest industry 33 years ago in Argyll, firstly as a planting contractor and then as a tree feller and chokerman. After studying Forest Management at Newton Rigg he spent time living and working in Ireland and Australia before joining Tilhill in Yorkshire. He spent 8 years there before moving north to the South West Scotland District, initially as a Forest manager for 6 years and subsequently as the District Manager for the past 9 years.

John Jefford BSC (Hons)For, MICFor

Senior Forest Manager

Following stints working for the National Trust, leading research projects in New Zealand, and contract forest establishment work in NE and SW Scotland, John has been involved with forest management in South Scotland since 1990. Motivated by achieving maximum sustainable productivity from land resources, he has worked for different forest management companies and focused on upland forest management. A broader range of experience has developed from establishing more than 1000ha of new forest, collaborating with landowners on farm woodlands, initiating utility arboriculture contracts and delivering landscaping works. John also co-ordinates supply of millions of Sitka spruce for Tilhill; working in partnership with nurseries to ensure best genetic stock is available for Tilhill sites.

Stephen Smith MICFor

Senior Forest Manager

Steve joined the company as a graduate trainee in 1978 and spent twenty years based in Oxford working on Forest Management and Timber harvesting and marketing, as well as Forestry Contracting.

In 1998 he moved to South West Scotland to take on a new challenge of restructuring the large scale commercial forests planted in the 1970’s and 80’s. He has never looked back.

Andrew Noble MICFor

Senior Forest Manager

Andrew started his career as a tree surgeon before going back to University at Bangor, studying Forestry and Forest products. Following a short period with Tilhill in Bury St Edmunds on mostly landscaping work, Andrew moved to the Harvesting Team with the Forestry Commission in Dumfries for 5 years. Initially involved in Standing Sales, he then took on the direct production Harvesting Team, followed by another 5 years harvesting with the Northern Ireland Forest Service across counties Fermanagh and Tyrone. A period in Establishment with the Forest Service followed before a move back to Dumfries in 2011 to his current role as a Senior Forest Manager, primarily in the Eskdalemuir area.

James Liley

Senior Forest Manager

Isaac Adams

Senior Forest Manager

Isaac joined Tilhill in late 2018. He brings a broad range of experience to the team having previously worked in the forestry industry in a number of countries including his native New Zealand, Australia and Uruguay.

Graham Chalk MICFor

Senior Forest Manager

Graham is a professional member of the ICF and a graduate of Bangor University. He started his career in the industry in 1985 with the Forestry Commission in South Wales and the New Forest before joining Tilhill. After a stint in the Yorkshire office he moved to South West Scotland in 1995 where he has managed a significant portfolio of commercial forests with average annual felling and restocking programmes in the hundreds of hectares. Graham has also successfully planned and planted new forests from small to large scale and is involved in Estate management locally.

William Burfitt

Forest Asset Manager

William has worked in the Forest industry for 19 years in a range of roles from the practical side through to management and has a Bsc Hons in Forest Management. He joined Tilhill in 2007 as a graduate with the Midlands district before moving to South West Scotland, becoming Project Manager of the Eskdalemuir timber bypass. He then progressed to Assistant Manager, then Forest Manager and is currently Forest Asset Manager. Will’s responsibilities involve the management of commercial conifer and native forests, managing a portfolio of approximately 6000ha for various owners and clients throughout South West Scotland (Ayrshire, Dumfriesshire, Lanarkshire and Renfrewshire). He is currently an Associate member of the Institute of Chartered Foresters working towards his full membership.

Andrew MacQueen

Forest Manager

Andrew joined Tilhill in 2012 after gaining a Forestry degree from Aberdeen University. He manages a range of properties from large scale commercial forests for investment clients to estate work for individual owners mainly in Annandale and Eskdale. He has a particular interest in soils and alternative species and has conducted a number of training courses for forestry staff. He is a committee member of the Institute of Chartered Foresters South Scotland regional group and an active member of the Royal Scottish Forestry Society.

Hannah Richardson

Forest Manager

Hannah graduated from Nottingham Trent University in 2017 with a BSc (Hons) in Environmental Science and joined Tilhill in June 2017 as a graduate Assistant Forest Manager. Throughout her degree, Hannah gained experience working in remote, challenging areas teaching environmental education by leading field trips in the moors of North Yorkshire.

Hannah now fully manages client forests using the many skill she has gained as an Assistant Forest Manager.

Cat Kent BSc (Hons) Countryside Management

Assistant Manager (Graduate)

Cat has graduated from Harper Adams University and joined the team through the Tilhill Graduate Programme. She became interested in pursuing a career in forestry after undertaking placement years with the National Trust as a volunteer ranger at Cragside in Northumberland and as a student arborist at Westonbirt, the National Arboretum, in Gloucestershire.

Cat has become very much involved in trials for alternatives in weevil control helping find alternatives to the use of insecticides to ensure the future of restocking on harvested sites.

Ben Crisford

Assistant Forest Manager

Following a year working in an East Sussex coppiced woodland for a local charity, Ben decided to pursue a degree in Woodland Ecology and Conservation at the National School of Forestry. He joined the South West Scotland team shortly after graduating in June 2018.

Ben has a particular interest in digital mapping and remote sensing, having previously worked on several large-scale survey projects in the south-east of England.

Kenny Wright

Wildlife Manager

Kenny started his career in wildlife management straight out of school, beginning as a trainee gamekeeper for Buccleuch Estates, quickly becoming an underkeeper on Drumpark & Spedoch estates before joining Tilhill (then EFG) as a trainee Wildlife manager working with Ronnie Rose in Eskdalemuir. Kenny has worked across the district to gain experience in Managing Roe and Red deer and over his 36 years in the profession has gained a broad knowledge and understanding of the varied wildlife that make the commercial forest of South Scotland there home.

Ann Aitken

Senior Survey Manager

Elaine Drennan

District Administrator

Elaine has worked in administration within the forestry industry since 1986 and is experienced in all aspects of the financial business. She started her career with Tilhill  working at the Moffat office and is now based at the Dumfries office. Elaine is always happy to assist with any client enquiries and is the first point of contact for any administrative queries within the South West Scotland District Office. Elaine is assisted by Jody Jacyszyn and Laura Lochrie.

Laura Lochrie

Administration Assistant

Laura joined Tilhill, South West Scotland District in March 2018. With over 12 years’ experience working in a clerical environment, she provides administrative support to the Forest Managers and the District Administrator. Laura also works closely alongside John Jefford, helping to co-ordinate the supply of millions of Sitka spruce for Tilhill; working in partnership with nurseries to ensure the best genetic stock is available for Tilhill sites.

Jody Jacyszyn

Administration Assistant

Jody joined Tilhill in 2012, with 4-years previous experience in administration based roles, she is accountable for providing multi-faceted administration support to a number of departments including the South West Scotland District, Survey Department, Investment & Property Team, and the Forestry Director.


She also works closely with our contractors and ensures their certification is up to date.

Ann Murray

Forestry Works Supervisor

Following ten years of working in the establishment and maintenance sectors of commercial forestry, Ann started work with Tilhill as a works supervisor in April 2018.

Ann mainly oversees contractors carrying our various tasks from establishment through to harvesting on properties managed by William Burfitt and Stephen Smith.

Amy Lucas

Assistant Wildlife Manager

Amy joined Tilhill in April 2017 following the completion of a 2-year National Diploma in Game and Countryside Management in 2009 at Newton Rigg College. Prior to joining the team in South-west Scotland, Amy worked as a Grouse beatkeeper in Wensleydale, North Yorkshire. Her role as Assistant Wildlife Manager is to manage deer numbers within the forests, keeping deer damage to a minimum.

Mike Futty

Survey Manager

Mike has worked in mapping for 34 years following the completion of a Geography degree from Aberdeen University and a postgraduate diploma in Cartography from Glasgow University in 1984. He then worked for JC Plans, a subsidiary of John Clegg & Co., producing maps for land agents and for title deeds. In 1996, he returned to study and gained a masters degree in Geographic Information Systems (GIS) from Edinburgh University. Mike moved to Tilhill in 1999 and since then has worked on all things GIS and mapping, ranging from data editing, map output, 3d visualisations, data analysis and presentation to the system administration of Griffin Map and GIS user training.

Ben Walbank

Forestry Foreman