A man from Honiton has admitted causing the death of a popular young farmer who was killed in a late-night crash on a country lane near Dunkeswell.

William Bennett, aged 24, of Broadhembury, pleaded guilty to causing the death of Jacob Chugg-White by careless driving while he was over the drink driving limit on July 23, 2022.

He admitted having an alcohol reading of 96 milligrams in 100 litres of blood, which is above the legal limit of 80 at the time of the crash. Judge Anna Richardson adjourned his sentence until November 16 and imposed an interim driving ban.

Members of the deceased man’s family sat in the public gallery at Exeter Crown Court as Bennett entered his plea at a short plea and trial preparation hearing.

Mr Chugg-White died after an accident involving a blue Volkswagen Golf on an unclassified road near the Blackdown Hills eventing course at Dunkeswell at 12:30am in the morning of Saturday July 23 last year.

Police said at the time that four other occupants of the car had been treated for less serious injuries and that a man in his 20s had been arrested.

The road was closed for eight hours while officers carried out a specialist investigation of the scene.

Mr Chugg-White, known as Chuggy was a prominent member of the Honiton Young Farmers Club, which posted a tribute and picture on its website after his funeral in August 2022.

It read: “Chuggy was the life and soul of Honiton Young Farmers Club. Tug of War captain, a keen stockman at the annual show and sales and most recently the chief road crew assistant for our charity bike ride.

“Your energy lit up the room and you always made us laugh. You have touched so many hearts within our club and you will be sorely missed. Rest in peace Chuggy, we will never forget you.”