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Norwich man's autobiography recounts time in Broadmoor with Jimmy Savile

PUBLISHED: 11:45 16 February 2018

David Armstrong has published a revised version of his book, Out of the Shadows. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

David Armstrong has published a revised version of his book, Out of the Shadows. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

Archant

A Norwich man has published his autobiography detailing the time he spent in Broadmoor psychiatric hospital and the visits of Jimmy Savile.

The cover of the revised version of David Armstrong's book, Out of the Shadows: The Devil in the Vatican. Picture: Jacob MasseyThe cover of the revised version of David Armstrong's book, Out of the Shadows: The Devil in the Vatican. Picture: Jacob Massey

David Armstrong, 70, originally published the book Out of the Shadows in 2014 as a means of coming to terms with the physical and sexual abuse he suffered as a child at Catholic-approved boarding school St Vincent’s in Dartford, Kent.

However, his deeply religious publisher believed that his persecutors should be forgiven and Mr Armstrong was encouraged to omit many of the more disturbing accounts from his life.

Now Mr Armstrong has self-published a revised version, titled Out of the Shadows: The Devil in the Vatican, in the hope of protecting future generations.

He said: “Writing this book has been a painful experience, reliving the darkest moments of my life. But I hope my story, which reveals the institutional failures of the past, will help protect children in the future.”

Mr Armstrong was sent to prison after leaving school and eventually served a term in Broadmoor, where he claims Jimmy Savile exploited his position as head of the entertainment committee and abused patients.

Mr Armstrong said: “He was an evil predator masquerading behind a cloak of respectability and he was protected by doctors and guards. If anyone complained they were ignored, and we were discouraged from reporting him.

“He would persuade very sick people to expose themselves and laugh at them while guards looked on, and he would abuse women while they rehearsed for concerts. They never complained because they were in awe of his celebrity status.

“I felt it was important that I wrote about the things I saw him do because even though we can’t bring him to justice, we can raise awareness of his crimes and learn from them.”

Mr Armstrong was born on the Larkman estate and was first sent to the boarding school by Norwich Juvenile Court aged 13, after he was arrested while helping a farmer shoot vermin.

Mr Armstrong is now in recovery after a battle with a gambling addiction which saw him lose his life savings and temporarily take up residence in his friend’s shed.

Out of the Shadows is available from www.childhoodabuse.co.uk

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