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Jeremy Clarkson breaks silence on Meghan column after fierce backlash

Jeremy Clarkson breaks silence on Meghan column after fierce backlash

Clarkson has faced backlash online for the article in The Sun, in which he said he said he ‘hated’ the Duchess of Sussex

Jeremy Clarkson said he was ‘horrified’ to have caused hurt with his column about the Duchess of Sussex which has attracted more than 12,000 complaints to the UK press watchdog.

In the piece, published in The Sun on Friday, the former Top Gear presenter wrote he had dreamed of Meghan being paraded through British towns and publicly shamed, adding that “everyone who’s my age thinks the same way”.

It followed the recent broadcast of Harry and Meghan’s explosive six-part Netflix documentary, in which the couple made allegations of mistreatment by the royal family.

Clarkson’s article - which attracted backlash from high-profile figures including Nicola Sturgeon, Carol Vorderman, Sir Philip Pullman and London Mayor Sadiq Khan, and his own daughter - was removed from The Sun’s website on Monday afternoon his request.

Breaking his silence on the column earlier on Monday, he said he was “horrified” to have caused so much hurt.

A spokesperson for the Independent Press Standards Organisation (Ipso) confirmed on Monday evening it had received more than 12,000 complaints over the article.

This equates to almost the total number of complaints the media regulator received in total in 2021 – which was 14,355.

“We will follow our usual processes to examine the complaints we have received,” the spokesperson said, adding: “This will take longer than usual because of the volume of complaints.”



Shortly after 1pm on Monday Clarkson tweeted: “Oh dear. I’ve rather put my foot in it. In a column I wrote about Meghan, I made a clumsy reference to a scene in Game of Thrones and this has gone down badly with a great many people. I’m horrified to have caused so much hurt and I shall be more careful in future.”

Speaking to broadcasters on Monday, First Minister of Scotland Ms Sturgeon said Clarkson’s comments about the duchess were “beyond the pale”.

“I think what he said about Meghan Markle was deeply misogynist and just downright awful and horrible,” she said.


Meghan Markle has faced considerable criticism online

“I have to say, taking a step back from it, my overwhelming emotion about guys like Jeremy Clarkson is pity.

“I mean, what is it that makes somebody so distorted by hate that they end up writing these things?

“I think that possibly gives an insight into Jeremy Clarkson and the kind of person he is.

“So maybe he just needs to take a step back from things and just think about life a bit more.”

Clarkson’s daughter, Emily Clarkson, said in an online post that she is “against everything that my dad wrote”.

“My views are and have always been clear when it comes to misogyny, bullying and the treatment of women by the media,” she said, in a statement shared on her Instagram story.

“I want to make it very clear that I stand against everything that my dad wrote about Meghan Markle and I remain standing in support of those that are targeted with online hatred.”


Former Countdown host Vorderman said Clarkson’s comments were unacceptable “in any circumstance”.

“NO Jeremy Clarkson. Not on any level, in any circumstance, is it ok to write this stuff about any woman & absolutely NO to ‘everyone who’s my age thinks the same’.

“No no no. We absolutely do NOT think the same. Listen to the noise Jeremy. The crowds are chanting ‘shame on YOU’.”

Mr Khan said Clarkson’s remarks were “dangerous and inexcusable”, writing: “As Jeremy Clarkson should well know – words have consequences.

“The words in his piece are no joke – they’re dangerous and inexcusable.

“We are in an epidemic of violence against women and girls and men with powerful voices must do better than this.”

Sir Philip, author of His Dark Materials, described Clarkson as “a brief loud noise and a brief bad smell”, but criticised Rupert Murdoch – owner of News UK, the organisation that publishes The Sun.

As well as Top Gear, Clarkson, 62, is known for his Amazon motoring show, The Grand Tour, which he presents alongside Richard Hammond and James May, as well as ITV’s Who Wants To Be A Millionaire?

Amazon, ITV and The Sun have all been approached for comment.

Harry and Meghan’s Archewell foundation has also been approached for comment over the remarks.

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