Jimmy Savile: Two Weeks On
Savilgate rumbles on with many more shocking revelations about the former national icon. Like we said in part one of this story nothing has been proven in a court yet but the avalanche of accusations have been ugly and quite convincing…
Two weeks since the ITV documentary, the Jimmy Savile revelations keep on coming thick and fast. Literally hundreds of people have contacted the police or child abuse helplines with gruesome stories about the disgraced former Radio 1 DJ, and the ghoulish tales appear to be getting more lurid by the day.
As well as countless young girls, Savile molested a nine-year-old cub scout in his dressing room, asking him if he was ready to âearn his Jimâll Fix It badgeâ; it was revealed that Stoke Mandeville hospital, where Savile worked as a volunteer â he had his own room there and allegedly abused several young patients â were launching an investigation into his unaccompanied mortuary visits and possible necrophilia; he also allegedly abused many patients at Broadmoor psychiatric hospital, where he held âall-girls discosâ and had a room and his own set of keys to hospital wards.
Other establishments where he reportedly abused youngsters include Leeds General Infirmary, the Haute de la Garenne childrenâs home in Jersey, Duncroft approved girlsâ school in Staines in Surrey, as well as the BBC â not to mention his camper van, where heâd routinely molest young girls he lured back there.
âSavile is one of the most serious predatory paedophiles in criminal history,â said BBC presenter Jeremy Vine, and media attention has largely focused on the BBCâs inaction and who else may have been involved with Savile (speculation about âa fourth manâ in recent days, following allegations against Gary Glitter and also Freddie Starr, who has vigorously denied all reports).
One BBC executive, former Radio 1 boss Derek Chinnery, reported that heâd questioned Savile over 20 years ago about âthese rumours we hearâ. The DJ used the Shaggy defence â âit wasnât meâ â and the exec took his denial at face value.
The BBC have now finally announced two inquiries into Savile â one over why their Newsnight investigative report was pulled, the other a âforensic and soul-searchingâ inquiry into how Savile was able to get away with sexual abuse for so long. And other institutions surely have questions to answer too. The police, as to why they didnât take allegations about Savile seriously before his death, for starters, but some of Savileâs connections while he was alive go right to the higher echelons of society too.
It was revealed that in 1988, a month after Conservative minister Kenneth Clarke took over the Department Of Health, the entire management board of Broadmoor psychiatric hospital was sacked, and Jimmy Savile was appointed to head a task-force into its future. Savile had been a volunteer there since the late 60s, calling himself the âvoluntary assistant entertainments officerâ â but using his position to abuse inmates with impunity.
It was also revealed that Savile attended eleven New Yearâs Eve parties in a row thrown by Margaret Thatcher at Chequers, and that Cardinal Hume proposed him for membership of the Athenaeum, an exclusive gentlemanâs club in Pall Mall. Hume had earlier hushed up a suspected sexual abuse scandal at Ampleforth College by a paedophile priest. The Pope, the head of the Catholic church, also granted Savile a papal knighthood on the recommendation of Cardinal Hume.
The Queen also knighted Savile in 1990, and he was friends with several members of the royal family. He was also allegedly a freemason. Unlike other paedophiles, however, Savile wasnât hiding in the shadows â he was âhiding in plain sightâ.
Rumours about his misdemeanours had followed him for years, yet Savile was clever. He was a member of Mensa, an organisation for people with a high IQ, and he seemed to instinctively know the limits of what he could get away with.
All manner of people who interviewed or worked with Savile professionally have given their testimonies about the man, and the writer Irvine Welsh has been apparently been inundated with inquiries about the origin of his fictional character in the Ecstasy trilogy of short stories, where his character Freddy Royle in Lorraine Goes To Livingston is an obvious parody of Savile – a necrophiliac who fund-raised for a hospital and received various âbenefitsâ in return.
Welshâs genius fictionalisation, and the lampooning by Brass Eyeâs Chris Morris in 1994â¦
â¦caustic stand-up comic Jerry Sadowitz in 1987â¦
and Harry Enfield and Paul Whitehouseâs Smashie & Nicie characters
Were basically flagging up Savileâs paedophiliac activities (and the proclivities of other Radio 1 DJs) whilst the law seemed unable to touch him.
Savile did, indeed, appear untouchable. His charity work and high-up connections allowed him to get away with sexual abuse for 50 years. Who was going to believe an allegation against Saint Jimmy, particularly if it came from a young girl in a psychiatric unit or wherever.
Savile was undoubtedly also a fantasist â taking credit for things he had no real right to. When interviewed by Louis Theroux for the infamous 2000 documentary, he claimed that his single âAhab The Arabâ â an appalling light entertainment ditty from 1962 â was one of the first ever rap records. Check it here to see if you agree:
He also claimed to be âthe godfather of DJ cultureâ, but this claim needs to be put to rest now. Savile claimed to be the first DJ to put two turntables together in the mid-1940s, although twin turntables were advertised for sale in Gramophone magazine in 1931. They were also illustrated in a BBC handbook in 1929. Savile may have been one of the early DJ entrepreneurs in the 1950s, but there were several others doing similar work â and many whoâve been more important in the growth of DJ culture.
Plaques, headstones, footpath signs and statues of Savile are now being removed, and heâs probably ensured that one of the most iconic music TV shows ever – Top Of The Pops â can never make a comeback. Tainted by the fact that Savile was its inaugural presenter in 1964 and appeared regularly until 2006 â including on its final episode â Savile also reportedly ran a paedophile ring inside TOTP with four of its crew members. The BBC has postponed all re-runs of TOTP with Savile presenting, and it would seem that not even Simon Cowell can resurrect this show now after this national scandal.
Savile wasnât really a music fan. You never heard of him âbreaking a bandâ by playing unknown acts on his radio shows – he seemed more into his own ego – and the idea that he was hugely loved has surely been mythologised.
Letâs call him out for what he was, then â a cold, creepy, unloved, self-referential, disgusting, pervy predatory paedophile. An evil c***, to quote Jerry Sadowitz. Even an evil genus, perhaps – how did he get away with it for so long?