DOZENS of acres of land was engulfed in flames when a fire took hold in a Hampshire field.

More than 30 firefighters were called to Monks Shorn farmhouse in East Boldre in the New Forest to tackle the blaze.

Now 37 acres of what was once a wheat and rye field is scorched, but the fire did not spread to buildings close to the field.

Firefighters had warned the public to take care when visiting open grasslands and woods following nearly 40 blazes in the open over the weekend.

A total of six fire engines from Lymington, Beaulieu, Brockenhurst, New Milton and St Mary's Fire stations along with five off road vehicles and two water carriers were called to the scene.

One eyewitness, who lives nearby, said: "The flames were really high, at one point the smoke covered the tractors in the field.

"We were worried that the wind could change the direction of the flames and they could spread to where we live adjoining the field."

She added that before the blaze began there was a bang and a power dip.

The farm manager, who did not want to be named, praised the fire crews.

He said: "They have done a fantastic job keeping it under control it could have been a lot worse"

Incident commander at the scene was station manager Rob Cole, who told the Daily Echo:"We were called to a fire in a field, initial crews arrived and saw a large developing fire that was spreading rapidly towards farm buildings.

"Initially one pump was called and in the end there was six fire engines and other vehicles. It was perfect conditions for a fire and here was a strong breeze fanning the flames."

The fire crews helped halt the flames by using a tractor to make a temporary ditch to contain the fire.

The fire began at 1.30pm and ten stop call was at 3.25pm, the cause is under investigation.