In this series of articles, we will be sharing exclusive coverage from all aspects of the ARB Show 2024. 

NOT only was it the 23rd edition of the ARB Show, but it also marked the 60th anniversary of the Arboricultural Association. Founded in 1964 by Keith Ross, Don Wells and other interested parties, the Arboricultural Association (AA) has gone from strength to strength in the decades since, becoming a key part of the industry. 

To mark the occasion, the AA put together an Arb Evolutions Exhibit, which celebrated how arboriculture has transformed during that time. And for those who took a moment away from the new products, there was plenty to enjoy. 

As well as chainsaws through the years – including a McCulloch 250 from 1960 and a 1950s Teles 58-11 – the tent demonstrated how PPE had transformed from, well, jeans and jumpers, to its modern-day equivalent, and explained a little bit about the history of the organisation. It also included a look at what is to come in the 21st century. 

“We are trying to look back on where we have come from, but also really focusing on the future,” said John Parker, the AA’s chief executive. “It’s the next 60 years and beyond we want to concentrate on. 

“Arb has changed a huge amount in the last six decades. We want to learn from what we have done in the past and to understand it. We want to celebrate the achievements of the last 60 years, but we don’t want to dwell on it.

“We are going through the whole history of arboriculture but in a brief, small space, but it’s something we can celebrate and learn from. 

Forestry Journal: The ARB Evolutions tent provided a look at how arb had evolved over time The ARB Evolutions tent provided a look at how arb had evolved over time (Image: eA/JH)

“It’s such a young profession, relative to more established professions. We have come a long way in a short space of time, and things have changed so quickly. 

“The 60th anniversary gives us a nice moment to pause, reflect on where we have been, and then focus on where we are going.” 

As for the future, John said: “We are always still trying to push for the recognition of arboriculture. That remains a key thing for us.” 

Keep an eye across our channels for the full version of this interview and more in-depth coverage from arb's biggest event.