Helen Bach: Please keep Top Gear – even without Jeremy Clarkson

Jeremy Clarkson.
Jeremy Clarkson.

So the BBC will not be renewing Jeremy Clarkson’s contract.

Like him or loathe him - and most people have an opinion one way or another - it does mean the end of an era as far as Top Gear is concerned.

It also leaves many questions that fans of the show will need answering.

No doubt starting with ‘does this mean the end of Top Gear on BBC TV or will they just try and fill that Clarkson-shaped hole?’

How would the Hamster and Captain Slow cope with and adapt to a new co-presenter?

Who’s a likely replacement? I hear Chris Evans’ name has been mentioned frequently, but he has dismissed the idea.

Perhaps it is time for a woman to join the team – Vicki Butler-Henderson or maybe Suzi Perry.

I have to say that I had actually been enjoying this current series of Top Gear and I’m disappointed that it’s come to an abrupt halt.

It used to really annoy me, but once you appreciate that you’re not going to learn anything new about cars, or see cars you could actually buy yourself unless you have a lottery win, you can start to enjoy their antics.

Such as converting a hearse into an ambulance and unsuccessfully launching the ‘patient’ into hospital.

Or driving a humungous Ford F150 up a snow-covered mountain in Canada to rescue an increasingly livid Richard Hammond.

I also like the ‘stars in the reasonably priced car’ bit – it’s great to see these huge Hollywood stars (Tom Cruise, Will Smith etc) acting like over-excited schoolchildren as they race around the track, desperately trying to beat each other’s times, and not achieve lift-off when rounding the corner named after Michael Gambon, who nearly did just that.

Of course, it’s always been controversial.

The Argentina Christmas special was, in my opinion, ill-judged.

But if the future of car shows on terrestrial television is The Classic Car Show on Channel Five I think I’ll be sticking with Top Gear, with or without Jeremy.

Read more from Helen here.