Danny Baker reveals how panic and revulsion washed over him after royal

The DJ announced on October 22 he would depart to spend more time writing novels, after a troubled few months for the drivetime show.BBC bosses decided earlier in 2018 that Whiley would share presenting duties, in part to address concern over a lack of female voices on the airwaves. Marion Bartoli at Wimbledon 2013 Sachs was scheduled to be interviewed over the phone on the show. Shortly before he was called, Brand told listeners: “In a minute we’re going to be talking to Andrew Sachs, Manuel actor. The elephant in the room is, what Andrew doesn’t know is, I’ve slept with his granddaughter.”When Brand and fellow Radio 2 DJ Jonathan Ross, who was co-hosting, tried to call Sachs during the pre-record, he does not pick up.Ross and Brand left Sachs four voice messages on the then 78-year-old’s home phone, during which Brand joked about the fact that both he and Sachs had appeared on The Bill.Ross is recorded shouting: “He f—– your daughter”, much to the ribald laughter of everyone in the studio. This sparked a run of messages that were, nominally, Brand and Ross trying to apologise for the outburst, but swiftly became increasingly offensive.  The Corporation later said that “a senior editorial figure signed off the programme, including its strong language, before it was broadcast”.Lesley Douglas, Controller of Radio 2, resigned within two weeks and Ross was suspended without pay from all BBC shows for three months.Ross later left the BBC in January 2010, saying: “I think it’s not a bad time for me to move on. It’s possibly not a bad time for them either”. Jeremy ClarksonOn March 25, 2015,  Jeremy Clarkson was told his BBC career was over and that Top Gear would continue without.The presenter had failed to maintain “standards of decency and respect” at work, Lord Hall said.Clarkson was found guilty of “a physical altercation accompanied by sustained and prolonged verbal abuse of an extreme nature” that left his victim, Oisin Tymon, in need of hospital treatment at an A&E department.Announcing the news, previously reported in the Telegraph, Lord Hall said: “It is with great regret that I have told Jeremy Clarkson today that the BBC will not be renewing his contract. It is not a decision I have taken lightly.“I know how popular the programme is and I also know that this decision will divide opinion.”It was the straw that broke the camel’s back for the broadcaster, having sparred with the controversial presenter for a number of years.  Baker tweeted: “Following one of the worst days of my life I just want to formally apologise for the outrage I caused and explain how I got myself into this mess.”I chose the wrong photo to illustrate a joke. Disastrously so.”In attempting to lampoon privilege and the news cycle I went to a file of goofy pictures and saw the chimp dressed as a Lord and thought, ‘That’s the one!’ Danny Baker’s tweet, which he later deletedCredit:@Prodnose/Twitter Danny Baker has revealed how “waves of panic and revulsion” washed over him when he realised the gravity of the royal baby chimpanzee picture he tweeted, which saw him sacked by the BBC.The DJ was fired by BBC Radio 5 Live for posting joke about the Duke and Duchess Of Sussex’s son featuring a picture of a chimpanzee.Following a backlash and allegations of racism given the Duchess of Sussex is mixed race, Baker, 61, deleted the post and apologised.He was lambasted Thursday for attempting to make light of the situation, but on Friday the presenter posted a lengthy thread on Twitter detailing what he described as one of the worst day of his life. In it, he admitted that the post was “racism at it’s basest”, but claimed it was a “genuine, naive and catastrophic mistake”. The segment takes a celebrity and gets two guests to guess which condiment the famous person would ask for if handed a sausage sandwich – brown sauce, red sauce or no sauce at all.Baker said he gave the BBC staff member who fired him short shrift: “I was given a lecture – which I must say I terminated after about 30 seconds with a couple of words I can leave you to fill in.” He said there were “other broadcasters they wouldn’t have done that to” and that the broadcaster was “siding with the vampires who didn’t like me anyway”.Many pointed out that Lord Sugar was not sacked from his BBC job after making a similarly ill-advised Twitter post comparing the Senegal football team to beach hawkers in Spain.  Hazel Irvine and Peter Alliss during the third round of the Ricoh Women's British Open at the Old Course, St Andrews The cross-bench peer and former chairman of Tottenham Hotspur was initially bullish when Twitter users called his comment offensive, saying: “Frankly, I can’t see that. I think it’s funny.”Babita Sharma, an anchor for BBC World News, wrote that his tweet was “vile”, to which Lord Sugar replied: “You make me sick.”But an hour later, having perhaps taken some advice from the BBC, he issued a contrite statement that read: “I misjudged my earlier tweet. It was in no way intended to cause offence, and clearly my attempt at humour has backfired. I have deleted the tweet and am very sorry.”The BBC decided not to sack Lord Sugar. John InverdaleJohn Inverdale, 56, sparked a furore in the summer of 2013 when he made the comment about the appearance of the French player, who had just won the ladies final at Wimbledon.The BBC received around 700 complaints after Inverdale questioned, on Radio 5 Live, whether Bartoli’s father had told her, when she was younger, that she was never going to be a “looker…a Sharapova… you’re never going to be 5ft 11in, you’re never going to be somebody with long legs, so you have to compensate for that”. Hazel Irvine and Peter Alliss during the third round of the Ricoh Women’s British Open at the Old Course, St Andrews in 2003Credit:David Cannon/Getty Baker took several months out of radio after announcing in November 2010 he had cancer. He started chemotherapy and radiotherapy the following January and was given the all clear in June 2011 and returned to radio shortly afterwards. Controversial departures from the BBCRichard BaconBlue Peter presenter Richard Bacon was sacked in 1998 after he admitted taking cocaine. Addressing his departure from the popular children’s show, the then head of BBC children’s programmes Lorraine Heggessey said: “It is sad that such a talented presenter as Richard Bacon has not only let himself and his colleagues down but, most important of all, he has let down the millions of children who watch Blue Peter.” The presenter later attempted to clarify the “ham-fisted” comment and said that he had written to Bartoli to apologise for using a “clumsy phrase”. Lifelong Millwall supporter Baker appeared on I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here in 2016. It is not the first time he has been in hot water with the BBC.In 2012, he delivered an extraordinary on-air rant criticising BBC bosses for dropping his afternoon show and asking him to stay quiet about it.He has also been sacked by 5 Live before. In 1997, he was fired for encouraging listeners to heckle a referee. Tricks included playing a miniature piano, posing for photographs and drinking Coca-Cola at the local soda counter.The picture shows the primate dressed to the nines as he attended “Trial of the Century,” the Scopes Monkey Trial in 1925. Thousands watched as Clarence Darrow defended high school science teacher John Scopes for teaching evolution in his classroom while William Jennings Bryan argued for the prosecution. Time magazine described the proceedings as ”the fantastic cross between a circus and a holy war.” Lew Backenstoe and his wife Gertrude Bauman paraded the chimp in front of the waiting press, and the photograph made many of the newspapers the next day.It was the first trial in American history to be covered by the broadcast media, so many Americans were able to see the monkey perform in front of the courthouse on screens across the country.Joe Mendi spent almost a decade in showbusiness before his death. Simon MayoA month after his Radio 2 colleague Chris Evans announced he was leaving, Simon Mayo followed suit after a backlash from listeners over his pairing with Jo Whiley. How the story unfolded on ThursdayHarry and Meghan revealed on Wednesday that their new arrival was named Archie Harrison Mountbatten-Windsor.Reacting to the news, radio DJ Danny Baker made a joke about the birth, tweeting a black and white photo showing a well-dressed man and woman holding hands with a suited chimpanzee.Baker captioned it: “Royal baby leaves hospital”. Following a backlash and allegations of racism given the Duchess of Sussex is mixed race, he deleted the post and apologised.On Thursday morning, he posted another message on social media, saying he had been “fired” by the BBC, later saying he had made a “grotesque mistake”.A BBC spokesman said: “This was a serious error of judgment and goes against the values we as a station aim to embody. Danny’s a brilliant broadcaster but will no longer be presenting a weekly show with us.”Speaking outside his Blackheath home, he admitted his relationship with the BBC has always been tense, and said he did not know the royal baby was Meghan and Harry’s.When a follower pointed out to him that baby Archie’s mother is mixed race, Baker said he immediately took the tweet down. “No matter how you wrap it up, women will never be able to do things that men can do. If we want to be equal, are you going to get a woman fighting for the heavyweight championship of the world [in] boxing? Are you? Could you?” Later in the show, Brand joked about Sachs committing suicide in the wake of the revelations, saying: “The main news again. Manuel Andrew Sachs hung himself today . . .’”Despite the fact the show was pre-recorded, producers and executives at the BBC greenlit it to be aired on the radio, and didn’t cut the recording of the voice messages left on Sachs’s phone.  Bacon, who was 22 at the time, said: “I have been stupid and regret making a silly mistake experimenting with drugs.”But I have learned the lesson the hard way and I hope it serves as a lesson to lots of other young people. I would also like to apologise to all loyal Blue Peter viewers.”Jonathan RossThe TV and radio host eventually left the BBC under a cloud after the fallout of his and Russell Brand’s lewd messages to Fawlty Towers star Andrew Sachs. A pre-recorded edition of The Russell Brand Show aired on Radio 2 in October 2008 But listeners soon complained at a lack of chemistry between the new pairing. An online petition called “Bring back Simon Mayo and the dream team” gathered more than 10,000 signatures. The presenter himself admitted that the upheaval had been “difficult and upsetting”.Within weeks of the relaunch the BBC was forced to issue a response, asking fans to let the show “settle” and to “give it a chance”. Radio 2 controller Lewis Carnie pledged changes, insisting “no show ends up where it starts”.But listeners were not reassured, and the complaints kept coming.And the controversial non-departureLord SugarThe BBC faced calls to drop Lord Sugar after he tweeted a “joke” comparing the Senegal football team to beach hawkers in Spain.The businessman, who has appeared in The Apprentice since 2005, posted a doctored image of the team posing with sunglasses and counterfeit handbags last summer, and wrote: “I recognise some of these guys from the beach in Marbella. Multitasking resourceful chaps.” Revealing he had been fired after a phonecall from his bosses, Baker added: “For the record – it was red sauce. Always,” in reference to the regular feature Sausage Sandwich Game on his Saturday morning Radio 5 Live show.   Lord Sugar's tweet Lord Sugar’s tweet Alliss continued: “I think women are more delicate than men. I like holding chairs for women. I enjoy the company of women. I don’t want to be bullied by them. I don’t care for macho women, I don’t care for them very much. And yet they’re prevalent today, and very prevalent in some cases. And very forward.” After the 2015 Open, the BBC felt obliged to apologise for Alliss’s aside about Zach Johnson’s wife, Kim Barclay, as he stood over the putt to win the Claret Jug.”She is probably thinking – ‘if this goes in I get a new kitchen’,” Alliss said. Earlier that year he had caused consternation when telling the Radio Times that the Equality Act had “buggered up” the game.History of the photographThe photograph is a picture of famous 1920s chimpanzee Joe Mendi “the gentleman chimpanzee”.The primate was the most popular animal entertainer of the time.He was billed as having “the intelligence of a five-year-old child” and toted around Broadway, New York by circus-owner Lew Backenstoe. The remark on BBC Two satirical show Mock The Week, made in 2008, earned a reprimand from the BBC Trust who branded it “humiliating” and “offensive”.Adlington went on to make a formal complaint through her agent, arguing that the reprimand was nothing more than “a slap on the wrist”.Peter AllissPeter Alliss said in 2017 he would try to be less of a “dinosaur” as he commentated on the Masters.The 88-year-old has worked for the corporation for 58 years, establishing himself as the voice of British golf in he process. However, he has come under increasing criticism over recent years for remarks, which many believe to be sexist.”I’ll try not to be too much of a dinosaur [when covering this year’s Masters], but remember: dinosaurs are making a comeback,” Alliss told Newsweek ahead of the 2017 tournament. Marion Bartoli at Wimbledon 2013Credit:Heathcliff O’Malley “Had I kept searching I might have chosen General Tom Thumb or even a baby in a crown. But I didn’t. God knows I wish had.”Minutes later I was alerted by followers that this royal baby was of course mixed race and waves of panic and revulsion washed over me.”F—, what had I done? I needed no lessons on the centuries slurs equating simians and people of colour. Racism at it’s basest.”I am aware black people do not need a white man to tell them this. Deleting it immediately and apologising for the awful gaffe I even foolishly tried to make light of it. (My situation that is, not the racism involved.) Too late and here I am.”I would like once and for all to apologise to every single person who, quite naturally, took the awful connection at face value. I understand that and all of the clamour and opprobrium I have faced since. I am not feeling sorry for myself. I f—-d up. Badly.”But it was a genuine, naive and catastrophic mistake. …”I am now paying the price for this crass and regrettable blunder and rightly so. Probably even this final word from me will extend the mania. (‘Dog whistle’ anyone?) I would like to thank friends on here for their kinder words and once again – I am so, so sorry.” The presenter, who a year later signed up with Bartoli to commentate for ITV on the French Open, told Radio Times magazine that as well as feeling unwell, he was attempting to fill time.Frankie BoyleThe two-time Olympic swimming champion said she laughed at comedians who made jokes at the expense of others, so had no right to expect special treatment.Frankie Boyle joked on television that Adlington “looks pretty weird… like someone who’s looking at themselves in the back of a spoon”. Rebecca Adlington in the pool in 2008 at the Beijing Olympic GamesCredit:Vladimir Rys/Bongarts Richard Bacon Credit:Neil Munns/PA Embarrassingly for the BBC, his tweet coincided with the publication of the corporation’s ethnic diversity report, which called for a “substantial culture change” and recommended that managers be given compulsory cultural awareness training. Show more Danny Baker's tweet, which he later deleted Rebecca Adlington in the pool in 2008 at the Beijing Olympic Games What on earth was Danny Baker thinking? I don’t believe he’s racist but it was inappropriate and he should know the climate on Twitter when it comes to “outrage”He was sacked – a bit harsh – but it does beg the question why @Lord_Sugar faced no repercussions for this tweet. pic.twitter.com/hvLMByb3m1— Peter C. Barnes (@Barnesy19) May 9, 2019 Richard Bacon  Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. read more

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