Call to strip ‘sex beast’ Smith of freedom honour
SEX beast Cyril Smith could be posthumously stripped of the Freedom of Rochdale - 26 years after he was granted the honour.
Next week councillors will consider rescinding the honour, awarded to the town’s paedophile former MP in 1992.
It follows a complaint from one of Smith’s victims.
Details of Smith’s three decades of sex abuse were laid bare during last year’s Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse.
Several victims told how the 29 stone politician had abused them at Cambridge Boys Hostel in the 1960s under the pretext of bizarre ‘medical examinations’.
Others told the hearing how he had raped and abused them at the notorious Knowl View special school 1980s.
A damning report published at the end of the hearings concluded Smith had ‘considerable control’ over some of his victims and tried to use his power to keep them quiet.
It also found his ‘strong, perhaps unduly detailed, interest in children in care’ was allowed to go unchallenged by the council.
The allegations were first made public by the Rochdale Alternative Paper in 1979.
Despite that, Smith was awarded a Knighthood by Margaret Thatcher in 1988 and four years later given the Freedom of Rochdale the highest honour the borough can confer.
But now a report set to go before Rochdale council next Wednesday recommends the Freedom of Rochdale is rescinded.
It states: “On August 19, 1992, the Council’s in the then Policy & Resources Committee resolved to confer the Freedom of the Borough on the then Sir Cyril Smith.
“Subsequently, according to local press reports, the award was conferred at a Town Hall ceremony on Monday, November 23, 1992.
“In the intervening years and before, there was considerable local disquiet about the way in which Cyril Smith behaved towards children and young people at Cambridge House and elsewhere.
“We now know that had this happened today, he would have been prosecuted and most likely convicted of serious criminal offences.
“To put matters beyond any doubt, there is still a compelling case - if the Council is so minded- to... conclude with certainty that the award of Freeman of the Borough on Cyril Smith is henceforth removed.”
●●Former Rochdale MP Cyril Smith