England & Wales Wildfire Forum

The England and Wales Wildfire Forum is a multi-agency stakeholder group of public, private and third-sector parties established to address wildfire issues.

The forum is a voluntary strategic body, independent of government, created to expand knowledge and understand of wildfire, with the overall purpose of reducing the harmful impact of wildfires by promoting joint working and collaboration.

The EWWF is currently managed by a chair, vice-chair and secretariat:
  • EWWF chair: Simon Thorp, director at the Heather Trust
  • EWWF vice-chair: Dewi Rose, assistant chief fire officer at South Wales Fire and Rescue Service
  • EWWF secretary: Robert Stacey, wildfire project officer at Northumberland Fire and Rescue Service.
The EWWF is governed according to the following key principles:

Legal status:
The forum will hold no legal status. Members agree to work together to deliver the forum’s aims and address wildfire issues.

Chair:
The forum will be chaired by a senior officer of a member organisation. The role of chairperson shall be reviewed annually.

Vice chair:
The vice chairperson of the forum, shall be a senior officer of a member organisation and shall deputise for the chair as required. The role of vice chairperson shall be reviewed annually.

Membership:
Member organisations shall nominate a standing representative but may if necessary send a replacement representative to forum meetings. New members, either by invitation or on application, shall be admitted at the discretion of the existing forum members. Additional representatives from member organisations shall be co-opted at the discretion of the forum members.

Meetings:
Forum meetings will be held at least annually, as agreed with members. Additional meetings to address specific matters may be held when necessary. An invitation to attend to discuss specific items of business may be extended to other organisations and individuals. Forum members will host meetings of the forum as appropriate.

Work groups:
Work groups will be established to undertake tasks of a specific nature as identified by the forum. Membership of work groups will comprise of representatives with expertise or interest in the identified task(s) who shall nominate a group leader. Work groups will report back to the wider forum membership.

Administration:
The administration function associated with the work of the forum will be undertaken by the chairperson (and/or vice chairman) and an appointed secretariat.

Budget:
Membership of the forum is on a voluntary basis, but member organisations are asked to make a small annual contribution to the running costs of the forum. Any additional funding requirements identified will be progressed through partnership arrangements amongst forum members and other bodies as appropriate.

Voting:
Every effort will be made to reach decisions by consensus but where a vote is required, the quorum will be six. Each forum member organisation will have one vote and decisions will be taken on the basis of a simple majority.

For the avoidance of doubt, decisions taken by the forum will not be binding upon forum members, albeit members will be expected to support the forum’s deliberations in accordance with their commitment. Where it is necessary to take a vote inbetween meetings, a vote can be taken by electronic means.

Reporting:
The forum will produce reports for public circulation as appropriate, related to progress matters relevant to its remit.

Relationship with other groups:
The forum will establish and maintain close working links with the CFOA Wildfire Group and the Scottish Wildfire Forum. In addition, the forum will promote new and existing relationships with other groups and forums operating in the wildfire arena.

Recognition:
The forum members agree that in conducting the forum and in publicising its work, full recognition will be given to the support of each member.

Withdrawal from the forum:
Any member will be entitled to withdraw from the forum after giving written notice to the chairperson (or vice chairperson).

Review:
The forum will review progress on delivery of its aims and objectives on a regular basis.
Members of the EWWF represent a number of key groups and organisations.
 
Grouping Organisation
Governmental Home Office (Lead government department for wildfire)
Civil Contingencies Secretariat, Cabinet Office
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA)
Welsh Assembly Government
Representative organisations Country Land & Business Association (CLA)
Fire Brigades Union (FBU)
Heather Trust
Moorland Association
Scottish Wildfire Forum
Fire & rescue service National Fire Chief's Council (NFCC) Wildfire Group
Defence Fire Risk Management Organisation (DFRMO)
Northumberland Fire and Rescue Service
South Wales Fire and Rescue Service
Government agencies Defence Fire Risk Management Organisation (DFRMO)
Forestry Commission England
Met Office
Natural England
Natural Resources Wales
Network Rail
National parks and local authorities English National Park Authorities
Dorset County Council
Local Government Association (LGA)
Peak District National Park Authority
Charity organisations Woodland Trust (pending)
Research institutions Manchester University
Royal Holloway University of London
Special interest groups Lancashire Fire Operations Group (FOG)
Northumberland Fire Group (NFG)
Peak District Fire Operations Group (FOG)
South East England Wildfire Group (SEEWG)
Urban Heaths Partnership

 If you would like to join the EWWF, then please contact us.
Plans are now well underway for an international conference considering worldwide issues around wildfire, climate change and fuel/land management, which will take place in Cardiff, Wales later this year.

Championed by The England and Wales Wildfire Forum, and organised by South Wales Fire and Rescue Service, the Conference, entitled Manage the Fuel: Reduce the Risk, will be held at the prestigious Principality Stadium, Cardiff, on Wednesday November 20 and Thursday November 21, 2019.

It is already attracting much interest from wildfire professionals and researchers across the world and will encourage collaboration and sharing of skill and knowledge to make a positive impact on how wildfire incidences across the globe are tackled in the future.

Fifteen speakers will present at the two day event, covering twelve topics including expanding collaborations through the Pau Costa Foundation, the Interactive Wildland Urban Interface Wildfire Risk Assessment Tool, the impact of wildfire on contaminated moorland catchment water quality, EIP/RDP approaches to fire management in Irish Uplands, Firewise UK – Dorset, management of risk - The Defence Training Estate, PERIL- a toolkit for the design of wildfire trigger buffers in WUI evacuations, working together in South Wales- enhancing the environment and reducing risk, supporting fire Incident Commanders to manage the fuel, fuel reduction through vegetation management in the Cheviot Hills, soil erosion after fire and the evolution of fire traits in plants, plant invasives and wildfire challenges.

The England and Wales Wildfire Forum indicates that the worldwide threat and impact of wildfires has increased significantly in recent years and climate change, socio- economic influences and diversification of land uses may have contributed to this. The Forum has stated it is therefore even more important for all agencies, public, private and voluntary, to engage in dialogue and share best practice to reduce the wildfire threat, through a considered and holistic land management strategy.

​The Conference is set to be a unique opportunity to share a broad view of how effective and coordinated land management can have a positive impact on reducing the threat and consequences of wildfires.

Ron Steffens
Faculty (Prescott College) & Incident Commander/Fire Analyst (Grand Teton National Park)

  • Teaches and develops graduate courses and programs with a focus on emergency and environmental communications
  • Wildland Fire Manager for the National Park Service (based at Grand Teton National Park)
  • Chair of Wildfire Magazine's editorial board and currently serves as executive editor of (IAWF) Wildfire Magazine

Marc Castellnou
Associated Professor. University of Lleida

  • Member of the emergency and forest fires round table of ESRI Europe. 2011-2013
  • Developer of wildfire analysis tool using particle random approach CPS and EMSYX. Los Angeles, USA. First place in the world wind challenge, NASA. Florence, June 2013.
  • Developer of wildfire analysis and simulation tools with Wildland Fire Analyst Tecnosylva. Leon, Spain/San Diego, USA
  • Member of Advisory group for CREAF (Center of Ecology Research in Forestry and Agriculture of University Autonoma of BCN)

Claire Belcher, Professor of Wildland Fire
Director of the University of Exeter wildFIRE Lab

  • Presentation during EWWF conference will focus on ‘Joining FRS with Scientists to Better Understand Wildfire’ (with collaboration from Andy Elliott (WildfireTaC), Ania Losiak (U. Exeter) and Gareth Clay (U. Manchester)

Carlos Júlio Trindade
Municipal Coordinator of the Municipal Civil Protection Service and Director of the Municipal Heliport

  • Forestry Technical Office of the Municipality of Mafra
  • Completed a number of specialised courses in several areas, including pedagogical training of trainers, Controlled Fire Course – ICNF, Training Course of Higher Technical of SHST
  • Organisational member of Stakeholder Committee of SURE project - SUstaining and Enhancing REsilience of European Forests - European Forest Institute
Matthew Perry
Senior Applied Scientist at the Met Office
  • Has worked at the Met Office for 16 years, starting as a climatologist developing key datasets for the UK, before changing his focus to helping customers to understand the impacts of weather and climate on their operations or infrastructure and adapt to future climate change.
  • He has also spent two years working at CSIRO in Australia on solar energy applications.
Alex Held

 

Conference Speakers

  • Sarah Woodcock – Healthy Hillsides Partnership

  • Rory M. Hadden – Experimental investigation of the role of fuel load, structure and environmental conditions on low intensity prescribed fires

  • Ciaran Nugent – Locally led – European Innovation Partnership (EIP) and Rural Development Programme (RDP )approaches to fire management in Irish uplands

  • Nicholas Kettridge – The impact of wildfire on contaminated moorland catchment water quality

  • Nienke Brouwer – Wildfire management to prevent uncontrollable wildfires

  • Andrew Scott - The evolution of fire traits in plants, plant invasives and wildfire challenges

  • Henrik Lindberg – Why are there so few forest fires in Finland?

  • Slobodan Milanovic – Forest fire probability mapping in Serbia using logistic regression

  • Paul Attwell – Firewise UK – Dorset

  • Harry Mitchell and Guillermo Rein – PERIL: Toolkit for the design of wildfire trigger buffers in Wildland Urban Interface (WUI) evacuations

  • Duncan Glen Fire at Will: Managing wildfire on military land

  • Shaun Walton – Supporting fire incident commanders to manage the fuel

  • Emma C. Underwood – Estimating the impacts of wildfire on ecosystem services in California

  • Bruce Hardy – Fuel reduction through vegetation management in the Cheviot Hills

  • Jonathon Bell and Dean Ferreira – An interactive wildland urban interface wildfire risk assessment tool

  • Nuria Prat – Expanding collaborations through the Pau Costa Foundation: From theory to practice

  • Sergio Prats – Effectiveness of community based initiatives for mitigation of land degradation after wildfires

  • Graham Sullivan and Andrew Coupar - Does managing fuel always reduce the risk?


Conference Posters

  • Zachary Campbell-Lochrie – The role of fuel loading and structure on the physical phenomena that control the flame spread process

  • Oscar Kennedy Blundell – Pyrogenic carbon formation and degradation in UK  peatland catchments

  • Anna Losiak – Burning trash for science: Using waste to monitor wildfire energies

  • Rosie Watts – The influence of people on wildfire occurrence in an area in South Wales with a high proportion of human ignitions

  • Janis Donis – Adaptation of Canadian forest fire danger rating system in Latvia

  • David Cross – Key statistics on wildfires in England

  • Sergio Prats – Effectiveness of community based initiatives for mitigation of land degradation after wildfire

  • Duncan Blake – Mapping wildfire occurrence, extent and severity in Scotland using remote sensing: Some recent advances

  • Ashleigh Parker - Wildfire research in the Brecon Beacons National Park: fuels, recovery rates and management implications.

The two-day Conference, hosted by South Wales Fire and Rescue Service, is priced at £155 per person, to include 2 x lunch and a three course Conference meal on Wednesday evening plus refreshments. 

For further details about any aspect of the England and Wales Wildfire Forum Conference 2019 and/or to book a place to attend, please contact the South Wales Fire and Rescue Service team by email on EWWF2019@southwales-fire.gov.uk or visit the conference website www.southwales-fire.gov.uk

The forum holds meetings at least two times per year to discuss wildfire issues of national importance. All members are invited to attend, provide briefings and contribute agenda items for discussion.

The forum also invites non-members to attend meetings to deliver presentations and participate in specific discussions. If you would like to attend a future meeting of the EWWF, please contact us

The next meeting of the EWWF will take place during the first half of 2019. Further information will follow soon. 
 
The EWWF is involved in a number of ongoing activities and projects related to wildfire prevention, preparedness, response and recovery. Below you can see copies of reports that summarise some of the key activities and projects involving the EWWF and its members.

Wildfire Workshop Report
The EWWF organised and faciilitated a wildfire workshop on behalf of DEFRA on 8th February 2019. The workshop was held in Nottingham and involved wildfire stakeholders from around the country. The aim of the workshop was to discuss and capture the key lessons learned from wildfire incidents that took place in 2018.
Final Report from the Wildfire Workshop on 8th February 2019

EWWF Activity Reports
Report on EWWF activities - January to March 2017 

You can also find out further information about current and ongoing EWWF activities from the newsletters section of this webpage. 
The EWWF will produce a number of newsletters each year to help inform the UK wildfire community about key wildfire activities and events. We hope that colleagues around the UK, and from further afield, will be willing and able to share information about events and projects which can be included in future newsletters.

Click here to read the March 2018 newsletter from the EWWF. 

The newsletter provides information about a number of wildfire-related issues, including: 
  • Report on the Joint Wildfire Forum Meeting held in November 2017
  • Report on the highly successful UK Wildfires 2017 Conference in Bournemouth
  • Feedback request for a new Wildfire Reporting Tool
  • Information about two Wildfire Webinars being organised by Moors for the Future in April and May 2018
  • Reports on recent wildfire incidents, exercises and workshops and information about forthcoming events and exercises.
  • EWWF meetings in 2018
  • Contact details for the EWWF
Please contact us if you have any queries about the newsletter or if you would like to provide information for inclusion within a future EWWF newsletter.
This section provides copies of newsletters previously published and circulated by the EWWF. 
The EWWF has collected a number of case studies of wildfire incidents and good practice. These case studies are provided below as a source of information and inspiration.

Case Studies from Northumberland: Case Study from South Wales:  Case Study from Dorset: Case Study from South East England:​ Case Study from Staffordshire:
The EWWF maintains close links with a number of other key wildfire stakeholder groups and projects around the UK, including:

The EWWF also maintains close links with international partners, including colleagues in the Republic of Ireland, the Pau Costa Foundation (Spain) and the Netherlands National Wildfire Project.

To facilitate and drive national activities related to wildfires, the EWWF liaises closely with regional and local wildfire groups. The key purpose of maintaining these links is to look for and promote cooperation, collaboration and synergy on wildfire issues across England and Wales. 

There are at least 16 local/regional groups in England and Wales that are currently addressing wildfire issues, including:
  • Northumberland Fire Group
  • Peak District Fire Operations Group
  • Urban Heaths Partnership
  • Cumbria Fire Group
  • Commons Vision/Gower Wildfire Group
  • Durham and Darlington Wildfire Group
  • Healthy Hillsides Project, Wales
  • Home Counties Wildfire Group
  • Lancashire Fire Operations Group
  • North Yorkshire Wildfire Group
  • North York Moors Fire Liaison Group
  • Pembrokeshire Wildfire Group
  • Pennine Wildfire Working Group
  • Sky Lantern and Balloon Releases in Dorset Working Group
  • South East of England Wildfire Group
  • South East Wales Upland Resilience Project
  • South Pennines Fire Operations Group
The EWWF can provide advice and support to existing local wildfire groups. Please contact us and let us know what you need and we will try to help. 

Help and support for creating new local wildfire groups
Local wildfire groups perform a key role in bringing together a variety of stakeholders to address wildfire risk and issues at local level. The EWWF can provide help, advice and support for anyone looking to create a new local wildfire group. Please contact us and let us know what you need and we will try to help. 
The forum helps to organise and support wildfire events. Further details about current and previous events supported by the forum are shown below.

Wildfires 2019 Conference - 20th and 21st November 2019
On 20th and 21st November 2019, South Wales Fire and Rescue Service will be hosting the UK Wildfire Conference 2019 - Manage the Fuel, Reduce the Risk. The event is being held at the Principality Stadium in Cardiff, Wales, and is being supported by the England and Wales Wildfire Forum, Scottish Wildfire Forum, the European Forest Institute and the Fire Times Magazine. 

The two-day conference will focus on the theme of ‘Manage the Fuel - Reduce the Risk’ and will bring together land managers, fire and rescue services, academic researchers, environmental organisations, planners and policy-makers involved in (i) the prevention, mitigation and suppression of wildfires, (ii) the management of wild- and prescribed fires, and (iii) evaluating the ecological and societal effects of fire, both in the UK and overseas. The event will showcase practical solutions that have been informed by the best knowledge and experience from the UK and internationally.

Book your place now!   

Booking is now open for this two day event. The registration cost is £155 per person, which includes 2 days of presenters, a trade show, lunches and 3 course conference evening meal. 

Find out more
If you would like to find out more about the event, please visit the conference website and/or contact the conference organisers at EWWF2019@southwales-fire.gov.uk

Wildfires 2017 Conference - 7th and 8th November 2017
The EWWF supported the highly successful UK Wildfires Conference 2017. The event was held on 7th and 8th November 2017 at the Royal Bath Hotel in Bournemouth and focused on the theme of Wildfire Resilience in a  UK Context. 

If you have any queries about the event please contact us.   

Wildfires 2015 Conference - 10th and 11th November 2015
The EWWF supported the Wildfire 2015 Conference, an extremely successful event co-hosted by the Scottish Wildfire Forum and the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service. The conference took place at the fire service’s training centre at Cambuslang, Glasgow, on 10-11 November 2015, bringing together wildlife practitioners and stakeholders from across the UK and from overseas. 

Click here to view copies of the presentations delivered at the conference

Wildfire Research and its Impact on Policy, Planning and Operations: the Swinley Forest Fire - 10th April 2015
The EWWF supported a one day seminar held at the University of Greenwich, London which was organised by the University of Greenwich, Bracknell Forest Council, the Knowledge for Wildfire Project, University of Manchester, Forestry Commission England, the Fire Efficient Project and Royal Berkshire Fire and Rescue Service. The event presented examples of wildfire research projects that have been completed since the Swinley Forest Fire in 2011. The event also facilitated discussions between a range of stakeholders on how research can and should impact wildfire policy, planning and operations in the UK.

Click here for further information about the event.
Click here to view copies of presentations delivered at this event. 

 
If you would like any further information and/or would like to join the England and Wales Wildfire Forum (EWWF), please contact:

Robert Stacey, secretary of the England and Wales Wildfire Forum