Top Gear and Clarkson Farm star Jeremy Clarkson has hit out at what he described as a "witch hunt" against the former This Morning host Phillip Schofield.

The well-known presenter said that the controversy around Schofield's secret affair with a younger male colleague was "weird" and that he has “never seen a witch hunt like it”.

This comes as Schofield, who has presented This Morning for over 20 years, was dropped by ITV after it was revealed that he had misled the broadcaster.

Clarkson expressed his views on The Sunday Times in which he stressed that he has “no skin in the fight” over Phillip Schofield's job.

Worcester News: (Jonathan Brady/PA Wire) Holly Willoughby and Phillip Schofield have presneted This Morning on ITV together since 2009(Jonathan Brady/PA Wire) Holly Willoughby and Phillip Schofield have presneted This Morning on ITV together since 2009 (Image: Jonathan Brady/PA Wire)

Jeremy Clarkson wrote: "He maintains that his lover was over the age of consent when their relationship became physical, but that hasn’t silenced the howls of disgust.

“And I find that weird. We casually roll our eyes when we hear that Leonardo DiCaprio’s new girlfriend is three and we even nod appreciatively when we learn that the age gap between Al Pacino and his pregnant girlfriend is 54 years.”

He went on to add that he had never seen a "witch hunt" quite like the one against the ITV presenter, adding: "Everyone who’s ever walked past him in the street must be sacked as well. And those who paid his wages or sat next to him in the studio must be hauled into televised committees so that bramble bushes can be inserted into their bottoms.

“I’ve never seen a witch-hunt like it, and what baffles me most of all is that, as things stand, no crime has been committed.

“I don’t know him at all well and have no skin in the game, but it seems to me he is only guilty of being what he said he was: gay.”

He went on to say that the public would be subject to "endless conversations" about the duty of care before finishing up by telling readers that he did not believe  ITV chief executive Carloyn McCall or the director of television would have been aware of the controversial affair.

Holly Willoughby to host This Morning with Josie Gibson as show returns on Monday

It was confirmed at the end of Friday’s episode of This Morning, which was hosted by Alison Hammond and Dermot O’Leary, that Gibson will be filling in on the sofa.

Josie Gibson won the 2010 series of Big Brother and joined the ITV show in 2019.

She has co-hosted on a number of occasions as a relief presenter.

This Morning will return to ITV1 on Monday from 10 am.