SUSPECTED joyriders or poachers torched a car after getting trapped in a field at a Hampshire beauty spot.

Fire fighters doused the flames that wrecked the stolen 4x4 dumped by a hedge at Cheesefoot Head on the A272 near Winchester.

Crew manager Vince Barnes, of Winchester Fire Station, said: “It was definitely arson. They could have been up there hare coursing and then couldn’t get back out.”

Landowner Peveril Bruce, of Matterley Estate, said: “They were up to no good cruising around my farm. They tried to get back onto the carriageway and hit the bank and hedge and got stuck, so they set fire to it to remove as much evidence as they could.

“Hare coursing is usually in the day but they could have been after deer.

“It is my responsibility to get rid of it as it is on private land. We will put it in a skip and it will go to scrap. It’s irritating; they have driven over crops without giving it a moment’s thought,” added Mr Bruce.

A police spokeswoman said she had no information about the incident.