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Last Updated: Saturday, 16 July, 2005, 16:28 GMT 17:28 UK
Park hosts tree-climbing contest
Picture of competitor in Cardiff tree-climbing contest
Competitors scale Bute Park's trees against the clock
Tree surgeons from across Europe have travelled to a park in Cardiff to take part in a tree-climbing championship.

The International Society of Arboriculture (ISA) is holding the British Isles men's and, for the first time, the women's finals in Cardiff.

Competitors have to take part in five events which include climbing 50ft up trees against the clock.

The event began in Bute Park on Saturday and is due to continue on Sunday.

The events in the competition include the speed climb, the foot lock, the throw line, the aerial rescue and the work climb, where climbers have to carry out tasks in the upper branches of a tree.

'Beautiful place'

Points are scored for climbing technique as well as for speed.

One of the organisers, Peter Davies, said: "The tree climbing competitions have been going in the UK for 10 years, but this is the first year we have been able to field a women's event alongside the men's.

"I am hoping this will go some way to break the clichéd image of a tree surgeon in this country."

He added that the competition was visiting Bute Park because it was a "beautiful place which has just been awarded the UK's finest urban collection of trees."

The winners of the men and women's events will be flown out to Nashville in the United States to represent the UK and Ireland in the world championships.

Craig Johnson, one of the judges, said competitors were being judged on "speed over safety", but that climbing technique was also important.

Organisers added that the people taking part in the competition were tree care professionals who ensured that no damage was done to the park's trees while they were climbing them.

Wood replanted with native trees
02 Aug 04 |  Lincolnshire

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