Retired soccer star David Beckham recently angered his neighbors with proposed plans for a security hut and 24-hour guards at his Cotswolds mansion. Days later, he delighted locals by dropping £400 at a local shop called Mrs. Bumbles in Burford, Oxfordshire — which translates according to Morningstar Inc. to USD 501.78 as of this writing. Beckham and his daughter Harper, 8, reportedly spent the large sum on fruits and vegetables.
According to the Daily Mail, locals said that Beckham was "charming" during the outing. His visit became the "talk of the town" and led to repeat visits. "It's now become one of his favorite spots as he's returned with Harper four times in three weeks to restock on his fresh fruit and veg," the source said. Bystanders reportedly view these trips as "bonding time" between Beckham and his daughter.
"Harper is very much a daddy's girl, and the trip was definitely a time for them to bond together," the source continued. "The owners were over the moon after he spent so much — they told staff not to take photos in case that stopped David from coming back." Having Beckham's level of celebrity means that bystanders immediately pull out their phones or cameras when he appears. The owners reportedly did not want this to happen.
These comments are in stark contrast to those made earlier in the COVID-19 pandemic. Locals spoke to the Daily Mail after the Beckhams headed to their Cotswolds home to isolate and made critical comments. Specifically, some did not like seeing the Beckhams post about their time in quarantine on social media.
"The Beckhams and these other fancy folks who think it's a good idea to self-isolate in the country are just being selfish," a local told the Daily Mail in April. Another individual said that "showing off" the country mansion on social media is just "rubbing our noses" in it. They also referred to the Beckhams as stupid and irresponsible.
The perceived friction between the Beckhams and their neighbors continued with comments about the home renovation plans. Some said that the retired soccer star and his family were "ruining" the ambiance of the area. "Farms and agricultural buildings do not have gatehouses and security huts," one neighbor said.
The decision to add a gatehouse and a security hut, pending approval, comes after two men robbed Tottenham Hotspur midfielder Dele Alli and his girlfriend. These unidentified individuals held the pair at knifepoint on May 12 and made off with several items. The Beckhams then proposed their renovation plans with the expressed intention of providing security for the occupants of the mansion and the surrounding grounds.