first_imgA former Highland Radio DJ claims he was constructively dismissed from the station after the use of a company car and a sales position were taken from him.Former Higland Radio presenter Steven Lynch leaving the tribunal yesterday. Pic by Northwest Newspix.Steven Lynch was the second most popular radio host on Highland after presenting the lunchtime show for many years.However an Employment Appeals Tribunal heard claims yesterday that he was forced to leave his position because it made no financial sense to remain. The tribunal, held at the Silver Tassie Hotel, heard how Mr Lynch, 37, had been employed by the station since 2004 until before he left in May 2013.Mr Lynch, of Strath, Carndonagh, had worked at a doctor’s surgery until being head-hunted to join the station after he had been heard presenting a show on another local station.He quickly became a popular presenter on its afternoon show and his show’s listenership was second only to the flagship Shaun Doherty Morning Show.He earned a basic wage of €394 for presenting his show but also had the use of a company car from Monday until Friday and was also on 20% of any adverts he sold to a list of between 40 and 50 clients. The car was one of a pool of three cars which were sponsored by Inishowen Motors in return for €10,000 worth of advertising on the station each year.Station manager Mr Charlie Collins also used a car as well as the sports-team at the weekend.When the company was sold to the Rabbitt family in 2008, a series of cost-cutting measures were introduced.Former station manager Collins told the tribunal that the business had turnover of €2.5 million with a profit of €750,000 at the time.However, despite a turnover of €2 million in 2009, this was the year the recession started to bite and staff were asked to take a 10% pay cut. Mr Collins said he thought this was excessive as the station was still in a very healthy state.He added that during 2009, the company paid more than €700,000 in bank debt as well as €100,000 to agents for the sale of the station.Local auditors were also replaced by outside agencies leading to another substantial cost.In his evidence, former station manager Collins told how marketing manager John Clancy, who joined the company in 2012, was constantly raising the issue of Mr Lynch and how he had become “obsessed” with him. His client base on the Inishowen peninsula was eventually reduced to 15 and the use of the company car was taken from him and taken over by Mr Clancy.“The car was also taken off him. That decision was made because Mr Clancy who felt we were not getting value and it did not make sense to supply him with a car. At every meeting it seemed that he was obsessed with Steven and he would say it was not god enough. This went on and on and he decided to take it off him. I think it would be fair to say that he targeted him,” said Mr Collins.Mr Collins said he told the radio presenter to go and spend time with his father who was dying at the time saying “Highland Radio will still be here when you get back.”The tribunal was told that Mr Lynch was looking for an extra €200 to compensate him for the loss of both the car and his position within sales.Mr Collins took this to the board but they rejected it.Solicitor for Mr Lynch, Ciaran McLaughlin, asked Mr Collins if he would have paid his client the money.“I felt we should negotiate with him but the board felt it was too much. I would have paid him close to it as I felt the show was so important to station,” added Mr Collins.Solicitor McLaughlin said his client estimated he was at a loss of €67,294 since leaving the station in May 2013.The tribunal was told that Mr Lynch was immediately replaced by another presenter Gary Gamble who was still employed at the station.The tribunal will continue on July 7th next.HIGHLAND RADIO PRESENTER CLAIMS STATION BOSSES FORCED HIM TO LEAVE was last modified: April 18th, 2015 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Tags:Claimconstructive dismissaldonegalHighland RadioJohn ClancyletterkennySteven Lynchlast_img

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