Rainfall came too late for Somerset farmer Richard Payne at Heathfield Manor Farm. He said: “We had a bit of rain but it came at the wrong time. The crops were too dry”.

Mr Payne expected the yields to be lower this year because of the dry weather. “It is not as good as last year, the straw is much shorter.”

He hoped to be able to start cutting winter barley by next week, with oilseed rape following. The rape had gone flat already, he said, and wheat was looking varied, with some starting to turn.

No farms had started cutting in the area, said Mr Payne, “We’re just waiting for it to dry out”.