Building A Bonfire
For most, the idea of building and controlling your own bonfire can be rather daunting. However, with the correct knowledge of how to carefully build a bonfire to dispose of waste material, it can be simple and enjoyable. It is important to take the following into account:
. Do not use anything that is highly flammable and can cause air pollution or harm someone’s health.
. Make sure that the smoke is not blowing in a direction that may be dangerous to others.
. Make sure that the bonfire site is open ground, well-lit and free from any obstructions such as: trees, buildings, cables and exceptionally long vegetation.
A bonfire is a traditional way to dispose of any garden waste in a controlled environment, as-well as being a celebration with toffee apples and fireworks!
Please avoid using any flammable liquids and be extremely careful when using a lighter or a match. Please make sure that you have permission from the land owner and that it is legal to have a bonfire prior to lighting the fire. Ensure that all fires are disposed of safely and that all who are present stand away from the flames at all times. All children must be supervised by an adult at all times.
Alternatively, you can recycle any remaining garden waste; especially the fallen autumn leaves that are becoming a nuisance.
Dry twigs, leaves, sticks and pieces of unwanted wood. Make sure that the wood is dry, as this will produce less smoke.
A pit that is a few inches deep and a few feet wider than you want your fire to be.
Rocks/bricks to place around the perimeter.
Twigs/bark to build a pyramid shape (leave gaps for oxygen to reach).
Ensure that the long pieces of kindling are touching the base and the tip of the tower shape.
Carefully light using a small match and stand back.
Water and fire extinguishers.
You can use any green waste such as: leafy plants, annual weeds and fruit or vegetables. It is also advisory that you include wood materials such as wood chippings or cardboard to help a bonfire light.
By recycling your garden waste, you can improve existing soil types by adding essential nutrients such as Nitrogen and Phosphorous which will encourage the growth of plants and vegetation. Furthermore, decomposition of compost can create a slow release fertiliser to help with soil amendment- perfect to maintain healthy soil in the winter months.
If you have built your bonfire in advance, please check bonfires carefully for sleeping hedgehogs before lighting. If possible the entire pile should be re-sited before being lit, if not possible, use broom handles to lift from the base of the pile, and shine torches, looking and listening carefully for any movement.