Avoid using barbecues to reduce wildfire risk, says CLA

28 April 2021

The Country Land and Business Association (CLA) is urging people to avoid using barbecues and lighting fires in the countryside.

The call comes following a spike in wildfires breaking out across the country on areas of moorland, due to warm weather and ultra-dry ground.

Firefighters have recently battled wildfires at Marsden Moor, Saddleworth Moor, Bodmin Moor, Dartmoor and Exmoor.

With dry and sunny conditions set to continue, more people are expected to visit the countryside over the bank holiday weekend.

The CLA, which represents 28,000 farmers, land managers and rural businesses across England and Wales, says serious incidents can be avoided if the Countryside Code is adhered to.

CLA President Mark Bridgeman said:

“Wildfires have devastating consequences for livestock and wildlife, not to mention climate change and those living and working in rural areas.

“While we want everyone to enjoy themselves this weekend in the countryside, it’s vitally important people act safely and responsibly.

“With that in mind, there is an increased risk of a fire associated with using disposable barbecues so they should be avoided at all costs. Reducing the risk of wildfires is key at this time of year.”

Mr Bridgeman added:

It will help everyone if visitors and rural communities alike take to heart the spirit of the Countryside Code; Respect, Protect, Enjoy.”

Find out more about the recently-refreshed Countryside Code here