Help prevent fires on London’s greenspaces

Dry meadow at Huckerby's credit Simon Hawkins

Several weeks of hot and dry weather have created a severe fire risk across the city’s natural open spaces

London Wildlife Trust is calling on Londoners to help prevent fires by taking simple precautions when out and about.

A long spell of exceptionally hot and dry weather has created a severe fire risk on grassland and heathland, including many of the Trust’s nature reserves. This was evidenced by a wildfire last week at Wanstead Flats, an open space managed by the City of London, which London Fire Brigade called “the largest in our history”.

Such fires can create a risk to life, in addition to destroying valuable wildlife habitat. But by following these steps we can all help reduce fire risk and the threat to public safety:

  • Do not smoke on or near nature reserves or other grassland areas.
  • Do not drop litter – and pick up any litter you find. Bottles and glass can magnify the sun.
  • Report any fire you see immediately by calling 999. Do not assume somebody else will make the call.

Mathew Frith, Director of Conservation at London Wildlife Trust, said: “With the hottest June since records began, and with hot and dry weather likely to continue until at least the end of July, we all need to be vigilant to the potential of fire. By following these simple rules we can all help to reduce the risk of fires starting.”

For further fire safety advice refer to www.london-fire.gov.uk.