A TAUNTON pensioner has recalled fond memories of the time she worked as a home help for Boris Johnson's family.

Mary Parkman, whose late husband used to farm near Dulverton, said she first knew the future Prime Minister when he was about ten-years-old.

She got to see him when he was home from Eton College on his school holidays in the 1970s.

"I remember him as a fun-loving lad who used to tease me," said Mrs Parkman, now aged 85.

"He was frequently getting into scuffs and had an unruly mop of blond hair."

At the time, Mrs Parkman was working as a home help looking after Mr Johnson's grandfather, Wilfred 'Johnny' Johnson, who lived with his family on a remote farm at Nethercott, on Exmoor.

"It was about two miles up an old track and Boris's grandfather would leave the keys to an old car on the wheel so I could drive it to their farm rather than damage my own," said Mrs Parkman.

"It was usually swimming in water from previous rainfall, but would always start.

"If not, it would take about an hour to walk to the farmhouse up this remote track, rain snow or shine.

"I got to know the family well - even Buster, his grandmother, until she had to have full time care.

"They were a lovely family and devoted to each other.

"I never thought at the time he would have been Mayor of London and then Prime Minister."

Mrs Parkman has twice written to Mr Johnson since those days, congratulating him first on being elected Mayor of London and more recently on entering Number 10.

"I have received lovely replies from him and he remembers with fondness his time at Nethercott," said Mrs Parkman.

"Of course, if he were to be elected (to stand) again, I would vote for him."