COUNCILLORS have severed another link between a Yorkshire seaside town and Jimmy Savile following the child sex abuse scandal that has engulfed the late’s star reputation.
A meeting of Scarborough Council yesterday unanimously backed a motion calling for the removal of Savile’s name from a town hall board listing people who have been made freemen of the borough.
The council will consider formally stripping Savile of his freeman title – awarded in 2005 – once the police have issued their final report into his alleged crimes.
There was also an unsuccessful call at yesterday’s meeting for Savile’s body to be exhumed and cremated following a complaint from the grandmother of a child who is buried in a grave near to his at Scarborough’s Woodlands Cemetery.
Coun Colin Haddington (Con, Filey) said: “This has caused a great deal of distress to my constituent and her family.”
Coun Haddington later said he was disappointed that his call had failed but acknowledged such a step would have to be authorised by Savile’s family.
A plaque outside BBC TV and radio host Savile’s old home in Scarborough was taken down shortly after the allegations against him emerged last month. His gravestone has also been removed from Woodlands Cemetery.
Detectives fear the Leeds-born star abused up to 300 young people, with some attacks said to have taken place on BBC and NHS premises.
Solicitors yesterday confirmed they are planning legal action on behalf of 43 of his potential victims.
Slater and Gordon, which is acting for 36 alleged victims, has sent legal letters to the BBC, Leeds General Infirmary, Stoke Mandeville and Broadmoor hospitals, and the executors of Savile’s £4.3m estate.
Another law firm, Pannone, is acting for seven potential victims and has sent letters of claim to Savile’s estate. One claim has also been made against the BBC.