Rape helpline calls soar a year after first Jimmy Savile allegations emerge

Rape Crisis England have reported a "huge" rise in demand for its services a year after Savile documentary was aired

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The Independent Online

Calls made to a helpline for abused women have soared by 40 per cent, a year after the first Jimmy Savile sex abuse claims emerged. 

Rape Crisis England, a sexual violence charity established for women and girls has highlighted a "huge" rise in demand for its services in the twelve months since the programme was shown on national TV.

Exposure: The Other Side Of Jimmy Savile was aired by ITV on 2 October, 2012 and allegations made during the documentary that Savile had abused women, girls and boys ultimately led to a joint review by the Metropolitan Police and the NSPCC.

The National Rape Crisis Helpline has since received 78,000 calls, compared with 55,000 during the previous 12 months.

The Exposure documentary detailed claims made by Savile that he had abused girls in his Rolls Royce and at the BBC TV Centre. Five women recounted incidents where they were assaulted by the Jim'll Fix It presenter.

After the documentary was aired, alleged victims of Saville contacted police forces across the country with claims that they too had been abused by him.

Operation Yewtree, a national investigation, was launched in the wake of the abuse claims.

Detectives have run the investigation in three strands - allegations involving Savile, those involving Savile and others, and those involving others.

Savile, described by the Metropolitan Police as a "predatory, serial sex offender", has had 214 offences, including 34 rapes recorded against him. Detectives say the offences happened throughout the UK between 1955 and 2009.

Rape Crisis spokeswoman Katie Russell said: “Shocking as the revelations of the last year have been, they've reinforced what we within the Rape Crisis movement have learnt through our 40 years' experience of providing specialist support to women and girls - that sexual violence sadly happens a lot more than most people think, and that the impacts for the survivor can be devastating and lifelong.”

Additional reporting by PA