Clarkson fired


The BBC has confirmed that it has parted ways with Top Gear presenter Jeremy Clarkson, after placing him on suspension three weeks ago for allegedly punching the show’s associate producer who had failed to arrange catering after a day’s filming.

In a document published by the broadcaster, its investigative Director for Scotland, Ken MacQuarrie, said that Oisin Tymon didn’t retaliate after being hit by Clarkson at the Simonstone Hall Hotel in the Yorkshire Dales on March 4th, and that the abuse lasting more than 30 seconds, constituted physical assault.

MacQuarrie said that Tymon suffered a swollen lip and was verbally abused by Clarkson to such an extent that, based on eyewitness accounts, it could be heard inside the dining room and “was audible in the hotel bedroom”.

“Derogatory and abusive language, relating to Oisin Tymon and other members of the Top Gear team, continued to be used by Jeremy Clarkson inside the hotel, in the presence of others, for a sustained period of time.

“It is clear that Oisin Tymon was shocked and distressed by the incident, and believed that he had lost his job,” said MacQuarrie, adding that Tymon drove himself to a nearby A&E department for treatment.

“Over the subsequent days, Jeremy Clarkson made a number of attempts to apologise to Oisin Tymon by way of text, email and in person and it is the case that Jeremy Clarkson reported the incident to BBC management.”

“It was not disputed by Jeremy Clarkson or any witness that Oisin Tymon was the victim of an unprovoked physical and verbal attack. He has suffered significant personal distress as a result of this incident, through no fault of his own”.

In a statement, BBC Director General, Tony Hall, said that the decision was not easy and that although he has confessed to being a fan of the show, “the facts cannot be disputed”.

“We need distinctive and different voices but they cannot come at any price. A member of staff - who is a completely innocent party - took himself to Accident and Emergency after a physical altercation accompanied by sustained and prolonged verbal abuse of an extreme nature. For me a line has been crossed.

“This decision should in no way detract from the extraordinary contribution that Jeremy Clarkson has made to the BBC. I have always personally been a great fan of his work and Top Gear. Jeremy is a huge talent. He may be leaving the BBC but I am sure he will continue to entertain, challenge and amuse audiences for many years to come,” Hall said.

He also added that Top Gear will continue and that the broadcaster had already started looking for a presenter to replace Clarkson. Although not implicated, co-presenters James May and Richard Hammond last week stated that they would not continue if Clarkson gets fired, leaving the show’s future in limbo.


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