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NEWS RELEASE No: 136392 JUNE 2010

Woodland visitors urged to play safe with fire

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Fire on heathland at Bagshot

The Forestry Commission is urging visitors to Nottinghamshire’s woods to take extra care to avoid causing fires.

With little rainfall over recent weeks, many of the county’s beauty spots are tinder dry and extra vigilance will help protect trees and wildlife alike.

Although forest fires are associated with high summer, the most vulnerable time is in fact the spring when rotted vegetation has dried out and litters the ground. Andy Medhurst, Forest Management Director, said;

"We want everyone to have an enjoyable time visiting our forests, but we take extremely seriously the threat posed by fire. The weather has been great for exploring the woods, but it’s important to remember that even a carelessly discarded cigarette or match can spark a fire.”

Forest fires can be a particular hazard to ground nesting birds, small mammals and reptiles.

The Forestry Commission manages 14,000 acres of land in Nottinghamshire, comprising 25 woods, including Sherwood Pines Forest Park, near Edwinstowe, which is the largest public woodland in the East Midlands. About 300,000 people visit each year.

The Forestry Commission is the government department responsible in England for protecting, expanding and promoting the sustainable management of woods and forests and increasing their value to society and the environment. Forestry makes a real contribution to sustainable development, providing social and environmental benefits arising from planting and managing attractive, as well as productive, woodlands. More information at

Richard Darn on 01226 246351. Mobile 0775 367 0038.