Heads up: Top comment and controversy
Janet Street Porter heard about Jimmy Savile abuse claims
05 October 2012 10:11 AM
Former Fleet Street editor Janet Street-Porter has revealed she was aware of rumours concerning Sir Jimmy Savile's alleged abuse of underage girls when she worked at the BBC during the late 1980s.
Speaking on Question Time, Street-Porter, who joined the BBC as an executive in 1987, said: "I was aware of the rumours about Jimmy Savile, I was also aware of rumours about other people.
"There was a culture, and it was a generational thing, in areas of light entertainment behaviour was tolerated."
The broadcaster added: "I feel that the reason these women never came forward before was nobody would have believed them because Jimmy Savile raised so much money for charity and he used the money that he raised for charity as a bargaining power to buy silence from national newspapers.
"If ever there was a time when someone might have blown the whistle on him, he would threaten those newspapers and those reporters that that charity money would not go to those hospitals."
Street-Porter also said that even if she had raised the rumours with senior BBC executives nobody would have taken any notice.
"A lot of people in the BBC knew what was going on," she said.
"I heard the rumours but I was working in an environment that was totally male.
"Do you really think that if I said to someone at the BBC higher up than me this was going on - they wouldn't gave taken any notice of me whatsoever."