Stuart Hall abuse victims' bravery praised
- 17 June 2013
- From the section Manchester
Victims of broadcaster Stuart Hall have been praised for their bravery in speaking out about the "horrendous" abuse.
Hall, 83, of Wilmslow, Cheshire, has been jailed for 14 offences that took place between 1967 and 1985.
Det Supt Neil Esseen, of Lancashire Police, said: "They have been tremendously brave in highlighting this horrendous abuse perpetrated by Mr Hall over a long period of time."
Alan Collins, of solicitors Pannone, which represents some of the victims, said: "He put them through the ringer - he publically denied the allegations and that was very traumatic for the victims.
"This man, who brazenly over many years abused children and young people, was finally shown to be what he was and sent to prison."
VICTIM 1, aged 16
Susan Harrison, formerly Melville, waived her right to anonymity.
She was a pupil at a secondary school in Hollingworth, Greater Manchester, when Hall presented her with an award at a prize-giving event after she sang a solo.
When she asked for his autograph at the end of the evening, he told her to write to him at the BBC and mentioned a recording session.
She later recorded some songs at BBC studios and afterwards Hall collected her in his car and invited her for a drink.
When she said she was not old enough he told her not to worry, the court heard, and took her to a public house where he bought her a vodka and lime.
On the way home he put his hand on her leg before moving it inside her skirt and indecently assaulting her, the court was told.
Prosecutor Peter Wright QC told the hearing: "She felt paralysed with shock at his approach and managed to squirm away from his touch and began to cough nervously.
"The defendant stopped touching her but asked if she wanted to rub her chest in order to make her cough better. Miss Melville declined the offer."
She ran into her house before bursting into tears and telling her parents.
Her angry father went to find Hall but he was nowhere to be seen and the family decided not to report the matter.
Mrs Harrison contacted the police after Hall's arrest last year because she "felt upset in particular that others had been harmed in the intervening years".
She said she had refused to watch It's A Knockout on television and that the indecent assault had affected her future relationships.
VICTIM 2, aged 17
Hall approached her in a hotel after filming an early 1970s edition of It's A Knockout, in which she had been wearing a medieval costume.
He grabbed her forcefully with both hands and pushed her against a door, kissing her and trying to lift her dress, before she successfully fought him off.
She felt "disgusted and angry" whenever she saw Hall on television and came forward to the police following Hall's arrest in December.
VICTIM 3, aged 16/17
Kim Parker, formerly Wright, waived her right to anonymity.
She was working on an exhibition stand at the Winter Gardens complex in Blackpool in 1974 when Hall, who was attending the event in an official capacity, was introduced to her.
Later in the evening, he walked up to her on the stand and put his arm around her, the court was told.
He then touched her indecently before she told him to stop.
She went on to tell her husband about the incident and last November reported the matter to police.
VICTIM 4, aged 17
She was in the home of family friends of Hall when he pushed her against a wall and groped her breasts.
She came forward following Hall's arrest in December.
VICTIM 5, aged 13
She was attending a party at the home of family friends of Hall when she got drunk and Hall placed her in the bath, indecently assaulting her.
He told her she was "beautiful and gorgeous" and went on to indecently assault her in a "frenzied maul", the court heard.
She later told her parents and went to police in January this year.
VICTIM 6, aged 15
She was filmed in her home for BBC North West Tonight and left alone with Hall after the rest of the TV crew left.
He began to kiss her, leaving her taken aback and confused, the court heard.
Attending the BBC studios on another occasion she recalled undressing to her underwear in Hall's dressing room when he put his arm around her and produced a battery-powered massager, which he asked to use on her.
She came forward after Hall was arrested.
VICTIMS 7, 8 and 9, aged 11, 14 and 13/14
Attending elocution lessons at Hall's home, he took the girls into his lounge and told them they needed to be relaxed and to have a bath.
He asked them to change into men's shirts and when they returned Hall was standing there wearing only a pair of small white underpants.
He asked them to pronounce the vowels of the alphabet and to read passages from a book before fondling all three.
One of the victims said she viewed Hall "with some degree of revulsion" and "could not bear to to see him on television or hear him on the radio".
She dreaded having to tell the police what had happened but felt it was something she had to do, the court heard.
VICTIM 10, aged 10
After meeting Hall when her family attended a recording of It's A Knockout, he invited her to swim in his outdoor pool.
Hall picked her up in his car and stopped off at a supermarket to buy steak and champagne.
After swimming she recalled being on the bed with Hall, who told her to cuddle him "like she would one of her teddies" before fondling her.
As a teenager she went on to have counselling and admitted feeling uncomfortable around men in general until she became an adult.
She said she came forward to police because she did not want to "feel that I have been unhappy with myself for not putting my case forward".
VICTIMS 11 and 12, aged nine and 13
Both were known to Hall through family friends.
The nine-year-old was indecently assaulted at her parents' home as she lay half asleep in bed.
The 13-year-old was abused as he drove her from a tennis centre and suddenly pulled in to the side of the road.
He told her that a thank you was sometimes not enough in words and that "people need to show their thanks in other ways".
Hall then kissed her on the lips and forced his tongue into her mouth.
She recoiled in fear and Hall pulled away and drove her home.
VICTIM 13, aged 10/11
Following an elocution lesson at Hall's home he took her into his bedroom and told her to take her clothes off.
He then produced a tape measure which he put around her chest as she practised saying sentences out aloud.
She assumed what happened was normal for an elocution lesson.
She contacted police after Hall's arrest in December.