| 13.1°C Belfast

12 trusts face new Savile claims


Fresh abuse allegations against Jimmy Savile have been made in relation to 12 NHS trusts

Fresh abuse allegations against Jimmy Savile have been made in relation to 12 NHS trusts

Jimmy Savile visiting Leeds General Infirmary in 1972

Jimmy Savile visiting Leeds General Infirmary in 1972

Fresh abuse allegations against Jimmy Savile have been made in relation to 12 NHS trusts

Fresh abuse allegations against disgraced TV and radio presenter Jimmy Savile have been made in relation to 12 NHS Trusts.

The NHS Legacy Unit, which provides oversight of NHS investigations into alleged abuse by Savile on health premises, has passed on information from victims and the Metropolitan Police to the trusts, which cover nine hospitals and health services which have not featured in earlier inquiries.

The fresh claims have emerged since 28 investigation reports into Savile's activities in NHS premises were published in June, Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt said in a written statement.

Outstanding investigation reports, including an investigation into Stoke Mandeville Hospital in Buckinghamshire, have been delayed until later in the year at the request of prosecutors, the Health Secretary added.

Lawyers representing Savile's victims said it was "incredibly worrying" to see new concerns emerge.

Tracey Storey, a specialist lawyer at Irwin Mitchell who is representing some of Savile's victims, said: "It is incredibly worrying to see more concerns related to Savile emerge and it is vital that authorities work quickly to fully investigate these new allegations.

"The extent of the abuse highlighted by previous and ongoing investigations has been truly horrifying, and the revelation of further allegations raises even more concerns regarding his activities and how he was able to offend over a number of years."

There will also be a delay t o the publication of investigations into alleged abuse by Savile in children's homes and schools, which are overseen by the Department for Education, Mr Hunt added.

New investigations have been launched into the following hospitals and health services:

:: Leeds General Infirmary, Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust (subject to previous investigation)

:: Stoke Mandeville Hospital, Buckinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust (subject to previous investigation)

:: Birch Hill Hospital, Rochdale Pennine Acute NHS Trust

:: Scott House Hospital, Rochdale Calderstones NHS Foundation Trust

:: Bethlem Royal Hospital, south London, and the Maudsley NHS Trust

:: Shenley Hospital, central and north west London NHS Trust

:: West Yorkshire Ambulance Service, Yorkshire Ambulance Service

:: St Martins Hospital, Canterbury, Kent, and Medway NHS and Social Care Partnership Trust

:: Queen Elizabeth Hospital Gateshead, Gateshead Health NHS Foundation Trust

:: Royal Victoria Infirmary, Newcastle upon Tyne NHS Foundation Trust (subject to previous investigation)

:: Meanwood Park Hospital, Leeds and York Partnerships Foundation Trust

:: Calderdale Royal Hospital, Calderdale and Huddersfield NHS Foundation Trust

Some of the hospitals might have closed, the minister said, in which case details of the allegations will be passed on to the legacy organisation.

Findings in the first round of NHS investigation reports - published in June - said Savile committed ''truly awful'' abuse against patients at hospitals across the country and even boasted about having sex with corpses.

Branded as an ''opportunistic sexual predator'' by investigators, Savile used the NHS and his celebrity status to ''exploit and abuse'' patients and staff.

Among the most disturbing findings were ''macabre accounts'' of claims that the late TV and radio presenter performed sex acts on dead bodies in the mortuary at Leeds General Infirmary (LGI) and at least one other hospital.

Savile, a Radio 1 DJ who also presented the BBC's Top Of The Pops and Jim'll Fix It, died aged 84 in October 2011 - a year before allegations that he had sexually abused children were broadcast in ITV documentary Exposure: The Other Side Of Jimmy Savile.

The documentary ultimately led to a joint review by the Metropolitan Police and NSPCC, which in turn triggered separate NHS investigations.

Efa Schimdt, abuse lawyer with Slater and Gordon, which represents 169 of Savile's victims, said: "Very sadly, I am not surprised that the investigations into Jimmy Savile's horrific reign of abuse continues to widen.

"The most important thing is to get to the truth. We must not stop until we know absolutely everything about how Savile was able to carry out decades of abuse in plain sight.

"The victims are pleased that we are getting closer to understanding exactly how all this was allowed to happen. However, with every new investigation, the pain goes on. What everyone is longing for is closure.

"The victims also believe redress in the form of a change to the law by introducing mandatory reporting of child abuse within certain regulated activities would stop predators like Savile ever striking again."

Caroline Moore, 55, says she was attacked by Savile at Stoke Mandeville when she was 13 while recovering from spinal fusion treatment.

She said: "What I want - what the victims want - is to find out the truth. What I find horrific is that people who worked at these organisations knew what was going on - and did nothing about it. So if the new investigations achieve that then I welcome them fully.

"I hope that the reports, when they are published, bring some people to task. We deserve redress and we deserve to know how this could have ever happened. Those people who should have done something but didn't should hold their hands up.

"I came forward when I heard about the claims against Jimmy Savile but before any claims had been made about what he did in any hospitals. I remember a few years before he died watching a documentary about him and growing more and more angry about the figure he was being portrayed as - a decent man basically.

"When I was young I told people about what had happened. It was no secret. Finally after all these years we are being listened to and for that at least I am grateful. I want it over with - I want closure. But I want the truth as well.

"The aim of all these inquiries must be to make sure this can never happen again. Predators like Savile must never be able to prey on the vulnerable again."