Savile: Portrait of a Predator, ITV, STV 9pm, ITV Hub

Ten years ago, Sir Jimmy Savile died. His funeral was an event that featured on the news. The great and the good appeared, in sombre tones, mourning our loss. People lined the streets to pay their respects. Sir Keith Stammer was Director of Public Prosecutions. Operation Yewtree was set up in London in 2012 to investigate his alleged sexual offences after girls from Duncroft, a children’s home in Surrey, featured in the tabloids saying he’d sexually abused them. Detective Gary Pankhurst said he followed up on hundreds of reports. He classified Savile as a high-functioning psychopath.

Spokesmen from Surrey Police admitted they’d interviewed the 80-year-old Savile in 2009. A familiar pattern emerged of Savile getting away with everything short of murder.

The question WHY is easily answered.

He was wealthy.

He was a celebrity. He didn’t work for the BBC. The BBC worked for him. They created a show, Jim’ll Fix It, and it did. It fixed it for the serial paedophile.

He counted Margaret Thatcher and Prince Charles as his personal friends. He was part of the British establishment, given a knighthood in 1990. He had access to Kensington Palace and wandered about at will. Princess Diana thought he was creepy, when he tried to lick her hand. Prince Charles failed to comment on Savile’s posthumous reputation as a serial paedophilic abuser of around 500 mostly preadolescent girls. That’s an estimate by NSPCC. Being a conservative, that is a conservative number.  

He had high-ranking policemen friends that acted as minders.

He had criminal friends that acted as minders.

He could play nice, but he could also play scary.

Sylvia Edwards, now 63, appears on the programme. Back then, in the nineteen-seventies, she’s been given the nod by Savile, picked up by runners for Top of the Pops, a show regularly watched by 15 million. There she is onscreen beside celebrity Jimmy Savile as he speaks to his audience at home in their living rooms. The moron’s moron and fellow psychopath, ex-American President, admitted he grabbed women by the pussy, but it was never shown on camera. But here it is on loop, a blonde and very pretty mop-topped girl, jumping up and twisting away as Savile rams his hand up into her pussy.

It was treated as a joke. When she complained to a cameraman, he told her to go away, get lost.

He picked his victims—they were poor and powerless.

A former bass player with Sparks, Ian Hampton, said: ‘I think he regarded Top of the Pops as a happy hunting ground for young ladies. On one occasion I was on Top of the Pops, Savile disappeared with a young girl to a dressing room’.

Claire McAlpine, (her image with Savile shown above) for example, an adolescent, who appeared dancing for the cameras on Top of the Pops. She became pregnant, aged fifteen, and killed herself. Her mother had complained to BBC management about her being in Savile’s dressing room.

Hampton asked a producer of the show what was happening with Savile? He wasn’t given answers. Told he was being ridiculous.  

Literally, powerless with a woman interviewed anonymously, telling how she was in a wheelchair, a patient at Stoke Mandeville Hospital. Savile took her away in her wheelchair to abuse her. She was paralysed from the waist down, but she remembered his eyes.

He did charity work. Kerching, this led to lucrative contracts with state institutions such as British Rail, paying him handsomely for acting as their spokesman on child safety, for example. Savile joked that he’d squared it up with Him upstairs for a few things he’d done. Quid pro quo. A peripatetic bachelor, he had the right credentials to become a priest. He had the equivalent of a knighthood with the Roman Catholic Church.

A two-and-a-half-year independent inquiry in France about the abuse of children by clergy, over the past seventy years, found that at least 330,000 children were victims of sexual abuse by clergy and lay members of church institutions.

“The Catholic church is, after the circle of family and friends, the environment that has the highest prevalence of sexual violence,” the report said.

There’s little reason to believe that similar figures of abuse didn’t also happen in the United Kingdom. And again, these are probably underestimates.

Jimmy Savile was a serial sexual abuser. As each spokesman or woman for the institutions involved run for cover, does this programme offer us anything new?



I didn't think it offered any new insights, which is not to say that it's not worth doing, to remind people of the appalling way he was enabled by the Great and the Good. There were many reasons Savile got away with it, but the one I've never heard mentioned in plain English is that nobody in authority actually gave a shit that he was raping kids. It's all 'we didn't realise'. They knew what he was - the producer of Children In Need at the time wouldn't let him anywhere near the programme - but they simply didn't care. It was only young women, children and hospital patients, and whether Savile was a cash cow or not, they didn't think those people mattered. I would like to see every one of those enablers forced to acknowledge that they actively chose to look the other way. I'm sick of hearing people say they thought he was 'creepy' or 'meancing' or yadda yadda but were happy to do a Pontius Pilate and walk away.

I remember being befuddled when I was a teenager and read about Claire McAlpine's suicide. I cut the article out of the paper and stuck it in my diary. I'd seen her on TOTP and she seemed to have everything. I tried to work out in my head what could have happened that made her want to die. I was lucky enough not to have any idea at all.

It's still happening and it will go on happening. I used to think it could be changed. I don't think so now. Child porn is one of the biggest, if not the biggest, thing on the internet. Doesn't mean we shouldn't try to change it. Just means we should accept we're going to fail.





I haven't watched it but I am aware of it. I always think of Saville when I watch the reruns of TOTP which, of course, never feature the disgraced JS. To have done what he did for so long and the fact that some at the BBC did know what was going on is chilling. I am still in two minds whether to watch stuff like this but I probably will. Eventually.


fair point airy fairy. You're right. Floor managers that selected victims. Brought them to his room or camper van. Michael Jackson used money to grease his vice. All those hotel staff and his entourage that claimed not to know. You still get the same shit. A reversal of the truth, when the victims are victimised. The first question a lawyer, representing the ultra-wealthy asks is have you made a compentsation claim (subtext, it's all made up, you're in it for the money, therefore it's all lies and made up).