Woman raises more than £25,000 for needy farmer who appeared on Clarkson’s Farm

A deputy manager at a nursery has said she was “blown away” after raising more than £25,000 to help a dairy farmer who appeared on Clarkson’s Farm.

The Amazon Prime show follows Jeremy Clarkson as he manages an Oxfordshire farm, and season two features Emma Ledbury, a farmer who lost half of her cattle to tuberculosis-carrying badgers.

After watching the programme, Rebecca Poole, 45, from Solihull, West Midlands, has made Ms Ledbury more than £25,000 through public donations on GoFundMe.

“I am absolutely overwhelmed and I can’t thank people enough,” Ms Poole told the PA news agency.

Rebecca Poole said she was 'blown away' by the public reaction (Richard Poole/PA)
Rebecca Poole said she was ‘blown away’ by the public reaction (Richard Poole/PA)

“It’s just blown me away how kind people are, especially in the current financial climate where people are struggling to buy food or heating, donating to a cause.

“And this cause – we’ve touched the heart of not only me, but the whole nation.

“I’ve had donations from Australia, Canada, America, as well as Britain and Ireland and Scotland.”

Ms Poole said she was initially inspired to channel the “anger” she felt after her father had been diagnosed with non-Hodgkin lymphoma.

“I thought I’ve got all these angry feelings around my dad, having the cancer and not being able to be cured of it,” she said.

“I thought I could just brood or I could do something – so I decided to put all this anger and focus it into something.

“I just saw (Emma) on the telly and thought I can help her.”

Ms Poole has been in touch with Ms Ledbury’s husband Pete, and the team at GoFundMe have made the couple beneficiaries of the online fund.

Ms Ledbury has been able to keep her farm afloat, but the detrimental impact of TB in British farming was explored on Clarkson’s Farm.

Ms Poole added that the number of donations on her GoFundMe appeal – more than 1,500 – sends a message about Britons’ support for UK farmers.

“I think people support British farming,” she said.

“I do think Jeremy Clarkson has a lot to do with highlighting some of the problems that British farmers face that maybe the normal, everyday person like myself wouldn’t realise.

Clarkson’s Farm
A general view Jeremy Clarkson’s Diddly Squat Farm Shop near Chadlington in Oxfordshire (Gareth Fuller/PA)

“Because they just get on with it, they just continue to work.

“We don’t necessarily know that they’re working for nothing, which is what some farmers are doing.”

She also said that not in her “wildest dreams” did she expect the level of donations for Ms Ledbury.

“I set it at £10,000 thinking, ‘Oh, well, you know, that might be able to buy a few cows’, because I think cows are quite expensive,” she said.

“That was quite an ambitious target.

“And I never dreamt that it would ever double – and keep on going.”

Ms Poole wrote on her GoFundMe page: “I was moved by the plight of Emma, a dairy farmer whose cattle were struck down by tuberculosis.

“Please donate if you can and let’s show our gratitude for the work that they do.”

To find out more, go to: www.gofundme.com/f/help-emma-the-dairy-farmer-from-clarksons-farm-2