HART District council has pledged to 'learn lessons' after multiple crews tackled 'out of control' contractors bonfires on Hazeley Heath last week.

Firefighters from Hartley Wintney, Fleet, Yateley and Rushmoor were called to the scene around 2.12pm on Friday afternoon (February 26), where two unattended contractor bonfires were “out of control”.

People were asked to avoid the northern area of the heathland near Hook while firefighters tackled the flames.

The fire service advised Hart District Council’s Countryside Management team that “no further fires should be lit to dispose of cleared brush and cut trees in this area”.

A spokesperson for Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service added: "Crews from Hartley Wintney, Fleet, Rushmoor and Yateley attended a large fire in the open on Hazeley Heath at 14:12.

"Approximately three hectares of heath, gorse and heather were involved in the fire that was extinguished using hose reel jets and beaters.

"Firefighters left the scene following the stop message at 15:41."

Now, Hart District Council has acknowledged that the safety measures carried out at the scene were 'inadequate'.

A council spokesperson said: "Hart District Council takes fire management and wildfire risk on our countryside site very seriously. It forms a key component of our site management plans.

"Unfortunately, over the past few days during routine scrub management tasks, contractors have inadequately controlled and extinguished their fire sites, which has resulted in the attendance of the Fire Service.

"This matter will be addressed in line with the councils’ policies. Moving forwards, Hart's countryside rangers will work closely with the local fire service to review the situation and discuss any lessons learnt."