We were intrigued when a year ago in March our visitor stats surged into the thousands. Later we were told that this had coincided with the Llanberis Mountain Film Festival, (Llamff), and that UKClimbing had two threads online — the 5th. and the 8th. of March — where our site had been discussed at some length.
On the first thread ‘Goucho’ asked ‘if a skeleton had fallen out of Jim Perrin’s closet’ and Dave Garnett responded with, helpfully, a link to our site. The second was started by ‘Minneconjou Sioux’ who also posted a link.
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Gordon Stainforth protested: ‘This [we presume he means by ‘this’ the contents of our posts] was a most unseemly airing of dirty linen in public, and the last thing any right-minded person should be doing [that is, those who are commenting on the thread] is re-airing someone else’s private dirty linen.’ We would like to point out that it is all too easy to trivialise the content of our site in that way and the play on words — ‘re-airing’ — whilst neat, is to criticise others besides ourselves for having the temerity to discuss it at all. This is censorship (though we do accept that it is at the discretion of the founder of the thread) and the attitude, this attempted closing down of comment, is one of the ways in which Jim Perrin seems always to have been protected by some of his peers. We wonder: if Gordon Stainforth, or other of Jim Perrin’s supporters, had a family member or close friend who had suffered as so many have through their connection with him, would they still wish to shield him? We are not alone in our relating of Jim Perrin’s behaviour over the years; it is not only we, Jac’s sisters who know the truth of his actions. There is, it is clear, a conspiracy of silence where Jim Perrin is concerned. We have been told that he, aware of how the details in our posts will damage him, has decreed that anyone reading them is being disloyal to him. Always the bully, although sometimes so subtle in his bullying…
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We can assure any other doubters (and ‘Goucho’ seemed to think that ‘like 99.9% of people I do not know whether it [our site] is factual or not’!) that all our claims concerning Jim Perrin’s conduct can be verified. All the details we have given are undisputed by ‘right-minded people’, although we do understand that many choose not to face an ‘inconvenient truth’. And, for the record, our lawyer says that ‘truth is an absolute defence.’
We contend that it is because people have not spoken out over the years that Jim Perrin has been able ‘to get away’ with so much, and we think it very shaming. In our opinion, if he had been challenged, instead of being protected by his cronies, the harm he has undoubtedly caused might have been curtailed. His behaviour has instead been tacitly accepted by those who protect him, and many of his transgressions have been ‘hidden in plain sight.’
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Some of the comments posted were the result, possibly, of speed-reading or crossed wires and reading the thread of the 8th. of March one can see how some content was mis-ascribed or mistakenly cross-referenced: ‘Chinese whispers’?
Phil West, for example, conflated the writing of Jim Curran and ourselves. In fact we were pleased to be able to present to a wider audience, in Jim Curran’s own words, the evidence of Jim Perrin’s vindictive malevolence and down-right dishonesty; and how Jim Curran had triumphed over him. So many other mealy-mouthed and risk-averse people have, it might be said, aided and abetted him by their silence. ‘Risk-averse’? Because, we believe, Jim Perrin has cultivated a (well-deserved) reputation for being disputatious, belligerent and litigious. The Lake District Climbing Club affair some years ago was a notorious case of the latter.
Jim Curran’s case is by now well documented and right was entirely on his side: see Jim Curran v Jim Perrin. Jim Perrin had behaved appallingly and it was a well-deserved victory for Jim Curran, albeit that the strain he endured was dreadful. A lesser man would perhaps have allowed Jim Perrin to ‘win’ by default — the risk was great as Jim Perrin had, as we have so often said, Friends in High Places. But the evidence against him was conclusive and his shame complete… Jim very kindly gave us permission to post the relevant chapter from his remarkable biography Here, There and Everywhere. The extraordinary thing is that Jim Perrin should really have believed that he would win; by deceit, bravado and force of will, and control over his publishers. We think he thinks he is omnipotent…
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We created jacssisters to ‘put the record straight’ for our sister, Jac, when we discovered the gross misrepresentation of which Jim Perrin had been guilty; and the blatant lies which he told when he wrote his account of his short time with her, of her illness and her tragically early death. This is all explained quite clearly in our earlier posts: Jim Perrin is a Liar, Jim Perrin’s qualified grief and Jim Perrin’s terms of bereavement. Now, so many people have contacted us and come forward with stories of their own disturbing experiences with Jim Perrin — telling of violence, financial fraud and loss of self-esteem and safety issues — that the site has expanded; and surely this is all to the good if his behavioural patterns can be made more widely known. For far too many years Jim Perrin has succeeded by compartmentalising his victims. Although, clearly, from reading the UKC Forum threads, some — Perrin-partisans — may think our site an inconvenience, denigrating it with the old cliché about washing dirty linen in public…
Alan James closed down the 8th. of March thread, on the same day. He said: ‘I am going to stop replies to this post. It is way beyond the scope of what we can cope with on this forum and is already giving us a lot of problems. [Our italics] Please don’t start any new threads on this topic.’ We can quite see how the trend of the comments might have dismayed him — they had strayed somewhat from the climbing questions, yet it was an interesting editorial decision. One wonders where the thread might have led if left to its own momentum. Were there perhaps complaints from Jim Perrin? Was there fear of litigation? At least, for the time being, it remains online, as does the other, but that may change in the future. We have print-outs if needed…