herald

Tuesday 12 December 2017

Travis episodes of Top of the Pops axed

The BBC has confirmed it will mothball editions of Top Of The Pops featuring disgraced presenter Dave Lee Travis.

The corporation had pulled episodes of the show which he hosted from its schedule of weekly BBC4 repeats following his arrest nearly two years ago, and future programmes in which he features will now be dropped following his conviction for indecent assault.

The latest decision comes despite the BBC agreeing to include appearances by convicted child sex offender Jonathan King - who was given a seven-year sentence for his crimes against under-age boys - in editions of the show.

King, who was put on the sex offenders register following his release from prison in 2005, was also recently interviewed for a documentary about the rock band Genesis.

The scheduling of Top Of The Pops repeats has been badly affected by claims against presenters and some of the participants. A number of shows were pulled as a result of the abuse scandal which emerged following the death of Jimmy Savile, and then Travis was subject to a number of claims which resulted in two criminals trials.

Appearances by Gary Glitter, who has also been convicted of sex offences, have been removed from editions of the show and a performance by King was initially cut from a programme.

Stalinist

However, King complained that it amounted to a "Stalinist revision of history" and received a letter from then director-general Mark Thompson apologising and assuring him that he would not be cut if the programme were to be screened again.

Travis was given a three-month sentence last month, suspended for two years.

Asked why King and Travis's appearances were being treated differently, a BBC spokeswoman said their decisions were "made on a case-by-case basis".

hnews@herald.ie

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