Donated guitar confiscated by customs

A gruelling bus and plane trip that took Tom Roche founder of Rhode-based forest conservation organisation Just Forests, to the Martin Guitar Company in Nazareth, Pennsylvania, to collect a donation of a guitar ended in disappointment last week.

A gruelling bus and plane trip that took Tom Roche founder of Rhode-based forest conservation organisation Just Forests, to the Martin Guitar Company in Nazareth, Pennsylvania, to collect a donation of a guitar ended in disappointment last week.

On his arrival from New York on Thursday Mr Roche had the guitar taken from him at Dublin Airport by Customs Officials. They thought Mr Roche had purchased it and would not believe it had been donated.

Mr Roche has expressed great disappointment at the development as the generous donation by CF Martin’s CEO Chris Martin, was to be used by Just Forests to raise funds to develop an education program that would see all musical instruments used in Ireland being made of ‘tonewoods’ from responsibly managed forests worldwide.

According to Mr Roche, “Over eighty of the estimated 200 wood species used to make musical instruments worldwide are on the brink of extinction and bringing this FSC-certified guitar into Ireland was part of our plan to engage the music industry with our education program.”

Martin Guitars have taken their environmental responsibilities seriously by starting to source FSC-certified wood for their musical instruments. Just Forests were awarded the guitar by Martins in recognition of their work on linking our love of music to our dependence on forests for the wood for our beautiful musical instruments-through our Sound of Wood Project.

“Our plan was to invite Bono and The Edge of U-2 fame to endorse this FSC-certified guitar and the significant social, economic and environmental message of hope it has for musicians, musical instrument-makers and indeed all lovers of music”, said Mr Roche.