Jeremy Clarkson is finally set to open his restaurant at Diddly Squat Farm despite local planners objecting to the project.
The Amazon Prime star is taking bookings for the 40-seat Diddly Squat restaurant online and said it is thanks to the loophole in regulations that they have been able to move forward.
Although there is no official menu, diners can pay from £49 and will only be offered beef served along with food produced on Clarkson’s 1000-acre farm near the quiet village of Chadlington, Oxfordshire.
According to the Sun, Clarkson said: ‘We had planning permission turned down but we’re opening anyway.
Everyone at Diddly Squat has spent the last three months becoming an expert in planning regulations and we’ve found a delightful little loophole.
‘We’re going to sell all the stuff we produce on the farm and finally make some profit from the stuff we grow rather than run up losses.’
Jeremy Clarkson is set to open his restaurant at Diddly Squat Farm despite local planners objecting to the project thanks to a ‘planning loophole’ which enabled them to move forward
Clarkson says there is no menu ‘as such’ at the new restaurant with diners being offered the best produce available that day at £49 per head or a VIP dining experience for £69 per head
The restaurant is now taking reservations on the online reservation site Open Table where Clarkson warns prospective patrons that the venue is small.
The description reads: ‘Before making your booking, you should know it’s small, mostly outdoors and very rustic.
‘Ordering a beer or going to the lavatory isn’t as easy as in your local pub and we don’t cater to the faddy.
We’ve done our best to keep you warm and dry, but this is England. On the upside, the view is enormous and almost everything you eat was grown or reared on our farm, so it’s fresh with minimal food miles.’
With a kitchen run by The Great British Menu’s Pip Lacey, Clarkson says there is no menu ‘as such’.
Diners being offered the best produce available that day at £49 per head or a VIP dining experience for £69 per head for a three course meal, according to the Times.
The restaurant is now taking reservations on Open Table with limited availability for this evening
The 62-year-old said diners will be served beef and will not get a choice over which cut they are given.
He told the Times: ‘I am told 1,000 people can eat from one cow and we have had one hanging for 29 days. Some people are going to get oxtail, some tongue and some will get fillet steak.’
All diners have to consent to being filmed for his show, Clarkson’s Farm, on Amazon Prime, the newspaper reports.
Diners are advised to dress appropriately as they may get wet with most of the seating located outside.
Anyone who wishes to use the lavatory has to be escorted via tractor or quad bikes.
On Open Table, he added: ‘Our bread, made with Hawkstone lager is absolutely brilliant. We even have a tiny VIP room housed in an old shepherd’s hut.
‘This seats four (just) but it is dry and warmer than outside. We will even serve you a complimentary bottle of English sparkling wine. Don’t scoff. It’s very good.
This is a restaurant like no other. Apart from one I went to in Croatia once. And which served me the best lunch I’ve ever had.’
Jeremy Clarkson, pictured, at the Diddly Squat Farm with his Lamborghini Tractor
Open Table shows the restaurant has so far received at least 30 bookings today with few slots available for this evening.
In January, Clarkson said he was ‘very’ frustrated after local officials refused his attempt to build a new restaurant and 70-space car park on the site of his 1,000-acre Diddly Squat farm.
Mr. Clarkson personally attended a meeting of West Oxfordshire District Council’s planning sub-committee that month in a last-ditch attempt to push his plans through but seven out of ten councilors voted against the plans.
The Grand Tour host left the meeting saying it was a bad day for farmers and labeled one of the planning officials a comedian.
But he went on to find support in his community among those who say council planners are dismissive of new ideas in farming.
At the council meeting in January, Mr. Clarkson insisted that he is simply trying to ‘diversify’ his business and warned that farmers will be unable to properly look after the natural environment because of their finances.
“Farmers look after the woodland, they look after the hedges, the streams and the fields, they keep it beautiful,” he said.
‘Farmers are not going to be able to do that for much longer because of the farmers’ state of finances. We have been told as farmers to diversify – that is exactly what this proposal is.’
Although councilors at the meeting were divided over Mr. Clarkson’s proposals, local officials agreed to refuse permission.
They argued that the cafe would be ‘out of keeping’ with the Cotswolds Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.