JIMMY Savile repeatedly walked unchallenged into a cottage hospital after visiting hours, touched a nurse and made lewd comments, an NHS inquiry has concluded.

A York Teaching Hospital NHS Foundation Trust report found that despite having no links with Whitby War Memorial Hospital, the disgraced TV presenter was allowed to “wander around as he pleased” during the 1960s.

Savile was said to have developed a good knowledge of the infirmary, which had three wards and single rooms, and only visited it at night, alone or with his driver, and touched a nurse inappropriately while there were only two staff looking after patients.

Loading article content

The report found the hospital’s day staff were unaware of his visits.

The inquiry was commissioned after a woman, referred to in the report as W, who worked as a night sister at the hospital in the 1960s reported Savile to police and Operation Yewtree last year that young members of staff were angered by the celebrity’s inappropriate behaviour.

The report stated: “W said that Savile was very 'touchy feely' and used to 'paw you'.

“She said that he had on occasion put his arms around her, but that she had told him she did not like it and told him to stop.

“W said that on one occasion, Savile approached her, put his arm around her and said 'Nurseynursey, I’ve made you a cup of tea'. She told Savile she did not like tea.

“She recalled the younger members of staff used to say they did not like Savile’s behaviour towards them, but because it was Savile, W said those members of staff would not tell him to stop, although W advised them to do so.

“She thought that they may have felt unable to tell him to stop because of who he was.”

She did not make a complaint to anyone at the time, because, she said, in the 1960s people did not make complaints and sexism was accepted and part of everyday life.

The former nurse stated colleagues’ requests to wear trousers when on duty were refused as it was not considered appropriate for women to wear trousers.

The report states: “W did comment it was not an infrequent occurrence at that time for a female nurse to be touched by male patients.”

A trust spokesman said: “Our investigation centred on a single allegation at Whitby Hospital, which was an isolated incident that does not appear to have caused long-term harm to the individual concerned.

“Our investigation also highlighted that, 50 years ago, society was very different and we now have much greater awareness of the dangers to vulnerable people, with systems and processes in place to better protect them.”