John Lydon claims he received BBC ban after issuing Jimmy Savile warning

Sex Pistols frontman described Savile as being 'into all sorts of seediness' during 1978 radio interview

John Lydon has claimed that he was banned by the BBC after speaking out against sex offender Jimmy Savile.

The former Sex Pistols frontman discussed the issue with Piers Morgan for his Life Stories ITV show, which airs on Friday (September 25).

Lydon said of an interview that took place in 1978, “I’m very, very bitter that the likes of Savile and the rest of them were allowed to continue. I did my bit, I said what I had to. But they didn’t air that.”


During the BBC radio interview, Lydon described Savile as being “into all sorts of seediness”, adding, “We all know about it but we’re not allowed to talk about it. I know some rumours.”

Speaking to Morgan, Lydon continued, “I found myself banned from BBC radio for quite a while, for my contentious behaviour. They wouldn’t state this directly; there’d be other excuses.”

“Weren’t I right? I think most kids wanted to go on Top of the Pops but we all knew what that cigar muncher was up to.”

BBC have issued a statement to NME, it reads, “We’re not aware of any ban – official or unofficial”.

Hear the 1978 interview below.


Lydon’s post-punk group Public Image Ltd released their tenth studio record, titled ‘What The World Needs Now…’ earlier this month (September 4). The singer recently described the band’s new album as “timeless” and “ahead of the pack”.

The band are amid a tour of the UK and Europe. PiL will play the following UK dates:

Bristol 02 Academy (September 25)
Buckley Tivoli (26)
Reading Sub 89 (27)
Bexhill De La Warr Pavilion (29)
Norwich UEA (30)
London 02 Shepherds Bush Empire (October 2)
Frome Cheese and Grain (3)
Southampton Engine Rooms (4)