- 15 Jun 16
A former employee of Radio Dublin has come forward to tell Hot Press about links between the notorious BBC DJ and the former boss of Radio Dublin
The Eamon Cooke story has taken another turn, with one of the paedophile broadcaster’s former Radio Dublin employees revealing to Hot Press that the discredited UK broadcaster Jimmy Savile (pictured) visited the station in the late 1970s.
Cooke, who ran the pirate radio station – which in many ways sparked the radio revolution in Ireland – was recently linked with the long unsolved disappearance of Philip Cairns. The 13-year-old schoolboy arrived back at his family home in Ballyrowan, Rathfarnham at lunch-time on October 23, 1986 – but was never seen again after he left to return to school for the afternoon.
What is clear is that Savile – who escaped being found guilty of paedophilia while he was alive but turned out to be a serial abuser and rapist on a horrendous scale – was in personal contact with Eamon Cooke.
“There’s plenty of stuff online about Savile coming across to do charity events, but nothing that mentions that he used to publicise them on Radio Dublin,” reveals the ex-DJ, who asked not to be named due to sensitivities with his present job. “I have vivid memories of Saville coming into the studios to plug a walk he was doing from the city-centre to Portmarnock for the Central Remedial Clinic, which was about a 10k. You got your sponsorship card and walked with Jimmy.
"This would have been either the Easter or June Bank Holiday in 1979, possibly a little earlier, when the station was still broadcasting from No. 3 Sarsfield Road in Inchicore. I’m not sure what the exact nature of their relationship was, but knowing what we know now, you can’t help but wonder, ‘Did they get up to anything together?’ It’s horrible to think that there are probably people out there who were abused by Cooke, but are still too traumatised to talk about it. Hopefully now that he’s dead, some of the fear factor of coming forward might have gone.”
Asked whether he suspected Cooke of wrong-doing at the time, our source resumes: “This was Ireland in 1978. I was 16 – we didn’t know anything about paedophiles. Adults preying on a child just wasn’t discussed, which of course suited Cooke down to the ground.
"The only thing demonstrably odd about him was that he had very poor personal hygiene and was paranoid about security,” the source adds. "When the station was in Sarsfield Road, I had a key to get in and open the hall door. There was another key hidden inside, which opened the steel door that got you into the little kitchen/dining-room where the phone was.
"There was another steel door that lead up the stairs to Cooke’s bedroom, which someone said was electrified. He definitely ran cables to the back door and told An Post, ‘Come in and you’ll be electrocuted!’ One or two mornings there’d be a note asking me to wake him up, usually because he was attending a court case.”
The bizarre and seamy nature of the place is obviously easier to see in retrospect. Whether the fortress aspect of it also made it easier to prey on innocents is a matter of speculation.
"The first time I knocked on his bedroom door and went in, I thought someone had died!” the source recalls. "I used the bathroom one day and noticed there was lice control stuff there for his head in it. A lot of the dirt was down to the fact that he was always digging. When we moved from Sarsfield to 58 Inchicore Road, he asked An Post to re-route Radio Dublin’s famous 758684 phone-line. They said ‘no chance’, so he dug a fucking trench on the railway track, from the back of No. 3 to No. 58, overnight or maybe over two nights. I don’t know whether he studied the train timetables but this was incredibly dangerous.”
During the 1970s, the Radio Dublin boss had been charged and found guilty of fire-bombing the house of someone who was apparently in the process of developing a relationship with a former girlfriend of Cooke's – but, along with his accomplices, got the probation act.
"He was such a lunatic,” the former Radio Dublin DJ confirms. "There were rumours that he was involved in trying to blow up the monument in Glasnevin Cemetery in the ‘60s. Then, of course, he had the CB radio in his car that he used to report crimes happening in the area to the Gardai. Alpha 6 was his call sign. He’d go chasing after the perpetrators in the Radio Dublin white Jaguar which, again, was insane behaviour.
“Something I only found out later was that two girls would come in after school to answer the ‘phones, and he got one of them pregnant. That wasn’t necessarily a crime, depending on her age, but it was highly inappropriate behavior from an older man in a position of power.”
As previously reported on hotpress.com, Gardai questioned Eamon Cooke while he was receiving palliative care recently over the new allegations that he was involved in the 1986 disappearance and alleged murder of the missing 13 year-old, Philip Cairns.
Anyone affected by this story can contact the Rape Crisis National 24 Hour Helpline at 1800 77 88 88 .