Jeremy Clarkson has said he is “horrified” by the response to his newspaper column about Meghan Markle.
The former Top Gear presenter was widely criticised for a column in which he said he hated Markle “on a cellular level”.
Kathy Burke was among those criticising Clarkson for his comments, calling him a “colossal c***” on social media.
Clarkson has since issued a statement – after Ipso told BBC News that over 6,000 complains had been made – saying he is “horrified” by the response.
“Oh dear. I’ve rather put my foot in it,” Clarkson began in a tweet. He went on to call a reference he made to a scene in Game of Thrones “clumsy”.
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.
— Jeremy Clarkson (@JeremyClarkson) December 19, 2022
In the original column, Clarkson had said: “At night, I’m unable to sleep as I lie there, grinding my teeth and dreaming of the day when she is made to parade naked through the streets of every town in Britain while the crowds chant, ‘Shame!’ and throw lumps of excrement at her.”
Referring to the Game Of Thrones reference specifically, Clarkson added in his statement: “I’m horrified to have caused so much hurt and I shall be more careful in future”.
John Bishop also criticised Clarkson’s comments about Markle, writing on Twitter: “WTF is this?? I don’t care who you are or who you work for you simply cannot write things like this.
“It is a blatant appeal to incite humiliation and violence on a woman. Some have excused it as dark humour. There is mo [sic] joke here @JeremyClarkson and no excuse.”