Kat Ward was the first victim to speak out about the abuse she suffered at the hands of Jimmy Savile. Her shocking testimony was the catalyst for the uncovering of decades of abuse and cover-ups. Kat Ward's childhood was marked by physical, emotional and sexual abuse. She was eventually taken into local authority care to a children's home in Norfolk, and first encountered Savile whilst on a 'holiday' with the home on Jersey. Later, she was moved to Duncroft Approved School in Surrey, a secure unit. Amazingly, Savile turned up there too; he would regularly drive up in his Rolls-Royce and offer sweets and cigarettes in return for sexual favours. Kat's revelations had already appeared in a memoir she'd placed online using Savile's initials, but she first spoke on camera as part of Newsnight's infamous shelved Savile expose. However, it was ITV's Exposure: The Other Side of Jimmy Savile (in which Kat did not take part), that led to his unmasking as a serial sex offender and opened the floodgates for hundreds of other victims to come forward, and for many other offenders to be unmasked.Freddie Starr brought a High Court case against her for libel and slander, seeking GBP300,000 in damages, calling her 'liar' and 'nutter'.
It failed spectacularly in July 2015, with costs awarded against him. Although the last few years have been trying, they have ultimately brought Kat vindication after years of being labelled an attention-seeker and liar. Her book, which charts her life from the 1960s to the end of Starr's failed action, is a unique, harrowing and immensely moving perspective on one of the biggest news stories of the last decade.