Lancaster-based wood and coal fuel specialist Logs Direct has found one of its newly introduced products flying out of the door all winter, thanks to TV programme Countryfile.
Logs Direct had started to stock Brackenburn Brackettes shortly before October 30 2016, when the popular Sunday evening BBC show featured these eco-logs and highlighted their unique nature. Since then, the family-run business, based in Halton, has been ‘briquetting’ it on a daily basis, sending out orders to homeowners nationwide.
Brackenburn Brackettes have been created thanks to a highly novel use of dead bracken, which their creators harvest on heath and moorland within a 100-mile radius of their base. This sustainable fuel source is then compressed into a solid log, which is ideal for use in log burners and open fires.
This bracken briquette burns hotter than its equivalent in oak logs and also produces much more potash, which has been used for centuries as a natural fertiliser.
This gives Brackenburn Brackettes’ buyers a bi-product that they can use in the garden.
The whole process is excellent news for the natural environment. By regularly harvesting bracken, the land’s biodiversity is improved, with flora such as bluebells and wild flowers flourishing, along with various species of birds and other wildlife.
As bracken covers 2.5million acres of the UK – an area as large as London and the South East – using this biomass fuel makes perfect sense, especially as, if left unchecked, bracken would encroach and take over other land at a rate of three per cent per year.
These benefits have not been lost on TV viewers, as Logs Direct’s sales director, Stephen Talbot, highlights. Stephen says: “We’d highlighted Brackenburn Brackettes as a really attractive product for us to stock alongside other lines such as our kiln-dried logs, but hadn’t expected the reaction that we got, once we’d added them to our online shop.
“The moment Countryfile aired, we were inundated with orders and completely sold out of our Brackenburn Brackettes before Christmas. We had to wait for new stock to arrive, but continued to see the orders flying out of the door. Things are now calming down a little, but we hear that, following one day of Caribbean temperatures, we should prepare for storms and snow, so we are gearing up to satisfy another wave of orders.”