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Tim Westwood: BBC launches inquiry into DJ’s time at corporation after sexual misconduct allegations

Evening Standard logo Evening Standard 04/08/2022 Josh Salisbury
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The BBC has launched an inquiry into what it knew of sexual misconduct claims against radio DJ Tim Westwood.

The broadcaster said it had appointed an independent barrister to lead a review which will “fully examine” his conduct during two decades of work.

The veteran DJ, who left the BBC in 2013, stepped down from his show on Capital Xtra in April following accusations by several women of misconduct and predatory behaviour.

Westwood, 64, has “strongly” denied any wrongdoing.

In July, the BBC said it received six complaints against Westwood, including one that was referred to police, despite director-general Tim Davie previously saying he had seen "no evidence of complaints".

Mr Davie then launched an internal audit, reporting to the BBC board’s senior independent director, Sir Nicholas Serota.

Following that report’s publication on Thursday, the corporation has appointed an independent reviewer to lead a broader review into what was known about concerns raised about Westwood.

(Ian West/PA) (PA Wire) © Provided by Evening Standard (Ian West/PA) (PA Wire)

Barrister Gemma White, supported by the law firm Linklaters, will aim to complete her investigation in six months.

The corporation also said it is in contact with the Metropolitan Police, and that as part of the "ongoing work any relevant information will be passed to them".

Sir Nicholas said: "I am grateful to the BBC’s investigations team for the work they have done.

"It is an important piece of work, but I see it as a first step. New allegations and issues are emerging as time passes and more people are prepared to come forward. For this reason the work must continue.

He said that although he expected the inquiry to be completed within six months, “this is not a hard deadline”.

A representative for Westwood has previously said: “Tim Westwood strongly denies all allegations of inappropriate behaviour.

“In a career that has spanned 40 years, there have never been any complaints made against him officially or unofficially.

"Tim Westwood strongly rejects all allegations of wrongdoing."

The Standard has attempted to contact Westwood’s representatives for comment.

The DJ, who is the son of Bill Westwood, the former Anglican bishop of Peterborough, who died in 1999, began his career on local radio before joining Capital Radio in London.

He was later given his own show by BBC Radio 1.

He left Radio 1 and Radio 1Xtra in 2013 after nearly 20 years and returned to Capital Xtra to host a regular show on Saturday nights.

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