A bonfire in a garden got out of control and ending up destroying fences and garden sheds. This fire which started in Morton Road, Fernhill Heath close to Worcester happened on July 27th and created a great deal of damage and risk to property. Hereford and Worcester Fire Service has issued warnings to people to be very careful about starting fires and to always check the weather conditions before starting. Windy weather can be particularly risky and the location, if too close to property is also very risky. Even though we have not had very long hot dry spells it is still very easy for a bonfire to get out of control.
The Fire Service had to send three appliances out after they received 14 calls about the blaze, caused by the fire spreading to the tinder dry conifer trees. Station Commander Dean Baker said that ‘the bonfire had been lit near some conifer trees, which due to the dry conditions and the wind on the day, had quickly caught light’ This fire then quickly spread along the conifers to the six neighbouring gardens and destroyed eight garden sheds, fencing and other garden buildings.
He went on to say ‘Thankfully no one was hurt but wanted the public to be aware of the dangers of bonfires in the garden and offered the following advice’
1/ Always locate any bonfire clear of buildings, fences, hedges and garden sheds.
2/ Never burn garden waste when it is windy and also NEVER use any flammable liquid to start the bonfire.
3/ Do not burn aerosol cans, paint tins, batteries, tyres or foam fill furniture – all of very dangerous to life.
4/ Have a bucket of water ready and a hose pipe connected as a precaution in case the fire gets out of hand.
5/ Before lighting ensure there are no children hiding in the bonfire and also that there are no animals as well. Never leave a bonfire unattended, even for a minute.
If you follow the above advice in Southampton then the garden sheds, fences, hedges and trees will not come to any harm and will serve the purpose to which it was intended.
This time of year with Easter out of the way and the Spring bank holiday been and gone, you should be able to look down the garden and see a delightful array of life. However, if you are like most of us the garden is still looking tired from the winter from the flower beds, to the garden lawn and even down to the garden potting shed. Now is the time to do something about it and to transform your garden into a pleasant relaxing oasis. As Spring has arrived in Southampton the addition of daffodils to the garden is a good choice but rather late for this year. Worth considering for next year. You will find these beautiful flowers which normally mark the start of spring have bloomed and faded and now is the time to start on the garden.
First your will need to venture into your garden shed and get the garden tools out, initially the stiff broom and rake will be a good start. Using the rake gather up all the leaves which fell into your garden from your local trees and bag these up for disposal or better still put onto the compost heap situated behind your shed. After this work your way around the garden and the flower beds removing any weeds which will thrive and choke your flowers and plants if left to grow. The garden hoe will be a good tool to use against the weeds and will mean less bending down (and less backache).
Also be on the lookout for garden pests such as snails and slugs and deal with them before they get out of hand. Take the opportunity to cut your evergreen shrubs and plants as well as pruning your flowers. The garden hedge can be trimmed and tidied up if you did not do this last Autumn
You can then get your lawn mower out of the garden shed and give the garden lawn a cut. If it’s the first cut of the season then set the blades a little higher than normal. You can then drop the height on later cuts. Again gather up the grass cuttings and put on the compost heap hidden away behind the shed. After you have done this the use of the broom will collect up all the waste and when this is done your garden will look a lot better.
Maybe a trip to a Southampton garden centre might be a good idea where you can buy bedding plants in pots ready to be planted in your garden. In no time at all they will be flourishing and producing an array of colour for you. If the plants selected need shade from the wind then planting in front of the shed or fence is a good idea. With the brown background of the garden shed you will find the colours of the flowers will show up really well, also helping to take away some of the plainness of the shed, certainly if your garden is on the small side.
To achieve the above all you need is a little enthusiasm and a little effort. Not a great deal of technical knowledge is needed, just basic common sense. If you achieve the above you will feel proud of your garden and if you include your garden shed in this early spree you will have an outdoor area to relax away from the house.