Bath and West Clive and his pigA fire on a farm can be devastating; resulting in the loss of machinery, stores of hay and straw, livestock and the destruction of buildings. 

Every year Devon & Somerset Fire & Rescue Service attend 100’s of fires and emergency incidents on farms and small holdings and a serious fire on a farm can affect the financial stability of even the most well run business.

A percentage of these fires are started deliberately, either as an act of mindless vandalism or as a fraudulent insurance claim. Farms are also particularly vulnerable to a deliberate fire with their isolated location, open boundaries, readily ignitable hay and straw stacks making them an easy target.

Devon & Somerset Fire & Rescue Service recently spoke to pig farmers Clive and Philip Snell (two brothers) from Mudford Farm, near Yeovil who were exhibiting their ‘Large Blacks”. Clive spoke about a fire they experienced three years ago in their Dutch barn, which was the result of arson.

Clive explained: “Thankfully we were quick to get to the scene of the fire – quick enough in fact to see a car disappear around the corner at 5.00am. DSFRS arrived quickly and certainly prevented the fire from spreading. No one expects to have a fire and it’s a horrible feeling seeing everything going up in smoke.

“We lost the barn, but were lucky as it was almost empty so we only lost a bit of hay. Fortunately there was no machinery or livestock inside or nearby, as that would have really have impacted.”

Clive pointed out: “Our pigs are the only five male “Large Blacks” pig blood lines in the country, so if we were to lose them in a fire we would struggle to replace them. They also mean something to us as well.”