Dorset open spaces watch

Dorset open spaces watch is a network of volunteers and user groups who work with the police, fire service and local authorities to protect Dorset's heathland, forests, fields, parks and coastline.

It is a central point for all open space users who care for the countryside of Dorset to come together and share information, and keep up to date with events.

Volunteer with Dorset open spaces watch

Do you use Dorset's open spaces for dog walking, mountain biking, relaxation, bird watching or any other activities? Would you be willing to use your local knowledge of these spaces to assist the emergency services? Could you be an extra pair of eyes for the emergency services and warn them of any suspicious activity or potential arson?

We need your help. We are asking members of the public to alert us to any problems or misuse of Dorset's open spaces. With your help we can protect these areas for future generations.

Members can opt to receive a blue wristband to help members of the public and the emergency services identify them as a source of local knowledge. This is particularly useful in an emergency. If you feel confident being identified by the emergency services as someone who can assist them with local knowledge, you can request a wristband from Sergeant Adrian Thompson by emailing

How to join Dorset open spaces watch

To join Dorset open spaces watch, you can do one of the following:

  • join one of our partner user groups (listed below)
  • join our closed Facebook group, where you can share information and interact with other members in a private space
  • register for Dorset Open Spaces updates on Dorset Alert. This is a 2 way community messaging system, operated by Dorset Police, which allows us to exchange information with you by email or phone at no cost to you. 

You can also help us by keeping your eyes peeled while out in the countryside, and reporting issues to Dorset Police or Dorset Fire and Rescue Service as they arise.

Reporting misuse of Dorset's open spaces

To report a crime that has taken place already or a person acting suspiciously, call Dorset Police's non-emergency number on 101.

If a crime is in progress or life is in danger, call 999. Do not use the Dorset Open Spaces group to report an emergency.

Dorset open space user groups

Dorset Open Spaces Watch is working in partnership with the following groups:

Page last updated: 13 June 2019
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