Woodbury Common blaze

LAND on Woodbury Common was left severely damaged after being scene to a large-scale inferno. Fifteen fire appliances tackled a blaze which spread across the common last Saturday leaving twenty acres of gorse, stretching from Four Firs to Yettington, char

LAND on Woodbury Common was left severely damaged after being scene to a large-scale inferno.

Fifteen fire appliances tackled a blaze which spread across the common last Saturday leaving twenty acres of gorse, stretching from Four Firs to Yettington, charred.

Fire service spokesman Paul Slaven said at one point crews from Exmouth, Budleigh Salterton and Topsham were faced with two 400-metre long walls of flames.

"We first received a call at around 2.15pm - it was under control at around five o'clock."


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Mr Slaven added: "We were concerned about the high winds and danger of the blaze spreading further."

Fire crews and the police had to control crowds of spectators who blocked roads, ensuring their safety.

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Two appliances, a water bowser and hose layer, were called initially, but the watch commander requested more support.

Shortly after 3pm four extra appliances were called followed by continued spells of back-up calls until the fire was extinguished.

Woodbury Castle car park was being used as a fire engine rendez vous point to control the large amount of spectators and volume of traffic.

The fire was finally brought under control using eight hose reels, two jets and compressed air foam. The commons ranger, tractors and an all-terrain vehicle from Somerset also attended.

It is believed the cause of fire was accidental.

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