Savile in Jersey: Madge Hayes & St Helier Community Services Board

Like so many of locations on Savile’s regular annual cycle of events where he would rotate himself around the nation spreading largesse and misery, Jersey featured frequently in his schedule.

Savile was featured many times in the Jersey Evening Post in various fundraising ‘escapades’. Agnes Savile had quite a few connections in Jersey and would stay at the Little Sisters of the Poor Convent at New St John’s Road in St Helier.

‘What can you do with a mother like that, except love her more than my own life? And only she could get skint in a convent? He recalled how she once went off on a holiday to convent in Jersey and he gave her a few quid to spend. When he rang her up a few days later she asked for more cash, as she didn’t seem to have any left: ‘How on earth can anybody get spent-up among the nuns?’ [How’s About that then? Alison Bellamy, Loc 1614]

In 2011, Helier St Clement recalled seeing Savile in the toy shop Beuzevals (here pictured by Jersey Evening Post in 1976 – is this lady Madge Hayes?) at Broad Street and King Street – the shop went right through) where the impression Mr Clement had was that The Duchess was friends with Madge Hayes, a faith healer who could often be seen ‘laying her hands on’ people’s various aching parts and who many would go to for back trouble.

It seems that those like me who deplore the absence of courtesy are the ones walking out of step, [Jersey Evening Post, November 2011]

“Sir Jimmy called his mum The Duchess and, if my memory isn’t totally addled with age and other punishments I have inflicted upon it, I have a feeling that she and Madge Hayes were friends.

I know that The Duchess used to stay with the Little Sisters of The Poor at the top of New St John’s Road when she was on one of her frequent trips to Jersey, but I have this vague recollection also that she might well have stayed with Madge and her husband, perhaps in the flat above the shop.

What I do know is that I met both Sir Jimmy and his mum a few times at Madge’s shop –once when I had my shirt half-way up my back and with Madge doing the business as he walked in. He didn’t bat an eyelid ,but looked at the grimace on my face and suggested I should ‘get rid of that snooker table before it really damages you’.

Despite the banter, it was clear that he absolutely doted on his mother, and the impression both left with me (as did Madge Hayes, if it comes to that) is of people from an age where courtesy and good manners were second nature and rudeness was not only frowned upon but simply not tolerated.”

Madge Hayes was not only a faith healer, she was “a well-known parish figure who was the first woman to be elected to the St Helier Community Services Board“, whose son David Beuzeval went on to found the Rotary Club la Manche and stand for Deputy in St Helier when working ‘at the reception of States Offices  at the Cyril Le Marquand States Offices’ in 2008.[Rotary Founder to stand for Town Deputy, Jersey Evening Post, 5 September 2008]

What responsibility did the St Helier Community Services Board have for children’s welfare or residential homes under the local parish?

Savile inveigled his way into anyone’s path that would be useful to him, and seemed to consider his mother ‘The Duchess’ as part of his sometime double act in gathering people to his purpose, albeit often unbeknownst to them as the guise would be fundraising or charitable events where he could pop up bringing with him local, and sometimes, national media.

Savile in Jersey pictured from 1966

There may be earlier pictures of Savile in Jersey, but the Jersey Evening Post archives host a collection starting with Savile clinging on a rock face, with his trademark medieval knight meets fright wig bob in the briefest of trunks, cigar between gritted grinning teeth.

June 1966 – Rock climbing in Jersey – captioned

“Temps Passe – Jimmy Savile 1966 – A young dark haired Jimmy Savile (still with the obligatory cigar!) ‘fixes’ it for himself to do a spot of rock climbing whilst in Jersey in June 1966 “Marathon Man – Jimmy Savile, with trademark cigar, keeps in tra…”

Savile in Jersey in 1968

Preaching at St Patrick’s Church in the parish of St Clements [photos? further details being sought]

Savile in Jersey in 1969

Battle of the Flowers;- some places site as 3 times, others 4.
1969 – Mr Battle of the Flowers – Mary Horton described him as ‘most peculiar’

Summer of 1969

‘Shortly afterwards, he stripped to the waist and cavorted on a floar with a 20-year-old carnival queen at the Battle of Flower parade in Jersey. His mother rode in a car behind him, holding aloft a card with the messafe: ‘I’m watching you Jimmy.’ If Agnes Savile knew nothing of what her son was up to, their relationship was used to create the impermeable veneer of innocent fun that had become his trademark.” [Loc 3977 Dan Davies] – Daily Mail 3 September 1969

Savile in Jersey in 1970

Disc jockey Savile in pulpit (Catholic Herald, 4th September 1970)

“SPEAKING for three quarters of an hour without notes, Jimmy Savile, the disc jockey and entertainer, gave the address on Sunday of last week at St. Patrick’s Church, Jersey, at the invitation of the parish priest, Fr. Anthony Moore.

Welcoming him. Fr. Moore said: “Some people will no doubt make the criticism that to make use of a famous star by inviting him to speak from the pulpit is little more than a gimmick.

“That is correct. It is a gimmick, and I cannot think of a better way of getting through than the message Jimmy will put across this morning. After all, there is really only one Star, and anything that anyone can do or say to bring us closer to Him, then God bless him for it.”

Beginning “Hallo all!” Mr. Saviie said: “I don’t see myself as any sort of gimmick at the moment. I rather like to think of myself as an ordinary person who has been invited here to say my piece, for surely a pulpit should be a place not only for the clergy but for anyone to come to and expound their views an life.”

He spoke of his early working life in a coal mine, being injured in an explosion and having to wear a steel corset for many years. He said the injury had forced him to find another way of living.

“I found that I had some talent for organising and running dances, and that was how I first entered the entertainment business. I worked myself very hard over the years, and am now in the position of needing to work only one day a week.

“I could, if I wished. spend all my spare time on pleasure; but a full stomach sometimes forgets what it is like to go hungry. It is often quite difficult to he successful and still remember the other side of the coin.”

Addressing particularly the young people in the congregation, Mr. Savile said: “If you don’t dig all this religious business, don’t just turn your back on it. God has plenty of patience and will wait for you. The worst thing you can do is to sever everything.”

He said he had spoken in ten different churches of seven denominations this year, and done charitable work in “strange places of mentally disturbed people,” including Broadmoor and Rampton.”

Fr. Anthony Moore was Parish Priest of St Patrick’s, Samares

Savile in Jersey in 1972

1972 – Dee Coles a 14 year old on holiday with her mum in Jersey. Jimmy Savile had his motor caravan parked in the car park of the hotel where they were staying. He abused her and a friend – the year he received his OBE.

“Jimmy Savile received the award for his regular but little known work as a hospital porter and prison visitor, as well as for his generous donations to charities. He is a regular visitor to Broadmoor and Leeds Hospital, where he acts as a porter.” (Catholic Herald, 7 Jan 1972)

Miss Battle: ‘Savile was most peculiar’ (Channel news, ITV)

“Former Miss Battle, Mary Horton, has given her view on the Sir Jimmy Savile abuse claims.

It’s alleged the Jim’ll Fix It host carried out a series of sexual assaults on underage girls.

The revelations came in an ITV documentary screened last night, titled ‘Exposure: The Other Side of Jimmy Savile’.

Mrs Horton met Jimmy Savile during her time as Miss Battle in 1972.

The entertainer was Mr Battle on two occasions.

Mrs Horton said of him, “I’ve said to my friends for many years that I found Jimmy Savile most peculiar. I thought there may be another side to him, and I’m probably being proved right now.”

Lawyers representing victims of historic abuse in Jersey say several of them have come forward to say they were abused by Sir Jimmy Savile.

Law firm Pannone based in Manchester act on behalf of a number of former residents of Haut de la Garenne who are already seeking compensation from Jersey States for their treatment at the children’s home.

Now lawyer Alan Collins says further allegations relating to Jimmy Savile have been made by his clients. Earlier this week Jersey Police confirmed they received a similar claim in 2008 but there wasn’t enough evidence to pursue an investigation.

Jimmy Savile was a regular visitor to Jersey in the late 60 and early 70s.

Jimmy Savile’s friends and family have strongly refuted the abuse claims. They believe it is odd that these allegations are coming to light now he is dead, and say if he was still alive, he would vigorously deny them.”

Savile in Jersey in 1976

Easter Mondays at Aquila, Jersey

After Savile’s death a stainless steel tray engraved ‘To Jimmy Savile OBE. With thanks for a great walk Easter Monday 1976. From Aquila Youth Centre Jersey” was auctioned.

Representatives of the Methodist Association of Youth Clubs (Jersey) and the Aquila Youth Club and its five aside football team went to London for a formal dinner and to be presented to Princess Margaret and Lord Snowdon.

Newscuttings relating to the Aquila Youth Club five aside football team and to a visit by Michael Tourtel representing of the Methodist Association of Youth Clubs [Jersey] and Geoff Duckworth of Aquila Youth Club to London where they attended a formal dinner and were presented to Princess Margaret and Lord Snowdon

Album of colour photos of Savile Album of colour photographs featuring a visit by Sir Jimmy Saville to Aquila Youth Club-presumed to have been taken during the 1970s

Aquila Road Methodist Church 

Aquila Methodist Church was originally built for the Bible Christians, an offshoot of the Methodists that sprang up after Wesley’s death in 1849. Now closed, Savile’s connections with the former Aquila Road Methodist Church and its Youth Club must be reviewed in light of one of Savile’s great supporters Sir Harold Haywood, who as Director of National Association of Youth Clubs gave Savile his vice-presidency next to Sir Angus Ogilvy’s Presidency, and also gave Savile dominion over former NAYC charity for disabled PHAB once it became independent in 1974 just prior to Haywood’s departure for the Albany Trust.

As Father Ted might have said (as on any topic he couldn’t fathom theologically speaking) ‘Ah Child abuse – that’ll be an ecumenical matter.’ Savile certainly wanted to draw in more than just Roman Catholics under a banner of Christian abusers unite, aiming also to include Ulster Protestant loyalists, Methodists and Anglicans amongst his followers in his role of most ancient and loyal shepherd of the Great Britisher Empire.