At least five former pupils of Duncroft Approved School have alleged they were sexually assaulted by Jimmy Savile. The school was under the direct control of the Home Office at the time.
The Home Office is the latest institution to become involved in the scandal surrounding the late Jimmy Savile. Former pupils of Duncroft Approved School, a residential establishment for "emotionally disturbed" girls, claim the Headmistress provided Savile with his own flat in the school.
The Daily Record reports that alleged victims say they were sexually assaulted after Savile was allowed to stay overnight.
According to the The Daily Telegraph, one of the alleged victims, Toni Townsend, who was photographed with the television star in 1972, said:
Jimmy treated Duncroft like a paedophile sweet shop.
He used to take his pick of the mix. He would wander around the school in a vest and tracksuit bottoms.
He stayed in a flat on the top floor. He was the only man allowed to stay overnight. Who knows what horrors happened up there.
The girls at Duncroft had been sent there by the courts for prostitution, drugs and because they tried to kill themselves. Who would have believed us against Saint Jimmy?
The Daily Mirror reports that Carole Wells alleges Savile once assaulted her in his Rolls-Royce after the headmistress asked if she wanted to go for a ride with him. She said:
He asked me my name and where I lived. Then he stopped the car and said, "Are you a virgin?"
I said, "I’m not telling you that." Then he put his hands down my knickers and started messing about with me. He put my hand down his trousers then took me back. I was crying.
When Wells reported the incident to the Headmistress, she was told, "Don’t be stupid."
The Home Office said it would be inappropriate to comment, as a number of former pupils are taking legal action.
Harriet Harman, the Shadow Culture Secretary and Deputy Leader of the Labour Party, said:
The fact that the Home Office now seems to be involved underlines the need for an independent inquiry.