Charities close over Savile scandal
Two British charities set up in the name of Jimmy Savile are to close in the wake of the growing sex abuse scandal surrounding the late television presenter.
The trustees of the Jimmy Savile Charitable Trust and the Jimmy Savile Stoke Mandeville Hospital Trust, which operates independently of the hospital, said they had given “much consideration” to a possible change of name but felt the charities would always be linked to him in the public’s mind.
“The trustees’ primary concern is to protect the charitable causes that they support,” a statement issued on their behalf said.
“They are concerned that the continued press attention into the two Savile charities is potentially damaging to the charitable beneficiaries and the vital work they do.
“The trustees have given much consideration to a possible change of name. However, the trustees feel that, whatever new name they may adopt, the charities will always be linked in the public’s mind with the late Jimmy Savile.
“The trustees cannot see a future for either charity. The trustees have, with great sadness, therefore decided to take steps to bring both charities to an end.”
The trustees would be talking to the charitable beneficiaries that they have committed to support as well as to the Charity Commission, to ensure this is done in the most “sensitive and appropriate” way, they added.
“The trustees have already chosen how to distribute the funds in each charity and have decided not to publicly announce who the recipients will be,” the statement continued.
“It will be for each charitable organisation to decide whether to publicise any donation received.”
The statement comes after the Jimmy Savile Charitable Trust said earlier this month it was considering changing its name in the wake of the allegations.
A spokeswoman for the charity said it received a large proportion of funds from donors other than Savile and was looking into supporting charities working with survivors of sexual abuse.