Calendar An icon of a desk calendar. Cancel An icon of a circle with a diagonal line across. Caret An icon of a block arrow pointing to the right. Email An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of the Facebook "f" mark. Google An icon of the Google "G" mark. Linked In An icon of the Linked In "in" mark. Logout An icon representing logout. Profile An icon that resembles human head and shoulders. Telephone An icon of a traditional telephone receiver. Tick An icon of a tick mark. Is Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes. Is Not Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes with a diagonal line through it. Pause Icon A two-lined pause icon for stopping interactions. Quote Mark A opening quote mark. Quote Mark A closing quote mark. Arrow An icon of an arrow. Folder An icon of a paper folder. Breaking An icon of an exclamation mark on a circular background. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Caret An icon of a caret arrow. Clock An icon of a clock face. Close An icon of the an X shape. Close Icon An icon used to represent where to interact to collapse or dismiss a component Comment An icon of a speech bubble. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Ellipsis An icon of 3 horizontal dots. Envelope An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Home An icon of a house. Instagram An icon of the Instagram logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. Magnifying Glass An icon of a magnifying glass. Search Icon A magnifying glass icon that is used to represent the function of searching. Menu An icon of 3 horizontal lines. Hamburger Menu Icon An icon used to represent a collapsed menu. Next An icon of an arrow pointing to the right. Notice An explanation mark centred inside a circle. Previous An icon of an arrow pointing to the left. Rating An icon of a star. Tag An icon of a tag. Twitter An icon of the Twitter logo. Video Camera An icon of a video camera shape. Speech Bubble Icon A icon displaying a speech bubble WhatsApp An icon of the WhatsApp logo. Information An icon of an information logo. Plus A mathematical 'plus' symbol. Duration An icon indicating Time. Success Tick An icon of a green tick. Success Tick Timeout An icon of a greyed out success tick. Loading Spinner An icon of a loading spinner.

PM promises to help farmers ‘make most of their land’ after Clarkson complaint

Jeremy Clarkson (Ian West/PA)
Jeremy Clarkson (Ian West/PA)

Boris Johnson has responded after Jeremy Clarkson called for the Government to prioritise farming, with the Prime Minister saying he wants to ensure farmers “make the most” of their crops and land.

Former Top Gear presenter Clarkson posted a video on Monday morning saying farmers had been asked to diversify their produce but were being restricted by local authorities.

He has become an unlikely campaigner for the industry after starring in Amazon series Clarkson’s Farm, which follows his attempts to grow crops and look after livestock on land he owns in the Cotswolds.

Speaking from a field and wearing a high-visibility jacket, the Prime Minister said in a video posted on Twitter on Monday afternoon that he wanted farmers such as Clarkson to be able to develop their properties “when they want to turn a barn into a bistro – or whatever you want to do”.

Clarkson has previously criticised the “not terribly bright people” who work in planning departments that have blocked him from making changes to his property.

Mr Johnson said he hoped Clarkson had been able to look at the Government’s food strategy.

He added: “What we want to do is back farmers in all sorts of ways, particularly making sure they have access to the labour they need but also supporting them when it comes to their fuel costs, their fertiliser costs, but supporting them also with innovation.

“And we are putting a lot of money into new technology. I have just been looking at a machine that can plant 150,000 cabbages, Jeremy, every day.

“What we want to do particularly for farmers – and I know that you care about this a lot – is ensure that we say that when farmers want to develop their property, when they want to turn a barn into a bistro – or whatever you want to do – that we make sure that computer does not say no and we help them, and we help farmers to make the most of their crops and make the most of their land as well.”

In his original post, Clarkson said: “Hi, I am Jeremy Clarkson and in the next parliament I would like to see the Government prioritising farming.

“We have been asked to diversify and when we try to do that the local authorities tell us we can’t. That needs addressing.”

Asked why Clarkson had received a personal response, the Prime Minister’s official spokesman said: “People accept that Jeremy Clarkson has voiced the concerns of the farming community quite effectively in recent years so it is understandable that we would listen.”

Last week, Clarkson wrote a column for the Sunday Times claiming he had been blocked from selling crayfish at his farm shop.

“You go down to your own lake on a lovely summer’s evening, haul in a net full of delicious morsels and then sell them to passing families as a healthy snack,” he wrote.

“Except I can’t do that because this isn’t a free country.”

American crayfish, such as those found on his farm, are classed as non-native and cannot be trapped without consent from the Environment Agency.

Already a subscriber? Sign in

[[title]]

[[text]]