Locals share anger as the stunning poppy field in Overton is closed. The vibrant blanket of beautiful poppies has made for some amazing photographs in recent weeks, but due to visitors ignoring pleads to be respectful and not trample on the crops, it has left Wildflower Turf no option but to close the field.
Every year Wildflower Turf grow a field of poppies to harvest the seeds for their business, which often attracts a lot of visitors in Overton. Although this is private land, Wildflower Turf have been more than generous by allowing public access so local people can enjoy the spectacular beauty spot to take photos and admire the view.
Over the past few weeks, the organisation has been overwhelmed with visitors, making public notices to remind people visiting to be respectful to their land and the local residents, yet these polite messages have gone unheard by some people. Visitors had been blocking roads and parking on private property and in some cases entering other private land. Wildflower Turf who told Andover Radio 95.9FM that the number of visitors had dramatically increased due to Covid-19, have since put up signs warning people to remember this is private land and their livelihood and requested people to not step on the poppies.
Wildflower Turf who “encourage people to enjoy the countryside, its biodiversity and its beauty” have now closed the field to public earlier this week.
The message announced on Monday read “Sadly however, after a lot of consideration, as of tonight the poppy field will be closed to visitors.
“Unfortunately visitors choices today have left us with no alternative as larger parts of our crop are being irreversibly damaged due to people ignoring our signage and roaming freely through the crop.
“The poppy field and surrounding fields are private land and access is now blocked so we ask that you please respect our wishes.
“We are very sad that a small minority have ruined it for everyone else. Thank you to all of you that have made donations to The Royal British Legion, we have raised £629 to date.”
Whilst many local visitors were lucky enough to enjoy this “little bit of heaven” This news has upset alot of people, Gemma Chambers wrote “so sad and angry to see you’ve now had to close due to people being disrespectful, as always the minority ruin it for the majority”. Phillipa Waite who shared photos on the Flowerfields Trust facebook page added “Such a a beautiful sight to see. so sad to see people could be disrespectful”