UK & World News
Jimmy Savile: Headstone Removed And Dumped
Sir Jimmy Savile's gravestone is going to be broken up and dumped after being removed from a cemetery in Scarborough amid new sexual abuse claims.
Scotland Yard says up to 25 young girls were allegedly targeted by the late television star over a period dating back to 1959.
His family said it took the decision to remove his headstone, which bears Savile's image and lists his accomplishments, as a mark of respect to others buried in the cemetery. It had only been in place for three weeks.
"(We) are deeply aware of the impact that the stone remaining there could have on the dignity and sanctity of the cemetery," a statement released on behalf of the family said.
"Out of respect to public opinion, to those who are buried there, and to those who tend their graves and visit there, we have decided to remove it."
Scarborough Borough Council said the work was carried out shortly after midnight - ahead of the scheduled time of 7.30 on Wednesday morning - to minimise disruption and potential vandalism. Police shut the gates of the cemetery as it took place.
Despite making the request, his family did not know it would be removed under the cover of night and the decision to do it then was made by the council and funeral directors.
The elaborate tombstone has been taken to a stonemason's yard in Leeds where the inscription will be ground down. It will then be broken up and sent to landfill.
The grave, in which Savile was buried at an angle so he could "see" Scarborough Castle and the sea, will remain unmarked.
Funeral director Robert Morphet, who organised Savile's funeral in November last year and oversaw the dismantling of the headstone, said that once the family had come to terms with the outcome of various investigations they will make a decision as to how the grave should be marked in the future.
A number of memorials to Sir Jimmy have also been removed, including an inscription on the wall at Leeds Civic Hall in recognition of his charity work, and a street sign in Scarborough, North Yorkshire.
A plaque outside his home has already been defaced.
Scores of sexual abuse claims against Sir Jimmy have been made to the police and the NSPCC charity in recent days.
It follows an ITV documentary examining historic claims about the presenter's behaviour with children, which aired last week.
Commander Peter Spindler, head of specialist crime investigations at Scotland Yard, said the allegations span four decades, with information suggesting abuse was on a "national scale".
"At this stage it is quite clear from what women are telling us that Savile was a predatory sex offender," he said.
Some 120 leads are being followed up by detectives, with five different police forces involved.
Police have so far recorded two allegations of rape and six allegations of indecent assault against the former Top of the Pops presenter. The youngest victim was 13 at the time of the alleged attack.
Mr Spindler said the first allegation dates back to about 1959 but most claims seemed to be from the 1970s and 80s.
Sky News' crime correspondent Martin Brunt said: "I think we now have acceptance by the investigators that the scale of this is truly big and growing."
Prime Minister David Cameron has hinted that Sir Jimmy could be posthumously stripped of his knighthood.
However, the move would require a change in the law as technically when the former DJ died last year the honour ceased to exist.
TV presenter and founder of the charity ChildLine, Esther Rantzen, is backing a petition to have him stripped of his knighthood, which if left unchecked, she said "taints the whole honours system".
In an interview with Sky News, Rantzen, who worked at the BBC alongside Savile, added: "From my point of view, [the revelation] absolutely wrecks the image of a charity fundraiser and the friend of royalty and the friend of a prime minister.
"For me now, I'm afraid, Jimmy Savile will be remembered as a predatory paedophile."
There have also been calls for Saville to have his papal knighthood removed - although as for the civil order it also ceases to exist after death. He was awarded this in 1990, the same year as he was knighted in the Queen's Birthday Honours.
A spokesperson for the Catholic Church in England and Wales told Sky News: "If the allegations prove to be true and the Church had known about it at the time, the papal knighthood would not have been awarded."
The NSPCC is urging anyone abused or harmed by Savile to speak out and contact them and the police.
The charity's head of child protection awareness, Christopher Cloke, told Sky News: "We need to learn from these very, very tragic circumstances so we can better protect children today."
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what do you think?
Andy Savo Hanson
I am sorry to say this but After them 3 girls reported him to me it sounds like lots have jumped on the bandwagon. The bloke died nearly a year ago.
So what- these women's lives have been ruined. And not to mention the fact the bbc covered it all up for years. Ya know, jimmy savile spoke out defending Gary glitter. And we all know why now. Pedophiles stick together
People are missing that very point Andy - it is surprising what a TV camera will draw out. I heard last night how these women are now being counseled as if they have spent 30 years in trauma sorry but it is taking things to the limit.
How do you know how these women feel?
agree totally. ££££ its all about. in their fifties saying all this,all these women,come on, may have been a few. the girls loved jimmy in the 70,s.
Come on Chris this is 30 years after and response to a TV camera. Where he did abuse then fine but tread a careful road as this is not black and white try working with a named band and you would be surprised.
Unless you have been the victim of such abuse you cannot ever understand how they must feel. Or why it took them til now to open up. The death of the abuser is usually a trigger that the victim can then feel free.
Andrea, they were not grown women back then, they were CHILDREN not the middle aged women on tv....if the girls consented, loved it went back for more, he , as the ADULT should not have taken advantage! He is the guilty one!
Blue side, I refer you to Nat's post.
All this media frenzy over a dead man. Why not be so quick to disclose the names of others allegations are being made against. As someone who has been affected but moved on I know.
I thik its more like they removed the gravestone in case the angry mob find it and ruin his grave more like
dreadful isnt it. would people really go and destroy a headstone. disgusting.
Andrea, if I were his victims, too right I would! And who could blame them?
She just can't stop sticking up for him - this 'great man' as she called him.
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The truth will always come out and and catch you up, it's just a shame in this case it took too long. My sympathy to those affected.
Susan Georgina Wilson
ALL THIS INVESTIGATION ABOUT JIMMY SAVILLE WILL COST THOUSANDS OF POUNDS AND MOST LIKELY AT THE COST OF THE TAX PAYER ,ITS WASTING POLICE TIME, THE MAN IS DEAD SO HE CANNOT BE PROSECUTED I FEEL SAD FOR ALL HIS VICTIMS IF THE ACCUSATIONS ARE TRUE, AND CAN NOW PUT IT TO A CLOSURE TO SAVE TIME AND MONEY
Susan I agree with you this is trial by media.
What price justice. Alive or dead, why should he be let off lightly?
Chris he can not defend himself and how come it takes 30 years. If you read some of the reports they went back for more come on does that sound like abuse?
To blue side It would appear that you have little or no understanding of what systematic abuse does to a victims head. They would have been taught that they are filthy & only good for sex, so they were not going back for more just reacting to the traumatic effect of the abuse and the devastating negative messaging drummed into them.
Funny that, blue side, " they came back for more, does that sound like abuse?" 13/14 yr old girls, middle aged adult man.....yep! Sounds like abuse to me!
Well said Julie and Jennie.
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Guilty by media again! Thus far these are allegations and not proven facts. I feel for those concerned if they are true, for the family if they are not. Whichever way it goes let us not lose sight of the fact that the money he raised for charity is still raised and the good works he did do will not be undone
Darn right sue people are saying about these girls lives being ruined yet it takes 30 years and a TV video camera for them to tell their story. Then I hear some of them went back several times for the same!
Still people are defending this paedophile and doing their best to smear his victims. Unbelievable.
No Chris, not defending him, trying to keep an open mind.
no good sue Chris is throwing one by looking on the surface and not trying to see if there is anything on the other side of the page.
One thing Chris doesn't possess is an open mind...
Lorgar funny I had noticed that about Chris :-)
Because they went " back for more" you are saying it was their fault, blue side, you really are missing the point....he was the adult! They were children! If they had got down on their knees and begged him, the bottom line is HE WAS THE ADULT!!!!!
Open minds? Lorgar and Blue Side?
I am very sorry if someone was abused by this man. But this has became trial and conviction by media when he is not able to defend himself. Therefore I will continue to remember him as a weird eccentric who raised a lot of money for charity. Even Cameron is jumping on the band Waggon now wanting his knighthood removed. What's the point? He's dead.
The 'point' is justice for his victims.
I agree with you Tim as well as Sue Sue, we are not in possession of the facts and never will be now he has died. I guess if he has any money left in his estate, the victims could bring an injury claim for suffering against his estate maybe? I'm not a lawyer. I think the family have done the right thing removing the ostentatious headstone and i truly believe it is as a mark of respect to potential victims. Maybe his raising so much money was his attempt to atone and right his wrongs?
Windows Live User
You have to ask yourself, if it is indeed true, why didnt the like of Ranzen and Street-Porter says something years ago while it was happening and have it stopped? They were allegedly amongst the many who now say they were aware of rumours years ago yet said nothing? Also how can it be justice to anyone to strip the dead of a knighthood that no longer exists? The title died with them and is gone!!! Nothing there to strip! This is no help.
Tim they are all jumping on the bandwagon. Not saying the guy is not guilty as he obviously abused his position but trust me within the industry he is not alone girls tend to go OTT to score brownie points if you take my point.
Yes..he's dead, the odds are he's guilty, he couldn't care less now, if indeed he is guilty, why should he be remembered as a "good egg?" And his victims need to be believed, and although he's dead, maybe it will illustrate to "celebs" that no matter how important tou think you are...your not!
Windows Live User
Marvelous how Cameron holds back until he sees the mood of the people before he acts. Why cant he lead the nation instead of following it?
your obsessed with Cameron.
The evidence is building up, like it or not, does anyone now think he's totaly, without any question of a doubt innocent?
No Julie do think the odds are against him however it is of concern when there is paranoia and one must question the full extent of guilt. Young girls do go gooey eyed within the pop music industry - need I say more. So whilst I would not defend his actions when a girl goes back for more, as seems to be the case, one does have to question the true situation.
It is a truelly horrible accusation to make against someone. But it really doesn;t look good..
Mabey we could do away with the whole criminal process and let Julie decide who is guilty or innocent - from Jeremy Kyle style programmes perhaps?
Blue side.....he was the adult, even if as you say, girls " threw" themselves at him, starkers, they were CHILDREN! Not the grown up women we've seen on television....they remain innocent, he gave in to his perversions, yes, dead or otherwise, the truth must come out, the more this goes on I'm convinced he is as guilty as hell....exposť him! He won't care,..his victims will stand up and be counted...
Don't be pathetic, Robert....
I remember a famous lady who I won't name once making a comment, years ago when the TOTP commerations were on, about Jimmy either in a documentary or other commerative programme, long before any of these allegations surfaced and it did stick with me. However until proven etc. I've never been convinced Michael Jackson was guilty, incredibly childlike and naive yes but not guility of what he was accused of, so who knows about all this now surfacing. The decent press don't give it much space but the gutter press a lot so make your own decisions.
No, the broadsheets have carried it on their front pages.
why hasnt these people done something about these alligations when they happened all those years ago why suddenly crawl out of the woodwork now that jimmy is dead. wasted taxpayers money on accusations that can never be proved or disproved as hes dead and cant defend himself . C Robinson needs to get real, justice can only be administered if the accused is there to face the music. As for ratzen shes nothing more than an embittered has been and is doing the band wagon thing. i will think on the good that jimmy did and until theres true evidence not innuendo and heresay i will continue to see the good that the man did.
hear hear cris nash. this is trial by media. jimmy did good work. where have these women been?
Did good work!? All negated by his, now very obvious guilt!
Get real yourself. Ever heard of being tried 'in absentia'? Martin Borman, the notorious fascist was such a person.
Glad to see your back on line andrea, i felt you were almost being cyber bullied because of your opinion last night
Her! Bullied! Your having a chuckle! Hard as nails, that one, lol!
She wasn't being bullied, she was being strongly disagreed with and rightly so. Fancy defending a paedophile.
I have total admiration for the familys decision to have the headstone removed.
I dont anybody on here is saying hes innocent.just is it worth the investigation.and did these woman get paid royaties by itv.and will they later sell their stories to the tabloids and if they do will they donate the money to the ns.pca
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The point i can not get over is the amount of people who knew and did not act . How can you not speak up .
Yes Emma, I have voiced this opinion before but have been shot down in flames. While I accept that victims can be traumatised and terrified for years afterwards, there were celebrities within the industry who had their suspicions but did not speak out. These are the people who I find despicable.
I totally agree Emma I am surprised that Rantzen had the nerve to say that she was aware of rumours but did nothing about it given her association with Childline. If it is true then shame on her and her collegues for keeping quiet & prolonging the alleged victims pain.
The real problem now Emma is that though Jimmy seems to have been a 'naughty boy' and some of these alleged victims could be genuine, what about the scores of neurotics now coming out of the woodwork with £££s signs in their eyes, how on earth can the authorities deal with that?
What a waste. Should have sold it on e-bay and given the proceeds to charity.
Savile may be dead but the allegations against him should be investigated. It appears that he was a pedetory peadophile and until the full investigation is complete we will not know for sure. He was a other that hid behind his religion and charity work. I feel for the genuine women who have now come forward and who knows why they never did before. Since they have now then we should be supporting them and you will find the majority will not be seeking compensation but looking for closure so people bad mouthing them should think carefully before spouting rubbish. Savile appears to have been a manipulative person who used all the skills he gained as an entertainer to carry out his attacks on these women who were no more than children. What strikes me is the family have removed his headstone from his grave and are going to have it destroyed. That alone shows they had an idea what he was like Nd accept that most if not all the allegations will be found to have happened. Previous enquiries were A sham and he got away with it due to his so called fame plus the corrupt BBC being complicit in His crimes.
The way people are still defending Savile the sexual predator and paedophile in this day and age given the overwhelming amount of information coming in, despite now EIGHT police forces reporting complaints against him plus all the others, despite Savile trying to defend Gary Glitter, even the statement of one of his own nephews about Savile taking him to a 'paedophile party', is breathtaking. Small wonder then that Savile was able to get away with his sordid crimes for so long.
The fellow's dead & gone so out they come like woodworm. Despicable!