Archive photos recall visit to Romford by disgraced DJ Jimmy Savile
These pictures, recently unearthed by the Recorder, show a smiling Jimmy Savile when he visited Romford to help encourage young people to vote.
At the time, Savile was one of the nation’s top DJs and TV presenters but the star’s good reputation has since been destroyed by child-abuse claims.
In 1970 he was invited to Romford by Havering Council for an event to promote electoral participation by young people.
The Welcome to Citizenship event at Romford Library, Main Road, was part of the council’s strategy to get 18 to 21-year-olds to the ballot box for the first time after the voting age had been lowered.
Historian Brian Evans worked in the reference section of the library in 1970, and left for the day just before Savile’s arrival.
He said: “I was a bit annoyed because they closed the library early that day.
“The BBC were involved, they came to set up microphones. There were lots of people waiting around, lots of them making the yodelling noise that he did.”
- 1 Man dumps knife amid Hornchurch police chase
- 2 Havering drivers pay more than £12m in traffic fines in less than a decade
- 3 Romford accountant pleads guilty to 'calculated' £160k tax fraud
- 4 ‘It is not tolerated’: CCTV images released after West Ham game disorder
- 5 ‘Every second there was less tree’: Historical oak trees along railway cut back
- 6 Plans submitted for 35,000sqm of commercial floorspace in first phase of Rainham industrial estate redevelopment
- 7 Car park murder: Witness describes moment John Avers was run over
- 8 Travel Bulletin: Havering, Redbridge, Barking and Dagenham
- 9 'So proud': Romford pupils achieve top grades in LAMDA exams
- 10 Taco Bell asks permission to open at ex-Thomas Cook site in Hornchurch
Brian has mentioned the event in two of his history books: Remembering Romford and A Century of Romford, from where these pictures are taken.
He added: “At the time I was uneasy about him, but I thought it was just because he was not my sort of thing.
“People who were a bit close to him knew, but obviously people in local government wouldn’t have done.
“Young people are traditionally not interested in politics, so they used the attraction of celebrity. I think some of the girls thought that by coming along they might get a chance to get into show business.”
In recent months the former Jim’ll Fix It presenter, who died last year, has become the subject of multiple police investigations after a number of people said he had abused them as children.
The Metropolitan Police has said he may have had more than 200 victims.