Jimmy Savile 'hated children', former BBC producer says

'He was creepy, but it never crossed my mind there was any kind of paedophilia going on' 

The producer who worked with Jimmy Savile on Jim’ll Fix It had recommended against him being recruited for the programme due to the presenter's dislike of children.

Roger Ordish said that Savile had little fondness for children, despite the programmes he worked on often being aimed at them.  

After his death in 2011, it emerged that Savile was a prolific paedophile and sexual abuser.   

Mr Ordish, who worked on Jim’ll Fix It for its entire 20 series from 1976 to 1994, told BBC Radio 4's Today programme: “He did openly state ‘I hate children.’ He said it publicly to newspapers.”

BBC apology to Savile victims

Mr Ordish continued: “I did think his presence was unnerving for some children. Frightening. To me his approach was to speak down to them, or speak very little to them."

Savile had claimed that his dislike of children was the reason for his success in broadcasting. In addition his 19-year tenure on Jim’ll Fix It, Savile was also well known as a presenter of popular music show Top of the Pops, which attracted a young audience to the studio.

A report into the Jimmy Savile scandal by Dame Janet Smith, to which Ordish had given evidence, was satisfied that he had not been aware of Savile’s criminal activities while working on the programme.

The Smith inquiry heard that 17 instances of abuse had taken place in connection with Jim’ll Fix It.   

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However, while Mr Ordish has acknowledged in the past that Savile had a "predilection for younger females,” he denied any knowledge of Savile’s sexual activities with children.  

“He was creepy, but it never crossed my mind there was any kind of paedophilia going on.” 

He added: “I do remember saying he should not be left alone with children, but that would apply to the presenter of any programme.”

Mr Ordish also said in his defence that he once accommodated Savile in his own home, where he slept in a room next to his teenage daughter.  

Mr Ordish also spoke of how Savile was a very secretive character.  “I knew him probably as well as anybody did but that wasn’t very well, because he was such a secretive man,” he said.

“He spent his whole life hiding things and rather enjoying hiding them probably. But that’s hindsight. I always found his behaviour rather odd, but you’re not thinking about it, you’re not saying: ‘Is Jimmy Savile a drug smuggler? Is Jimmy Savile a paedophile?’ You’re just thinking: ‘That’s Jimmy Savile.’”

The former producer has also said how he now looks back on his career with a sense of shame.

“It’s of no significance really compared to the terrible things that happened to the victims, but in retirement, people say: ‘What did you do?’

“I’d say: ‘I was a BBC producer … Jim’ll Fix It, I did that for 20 years’, and you used to get a wonderful reaction. Now it’s something I can’t mention, you’re ashamed of it.”