Director general Lord Tony Hall said “a line had been crossed” in a lengthy statement.
said: “It is with great regret that I have told Jeremy Clarkson today
that the BBC will not be renewing his contract. It is not a decision I
have taken lightly. I have done so only after a very careful
consideration of the facts and after personally meeting both Jeremy and
“I am grateful to Ken MacQuarrie for the thorough
way he has conducted an investigation of the incident on 4 March. Given
the obvious and very genuine public interest in this I am publishing the
findings of his report.
“I take no pleasure in doing so. I am only making them public so
people can better understand the background. I know how popular the
programme is and I also know that this decision will divide opinion. The
main facts are not disputed by those involved.”
His decision to
axe the controversial host from the BBC2 series because of the serious
nature of his “fracas” with Oisin, in which he is said to have called
him a “lazy, Irish c***” and punched him. The incident happened when
Clarkson, 54, was already on a “final warning” after a string of earlier
The BBC probe heard that the star erupted in fury after discovering
that he no longer had a hot meal available to him when he arrived at a
hotel in Yorkshire two hours late. He and the other presenters, Richard
Hammond and James May, had delayed their helicopter in order to stay in
the pub near to the Top Gear track in Surrey.
May and Hammond are expected to remain on the programme with a new host to be appointed in due course.
Many fans of the show have threatened to boycott it if Clarkson left – while others insist they would stop watching if he stays.
FULL REPORT BELOW:
Investigation findings – Ken MacQuarrie
9 March 2015, Jeremy Clarkson reported to BBC management that he had
been involved in a physical and verbal incident with Oisin Tymon, the
producer of Top Gear, at the Simonstone Hall Hotel, North Yorkshire,
whilst working on location. The incident had occurred on 4 March 2015
and Jeremy Clarkson was suspended on 10 March, pending investigation.
was asked to undertake an investigation to establish the facts of what
occurred. In conducting my investigation, in line with the BBC’s usual
practice, I interviewed a number of witnesses and others connected with
the incident. Accounts were agreed, based on my interviews, with each
Having conducted these interviews and considered the
evidence presented, I conclude the following: on 4 March 2015 Oisin
Tymon was subject to an unprovoked physical and verbal attack by Jeremy
Clarkson. During the physical attack Oisin Tymon was struck, resulting
in swelling and bleeding to his lip. The verbal abuse was sustained over
a longer period, both at the time of the physical attack and
Specific facts I have found as part of my investigation are as follows:
on 4 March, studio recording of Top Gear had taken place in Surrey and
the presenters had travelled that same evening to the location shoot in
- the incident occurred on a patio area of the Simonstone Hall Hotel, where Oisin Tymon was working on location for Top Gear;
- the physical attack lasted around 30 seconds and was halted by the intervention of a witness;
- it is the case that Oisin Tymon offered no retaliation;
verbal abuse was directed at Oisin Tymon on more than one occasion –
both during the attack and subsequently inside the hotel – and contained
the strongest expletives and threats to sack him. The abuse was at such
volume as to be heard in the dining room, and the shouting was audible
in a 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;
- following the attack, I understand that Oisin Tymon drove to a nearby A&E department for examination;
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.
was not disputed by Jeremy Clarkson or any witness that Oisin Tymon was
the victim of an unprovoked physical and verbal attack. It is also
clear to me that Oisin Tymon is an important creative member of the Top
Gear team who is well-valued and respected. He has suffered significant
personal distress as a result of this incident, through no fault of his
Jeremy Clarkson’s timeline of shame
He was reported as saying that the designer of the Hyundai XG had probably eaten a spaniel for lunch.
He later apologised for the “one-eyed” part of his comment but not the “Scottish idiot” aspect.
in a burka wearing a red g-string while discussing dangerous driving
conditions on the show.
The joke even upset the often-controversial Lily Allen, who tweeted that the joke was “distasteful”.
in unaired comments, Clarkson had rebuffed claims that he wasn’t very
sound on gay rights by replying “Oh yes I am. I demand the right not to be bummed.”
presenter was comparing two Ferrari’s and described the older one as a
‘simpleton’ that should be called the ‘430 Speciale needs’ instead of
it’s real name ‘430 Speciale’, which prompted a backlash from the
National Autistic Society.
But Top Gear apologised on their behalf saying it was the producer’s fault and not the presenters’ decision.
He told the shocked presenters: “I’d have them all shot. I would take them outside and execute them in front of their families.
mean how dare they go on strike when they’ve got these gilt-edged
pensions that are going to be guaranteed while the rest of us have to
work for a living.”
The presenter argued that following a death, trains should carry on their journeys as soon as possible.
The trio were tasked with building a bridge over the river Kwai in Thailand.
“That is a proud moment – but there’s a slope on it,” said Clarkson, as a figure walked toward them on the bridge.
Hammond replied: “You’re right, it’s definitely higher on that side.”
Ofcom later ruled that the presenter had been “deliberately offensive”.
The number plate seemed to refer to the 1982 Falklands War in which Argentina and the UK clashed over ownership of the island.
The team had to leave Argentina in a hurry and claimed they had been hounded out of the country.
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