Northern Ireland

Firefighters tackle large gorse fire in Newcastle

Firefighters have tackled a large gorse fire close to an outdoor education centre near Newcastle, County Down.

Officers from the Fire and Rescue Service feared the blaze which covered up to 50 acres could spread to the Shannagh-More Centre during Friday night.

Twelve fire appliances were used to bring the fire at Bloody Bridge under control.

John Denver from the Fire Service said crews were positioned in two areas.

"At several points during the fire itself we were concerned that the wind direction was taking it down towards Shannagh-More.

"We had 20 to 30 firefighters on the mountain itself and the rest of the firefighers were in an area around Shannagh-More, just in case it headed down towards the outdoor pursuits centre itself.

"There was nobody in the centre at the time," he added.

The Fire and Rescue Service said it does not know how the blaze started.