Jeremy Clarkson has revealed he has to stop harvesting at his Diddly Squat farm due to the risk of fire as the sweltering conditions in the UK continue to dry up soil and raise the probability of wildfires.
The former Top Gear host, 62, runs his own farm in Chipping Norton, Chadlington, Oxfordshire, and films his escapades for the Amazon Prime show Clarkson’s Farm, but the run of warm weather has left him unable to harvest.
Clarkson took to Twitter to reveal: ‘F**ketty F**k. Had to stop harvesting because of, and I’m not making this up, the fire risk.’
He explained to a fan asking what may cause a fire that anything could lead to devastating consequences: ‘Any damn thing. A bit of litter. A spark from the combine. A fag end. A careless rambler.’
One reply quipped, ‘at least it will make a nice episode plot’, with Jeremy responding that season two had already finished filming on Monday this week.
Today it emerged that a drought could be declared for some parts of England on Friday as 96.8F (36C) temperatures are forecasted from Saturday.
Jeremy Clarkson (pictured) has revealed he has to stop harvesting at his Diddly Squat farm due to the risk of fire as the sweltering conditions in the UK continue to dry up soil and raise the probability of wildfires
The former Top Gear host, 62, runs his own farm in Chipping Norton, Chadlington, Oxfordshire, and films his escapades for the Amazon Prime show Clarkson’s Farm, but the run of warm weather has left him unable to harvest
The National Drought Group – made up of Government and agency officials, water companies and other groups such as the National Farmers’ Union (NFU) – is set to meet tomorrow to discuss the prolonged dry weather.
There are expectations drought could be declared for some parts of England such as southern and eastern areas, could prompt action by agencies and water companies to manage water resources to ensure supplies and protect the environment after the driest July on record for some areas and the driest first half of the year since 1976.
Four water companies in England and Wales have already brought in hosepipe bans or have signalled their intention to do so, while the Wildlife Trusts have called for an England-wide hosepipe ban to protect nature and rivers.
Clarkson (his farm shop sign is pictured) explained to a fan asking what may cause a fire that anything could lead to devastating consequences: ‘Any damn thing. A bit of litter. A spark from the combine. A fag end. A careless rambler’
Clarkson, pictured with farming contractor Kaleb Cooper who helps Jeremy maintain his land on the Amazon Prime series Clarkson’s Farm, told fans filming finished for season two
The ongoing dry conditions, combined with last month’s record-breaking heatwave, have depleted rivers, reservoirs and aquifers and dried up soils, hitting agriculture, water supplies and wildlife and raising the risk of wildfires.
It comes as fire crews have been battling ferocious wildfires across the capital today amid the sweltering temperatures across the dry, tinderbox conditions – while a ‘substantial fire involving crop’ continues to rage in Leicestershire.
Britain experienced its hottest day on record with temperatures hitting an unprecedented 40.3C (104.5F) in Coningsby on 19 July amidst a scorching heatwave for the UK.
The Met Office raised its Fire Severity Index to exceptional – the highest level – today for much of southern England, and Wales alongside an amber, as the mercury is forecast to climb to ‘lethally hot’ temperatures of 35C (95F) over the weekend.
The warning system also been at its second highest level of alert for seven weeks, which is the longest stretch since 1976.
An aerial photograph taken today shows dried out fields at the Euston Estate farm, outside Thetford, as drought is expected to be declared tomorrow
Pictured: As the scorching heatwave continues, cattle search for drinking water in Dartmoor, Devon, at what until recently was an established watering hole, but is now completely dry
Pictured: An alarming aerial image shows Euston Estate farm’s depleted reservoirs, located outside Thetford
The heat is likely to affect health, transport and working conditions, meteorologists said, as water companies are being urged to protect essential supplies heading into a ‘likely very dry autumn’.
The 62-year-old now-farmer Clarkson, who also stars with ex-Top Gear hosts Richard Hammond and James May in The Grand Tour on Amazon Prime, came under fire last month for suggesting that Britain is overreacting to the heatwave across the country.
Trains were cancelled, hospital appointments were axed and schools closed amid warnings from the Met Office that even healthy people could die.
Firefighters put out a grass fire at Hollow Ponds in Leytonstone, East London on Thursday afternoon as parts of the UK have become a tinder box due to the extreme hot weather
Firefighter battles a wall of flames as he and his crew attempt to put out a grass fire at Hollow Ponds in Leytonstone, East London on Thursday
A man is pictured walking on a path amongst dead grass in Victoria Park, east London. The Met Office has issued an amber heat warning running between Thursday and Sunday, which could see temperatures peak at 36C across southern England and eastern Wales
Pictured: A view from the runway of Gatwick Airport sees smoke billowing in the distance from a suspected wildfire from the Crawley area earlier today. The heat and constant dry weather in the south west has risen concerns about serious drought and wildfires
Jeremy, 62, seemed to think that the reaction was over the top, and tweeted to his 7.7 million followers: ‘It’s very hot in the south of France but so far as I know, there’s no DefCon 8 level 3 killer death heatwave warning in place.’
It attracted a lot of backlash from people who pointed out that Jeremy was incorrect, as much of western France experienced up to 111F (44C) near Bordeaux in what forecasters branded a ‘heat apocalypse’.
The extreme conditions sparked dozens of fires, with crews left battling a ‘monster’ blaze in Gironde which forced 16,000 people to evacuate and torched 14,000 acres within a week.