A former personal assistant of Jimmy Savile reveals details of his relationships with the great and the good, and his access to hospitals, to a new ITV1 Exposure programme.
UK (ITV1 EXPOSURE) - A former personal assistant of Jimmy Savile described the disgraced former presenter as "untouchable" in a new ITV1 Exposure programme broadcast on Wednesday (November 21).Janet Cope shared files and photographs illustrating Savile's ties to numerous celebrities and members of the British establishment over the 28-year period that she worked for him, and clearly remembered the moment of her summary dismissal, in front of other members of Savile's staff.
"There was the chief radiographer, the chief works officer, there was a senior secretary, and he was puffing away at his cigar and he said, 'right
then, she's out. I'm getting a management team in.' I was speechless."
Asked why nobody stood up for her, Cope replied; "Because Jimmy was untouchable."
Savile, a cigar-chomping former DJ who was one of the BBC's top presenters, died last year aged 84.
A police investigation into hundreds of allegations of sexual abuse is ongoing, but the scandal has already destroyed the reputation of a man who had been widely admired and honoured for his charity work, and has raised troubling questions about the BBC's management and its workplace culture in the past.
Police have said Savile was "undoubtedly" one of Britain's most prolific sex offenders.
With regard to Savile's involvement with the high-security hospital at Broadmoor, Cope told ITV1 Exposure that his access was "total", and he "was very proud of the fact that he spoke to all these very high-profile poorly criminals".
Edwina Curry, a government minister at the time, told the programme: "I feel fairly sure that Jimmy Savile suggested himself for this and we would have leapt at it because he had been a prison visitor there for over 20 years. He would have been seen as an extremely useful person and to have a high profile doing this is would have been so much the better."
She added that it was never clear what his brief was, but that he was simply seen as 'a friend of the establishment'.