Jeremy Clarkson is reportedly keen to settle a legal claim by Top Gear producer Oisin Tymon, but the BBC won’t let him. Tymon is suing Clarkson for racial harassment and personal injury and is seeking damages of at least £100,000 from the former presenter and the corporation.
The racial harassment angle is all due to Clarkson calling Tymon a “lazy, Irish, cunt” before hitting him in the face and threatening to get him sacked – because he hadn’t organised for the hotel to provide hot meals to the Top Gear hosts and crew when they’d checked in after a long day of filming.
A panel will decide if the long-serving producer, who is still on full pay from the BBC but has not returned to work since the assault, should be paid damages for his ordeal. Lawyers for Oisin and the BBC attended a Central London Employment Tribunal today for a preliminary hearing about the legal action.
It is understood multimillionaire Clarkson, 55, is keen to settle while the BBC is less inclined to pay out. An agreement needs to be reached by all three parties. Clarkson was not required to attend and has so far refused to comment, as did representatives for Oisin.
The BBC said: “We will be responding to this claim but will not be commenting further at this time.”
The bust-up took place when Clarkson, Hammond and May arrived by helicopter at the Simonstone Hotel, near Hawes, North Yorks, from the Top Gear studio in Surrey. Other guests and hotel staff witnessed the row.
One said Clarkson had complained it was “ridiculous there was nothing to eat” and he thought the producer had not done his job properly.
Another added: “It was the shock of, how can someone be so rude? It was the swearing and the length of time and this poor guy he ripped into.”