Central Leeds: Rebranding rubs out Jimmy Savile’s name

Jimmy Savile.
Jimmy Savile.
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The flagship Leeds entertainment venue named after Sir Jimmy Savile is to change its name as the child sex-scandal surrounding the star continues.

Savile’s Hall, part of Royal Armouries International (RAI), is to be rebranded as New Dock Hall after bosses said the Savile name had become “toxic” since the allegations broke.

RAI is the latest high-profile organisation to sever links with the star, who died a year ago tomorrow.

Trustees for the Jimmy Savile Charitable Trust and Jimmy Savile Stoke Mandeville Hospital Charitable Trust are already considering changing their names and donating money to child sex abuse victims.

Police now fear Savile may have had up to 200 victims during an “unprecedented” campaign of sex abuse spanning six decades.

Bosses at RAI said Savile’s Hall is to be renamed New Dock in line with its purchase by the Allied London property company in July this year.

RAI Managing Director James Vincent said: “The sheer volume and nature of these allegations has made the [Savile] name toxic.

“We are pleased to have the opportunity to rename the venue and to associate it with New Dock, the new identity being created for the area.”

RAI is separate from the Royal Armouries Museum, which is based on the same site in Leeds but is run as a separate concern.

Today the BBC was due to broadcast a Panorama special examining Newsnight’s decision to drop an investigation into Jimmy Savile’s alleged abuse of children.

The programme will see one BBC flagship pore over the apparent failings and editorial integrity of the other.

The Panorama special, which was still being made at the weekend, could result in more difficult questions for BBC director general George Entwistle when he appears on Tuesday at the Commons select committee for Culture, Media and Sport.

The BBC has already announced two inquiries, one into its culture and practices, and another by former Sky News boss Nick Pollard probing why Newsnight dropped its programme into Savile’s alleged sex abuse.

The Savile inquiry became a formal criminal investigation on Friday, involving other living people.

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