BBC says ‘Top Gear’ won’t return for ‘foreseeable future’ – deadline

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Higher speed will not be seen for the “foreseeable future” on television, the BBC has said.

The show has been off the air since host Andrew Flintoff suffered “life-threatening” injuries following an accident, which led to a £9 million ($11.2 million) payout ) for the cricket legend and a health and safety examination.

In the last few minutes, the BBC released a statement saying it had “decided to suspend the UK show for the foreseeable future”, citing “exceptional circumstances”.

The company said it remains committed to Flintoff and his co-hosts Paddy McGuinness and Chris Harris, “and we are excited about the new projects being developed with each of them”, with “more to say in the near future at this subject”.

“We know the end of the series will be disappointing news for fans, but it is the right thing to do,” the statement said. “All other Top Gear businesses are unaffected by this disruption, including international formats, digital, magazines and licensing.”

Flintoff has only recently started to be seen in public since the crash – with visible facial injuries – which took place last year at Dunsfold Park Aerodrome in Surrey and resulted in the immediate cessation of filming.

The BBC apologized to Flintoff in March for his injuries, around the time a security review was wrapping up. The security review will not be published, but BBC Studios said “important lessons” would be learned from it and a number of recommendations had been made. A number of producers have left the show since the crash.

The news confirms what many already thought, but is a major blow to one of the BBC’s most established formats. Higher speed had enjoyed something of a renaissance under Flintoff, Harris and McGuinness after a few difficult seasons in which ratings fell.

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