Fire at Sheffield nature reserve prompts warning

A Sheffield nature reserve nearly went up in flames this week, prompting a warning for people to take care despite the cooler conditions.

Friday, 17th August 2018, 3:03 pm
Updated Friday, 17th August 2018, 3:10 pm
Firefighters douse the smouldering ground after a blaze at the Moss Valley Woodlands in Sheffield (pic: Nabil Abbas)
Firefighters douse the smouldering ground after a blaze at the Moss Valley Woodlands in Sheffield (pic: Nabil Abbas)

An abandoned campfire in the Moss Valley Woodlands, near Norton, almost sparked a major blaze when flames spread to the surrounding leaf litter this week.

Thankfully, rangers managed to spot the fire early, and firefighters were quickly able to extinguish it before the damage became too extensive.

Firefighters were able to extinguish the blaze before major damage was caused (pic: Nabil Abbas)

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Only around 10 square metres of the woodland floor was scorched, but Sheffield and Rotherham Wildlife Trust said Wednesday's fire could have been much worse.

It urged people to continue to take care, even though the searing temperatures from earlier this summer have been replaced with cooler weather.

Nabil Abbas, the trust's reserve manager, said: "We've also had to put out fires at Greno Woods and Wyming Brook this year. Luckily none of these fires have caused any major damage, but the wildfires in the Peak District and elsewhere in the country this year have shown how dangerous fire can be, particularly in this extremely dry summer.

"Having to call out the fire service on to our sites also means that they're not available to fight fires elsewhere, potentially putting peoples lives at risk.

"Please do not have any fires or barbecues on our nature reserves, and if you see a fire in the countryside please call 999 immediately."

South Yorkshire Fire and Rescue echoed the trust's advice, tweeting: "We may have had some rain but our plea around being careful when lighting open fires and barbecues is still relevant - please don't do it!"