Is this one of the Lagria beetles?
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Lagria atripes is supposed to be larger (10-12mm long) than L. hirta (7-9mm long), although the Kerbtier website in Germany gives both of them as 7-10mm. I've always assumed that what I'm seeing is L. hirta, and as you say L. atripes is very rare (oldish records for Kent and Hampshire as far as I know), but perhaps I should be looking more closely at them in case atripes is out there somewhere!
Other differences: hirta has strongly punctured pronotum (top of thorax), atripes only very finely punctate; hirta has smaller eyes (but both species have a difference in eye size between males and females, so not easy to judge on an isolated individual).
Entomologist and biological recorder
Lat/Lng: 51.4, -0.1
OS grid ref: TQ3369