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Pierrepont set for big burn

by Rod Kebble

Following the failure of North Korea’s Unha-3 rocket last week, the eyes of the world are now on Tankersford Copse, where the Pierrepont volunteers have readied their charcoal kiln for a big burn lasting some twenty-four hours, several hundreds of times longer than the Koreans achieved.

The charcoal kiln and Countryside Restoration Trust volunteers.

The kiln with the access system in place. Note the twin chimneys and, on the right, our chief scientist inspecting a sample of the carbon fuel.

Conway Churchill and his acolytes, the Powle twins, spent part of last week fuelling the kiln with its carbon-based propellant and now it is standing upright on its launch pad, while the countdown continues towards ignition, which is scheduled for later this week — weather permitting.

If all goes well, it is hoped to repeat the burn several times in the coming months. Beneficiaries of this important work include barbecue owners all over the south of England, the environment and the UK economy, as it has been estimated that over 90% of the £100 million-worth of charcoal burnt in this country each year is imported, often from unsustainable sources.

Countryside Restoration Trust volunteers Richard and Damien Powle with the fully-fuelled kiln.

Richard Powle inspects the arrangement of the fuel rods, while Damien stands by with the upper heat shield. (Or maybe that's Richard with the shield and...)