Clarkson report due this week

Published: Monday 23rd March 2015 by The News Editor

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A verdict on Jeremy Clarkson’s future is expected this week as four live Top Gear shows in Norway were postponed.

Clarkson, alongside co-hosts James May and Richard Hammond, were scheduled to take part in the popular events in Stavanger this week.

But they were put on hold while the embattled presenter remains suspended, after allegedly punching Top Gear producer Oisin Tymon during a row over a hot meal at a hotel.

Both Clarkson and Tymon have given their evidence to the internal investigation, led by Ken MacQuarrie, into what happened and the star’s future at the BBC is expected to be decided this week.

Earlier, Clarkson described the past week as “turbulent” and claimed he was joking when he appeared to criticise BBC bosses during an expletive-laden rant at a charity event.

The beleaguered presenter had appeared to suggest he may be sacked from the BBC2 show and criticised the corporation’s executives.

Clarkson said that he was told off by his lawyer after his on-stage speech at the charity gala in north London was captured on video.

But he said in The Sunday Times that it had all been in good humour, writing: “It was all meant in jest and anyway it worked.

“By being brief, controversial and a bit sweary I woke the room up and the auction prize I was offering – one last lap of the Top Gear test track – raised £100,000.”

Clarkson had told those gathered at the charity event: “To be in the audience of Top Gear there was an 18-year waiting list. You know the BBC has f***** themselves, and so who gives a f***?

“It was a great show and they f***** it up.”

He is reported to be considering new shows, including a programme about a novice trying to run a farm.

Clarkson tweeted his thanks to supporters of a petition, delivered by tank to BBC headquarters in London on Friday, but declared in his column in The Sun that “protest never works”.

Meanwhile, with money-spinning show Top Gear off air during the internal investigation, May has been tweeting about getting to grips with life without work to distract him.

He wrote at the weekend: “Woodwork tasks today. Being jobless allows you to revisit old interests, learn new things, and listen to the radio more. Sold the telly.”

May had previously told his fans: “I’ve been given some heavy gardening work today. Temptation to cut my own head off with the chainsaw may prove too strong. #StillUnemployed.”

The corporation’s internal investigation into Clarkson’s conduct is being handed over to the director-general, and could be resolved as early as tomorrow.

The BBC has not commented on when the investigation will be completed but it is understood that they want it finished as soon as possible.

The four performances in Norway were due to take place on Friday March 27 and Saturday March 28.

A statement issued yesterday said: “Top Gear Live regrets to inform ticket holders for next week’s shows in Stavanger, Norway that we will be postponing all four performances, with rescheduled dates for later this year to be confirmed within the next fortnight.

“We sincerely apologise for the inconvenience this will cause fans and we will endeavour to contact all ticket holders directly to inform them of the change of dates.

“At present, all other Top Gear Live dates will run as scheduled.”

Published: Monday 23rd March 2015 by The News Editor

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