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Warning of fireworks distressing New Forest animals

Warning of fireworks distressing New Forest animals


The New Forest National Park Authority and partners are asking people to please consider New Forest animals this Bonfire Night.

Due to the current Coronavirus lockdown, most organised fireworks displays have been cancelled this year, with fears that it could encourage more celebrating at home. Residents in the New Forest are being asked to be aware of ponies and other animals to avoid causing them injuries and distress.

Nigel Matthews, Head of Recreation Management and Learning at the New Forest National Park Authority, said: ‘The livestock in the National Park can be easily frightened by loud bangs and bright lights. It can cause them to injure themselves by running into fencing, or they can run across roads and be hit by passing traffic.’

Charlotte Lines, Chairman of the Commoners Defence Association, said: ‘We are asking people who are fortunate enough to live in the beautiful New Forest to consider the impacts fireworks can have on those animals grazing near people’s properties. Unfortunately, we are still seeing too many road traffic accidents involving commoners’ livestock and there is a risk that fireworks can startle animals driving them into roads and oncoming traffic, so please #BeForestFriendly and help us protect our animals.’

New Forest Commoner Lyndsey Stride said that November is also the peak month for animal accidents on Forest roads. She said: ‘Please also take extra care when driving in the dark, #add3minutes to your journey, drive slowly and make sure you arrive safely.’


About the New Forest National Park Authority

Protect – Enjoy – Prosper

The New Forest National Park Authority’s statutory purposes are to:
-Conserve and enhance the natural beauty, wildlife and cultural heritage of the Park – Protect.
-Promote opportunities for understanding and enjoyment of its special qualities – Enjoy.

We also have a duty to:
Seek to foster the social and economic well-being of local communities within the Park – Prosper.

The New Forest National Park was designated in March 2005. Its unique landscape has been shaped over the centuries by grazing ponies, cattle and pigs which roam free. Majestic woodlands, rare heathland and a spectacular coastline provide fabulous opportunities for quiet recreation, enjoyment and discovery.

Visit to find out more.

Suzi Shilling, Communications Assistant
New Forest National Park Authority
Tel: 01590 646602

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