A petition calling for Jeremy Clarkson’s Diddly Squat Farm restaurant to reopen despite a council decision has gathered more than 150,000 signatures. The TV presenter was forced to close his restaurant at the farm after multiple complaints about traffic from locals, although he has since appealed the council’s decision.
The farm has seen thousands of visitors following the massive success of Prime Video series Clarkson’s Farm, in which the former Top Gear presenter documents his attempts to property run an agricultural business. But the popularity of Diddly Squat Farm has led to a large increase in traffic in the Cotswolds area, with Clarkson even admitting that queues of visitors stopped locals from getting their Covid-19 vaccinations.
The change.org petition, which had 156,000 signatures as of March 8 says: “It is clear that West Oxfordshire District council are not supporting Diddly Squat Farm becoming a successful local business by making a planning decision based on bias towards Jeremy Clarkson.
“Jeremy Clarkson has championed farming and shown that it is a struggle for farmers to make a living by feeding us.”
It continues: “He should be supported and encouraged to grow his business creating local jobs and continuing on his path to run a farm which is sustainable both economically and environmentally.”
In February 2023, it was revealed Clarkson had appealed the West Oxfordshire district councils decision to close his restaurant, which is located in a Cotswolds Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. The council claimed he had "continued to operate outside the planning permissions granted", and had ignored advice.
While the petition and several signatories have claimed that the decision is against “the man and not his plans”, the council said: “We understand that the planning process shown in season two of Clarkson’s Farm can seem obstructive and that people will be confused by the planning decisions at Diddly Squat Farm.
“As with any other planning authority, we have a legal responsibility to make sure that planning laws and policies are followed correctly by everyone to manage development and protect local communities and the environment. This is regardless of who they are and we treat Diddly Squat Farm no differently.”
Season 2 of Clarkson’s Farm is available now on Amazon Prime. You can sign up to watch all of the episodes here.
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