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DESTRUCTIVE FIRES.

GREAT LOSS OF SHEEP.

Maelbokough.

The Marlhorough Express of Saturday, January 30th, reports:—We learn with much regret that extensive fires are raging in the Southern districts of this Province, the glare of which was plainly visible on board the Falcon off Wellington Heads. The fires commenced at Starborough, Awatere, on Monday last, and the irjury done to several runs must be enormous. We are informed by persons who arrived last evening, that the Cape Run is entirely burnt out, and in fact the whole district between Templeton's and the sea as far as Flaxbourne. At Starborough the homestead was in great danger, and during Thursday evening a staff of twenty-five men were engaged cutting off the turf and blazing the ground to stop the conflagration. Our informant says that dead sheep are lying in all directions, unable to escape from the terrible heat, and large mobs have been literally roasted alive. Unless checked by speedy rain, it is impassible to say ■where the ruin will stop ; as it is the feed over very many thousands of acres is entirely burnt off. Cantebbubx. The Canterbury Press of January 20th, states : — We are informed that on Saturday last the grass on the Acton station got on fire accidently, and about 30,000 acres have been completely cleared, and about 300 sheep were burned. The fire which occurred on Wednesday resulted from the sparks of a fire lit in Camp Bay, and we are sorry to hear that a number of sheep have been burned. Mr. R. H. Rhodes' house at Perau had a near escape of being burned down. About 200 yards from the house the fire was stayed, but it continued its course up the bush, the fire making its way towards the pilot station, and the pilot-men and their families had a narrow escape. The rain which fell on Thursday night checked the fire considerably. The ranges present a very melancholy appearance, not a blade of green grass is to be seen ; nothing but black charred tussocks. Another serious grass fiie occurred yesterday afternoon iv the Heathcote Valley. It appears to have originated somewhere on Mount Pleasant Station, and burned rapidly in the direction of the Ferry bridge. From thence it speedily ran over the spur, setting Mr. Evans' fences on fire. When our informant saw it last it was working towards Sumner. The hills from Moorhouse's cave to the bridge, were one blackened mass. Grass fires are stated to be very prevalent in the Southern districts, and in some instances considerable damage has been done. A fire occurred at the Waihi Bush (Steam Saw Mills, which was fortunately extinguished before any material injuries had been caused. —On Jan. 14, a fire occurred on Mr. Cnrdale's farm, Lawford, Canterbury, which destroyed property to the value of £700. Othbs Fiees.—Loss os Life. Near Stokes' Point, Auckland, afire has devastated about four square miles of country. —At Howick, (Auckland) a pretty seven-roomed house has been destroyed by fire. It was unoccupied.—The Shotover (Otago), Ferry Hotel has been burned down.—At Taurunga, (Auckland), a house belonging to a Mr. Patterson has been destroyed by the same element.— The bridge crossing the Arrow river, Sawpit Gully (Otago), has been partially burnt.—At Maungakaramea, Mr. James Miller's house has been destroyed, and his son burned to death.—On Jan. 15th, the Bouth side of Moroa Plain, Wellington, was on fire, and for some time threatened the destruction of .batters aa farm and homestead. On the eastern side qf the plain four thousand acres have been burned and two miles of fencing destroyed.—A serious bush fire has occurred in the Whangarei district, Auckland, and has destroyed fences and other property owned by Dr. Sissions, to the value of £150. The fire was originated by a settler burning off. —A paddock of wheat and a haystack, valued ab £150, have been destroyed by fire on the old Great North Road, Auckland, through the carelessness of a smoker throwing away a lighted match.

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DESTRUCTIVE FIRES. The Colonist, Volume XV, Issue 1495, 23 January 1872

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