A DRY winter may have contributed to an early gorse fire in Fairlight Country Park.
Firefighters from The Ridge station were called out to Mill Lane around 11am on Tuesday.
An area of gorse measuring 10x5 metres was on fire and firefighters used foam and a hose reel to bring it under control.
Watch commander Stephen Cramp said: “It was the first gorse fire we have been called out to this year.
“We normally don’t get them until later in the year but there has hardly been any rain this winter and the gorse is very dry.
“A park ranger said he had recently dealt with a similar fire. We don’t know whether it was deliberate or not.”