The Coleraine-based charity Vineyard Compassion continues to make a real difference in delivering community services and much-needed job opportunities for people within its catchment area.
At the heart of these developments is the fast growing Link Logs business.
Established as part of the Link+ support programme, the project has been designed to increase employability skills.
As a result, it gives people the opportunity to gain skills and expertise through participation in a working production line environment
Link Logs produces seasoned and dried logs and kindling at Vineyard Compassion’s Coleraine premises.
Moreover, every purchase or donation helps support Vineyard Compassion projects that tackle food poverty, problem debt, unemployment and addiction.
Link Logs Project manager Jeremy Gillan takes up the story: “It really is a case of success building on success. Link Logs are now selling in a wide range of retail outlets across Northern Ireland.
“In fact, demand has increased to such an extent that we have had to entirely reconfigure our entire log cutting, packing and storage operations.”
Recent developments at Link Logs have included a significant investment in expanded timber cutting facilities and the acquisition of a new JCB 525-60 telehandler.
Jeremy again: “The telehandler is a very versatile machine. It can get in and out of all our buildings with the utmost ease.
“We use it to move logs and the finished fire wood to and from all the various locations where they are needed throughout the site.
“The telehandler can lift loads weighing up to 2.5t. In addition, it has a 6m lift capacity.
He continued: “We needed a machine with this level of versatility. And the JCB 525-60 has delivered in spades for us in this regard.”
The telehandler was procured from Ballylclare-based Dennison-JCB. The company’s Jeff Haslett was a recent visitor to Link Logs’ site.
Jeff explained: “Demand for the 525-60 telehandler continues to grow. It is particularly popular on farms, where it can be used to carry out a number of important jobs.
“These include the cleaning out of sheds, the moving of bales and the loading of diet feeders.
He continued: “Farmers need access to a machine with the total versatility that the 525-60 has to offer.
“Sales of the machine reflect this growing recognition at farm level throughout Northern Ireland.
Jeff concluded: “The 525-60 is a modern, high-spec, no compromise machine that is easy to use, has exceptional rear three-quarters visibility, and can deliver a full-size machine’s performance.”
Measuring just 1.97m to the top of the spacious cab and only 1.89m over the tyres, the 525-60 will slot into the smallest of buildings and can be worked with ease around ‘traditional’ and modern farm yards thanks to unmatched all-round visibility.
In particular, the low engine cover and boom pivot, which is set at the same height as a seated driver’s waist, results in exceptional right rear three-quarters visibility.
A short wheelbase provides the ultimate in four-wheel steer agility so that operators can make the most of the 2.5 tonne lift capacity and 6m lift height.
The 525-60 is powered by a 2.5-litre JCB Diesel by Kohler compact four-cylinder engine developing 74hp (55kW).