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BBC defends bad taste Jonathan Ross radio joke

BBC defends bad taste Jonathan Ross radio joke
BBC defends bad taste Jonathan Ross radio joke (Image credit: PA Wire/PA Photos)

The BBC says a joke about sex with an elderly woman made by Jonathan Ross on his Radio 2 show was acceptable because there was 'clearly no intention to offend anyone'. Ross was chatting with his co-presenter Andy Davies about an elderly Spanish neighbour when he joked that Davies should 'give her one last night before the grave'. The comment on Saturday was picked up by some Sunday papers, but the BBC didn't receive any complaints (opens in new tab) at the time of the broadcast. Davies reportedly mentioned an elderly woman who kept kissing him while he was carrying out DIY at his Spanish home. Ross responded: "I think you should just, for charity, give her one last night. One last night before the grave." Ross told the News of the World: "It was a spontaneous, light-hearted remark made in response to an anecdote set in Spain, where no one was named or ever likely to hear the broadcast. "As far as I was concerned, the story may even have been apocryphal or exaggerated for comedic purposes, as is common practice on radio and comedy shows around the country. "Absolutely no offence to any individual was intended and, if the media wasn't hell bent on stirring up controversy, I'm sure none would be taken." A BBC spokesman said: "This light-hearted exchange contained no offensive language, named no individuals and there was clearly no intention to offend anyone. "Nothing broadcast by the BBC was linked to a specific individual or would allow the public to link these comments to an individual." Get exclusive access to your favourite stars. Subscribe to TV Times magazine (opens in new tab)

Patrick McLennan is a London-based journalist and documentary maker who has worked as a writer, sub-editor, digital editor and TV producer in the UK and New Zealand. His CV includes spells as a news producer at the BBC and TVNZ, as well as web editor for Time Inc UK. He has produced TV news and entertainment features on personalities as diverse as Nick Cave, Tom Hardy, Clive James, Jodie Marsh and Kevin Bacon and he co-produced and directed The Ponds, which has screened in UK cinemas, BBC Four and is currently available on Netflix. 


An entertainment writer with a diverse taste in TV and film, he lists Seinfeld, The Sopranos, The Chase, The Thick of It and Detectorists among his favourite shows, but steers well clear of most sci-fi.