Jeremy Clarkson has reflected on a ‘very bad day for farming’ after being refused planning permission to build a restaurant at his Oxfordshire farm.
Diddly Squat Farm near Chipping Norton has made headlines since Jeremy took over the running for Amazon show Clarkson’s Farm in 2020.
The Grand Tour star, 61, previously filed an application to create a 50 cover restaurant, featuring a kitchen, ‘servery area and an internal seating area’ inside a lambing shed in September.
Planning documents stated that Clarkson wanted to re-use the ‘under-utilised lambing shed’ to ‘diversify further the farming business and complement the farming business and existing farm shop, by providing a new outlet for farm produce in the form of a cafe/restaurant.’
It added that in the application, an extension to the existing car park to provide capacity ‘for 60 to 70 cars’ was also being sought ‘to deal with both the under provision of parking for the existing shop and any increased visitor numbers that will associate with the new restaurant.’
However, the BBC reports that a West Oxfordshire District Council (WODC) planning committee rejected the application on Monday.
Planning documents revealed Chadlington Parish Council held a public meeting in November 2021 on whether to ‘object’ or ‘neither object nor support’ the proposed development. It resulted in an inconclusive vote.
The parish council added that as the application had been ‘so divisive and contentious’, it should be referred to the full planning committee instead of a sub-committee.
Nearly 70 objections were lodged against the application online, while 17 comments were supportive.
Those who objected stated that the development would ‘create further erosion of the tranquillity and would have a significant environmental impact within the Cotswold Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB)’ while others stated the application would ‘make the traffic situation worse’.
Jeremy added that refusing the idea would mean a ‘very bad day for farming’ during an in-person meeting at West District Council on Monday.
The farming documentary, Clarkson’s Farm, sees The Grand Tour presenter embark on the unexpected journey of taking over the day-to-day running of his farm in the Cotswolds, Oxfordshire, looking after livestock and growing crops with the show’s breakout star Kaleb Cooper.
The news comes after Jeremy’s beloved Diddly Squat farm shop confirmed its closure for January and February 2022.
Clarkson’s Farm is available to stream on Amazon Prime Video.