Shropshire Star

Top Gear timeline: What happened after the departure of Jeremy Clarkson?

The long-standing motoring show has seen big changes to its presenting line-up since 2015.

Chris Harris, Matt Le Blanc and Rory Reid

Following Jeremy Clarkson’s departure, Top Gear has undergone various revamps before the BBC announced it would pause the show for the “foreseeable future”.

The long-standing motoring show, which began under a new format in 2002, has seen big changes to its presenting line-up since 2015.

Here is a round-up of big moments in the show’s history:

– 2015

– March 10: BBC says Clarkson has been suspended after a “fracas” with a producer on the show.

– March 25: Then director-general of the BBC Lord Tony Hall says the corporation will not renew Clarkson’s contract following an investigation. This event would then bring the resignation of Richard Hammond and James May.

Top Gear film in Downing Street – London
Former presenters of the BBC’s Top Gear show (l to r) Jeremy Clarkson, James May and Richard Hammond (Stefan Rousseau/PA)

– June 16: Chris Evans is announced as part of the Top Gear presenting line-up.

– 2016

– February: Former Friends star Matt LeBlanc is confirmed as co-host to join radio DJ Evans.

– March 14: The BBC “sincerely apologises” for Top Gear filming near The Cenotaph in London, saying that the war memorial was not intended to be featured and will not appear in the programme.

– July 4: Chris Evans steps down, saying he gave it his “best shot” but “standing aside is the single best thing I can now do to help” the show move forward.

– 2018

– May 31: LeBlanc will leave Top Gear after the next series, BBC Studios announces.

New hosts of Top Gear
Andrew “Freddie” Flintoff, Paddy McGuinness and Chris Harris (David Parry/PA)

– October 22: Take Me Out star Paddy McGuinness and former England cricket player Andrew “Freddie” Flintoff confirmed as presenters as they join motoring journalist and racing driver Chris Harris.

– 2022

– December 13: Andrew “Freddie” Flintoff is taken to hospital after an accident at the Top Gear test track at Dunsfold Aerodrome in Surrey while filming the show.

– 2023

– March 23: BBC Studios conclude an investigation into Flintoff’s accident, saying “it would be inappropriate to resume making series 34 of Top Gear at this time”.

– October 13: BBC Studios, which does not use licence fee income, confirms it has reached a financial settlement with Flintoff. The agreement was reportedly worth £9 million.

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