A memorial to beloved Harry Potter character, Dobby the House Elf, has been given a last-minute reprieve after it was threatened with removal.
Scenes for Dobby’s death in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part One were filmed on location above Freshwater West beach in Pembrokeshire, Wales, and the site has since become a hotspot for tourists wishing to pay their respects to Harry Potter’s loyal friend.
Dobby’s demise comes after suffering a fatal stab wound at the hands of Death Eater Bellatrix Lestrange (Helena Bonham Carter) during a battle at Malfoy Manor. In a final heroic act, Dobby transports the heroes out of danger, but soon succumbs to his wounds.
Much like Potter in the movies, fans have left makeshift tombstones on the beach with an inscription: ‘Here lies Dobby, a free Elf.’
Dobby was, of course, freed by the gift of a sock, so fans are now leaving everything from items of clothing and decorated pebbles on the mock grave. But the surge in tourism is causing concern for the local environment.
National Trust Wales is urging visitors not to leave anything behind, explaining how ‘items like socks, trinkets, and paint chips from painted pebbles could enter the marine environment and put wildlife at risk’.
The beach is a legally protected conservation area and is home to a host of wildlife, including lizards, rare ground-nesting birds, large grey seals, and some of the largest populations of seabirds in the world.
The trust also said it would be implementing charges at the car park and creating an overflow parking area on a nearby farm, with the money raised used to enable them to ‘carry out important conservation work at Freshwater West’.
There will also be renovation work carried out to the existing toilet block, with improved access for disabled people.