Arson investigation underway after deliberate fire on Calderdale moorland

An arson investigation has been launched after a fire on moorland in the Calderdale area.

Officers are investigating what they believe to be a deliberate ignition of heather on agricultural land in the Tenacres, Wadsworth road area of Hebden Bridge.

Cllr Tim Swift (Calderdale Councils Leader), Natasha Lymm (the Councils Senior Community Safety Warden), Inspector Ben Doughty from West Yorkshire Police and Geoff Shaw, Watch Commander at West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service, with the new Public Space Protection Order signs on moorland in Mytholmroyd.

Cllr Tim Swift (Calderdale Councils Leader), Natasha Lymm (the Councils Senior Community Safety Warden), Inspector Ben Doughty from West Yorkshire Police and Geoff Shaw, Watch Commander at West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service, with the new Public Space Protection Order signs on moorland in Mytholmroyd.

The incident happened at 10pm on July 23.

Anyone with any information should call 101 quoting 13190376534 or call the charity crime stoppers anonymously on 0800555111.

READ MORE: Huge support to ban fires and barbecues on Calderdale's countryside
The incident comes just a week after emergency services and Calderdale Council joined forces to prevent moorland fires in the borough.

Last month Calderdale Council introduced a Public Space Protection Order (PSPO) in areas of the countryside, to prohibit the lighting of fires, barbecues, sky lanterns or anything that causes a fire risk.

Councillo Susan Press, Calderdale Council’s Cabinet Member for Public Services and Communities, said: “It’s vital to protect Calderdale’s distinctive countryside. Our Public Space Protection Order is in place all year round to prevent moorland fires – a key commitment within our first 100 days programme.

“We will continue to work with other organisations, including West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service, West Yorkshire Police and landowners to warn people of the dangers of fires, and to urge them to enjoy our beautiful moorland responsibly.

"Everyone has a part to play in ensuring our landscape remains a core part of what makes Calderdale so special.”

Over the next two weeks, the Council’s community safety wardens and countryside team are putting up 50 PSPO signs at entry points to the moors across Calderdale, with support from West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service, West Yorkshire Police and landowners.

Community safety wardens will enforce the Order, supported by the Police. Anyone who doesn’t comply will be fined £100 and could face prosecution.

This reflects the seriousness of moorland fires and the devastating effects they can cause, including destroying acres of rural land and precious wildlife habitats.

The Council is backing West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service’s #BeMoorAware campaign to highlight the serious consequences of wildfires and to urge people to follow some basic rules to enjoy rural areas without creating a fire threat.

READ MORE: Hard-hitting campaign launches warning of devastating moor fires as summer holidays start
(VIDEO by West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service)