PAUL Raymond-Barker BEM has been announced as the recipient of the Sylva Trophy 2021, recognising his ‘outstanding’ role over many decades helping forestry owners and managers embrace change in Wales and England.

Nominating him, Chris Jones, Royal Forestry Society (RFS) South Wales Division chairman, said: “Paul has been a champion of more traditional estate forest management over the years. 

“He has also tuned in to the need for management to evolve and develop. He has embraced new ideas and convinced others to change as well.”

The award is presented annually by the RFS to recognise an outstanding contribution to forestry in its broadest sense.

Receiving his award at the Glanusk Estate in the Brecon Beacons National Park, Paul said: “It has been a privilege to work in forestry. We have all the conditions to grow great timber in this country and we should never lose sight of the importance of home-grown timber.”

Paul retired in 2019 at the age of 85. His career had taken him from national service and France to the Lord Bradford Estates in Shropshire and Tilhill. He became a partner in Woosnam and Tyler at Builth Wells before setting up his own business, Raymond-Barker & Co.

Paul had entered forestry at a time when estates were moving away from using their own direct workforce, saw the shift and set about developing a core of reliable teams of contractors to undertake all the necessary tasks whilst maintaining silvicultural standards. He also specialised in valuations and forestry sales.

Paul was chair of the South East Wales division (now integrated with the South Wales Division) and is known to many as the former chair of the Forestry Section of the Royal Welsh Show. 
In 2016 he was awarded the British Empire Medal (BEM) in recognition of his impact on forestry and silviculture in Wales.