Inspections after double blaze in ‘Winnie the Pooh’ country

Photograph by Dan Jessup
Photograph by Dan Jessup

East Sussex Fire and Rescue Service was due to return to the scene of two wildfires on Ashdown Forest this morning (Wednesday, February 27) to carry out re-inspections.

The blazes, usually a curse of the summer months in ‘Winnie the Pooh’ country, broke out on the warmest February day ever recorded in the UK with the Met Office reporting a temperature of 20.6C (69.08F) at Trawsgoed, Ceredigion.

The first fire began at 12.31pm at Millbrook Hill, Nutley, with seven fire appliances tackling flames extending across 400m. The ‘stop’ message was received at 7.42pm marking the end of the firefighting operation with crews leaving the area shortly afterwards. The fire has been deemed accidental.

The second blaze had broken out at Kidds Hill, near Hartfield, at 1.37pm with flames engulfing 200m of gorse and undergrowth. The ‘stop’ message was received at 7.02pm and the scene was left with the Forest Rangers.

The cause of this fire had not been confirmed yesterday evening (Tuesday, February 26).

Farm machinery was used to create a fire break to stop the spread of flames. Advice was given to those temporarily unable to gain access to their property. There were no reported injuries.

Members of the public are being asked by East Sussex Fire and Rescue to be extra careful while enjoying the outdoors.

See some dramatic photos of the blazes.