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Wildfire Risk Assessment and Management Planning

The Uplands Management Group was commissioned by Defra to produce guidance documents for practitioners to carry out wildfire risk assessment and management planning. The documents were published July 2019.


The Heather and Grass Burning Regulations 2021, introduced the requirement for a licence to be obtained to to burn heather, rough grass, bracken, gorse or Vaccinium (such as bilberries) which is both:

  • on peat deeper than 40cm (also known as blanket bog), and

  • within a site of special scientific interest (SSSI), and either a special area of conservation (SAC) or a special protection area (SPA).


A Wildfire Management Plan (WMP) is required to support the application for a licence, where the purpose is to reduce wildfire risk.  A special WMP has been developed for this purpose and, as part of this process, the original documents have been reviewed and revised in some places.

Guidance about applying for a licence is available on the GOV.UK website.

The risk assessment process is outlined in Figure 1, and includes a choice of Wildfire Management Plans that depends on the purpose for which the Plan is required.












Figure 1: Risk Assessment Process



The documents that provide more information are available on the next page

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