Helen Skelton talks downside to ‘no sick days’ after hosting show with metal stuck in eye

Helen Skelton recalls continuing to work with an eye injury

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This Week on the Farm presenter Helen Skelton. 37, discussed the highs and lows of being self-employed and dipping in and out of jobs as a freelancer. The host said sick days were not allowed in the industry as she revealed she once had to present with metal stuck in her eye.

Helen said one of the positives to being a freelancer was being able to spend time with her family and experience different jobs.

But, she divulged that in order to to be flexible with jobs, sacrifices had to be made.

She said: “We’re in an industry where people go, ‘Oh what’s next for you?’ You should be able to say, ‘Spending time with my kids’.

“You never have a chance to get upset with your colleagues and you never get dragged into the office politics – that’s what I like.

“You’ve got to be alright with no sick pay and no pension and no guaranteed employment.”

She laughed: “Life would be dull!”

Discussing self-employment with Andy Jaye on his podcast, the latter said he had never taken a sick pay.

“You’re not allowed in our industry!” she added.

The pair pointed out that viewers may be unaware about things that happen on set when the cameras stop rolling, such as being sick.

“You look a bit sweaty!” Helen joked about an example of a viewer’s comment.

The presenter went to discuss her current role presenting This Week On The Farm.

Helen said the show was extended after becoming a popular hit with viewers.

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“The reason it has kept rolling is because people have really sort of got behind it and got into it,” she explained.

“It’s just timed so well, this is feel-good, it’s farming, it’s escapism, it’s a bit of fun, it’s a bit of cheeky banter.

“Hopefully it puts a smile on people’s faces.”

She added: “And, I think it resonates with people because is about British farmers, British produce, the pandemic and Brexit.

“All of those things have kind of triggered an interest in people in British produce and British growers.”

As well as presenting the weekly show, Helen is also a regular presenter on Countryfile.

She joined the BBC show in 2008 after rising to fame in children’s television on shows such as Blue Peter.

This Week on the Farm continues tonight at 8pm on Channel 5.

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