Jeremy Clarkson criticises the BBC for letting the Great British Bake Off go to Channel 4
Jeremy Clarkson has hit out at the BBC for allowing Channel 4 to buy the rights to the Great British Bake Off, saying it was “the BBC’s duty to keep that show”.
As we all know, the well-loved British baking show will no longer be airing on the BBC after Channel 4 paid a reported £75 million to broadcast the programme. However, Jeremy Clarkson has argued that the BBC should have spent the money necessary to prevent the steal.
Always one to speak his mind, Jeremy said: “If I’d been running the BBC, I’d have paid.
“It’s a very popular show. What were the figures? 13, 14million – that’s an astronomical figure.
“It’s the BBC’s duty to keep that show.”
He compared the situation to the BBC’s coverage of Her Majesty’s Diamond Jubilee Pageant in 2012, which demanded a huge broadcasting operation along the River Thames: “They don’t say, ‘The Queen’s decided to go down the river, that’s too expensive’ – they just do it. And so they should.”
Despite his controversial departure from the BBC’s Top Gear in 2015, Jeremy praised the corporation when reflecting on his time working with them: “There are a lot of very hardworking, clever, talented, dedicated people in that organisation that I got on well with for a very long time.
“The BBC were tremendous, bloody good people. Danny Cohen was a nightmare, but he’s gone now. He was the only real sticking point.”
Jeremy did, however, go on to criticise the BBC’s talent management: “They’re rubbish at talent management, they just have to buck their ideas up. That’s why they keep losing shows.”
He also insisted that the BBC shouldn’t have to feel under pressure to reveal their biggest stars’ salaries, saying: “I don’t know why somebody’s interested in what somebody earns. I think if you put someone in a management position running the BBC, you would hope he is capable of deciding who gets paid what, he doesn’t have to explain it to every Tom, Dick and Harry in the country.
“Why do we need to know? It’s like saying, Kate Moss is attractive, everyone should be that attractive. Well, they can’t be. So some people are rich, some people are poor, some people are beautiful, some people are intelligent. These are things that make the world go round.”
Jeremy Clarkson’s The Grand Tour will be released on Amazon Prime later this month. The show, which also features James May and Richard Hammond, will share similarities with their earlier Top Gear series.
Jeremy revealed: “Amazon said we could swear, but we made a policy not to swear, same as before. If an eight-year-old wants to watch it, the parents need to know they’re not going to be subjected to an hour of foul language. If you get scared, you swear, and they just beep it.
“Top Gear was a big family show, and this should be as well.”
The Grand Tour debuts on Amazon Prime on November 18.