Farmers who lend a hand to grit and clear snow from public roads in the Bradford district will be allowed to use vehicles fuelled with restricted red diesel while on the task this winter.

HM Revenue & Customs has confirmed that during extreme weather farmers can use red diesel in their tractors to help grit and clear snow.

HMRC now says it recognises the vital role played by farmers in helping to keep rural roads clear and has recently consulted on a proposed change to the legislation to allow red diesel to be used in tractors while gritting.

The body says it will adopt a “pragmatic” approach to the rules during periods of extreme weather.

It will not penalise agricultural tractors fuelled by red diesel for using public roads if they are clearing snow or gritting to provide access to schools, hospitals, a remote dwelling, or communities cut off by ice and snow.

Call the helpline on 0845 0109000 for more details.