VIDEO: Ambersham heathland fire may have started when ‘controlled burn’ got out of hand

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A BLAZE which destroyed two acres of heathland on Ambersham Common today (Thursday, March 12) is believed to have started when a controlled burn got out of hand.

Fire crews from Midhurst and Petworth tackled the fire on Cowdray Estate land off New Road, near Heyshott.

Donald Macdonald, Woodlands Manager for the estate told the Observer: “The land is owned by the estate but very recently the management has been taken over by the South Downs National Park Authority.”

There were teams at work on the land this morning who were clearing scrub from the heathland.

The alarm was raised at 11.20am.

Firefighters were quickly on the scene where officer in charge Nigel Gamblen reported the fire had spread rapidly up the hill and crews operated a ‘pincer movement’ to tackle it from both ends and stop it spreading.

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