In amongst all of the media frenzy and witch-hunting that has occurred because of Jimmy Saville, reports of celebrities from the 60s and 70s taken advantage of ‘children’ has gone out of control.
One victim of this media destruction is the late John Peel. His name has been sullied because of sensationalist reporting and knee-jerking by spineless ‘yes’ men at the BBC.
Now the truth is out, and the media who twisted the truth for their own chest-puffing righteousness, and those who were quick to cast aspersions in public should be shamed for their actions.
You probably won’t hear too much about this in the mainstream media – after all, they are not going to admit their reporting was bias and sensational unless pushed to do so. And you probably won’t hear anyone from the BBC apologising unless the threat of legal action is made against them.
The story concerning John Peel’s relationship with Jane Navin hit the headlines in British newspapers in October of this year. The feeding frenzy got well underway in naming anyone (particularly at the BBC) who did anything remotely ‘un-pc’ in the context of today – not in the context of the time when the alleged events occurred.
The reports claimed that John Peel had preyed on Jane Nevin at a Black Sabbath concert in the summer of 1969, got her pregnant, and that she contracted VD from their encounter – all while she was 15 years old and he was 30.
As can be expected with the press, Jane Nevin’s recollection of her relationship with John Peel was taken out of context and sensationalised to infer that John Peel was a predatory abuser.
In a recent interview, Jane Nevin says she now regrets telling the press about her relationship with John Peel. In the interview, Jane Nevin is asked if meeting John Peel at a Black Sabbath gig when she was 15 was ‘abuse’ (seems like a stupid question, perhaps the reporter meant to ask if their relationship was abuseful). She says not. John Peel didn’t know she was 15 years old at the time, and she didn’t want to tell him. She went on to say that there was no way that she felt she was abused, or that their relationship was based on manipulation. Jane Nevin said that at the time she was openly promiscuous – as many girls under the age of 16 were at the time.
The reporter asked her why she had gone to the press. She said that at the time Saville was ‘outed’ there were a lot of questions about other DJs, and she wanted to put the record straight on what was and wasn’t abuse in the context of the time.
Jane Nevin feels that John Peel’s name has been tarnished by the context in which her relationship with him was portrayed by the press. She goes on to say that it shouldn’t be that way, and that he was a lovely man.
The truth is that when they met in 1969, it was a time when people were trying to find freedom, a time of excitement and exploration, life and love was the driving force of a new generation.
Jane Nevin met John Peel at a concert and wanted to be with him. Age never entered the equation, and Jane Nevin was already experienced in the ways of the world and progressive for her age. Their relationship lasted for three months, and she became pregnant at 16. As with many relationships at the time among progressive thinkers, their encounter was brief – and never abusive.
It was a time when people were not afraid to talk to each other, not afraid to hug and touch each other, where people got along with each other whatever walk of life they came from. Barriers were being broken down.
When relationships like that between John Peel and Jane Nevin are taken out of original context, and put in the context of today – a time when people are afraid to talk to each other, afraid to touch each other, and afraid to think for themselves or say anything meaningful for fear of upsetting someone – a very different picture is portrayed and the truth becomes twisted.
No doubt there were predatory abusers in the 60s and 70s who would have taken advantage of the innocence of youth. But the same can be said of ANY decade – including this one (possibly more than ever). When caught, and PROVEN to be abusers, they should face the maximum penalty society can give them.
It is important that the press and society do not jump to conclusions before a proper process of investigation has taken place. Just because one person says or infers something (press or otherwise) doesn’t mean it is true.
Unfortunately, the interview with Jane Nevin takes up less than half the time of the video, with the reporter (again) trying to put a different context on the times and referring to other totally unrelated material like Jimmy Saville – who has nothing to do with John Peel and Jane Nevin – very poor reporting.
You can see the video on the BBC website