Financial contributions of planning applications to prevention of heathland fires in Dorset, UK
Dorset is a county in South West England on the English Channel Coast. The Dorset heathlands cover an extensive area of South East Dorset, fragmented by urban development and other land uses. These heathlands once covered over 50,000 hectares, stretching as far as Dorchester and Poole. Changes in agricultural practice, conifer planting, scrub encroachment, urban expansion and road building have all contributed to a reduction in area. Dorset's fragmented heaths measure approximately 5,700 hectares today. Heathlands are an important habitat and are protected by European-level designations.