Telly star Martin Clunes axed from Churchill ads after driving ban

Actor Martin Clunes – famous for his role in sitcom Men Behaving Badly – has blasted Churchill insurance bosses for axing him after he was disqualified from driving for 6 months.

Clunes totted up 12 penalty points on his licence and was subsequently banned from driving a vehicle for 6 months last November.

The actor was shocked at the insurance firm's reaction, he said to The Mirror: "I was very surprised by their reaction. It was neurotic and very heavy-handed. Quite rude, actually.

"They never said goodbye, they never said thanks – they washed their hands of me completely."

The most recent adverts featured Clunes and his sidekick, an animatronic bulldog, embarking on various road trips while riding a Triumph motorcycle. The pair can be seen helping countryside-dwellers with their day-to-day problems.

But this isn't the first time Churchill Insurance has axed one of its stars. In 2005, the firm let Vic Reeves (who once voiced the dog) go after he was charged with drink driving.

Churchill Insurance reacted to Clunes' outburst by saying, "Churchill Insurance worked with Martin Clunes in a brand advertising campaign from December 2011 until November 2012, when his driving licence was suspended after he accumulated penalty points for four speeding offences.

"Churchill Insurance takes the issue of road safety very seriously and so we felt that it was not appropriate to continue the ­relationship with him."

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