Flytipping has prevented fire crews from accessing a Dorset heath reported to have been on fire.

There has been three reports of flytipping on Dorset Wildlife Trust's (DWT) nature reserve Upton Heath in the last week, and two incidents on the Lower Common nature reserve near Verwood, which stopped fire crews from Dorset and Wiltshire Fire Rescue service gaining access to the heath following the report of a fire.

DWT land manager, Rob Brunt said, “No matter what the time of the year is, fly tipping is completely unacceptable. However, during this hot and dry period of weather we are having, emergency services may need to get quick access to heathland in the event of a fire.

"If fly-tipping incidents prevent emergency vehicles from getting access, this increases the risk of serious and far-reaching damage to the habitat that wildlife live in.

"Nature reserves in east Dorset are also close to the surrounding conurbations which adds extra concern at this time. We need the people causing the problems to think twice about the potentially dire consequences of their actions.”

Dorset Wildlife Trust is asking the public to remain vigilant at this time and report any suspicious activity or behaviour to the police on 101. If life is in danger or a crime is in progress call 999.