Who are you? My name is Nick Bolton and I am an Arboricultural Consultant for Lockhart Garratt. I am a Director of the company and the board representative at our Chipping Norton office.
What do you do? I have a dual role at the company. Professionally I am an arboriculturist, assisting clients on a variety of projects relating to the care and management of trees. We work on a number of development projects, helping developers and others involved in the construction industry to manage the existing and future tree stocks while meeting obligations defined by the planning process. We also work with private estate owners and other individuals, helping to understand and manage tree related risk, property damage or how they can manage their trees in a cost effective way.
My other professional skill is as a qualified drone pilot. I have been commercially qualified for 3 years and we use the drone for a variety of tasks, whether to capture the context of development site, assess woodlands, manage habitat or simply to get great landscape photographs. We are constantly seeking new ways to use this technology and are now looking into 3D modelling to assist developer clients.
As a director of the business I lead the arboricultural team while also having a wider remit for the operational functions of the company. I am currently completing a post-graduate certificate in Business Administration which will help me to provide a better service to colleagues within the company as well as to clients.
What projects do you find it particularly interesting to be involved with? The split role provides me with plenty of opportunity to diversify the projects I am involved with, which helps every experience to be a learning opportunity. At present I am finding the challenge of helping clients manage their tree related risk to be very interesting, as we have developed a methodology to provide guidance on this important requirement. Every estate has different challenges, so getting to understand these while ensuring that we do not create overly complicated systems is very stimulating.
We also have a long term company objective to expand the range of services and geographic spread of the business, so planning for this and ensuring that we have the right people offering the right service to meet the needs and expectations of our clients and others we interact with is another part of the role that I am deriving a huge sense of excitement and achievement from.
Favourite Lockhart Garratt moment to date? We have recently been assessed as being compliant with the requirements of ISO 9001, a standard that relates to quality management. This has been a long time in planning and implementing and I am very proud of our achievement. At a personal level, becoming a Chartered Arboriculturist with the ICF was a moment of profound satisfaction, and I am pleased to have been recognised by my peers as a competent professional.
What are your interests and hobbies? Home life is busy for my wife and me, with four school age children that need ferrying around and three demanding dogs. We live on a small farm and have managed to diversify some of our activities, including a simple holiday let business, an equestrian business and a small renewables operation. In my spare time I love the outdoors life, spending time with friends on country pursuits. I have recently set my self the challenge of walking the length of Offa’s Dyke on the Wales/England border, something being undertaken in small but exhausting bursts.