New Forest retailers come out in force to back ban on BBQs
Two weeks, three villages, 18 stores BBQ-free
After just two weeks, 18 stores have already shown support for a BBQ-free New Forest by withdrawing disposable BBQs from sale.
It means that the three main New Forest villages of Ashurst, Lyndhurst and Brockenhurst are all now disposable BBQ-free.
Retailers large and small 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.
The #BBQFreeNewForest campaign, supported by Forestry England and Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service, 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.
New Forest National Park Authority Chairman 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.
‘While we have had some rain, the area remains on a fire alert and with the warm weather set to return, the New Forest will be at an even greater risk of fire. This is why we need your help.’
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 email@example.com or on social @Newforestnpa. A list of participating retailers is featured on our website.
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