(Part 2) Should Roger Alton be thanked for favouring Jim Perrin?

Had Roger Alton, in 2005, agreed to our family’s request — as behoved any intellectually honest editor (given the circumstances we explained to him) to respond to the article by Jim Perrin which he had published in his paper The Observer — instead of favouring his friend and climbing partner by denying that request, in all probability we would never have created jacssisters, the site which has enabled readers to access some of the more unpalatable truths about Jim Perrin and emboldened others to come forward with details of their own disturbing, and in some cases traumatic, experiences with him.

There can be no doubt that Roger Alton should have allowed our voice to be heard in 2005. Perhaps our response would have restrained that author’s hyperbole when he was writing West, and the knowledge that we had publicly expressed our rightful concern might at least have curbed his Worst Excesses.

But no: Jim Perrin has ‘Friends in High Places’, and he went on to write, with apparent impunity, the book which was such a travesty: we noted that some of those involved with its progress, and they will know who they are — thought it lacking in the quality sufficiently acceptable to allow it to be (even) long-listed for the ‘Wales Book of the Year’. We are really very grateful (it would have added insult to injury had he been rewarded for such a vile book) but as he has always been something of a ‘golden boy’ in the Welsh literary hierarchy and had very close ‘friendships’ with many of the women in that circle, this must have come as a considerable shock to Jim Perrin: clearly he had felt his ‘trajectory’ was assured — he wrote in one of his letters to our sister: ‘My work is highly thought of and receives much critical acclaim: my star is rising’…

Our posts, which from the outset we stated ‘were to set the record straight’, have become, with the help of those many new supporters who have told us so much, an extraordinary revelation of some of Jim Perrin’s undeniably unpleasant characteristics.

These include: his proved ability to lie; his physical violence; what do seem to be his pretensions; his witnessed and well-documented willingness to financially defraud some of those with whom he is or has been connected; his ‘slipperyness’; his penchant for the use of aliases to hurt others and to puff his own work; and, when he chooses, a total disregard — often even risible if it was not so serious — for truth. Such a list! And we would not make such a list if we did not have the absolute proof for our assertions…

But: despite the many transgressions of which he was guilty during his relationship with Jac, and apart from all the other serious failings we have documented, we consider the following to be the very worst betrayal. How can a man of any calibre, or even half-decency, claim to be at his partner’s side as she lay dying, when in fact he was actually miles away? Ref. our post Our account of Jac’s illness … part four.

We say these things now, because we have incontestable evidence of everything we have described. There can be no question of any viable denial.

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And we do thank Roger Alton: had he not refused to print our response in 2005 — through a surely misplaced ‘allegiance’ to his friend Jim Perrin — it is highly probable, as we were then such technophobes, that we would have been unaware of The Guardian’s comments thread on which our family was being attacked with those spurious and salacious outpourings by ‘Melangell’ (JP?) and would never have envisaged a site of our own on which we could challenge Jim Perrin in a fair fight.

So it would now appear that we do indeed owe Roger Alton our thanks: but the ‘favour’ he granted his friend, Jim Perrin (and for which he was rewarded by the belittling mention in the introduction, quoted in the previous post, four years later), was not in our view, well-judged.

Inadvertently, as fate would have it, it would seem that he has done us the greater favour because by his refusal to publish our rebuttal we were encouraged to set up our site jacssisters and to show through our posts — to put on record — aspects of the real Jim Perrin which hitherto, with an amazing degree of skill and success, he has managed to keep well-hidden and completely free from scrutiny.

Jac’s sisters.