Adverts go out inviting people who think they were sexually abused by the late Sir James Savile to claim compensation. On the BBC, Alison Millar, a lawyer at the firm Leigh Day, explained that, to be paid: ‘You will need some evidence to show that you were in a situation where Savile will have had the opportunity to abuse you.’ If that is all you need, I reckon I am in with a chance. I met Savile only once, at the director-general’s BBC election night party in 1987, when I was the vulnerable 30-year-old editor of this magazine. Obviously, others were in the room, but we have heard from many accounts that Jimmy was resourceful in getting his way. I don’t think I shall bother to try to get the money, which is capped at £60,000 a head, but I mention it because, if evidence of proximity is all that is required, this is not justice. By the way, I also met the future Sir Cyril Smith when I was an 18-year-old delegate to the Liberal Assembly in Scarborough in 1975. If the Times and the Daily Mail are to be believed, the Liberal high-ups culpably ignored Smith’s abuse. Perhaps I shall sue them.
This is an extract from Charles Moore’s Spectator’s Notes in this week’s magazine. Click here to read for free with a trial of The Spectator app for iPad and iPhone. You can also subscribe with a free trial on the Kindle Fire.