Sir Rodney will use Savile flat as holiday home

Scarborough Civic Society's plaque, on Wessex Court flats, on the Esplanade, Sir Jimmy Savile's seaside home. The golden plaque is thought to the the first, and only, gold coloured heritage plaque in the country. Picture by Andrew Higgins  123827n   20/09/12
Scarborough Civic Society's plaque, on Wessex Court flats, on the Esplanade, Sir Jimmy Savile's seaside home. The golden plaque is thought to the the first, and only, gold coloured heritage plaque in the country. Picture by Andrew Higgins 123827n 20/09/12

Millionaire and child abuse campaigner Sir Rodney Walker has bought Jimmy Savile’s luxury seaside home.

Sir Rodney, who personally raised £25m during an NSPCC campaign against child cruelty, said he had no idea the shamed former DJ was a paedophile when he made an offer to buy the Scarborough flat 10 months ago.

Opening of the new Spinal Injuries Rehabilitation centre at Pinderfields Hospital.Sir Jimmy Savile

Opening of the new Spinal Injuries Rehabilitation centre at Pinderfields Hospital.Sir Jimmy Savile

A deal was delayed after it emerged Savile, who died in 2011, had allegedly abused hundreds of children during his time as a presenter and charity campaigner.

Wakefield-born Sir Rodney said he was comforted to know money from the sale, believed to be around £200,000, would not benefit Savile, but go to charity or abuse victims.

The man who is leading the project to build a new community stadium near Stanley already owns an apartment in the same block and will use it as a family holiday home.

Sir Rodney, 69, said: “I have had a flat in the same block for over 30 years. I decided to buy this one because we now have grandchildren and like the location. A flat became available and it just happened to be Jimmy Savile’s.

Sir Rodney Walker.

Sir Rodney Walker.

“I made an offer 10 months ago and was on the verge of buying it when the scandal broke and that delayed it until now.

“At the end of the day I am buying a piece of real estate, it just happens to have been owned by Jimmy Savile.

“The reality is the only people who will benefit from the money will be either charities or the alleged victims who claim from his estate.

“I had seen him there over the 30 years and everyone knew Jimmy Savile had a flat there. But no-one knew there was going to be a scandal.

“I met him on numerous occasions and he was always a man who was difficult to get to know. But I had no idea of the alleged abuse.”

Savile originally bought the apartment in Wessex Court with its stunning views of the South Bay as a gift to his mother Agnes and after she died he turned it into a shrine to her.

A gold Savile memorial plaque installed on the wall of the block has been removed after it was vandalised.