FIRE chiefs are warning members of the public to keep away while emergency crew continue to tackle moorland fires.

The warning comes as another wildfire broke out over the weekend in Denshaw, putting GMFRS under more intense pressure.

On Saturday afternoon, the moorland fire in Denshaw involved 12 fire engines. Currently 20 firefighters from Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue supported by two crews from West Yorkshire Fire are working to contain the fire.

Crews were also called to fight a blaze at the graveyard at St Chad's Church, in Uppermill, which broke out on Saturday, causing widespread damage across the cemetery. It's the second fire there in two weeks.

Assistant chief fire officer, Tony Hunter, said: “The three significant moorland incidents in Greater Manchester are unprecedented and they have drawn upon a large amount of our resources over the last couple of weeks, supported by a number of other agencies.

"I am proud of our crews and control room operators who, very tired after an already long shift, responded and quickly brought the Denshaw fire under control.

“Our firefighting activities have resulted in a large amount of hose, machinery and vehicles in the area, including helicopter activity, each of which bring their own hazards."

Mr Hunter said despite previous warnings to stay away members of the public were continuing to come up onto the moors.

He explained: “By walking on the moorlands close to where these incidents are, you are not only putting yourselves in danger but risk disrupting the work of our firefighters who are working tirelessly to put the fires out and keep local people safe. We want people to enjoy the sunshine but please find an alternative walking route, and steer clear from all three fires.

“The support we have had from local communities has been overwhelming and we cannot thank you enough for your support, but please help us deal with these challenging incidents by staying away.”

The severe wildfire conditions are expected to continue for much of England and Wales through the week due to the ongoing warm and dry conditions.

A total of 22 fire engines from GMFRS, supported by a number of neighbouring fire and rescue services and partner agencies continued to tackle the fires at the three incidents over the weekend. There are currently 50 firefighters on the Tameside moorlands working across four areas and four fire engines remain at the scene in Winter Hill, supporting Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service.

Last Thursday (July 5), Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service provided a map showing the areas on the moorland that have been affected and where we need people to stay away from.

ACFO Hunter added: “As well as staying away from the moors, I would also ask the people of Greater Manchester to take extra care to keep themselves, their families and their property safe – particularly with the hot weather that is expected to continue over the next few weeks.

“We know there will be lots of people having barbecues and enjoying a drink while they watch the football but please stay safe by ensuring barbecues are used safely and are fully extinguished before you go to bed, and please take care when cooking – don’t leave pans unattended and don’t drink and cook.

“Please only call us in an emergency as our control room operators are extremely busy.”