Marshals deployed following spate of moorland blazes

MARSHALS brought in to patrol Dovestone Reservoir will be on duty tonight (Wednesday, February 27) in the wake of moorland fires.

Firefighters were called to tackle blazes in two separate areas Monday night, including Ashway Moss close to the water, and a large part of Marsden Moor was on fire on Tuesday.

Now new marshals will be deployed today from 3.30pm until 9.30pm with the backing of officers from Greater Manchester Police.

The Dovestones Marshals Scheme came into action on Saturday in a bid to further enforce Peak District National Park rules.

Two people have been deployed at the much-loved beauty spot. They are trained staff and will be on hand to ensure that the site runs smoothly whilst also highlighting Peak Park Rules.

Users will also receive leaflets at the entrance to the Saddleworth site.

A Greater Manchester Police spokesman said of the scheme’s introduction: “There is a partnership managing the Dovestone site, working closely together to make the visitors experience as enjoyable and as safe as possible.

“We will adapt our approach to tackle activity at the site and look to the Saddleworth local community to support us in our efforts.”

The Peak District National Park is asking visitors to be ‘fire aware’ after a period of unseasonably warm weather, and recent wild fires.

A National Park spokesperson said:

“The moorlands of the Peak District National Park are of global environmental importance, dominated by large expanses of blanket bog and upland heath. We must protect these moorlands from the considerable risk of damage by wildfires. We work throughout the year with partners – including landowners, fire and rescue services and local farmers – to monitor conditions and ensure that teams can respond to incidents effectively when they occur.”

Oldham Council today tweeted:

“From everyone here in Oldham, we would like to say a massive thank you to West Yorkshire fire service and Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue for their amazing efforts in tackling the moorland fire in Marsden overnight. you’re doing a fantastic job.”

A statement released by West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue service states:

“To prevent the cause or spread of further fires West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service are reminding the public of some steps they can take to keep our countryside safe.

  • Clear up and take your rubbish home after picnics
  • Observe all signs and notices- they are there for a reason
  • Follow the National Trust Countryside Code
  • Don’t leave glass bottles- not only can they hurt people and animals, but they can magnify the sun’s rays and start a fire
  • Never be tempted to light a fire in the countryside and only barbeque in authorised areas
  • Never throw lighted cigarette ends onto the ground or out of the window of vehicles or trains. Always ensure that they are completely extinguished and disposed of responsibly.”

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