Environment, Hampshire, Latest News | Posted: Friday, June 26th, 2020 at 9:57 am | return to news

18 stores BBQ-free as New Forest retailers back ban

After just two weeks, 18 stores have shown support for a BBQ-free New Forest by withdrawing disposable BBQs from sale.

no-bbqs-New-Forest

It means that the three main New Forest villages are now disposable BBQ-free.

Retailers across the Forest and beyond are backing the ban and are also alerting people to the dangers of BBQs with posters and point-of-sale messaging.

Supported by Forestry England and Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service, the #BBQFreeNewForest campaign was launched earlier this month following the large number of disposable BBQs being used while the New Forest is at extreme risk of fire. Multiple fires have had to be put out in recent weeks, and numerous areas of scorched earth have been left across the protected habitats when a fire warning is still in place.

Chairman of New Forest National Park Authority, Oliver Crosthwaite-Eyre, said, “Thanks to support from garages and shops the villages of Ashurst, Lyndhurst and Brockenhurst are all now disposable BBQ-free.

“Our woods and lowland heathland are of global environmental importance for wildlife and their peaty soils store carbon and help reduce climate change. Wildfires at this time of year would cause immense damage to the ground and the rare flora and fauna. We must protect them from unintentional fires caused by carelessness.”

He added that while there had been some rain, the area remains on a fire alert. “This is why we need your help,” he said.

Nicky Watson, company secretary for Castles Home Hardware in Christchurch said they were “delighted to support anything that can help stop these awful fires and devastation on the Forest, heathland or coast.”

The campaign has received widespread media coverage and reached nearly 300,000 people on social media with over 40,000 supporting it with likes, comments and shares.

Everyone can help protect the precious habitats of the New Forest by contacting their local retailer and asking them to remove disposable BBQs from sale. Retailers can then display the poster (see link below) and contact the New Forest National Park Authority either via email communications@newforestnpa.gov.uk or on social @Newforestnpa. 

If you’re a local retailer and will be backing the ban, please show support on social media by tagging #BBQFreeNewForest and display a poster available to download here: https://bit.ly/2XOyLxz

For full information and a list of all stores supporting our campaign visit www.newforestnpa.gov.uk/BBQFreeNewForest

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