- Cyril Smith grew up in the Depression in Rochdale, Greater Manchester
- Local shops refused to serve him or his siblings as they were 'illegitimate'
- He was bullied at grammar school for his weight - 12 stone at 12-years-old
- Smith pursued politics and power so he could no longer be rejected
- When he was elected mayor, he made his mother Eva his Lady Mayoress
- She was known to pinch the backsides of young Liberals even in her 70s
By Simon Danczuk
16 April 2014
His revelations have shocked Britain and shamed our political elite. All this week, Labour MP Simon Danczuk has laid bare the hideous wholesale child abuse of Liberal MP Cyril Smith — and how politicians, the police and even MI5 conspired to cover it up.
Now, in the concluding part of our devastating series, he reveals how being illegitimate and overweight saw Smith ostracised as a child — and helped turn him into a twisted predator.
Hunger was an everyday part of Cyril Smith’s childhood. He grew up in the Depression years in a one-up, one-down house in Rochdale with his grandmother, mother, younger brother Norman and older sister Eunice.
Food consisted of dripping on bread, a single egg shared between three people, potato hash and penny bags of stale cakes. The family were so poor that sometimes they had to burn bits of their own furniture to cook a meal.
Their poverty, while tough, was not unusual. Much worse, as far as the young Cyril was concerned, was the fact that he and his siblings had no father.
It was customary in those days for the Rochdale Observer to print details of all the births at Birch Hill Hospital. But if you check the records for June 1928, Cyril’s name is conspicuously absent. Illegitimate children were not recorded.
Being poor, he acknowledged in his autobiography, ‘was just simply how life was’. Being illegitimate was socially unacceptable.