Apology over Jimmy Savile float

The members of the Twenty 10 club in Lauder have apologised after coming under fire for an "offensive and insensitive" Jimmy Savile themed float at the town's Common Riding.

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Twenty 10 club apologise for Jimmy Savile float

Members of a local Twenty 10 club, who drew criticism for dressing up as disgraced television presenter Jimmy Savile and his schoolgirl victims at the Lauder Common Riding, have apologised for any offence caused.

We, the members of the 2010 club who participated in Lauder Fancy Dress recognise we made a serious error of judgement in our choice of subject for our float at this year’s event.

"It was never our intention to cause offence to anyone. For the upset we have caused or may cause we unreservedly apologise.


Organiser says they have been targeted following float outrage

One of the organisers of the Lauder Common Riding says they have been targeted after a fancy dress float caused offence at this year's event. A float with people dressed as Jimmy Savile and schoolgirls was part of a parade in the Borders town last weekend.

The stunt made national news headlines and was criticised by politicians and charities. The organiser says animal droppings were left at their home and have reported the matter to Police.

Full Report: Outrage over Jimmy Savile float at Lauder Common Riding

The organisers of Lauder's Common Riding are coming under fire for allowing a Jimmy Savile themed float to enter their fancy dress parade last week.

The stunt has attracted criticism from some people in the town as well as politicians and victims of abuse.

However, the committee say they do not censor entries and it is up to people to make their own moral choices about what they put in the parade.

Kathryn Samson reports.

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Abuse support charity say Savile float "crass"

A charity which supports people abused in childhood say they have already had a number of calls from "distressed" victims of abuse.

The National Association for People Abused in Childhood said the float featuring people in Jimmy Savile costumes at a festival in the Borders was "crass".

"We've already had calls to the NAPAC support line from people who are distressed by this because every time people do stupid things like this and glorify these crimes, it will glorify abuse - not just Savile victims who will understandably be upset, but other victims of childhood abuse."

– Peter Saunders, NAPAC

A link to the charity can be found here


Common Riding organisers: "We have never censored anyone who has entered the event"

In response to comments branding a Jim'll Fix It themed float in this year's Lauder Common Riding competition "distasteful and offensive", the organisers have said:

"Lauder Common Riding Committee is responsible for running one of the oldest and largest equestrian events in Europe.

"Our main aim is to ensure this event is run safely and for the enjoyment of spectators and the many hundreds who take part in all our events. This we have done very successfully both this year and in the past.

"Our fancy dress parade is only one element of our week and is a long-standing tradition. We have never censored anyone who has entered the event. It is up to the individuals who enter and their conscience to decide how they wish to express themselves and approach the event.

"People spectate and take part of their own free will. This year we did not receive any complaints about any of the entrants.

"We are obviously dismayed and understand that people are upset by the coverage one of the entries has received; however, we would reiterate that the committee does not condone or condemn the individual's right to enter the parade in their own way."

Christine Grahame MSP: Savile float was a "serious misjudgement"

Local politician Christine Grahame MSP - whose constituency includes Lauder - has expressed concern over the entry of a Jimmy Savile float into the town's Common Riding float competition.

“I am a great believer in free speech but I do think people have to be responsible and in my opinion this subject was in poor taste.

“While I’m sure those involved didn’t go out to deliberately offend anyone this was a very inappropriate topic for a family event.

“There may well have been a Savile victim in the crowd, a young person or an adult who is or has been the victim of sexual abuse.

“I wouldn’t want to censor anyone but I think this has been a serious misjudgement and hope the people involved are reflecting upon the offence their actions will have caused to many people.”

– Christine Grahame MSP

Facebook users brand Jimmy Savile float "offensive and distasteful"

A Jim'll Fix It themed float which was entered into the Lauder parade has been branded "offensive and distasteful".

Gregory Kynoch from Edinburgh was in the crowd and said the stunt was "inappropriate" and "out of order" on the Facebook page of the Lauder Common Riding committee.

"One of your floats thought it would be 'funny' to do a cover of the theme tune from Jim with Fix it, and thought this would be seen as humour? Am sorry, in light of the events surrounding that programme and the revelations since it I feel that was a step WAY over the line.

"What I hoped would be a pleasant night and a good memory has now been tainted. I can see a lot of work went into the parade but fear that will be the outstanding memory for all who had the misfortune to witness it.

"Humour is funny. That was just out of order."

– Gregory Kynoch on Facebook

The former student of Edinburgh Napier University also said he would not attend the event again.

In support of his message, Margaret Ryles also wrote a comment on the social networking site about the use of Jimmy Savile for fancy dress.

"I feel there was no respect for those who were abused by this very sick sick man...and I think it was in very bad taste, offensive and insensitive."

– Margaret Ryles on Facebook
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