Jeremy Clarkson racism: Top Gear presenter’s week of hell continues with rumours Frances, his wife of 21 years, is divorcing him

Frances Clarkson declined to comment on reports, as a source close to the presenter cited the difference between 'divorce and getting a divorce'

Whether deservedly so or not, the last seven days of Jeremy Clarkson’s life have been, by all accounts, a bit of a shocker.

Firstly, the Top Gear presenter was accused of being a racist when un-broadcast footage of him appearing to mumble the word ‘n****r’ while reciting a derogatory rhyme was leaked to the press.

Clarkson's First Wife Alex Hall Responds To Divorce Reports

It resulted in some stern words from BBC bosses and a final warning, and some words of support from co-presenter James May, the Secretary of State for Eduction Michael Gove and the man no-one could possibly want sticking up for them, UKIP leader Nigel Farage.

He also released a grovelling video apology, in which he declared he’d taken steps to ensure he hadn’t said the offensive word, but admitted that his efforts “obviously were not good enough”.

None of this, of course, was helped by the fact he’d recently come under fire for naming his black pet dog ‘Didier Dogba’ (yes, after the black footballer), and made a derogatory reference to Asian people during a recent episode of Top Gear (read about that here).

 

But it gets worse. Reports this morning suggest that Clarkson’s wife of 21 years, Frances Clarkson, is set to divorce him.

The couple have been living apart for three years after their marriage was put under strain following a slew of rumours that the presenter had been unfaithful – something he has vehemently denied.

Again, his repeat denials were not helped by the fact he’d lifted a High Court injunction in 2011 that prevented his first wife, Alex Hall, whom he’d initially married in 1989 only to separate from two years later, from claiming that she’d had an affair with Clarkson after he was married to Frances in 1993.

According to Hall, the pair had rekindled their relationship from 1999 onwards.

Meet Clarkson's dog, Didier Dogba Furthermore, in 2002, a tabloid newspaper snapped Clarkson and TV presenter Elaine Bedell cuddling in a doorway and kissing in a car, while in 2011, he was pictured kissing events organiser Phillipa Sage during a world tour with his Top Gear co-presenters Richard Hammond and James May. Clarkson shrugged off the claims, saying he and Sage had simply been “colleagues fooling around”. Last year, he was photographed kissing that same colleague on holiday in Greece.

Now, sources close to Frances are claiming that she’s finally decided to throw in the marital towel, celebrating her decision with a  trip to Majorca.

“Apparently Francie had a really jolly boozy time because she is finally getting a divorce from Jeremy and she was celebrating that,” a source was quoted by Daily Mail as saying.

“All her friends have been waiting for years for her to do it and she finally has.”

A screengrab from Jeremy Clarkson's video apology A screengrab from Jeremy Clarkson's video apology A source close to Clarkson has since denied that the Top Gear presenter is divorced. However, when pressed further over whether he would be “getting divorced” in the near future, the insider apparently replied: “Getting [divorced] and divorced are different.”

Last night, Frances told reporters that she did not “want to make a comment at this time” on the reports. Asked whether she could confirm or deny the rumours, she answered bluntly: “No.”

If the couple do end up officially ending their marriage, Frances could be set to secure a substantial pay-out as, as well as being Clarkson’s wife, she also has the unenviable task of being his manager.

His fortune is estimated at £30million, and last year, he reportedly earned £14million for Top Gear, which includes his salary and payments from a company he set up with the BBC to sell the programme internationally.

A spokesperson for Clarkson has declined to comment.

PROMOTED VIDEO
News
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs People

Chief Executive

£28, 700: Whiskey Whiskey Tango: Property Management Company is seeking a brig...

COO / Chief Operating Officer

£80 - 100k + Bonus: Guru Careers: A COO / Chief Operating Officer is needed to...

HR Manager - Kent - £45,000

£40000 - £45000 per annum: Ashdown Group: HR Manager / Training Manager (L&D /...

HR Manager - Edgware, London - £45,000

£40000 - £45000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: HR Manager - Edgware, Lon...

Day In a Page

Ebola outbreak: The children orphaned by the virus – then rejected by surviving relatives over fear of infection

The children orphaned by Ebola...

... then rejected by surviving relatives over fear of infection
Pride: Are censors pandering to homophobia?

Are censors pandering to homophobia?

US film censors have ruled 'Pride' unfit for under-16s, though it contains no sex or violence
The magic of roundabouts

Lords of the rings

Just who are the Roundabout Appreciation Society?
Why do we like making lists?

Notes to self: Why do we like making lists?

Well it was good enough for Ancient Egyptians and Picasso...
Hong Kong protests: A good time to open a new restaurant?

A good time to open a new restaurant in Hong Kong?

As pro-democracy demonstrators hold firm, chef Rowley Leigh, who's in the city to open a new restaurant, says you couldn't hope to meet a nicer bunch
Paris Fashion Week: Karl Lagerfeld leads a feminist riot on 'Boulevard Chanel'

Paris Fashion Week

Lagerfeld leads a feminist riot on 'Boulevard Chanel'
Bruce Chatwin's Wales: One of the finest one-day walks in Britain

Simon Calder discovers Bruce Chatwin's Wales

One of the finest one-day walks you could hope for - in Britain
10 best children's nightwear

10 best children's nightwear

Make sure the kids stay cosy on cooler autumn nights in this selection of pjs, onesies and nighties
Manchester City vs Roma: Five things we learnt from City’s draw at the Etihad

Manchester City vs Roma

Five things we learnt from City’s Champions League draw at the Etihad
Martin Hardy: Mike Ashley must act now and end the Alan Pardew reign

Trouble on the Tyne

Ashley must act now and end Pardew's reign at Newcastle, says Martin Hardy
Isis is an hour from Baghdad, the Iraq army has little chance against it, and air strikes won't help

Isis an hour away from Baghdad -

and with no sign of Iraq army being able to make a successful counter-attack
Turner Prize 2014 is frustratingly timid

Turner Prize 2014 is frustratingly timid

The exhibition nods to rich and potentially brilliant ideas, but steps back
Last chance to see: Half the world’s animals have disappeared over the last 40 years

Last chance to see...

The Earth’s animal wildlife population has halved in 40 years
So here's why teenagers are always grumpy - and it's not what you think

Truth behind teens' grumpiness

Early school hours mess with their biological clocks
Why can no one stop hackers putting celebrities' private photos online?

Hacked photos: the third wave

Why can no one stop hackers putting celebrities' private photos online?