What a difference a year makes to once picturesque poppy field

The poppies have been removed from the field off Ipswich Road near Keswick 

The poppies have been removed from the field off Ipswich Road near Keswick - Credit: David Vail

It has become a popular destination for photographers, but a poppy field is looking less picturesque one year on. 

The field, located off the Ipswich Road near Keswick on the edge of Norwich, has lost its eye-catching red, which attracted people from across the county for snaps, much to the disappointment of those living nearby.

Norwich Apex Limited, who were granted outline planning permission to turn the field into an industrial development in 2018, confirmed they were responsible for the loss of the poppies.

Striking pictures of a poppy field near Norwich. Picture: Rob Borrett

Striking pictures of a poppy field near Norwich. Picture: Rob Borrett - Credit: Rob Borrett

Craig Knights, one of the company's directors, said: "We appreciate the concern of residents. However, Apex have sub-contracted pre-commencement and soil export to a third party in anticipation of work commencing later this year." 

A poppy field in Keswick is due to be turned into an industrial estate. Inset: Craig Knights of Norw

A poppy field in Keswick is due to be turned into an industrial estate. Inset: Craig Knights of Norwich Apex Ltd. Picture: Archant - Credit: Archant

Keswick resident David Vail said: "There is an obvious difference. People are quite concerned as it is such a rural area. Is it because the developers are embarrassed by the attention the field was getting last year?

A field opposite Tesco on Ipswich Road in Norwich was last year full of poppies, yet this year there

A field opposite Tesco on Ipswich Road in Norwich was last year full of poppies, yet this year there are hardly any. - Credit: Sarah Lucy Brown

"There are local concerns about what chemicals are being used on the site. Last year photographers from across Norfolk made a beeline for a field which produced a remarkable display of poppies to coincide with the 75th anniversary of the end of World War Two on the site of the controversial Keswick Industrial Estate proposal."

Mr Knights said last summer that the decision to allow the poppies to grow was deliberate and he welcomed their popularity. 


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But a reserved matters application was submitted in May 2021 for the next phase of the development, which includes a new warehouse unit and associated works. 

A design and access statement for the reserved matters application to South Norfolk Council says existing trees and hedgerows will be maintained and improved to all boundaries on the site.

A field opposite Tesco on Ipswich Road in Norwich was last year full of poppies, yet this year there

A field opposite Tesco on Ipswich Road in Norwich was last year full of poppies, yet this year there are hardly any. - Credit: Sarah Lucy Brown

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It adds: "The site wide landscape strategy seeks to provide an attractive and layered landscape across the site with significant areas of planting contributing to the screening of the proposed built form along sensitive views."

It is understood the company hope to be on site later this year and intend to create 50 jobs.

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