Jeremy Clarkson: I was offered Top Gear return

Jeremy Clarkson has claimed he was offered a return to Top Gear.

Clarkson - who was sacked in March for punching producer Oisin Tymon - told The Sun that he met a BBC executive last week before DJ Chris Evans was unveiled as the new host of the show.

But the 55-year-old said he turned it down as "too much has gone on" since his departure - including being compared to Jimmy Savile.

I had a meeting with a BBC executive last week and they asked if I'd come back to Top Gear.

Jeremy Clarkson

A BBC spokesman seemed to deny Clarkson's claim, saying: "We haven't offered another Top Gear contract and the BBC had placed on record its thanks to Jeremy for his broadcasting on the programme and wish him well for the future."

Chris Evans was named as Clarkson's successor on Tuesday, saying he was "thrilled" to lead his "favourite programme of all time".

He also revealed that he will hold auditions to find a co-host.