Firefighting teams battling a wildfire on the historic Neethlingshof Estate near Stellenbosch in the Western Cape seem to have the blaze under control, although strong winds are fanning the flames.
The fire, that broke out early yesterday evening (on Monday, 11 January 2021) is not currently threatening any of the vineyards or historic buildings dating back as much as 300 years, a spokesperson confirmed.
Neethlingshof estate manager, DeWet Viljoen, told Food For Mzansi the fire erupted at approximately 18:00 last night.
Speculation that at least one Cabernet Sauvignon vineyard has been laid to waste by the fire are untrue, he emphasised. No damage to buildings and vineyards have been reported at this stage as the fire is said to have broken out on fallow lands on the farm.
“We have a wildfire on the farm and will assess the damage at a later stage. The fire is currently under control. It is currently (not posing any) threat to any buildings, and (it) is happening in fallow lands. We have fire teams busy on the property controlling the fire,” Viljoen confirmed.
The Neethlingshof Estate was first established in 1692 and is one of the oldest vineyards in South Africa. It is a popular destination with foodies and wine tourists alike.
According to weather forecasts, Stellenbosch is currently experiencing a wind speed of 21 km/h and a 32% humidity. Temperature at the Neethlingshof Estate is set to peak up at 36°C today.
This is a developing story.