year on from devastating fire, Berrow's
reed beds have fully recovered
exactly one year since a devastating fire tore through a half
mile stretch of reed beds at Berrow but, as our photo here shows,
the area has recovered well and is once again bursting with wildlife.
Corns, English Nature's Conservation Officer for Bridgwater Bay,
told Burnham-On-Sea.com this week: "The
Berrow reed bed has now recovered. I had the opportunity to look
at it recently and the reed growth was vigorous and recovery was
are known to recover rapidly from fire but regular burning can
have a deleterious effect on nesting birds and invertebrates."
He added: "We were fortunate that last year's burn only affected
the new reed bed
near the Church and not the main bed to the south. It
is this bed that holds the most interesting species, particularly
breeding birds, and a fire in this bed could be disastrous."
fire lit up the skies around Burnham-On-Sea for
several hours on September 1, 2004, with the flames quickly spreading
across the reed beds to the west of Berrow Church.
at the scene saw flames up to five metres high - and firefighters
said that an area half a mile long and 500 metres wide was destroyed.
The fire was active in at least four areas and was fanned by a
brisk westerly wind coming off the Bristol Channel.
fire engines from Burnham-On-Sea, Weston-super-Mare, Bridgwater
and Cheddar were called and scores of firefighters with hoses
and beaters tried to bring the blaze under control.
water carrier from Bridgwater and a command support unit from
Street were also drafted in to help, along with a police helicopter.
hot summer temperatures continuing this
Mr Corns recommended visitors stay vigilant in the area and not
engage in activities such as barbecues and small wood fires that
pose any risk.
sweeps across reed beds at Berrow