Chris Tarrant to face court charged with drink-driving

Radio host and TV presenter Chris Tarrant is due to appear in court in the new year charged with drink-driving in his Mercedes.

Chris Tarrant
Chris Tarrant

The 71-year-old is accused of being over the limit while behind the wheel on December 16 after a pub lunch at the Bladebone Inn in Bucklebury, close to his Berkshire home.

Police were tipped off about his alleged drink-driving by a member of the public.

He has been summoned to appear at Reading Magistrates' Court on January 18.

The radio host and former presenter of hit quiz show Who Wants To Be A Millionaire has strongly denied any wrongdoing.


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His agent and manager Paul Vaughan said in a statement that Tarrant had "enjoyed a single drink and something to eat" before leaving the pub "in an entirely sober state" and driving home.

He continued: "Once he was at home, as he was not to drive himself again that day, he freely admits he drank a quantity of alcohol - some brandy and later some wine.

"Having been at home for some time, he was called upon by a police officer who approached him outside his house and required him, following information received by a member of the public, to take a breath test.

"This test proved positive and he was formally arrested and taken to the Newbury Police Station."


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The statement said Tarrant's breathalyser reading was 50 microgrammes of alcohol per 100 millilitres of breath - the legal limit being 35 microgrammes.

Mr Vaughan added: "Mr Tarrant was not stopped by police at the roadside, nor was he given a roadside breath test - nor is there any allegation by police that his driving fell below standard.

"Indeed, they did not witness the journey."

Tarrant intends to plead not guilty at his court appearance, Mr Vaughan said.