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Firefighters tackle 40 hectare field fire in Ringstead

PUBLISHED: 19:13 26 July 2018 | UPDATED: 23:46 26 July 2018

Norfolk Fire and Rescue Service at the scene of a field fire in Ringstead. PHOTO: Rebecca Murphy

Norfolk Fire and Rescue Service at the scene of a field fire in Ringstead. PHOTO: Rebecca Murphy

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Thirteen fire crews tackled a 40-hectare field fire in Ringstead as crews endured yet another busy day of firefighting in the tinderbox conditions the heatwave has created across Norfolk.

About 20 homes were also evacuated due to the Ringstead fire close to the Peddars Way today which also spread to nearby gardens.

Firefighters were alerted at about 2.30pm and crews from Fakenham, King’s Lynn, Hunstanton, Heacham, Wymondham, Wells, Sheringham, Terrington and Massingham were among those sent to the scene.

By 5.30pm, some crews were stood down, while some firefighters remained at the scene well into the night.

Paul Seaman, group manager for Norfolk Fire and Rescue Service, said: “The challenge we had was a rapidly spreading fire which potentially could have affected properties. The first crew in attendance will have had to prioritise the spread of the fire and make sure everybody was evacuated safely. They were working on extreme heat.”

Anne Wood, a resident whose neighbour’s caravan caught light, said: “I thought it was a barbecue to be honest. I then looked out of the window and saw the field on fire.

“The flames were huge. I did get a bit concerned as I thought if it gets in the garden it would just shoot through.”

Chris Roberts, who also lives close by, said: “At the start I actually thought someone had started a bonfire which I thought was a bit silly. I came out and looked out and saw the engines.

“I got my dogs and cat out and took them to a friends house. I had a caravan at the back of the garden and it is all gone. It was terrifying really.”

Norfolk Fire and Rescue Service at the scene of a field fire in Ringstead. PHOTO: Rebecca MurphyNorfolk Fire and Rescue Service at the scene of a field fire in Ringstead. PHOTO: Rebecca Murphy

He added: “The fire service are doing a fantastic job. They are marvellous.”

Fire crews were also called out to a series of other fires across Norfolk through the afternoon and evening.

These included fires in the open at Thetford, Lynn Road in South Runcton, on the Sweet Briar Road Industrial Estate in Norwich, Market Lane in Walpole St Andrew, Hockwold Cum Wilton, Marine Parade in Great Yarmouth, and Swaffham Road in Cockley Cley.

Three fire crews also attended a large field fire near the A11 at Roudham, and firefighters also attended a forest fire near Gloucester Way in Thetford.

Norfolk Fire and Rescue Service at the scene of a field fire in Ringstead. PHOTO: Rebecca MurphyNorfolk Fire and Rescue Service at the scene of a field fire in Ringstead. PHOTO: Rebecca Murphy

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