Field where Prince Harry lost his virginity could have 'blue plaque'
Owners of field where Prince Harry revealed he lost his virginity joke about putting up ‘a blue plaque’ on their land as ‘everyone in the village is talking about it’
- The owners of the field in Norton, Wiltshire, joke about setting up a gift shop too
- Prince Harry had sex with Sasha Walpole, now a 40-year-old digger driver
- Read more: Prince Harry’s ex-lover Sasha Walpole describes ‘disbelief’
The owners of the Wiltshire field where Prince Harry lost his virginity to groom Sasha Walpole have joked they will have to put up ‘a blue plaque’ because of how famous their plot of land has become.
Dean Ellwood and partner Anna Pitt-Stanley own the field behind The Vine Tree Inn, which belonged to the pub in 2001 but has now transferred to their ownership as part of their property, Splash Cottage.
The couple, who purchased the cottage eight years ago, are said to have laughed when they discovered their small plot in Norton had become famous, but several weeks on the excitement over the patch shows no signs of ebbing away.
Mr Ellwood told the Sun: ‘I suppose I could put a blue plaque up in the field, but I don’t think many people would be interested.’
Ms Pitt-Stanley added: ‘Everyone in the village is talking about it but I don’t think we will be setting up a gift shop selling memorabilia.’
Prince Harry pictured with friends as a teenager, including Sasha Walpole (second left)
The field is located behind The Vine Tree Inn (pictured left) but now belongs to nearby Splash Cottage
Prince Harry, now 38, shocked the world in January when he revealed how he lost his virginity in his tell-all memoir Spare.
He described his partner as an ‘older woman’ with a love of horses, who he took outside a country pub in Wiltshire when he was 17.
In Spare, Harry writes that the ‘inglorious’ encounter was ‘a quick ride, after which she’d smacked my rump and sent me off to graze’.
As the world speculated about who his partner might have been, a digger driver from Wiltshire received a text message from a friend informing her that Prince Harry had just revealed details of their secret tryst to the world – a secret she had kept for the past 21 years.
Last weekend, the Mail on Sunday exclusively revealed that the ‘older woman’ was in fact Sasha Walpole, now 40, who was on the eve of her 19th birthday at the time.
Ms Walpole met Prince William before ever coming into contact with his young brother – at a comedy night starring the late Cornish comedian Jethro at the Beaufort Hunt Kennels.
She had recently begun working at Highgrove as an assistant groomer, aged just 17.
She subsequently made friends with Harry at one of his favourite pubs, The Rattlebone Inn, in the nearby Wiltshire village of Sherston.
They bonded over their love of all things equestrian and stories of her escapades on her own horse Beano.
Her close friendship with Harry was born of a common understanding: ‘Everyone was equal in the world of horses.
Sasha Walpole, 40, is a digger driver from Wiltshire, but used to be an assistant groom at Highgrove
Ms Walpole (left) and Prince Harry (right) were in a group of friends who bonded over horses as teens
he Vine Tree Pub, Norton, Wiltshire where Prince Harry had sex with Sasha Walpole in a field
English Heritage’s Blue Plaque honouring the life of Diana, Princess of Wales seen on the Chelsea flat she used to rent
‘Our group was a very mixed bunch of polo players, grooms, hunt staff and racing people, a cosmopolitan crowd.
‘It didn’t matter if you were a groom, a Royal or a rider. There was no judgment.
‘Harry didn’t act like a Prince, there wasn’t any snobbery. Honestly, we were just two mates who talked horses.’
But their friendship came to an abrupt end when a quick cigarette break turned into a romp in a field – and they never spoke again.
Ms Walpole said: ‘It was instant, fiery, wham bam, between two friends. It was sparky because we shouldn’t have been doing it.
‘He wasn’t ‘Prince Harry’ to me, this was Harry, my friend, and the situation had got a little bit out of control. It felt naughty, I suppose, in the sense that it shouldn’t be happening.
‘We didn’t set out to do it – it wasn’t premeditated and I didn’t know he was a virgin. There were no virgin vibes – he seemed to know what he was doing.
‘It was quick, wild, exciting. We were both drunk. It wouldn’t have happened if we weren’t.’
Prince Harry married Meghan Markle and moved to California, a world away from Wiltshire
A younger Sasha Walpole dressed up for a Polo ball, around the time she was friends with the princes
She recalled seeing him hiding in a phone box as she left the pub for home – and the encounter marked the end of Sasha’s friendship with Harry.
More than two decades on, the owners of the field have joked about installing a blue plaque or even a gift shop as the site’s fame spreads around the world.
Blue plaques, produced by the English Heritage organisation, are dotted around London and commemorate places where significant people have lived, worked or spent time.
There are almost 1,000 in the capital with a history of more than 150 years.
The English Heritage website states: ‘London’s famous blue plaques link the people of the past with the buildings of the present.
‘Now run by English Heritage, the London blue plaques scheme was started in 1866 and is thought to be the oldest of its kind in the world.
‘Across the capital over 990 plaques, on buildings humble and grand, honour the notable men and women who have lived or worked in them.’
Many members of the royal family have their own blue plaques, including Prince Harry’s mother Princess Diana.
English Heritage welcomes plaque suggestions from members of the public, but the main obstacle to a blue plaque in this field’s case may not be a lack of interest as Dean fears, but a simple geographical limit.
At nearly 100 miles away, it is unlikely the English Heritage will stretch to Splash Cottage.
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