We caricature them as yokels or grasping grain barons. But as we shape a post-EU future, do we really know those who work our land?
Last week, it was the news that withdrawal of subsidy might mean the end of many UK farms; and that “furious villagers” were incensed by the success of Jeremy Clarkson’s new farm shop in the Cotswolds. Before that, it was the potential impact of the UK-Australian trade deal on small farms. Then there was dog attacks on livestock, the increase in fly-tipping, one-off golden handshakes to older farmers, the impact of staycationers on farmland and potential shifts in the badger-culling strategy. There always seems to be a farming story somewhere.
However, while farming is never out of the news, farmers themselves don’t often feature. Apart from Kate Humble, Adam Henson and now Jeremy Clarkson, farmers are generally represented either by the constant persuasive figure of NFU president, Minette Batters, or by an old person looking furious beside a gate.