‘Predator Savile roamed freely at boarding school’
Inquiry told TV star made boys uncomfortable
A CHILD abuse inquiry has heard that shamed showbiz figure Jimmy Savile was allowed to “roam freely” at a Catholic school in the north.
The claims were made as witnesses gave evidence of sexual and physical attacks by members of religious orders and staff at the Benedictine Fort Augustus Abbey, on Loch Nessside.
One man said he was drugged and raped by monks at the school – and that he was also sexually assaulted at Pluscarden Abbey near Elgin.
The witness told the Scottish Child Abuse Inquiry he was warned he would be thrown into the Moray Firth or Loch Ness if he told anyone.
Savile is thought to have been a frequent visitor to the school during trips north before the sexual predator bought a cottage in Glencoe.
One man said his late brother told him: “Savile was allowed to roam freely at the school, even the boys’ dormitories. Although he was a big star, they felt uncomfortable.”
Jimmy Savile was allowed to “roam freely” in the boys’ dormitories of a Catholic school in the Highlands, an inquiry heard yesterday.
A former pupil at the Benedictine Fort Augustus Abbey told family members the serial predator would turn up at the school in his Rolls-Royce at a time when young boys say they were being abused by staff.
Another witness said yesterday he had been drugged and raped by monks at the same school, and was also sexually assaulted at Pluscarden Abbey, near Elgin.
The youngster was warned he would be thrown into the Moray Firth or Loch Ness if he reported the abuse, he said.
The allegations were made as witnesses at the Scottish Child Abuse Inquiry gave evidence of sexual and physical attacks at Fort Augustus Abbey.
In a written statement, a man given the pseudonym “Rory” said his brother “Doug”, who was born in 1951 but has since died, told him Savile was given access to the school in the 1960s, when he was already a famous DJ with Radio Luxembourg.
“Savile would park his Rolls-Royce car outside the school. Doug said Savile was allowed to roam freely at the school, even the boys’ dormitories,” it read.
“Doug said the boys didn’t like Savile. Even although he was a big star, they felt uncomfortable.”
Savile was photographed at the school in 1970 and later bought a cottage at Glencoe.
In the statement, it was claimed Doug had also told his brother he was sexually assaulted by a staff member at the school.
Another anonymous witness, known as “James” and born in 1956, gave a statement which was read yesterday to the inquiry, being chaired by Lady Smith.
He alleged he had been attacked at Fort Augustus and at Pluscarden Abbey in Moray while he was on a trip north from a Catholic school in Glasgow.
He said: “My memory is a little hazy because I believe I was drugged at the (Pluscarden) abbey and that some kind of alcohol was made at the abbey, and I may have been given some.
“I remember being locked in a room and I think while I was in the room I was given a drink of alcohol.”
He said another two monks entered the room and he was sexually assaulted.
A 56-year-old witness, who attended Fort Augustus Abbey in the 1970s, told the inquiry yesterday he had been sexually abused three times by a monk.
He said the abuse had a major impact on his life and he continues to receive psychological treatment to this day.
The school was closed in 1993 and the last monks left in 1998.
The inquiry continues today.
PROBE: The shamed TV presenter would turn up to Fort Augustus Abbey at a time of alleged abuse.
Pluscarden Abbey, Moray