Clowning around with bastards

Date

AUDIO: The victim details the sordid story to Hinch

AUDIO: Roy Lyons' niece calls in to defend her uncle Roy

As Zig and Zag, Jack Perry and Doug McKenzie, drove a toy car at their first Moomba parade in 1956 and that same year broadcast the first episode of Peters Fun Fair on Channel 7. It was the first children’s show ever broadcast in Australia. Also on Peters Fun Fair was Roy Lyons as Cousin Roy.

For more than 40 years Zig and Zag appeared every year as favourites on the Channel Seven Good Friday Appeal for the Royal Children’s Hospital.

Everybody could sing their theme song You and Me and knew their catchphrase ‘no-o-o trouble’.

And publicly there was no-o-o trouble. They were even named joint Moomba Monarchs in 1999. That honour was withdrawn when it was revealed that Jack Perry had been convicted in 1994 of sex offences against his grand-daughter. The case had received no publicity and the comic team kept working with kids.

The scandal not only meant that one of Australia’s most famous clowns was a pedophile but that his partner, McKenzie, knew it and for years continued the charade as a comic duo with his child-molesting partner.

After the scandal was made public and they were stripped of the Moomba honours I’m told Zig and Zag never spoke to each other again.

I’m going back to this not because of Zig and Zag but to wonder how much McKenzie knew of Perry’s child-molesting – as far back as the 1960s.

Because it seems there was more than one pedophile in the cast of Peters Fun Fair. There were other predators who targeted young girls in the live audience for the show.

One of them: Cousin Roy. Roy Lyons.

One of his victims has contacted me to tell her story for the first time. She and her girlfriend were 11 years old when they were invited by her girlfriend’s older cousin to be in the studio audience in 1963 and 1964.

They were later separated and taken into separate rooms where, she says, they were made to undress. She said Roy Lyons touched her, made her touch his penis and then rubbed his penis up against the girls.

She remembers they were then taken to the Hotel Australia for a treat because the hotel had an ice-cream parlour.

More than 45 years later this woman, now 57, wants to tell her story because she wants people to know about these men and about that family show which hid a pedophile ring.

You wonder, over the years, how many people knew, and how many covered it up. These sick clowns hid behind those masks for decades. They were laughing at you. And all those trusting little kids. What a pack of bastards.

24 comments so far

  • My son was sexually assaulted by a trusted male when he was 14, so I have been down that path with him. I am 100% supportive of you, Derryn and any other humane person who does whatever they can to expose and bring to justice, these despicable people who have lost the right to be considered part of the human race.

    Commenter
    Heather
    Date and time
    May 13, 2011, 4:20PM
    • I was under the impression that Jack Perry was covering up for some one close to the family And took the blame for it

      Commenter
      IAN CUZENS
      Date and time
      May 13, 2011, 4:58PM
      • Derryn's allegations are serious. What are we using for proof here?

        Commenter
        Bruce
        Date and time
        May 13, 2011, 8:21PM
        • Yes sadly...my son was sexually assaulted at an early age...he is now 50 and has not spoken to me for years now..he has blamed me for not protecting him better ....this should never have happened to any of our children...
          Thank you Derryn for protecting the children now...

          Commenter
          Judy
          Date and time
          May 13, 2011, 9:09PM
          • Derryn, you're a very brave man and you have a lot of supporters out there, including me.

            I think that every child molester should be exposed and vilified to the extreme - yes they certainly are bastards of the highest order.

            I personally don't think that there is any cure or deterrent for paedophilia and I strongly believe that capital punishment is the only solution for serial paedophiles, because I have yet to hear of one who has stopped his perverted behaviour, even after repeated jailings.

            Good for you Derryn, don't let the idiotic legal system stifle you. In fact I believe that a website totally out of the jurisdiction of the Australian legal system should be set up to name these paedophiles.

            People who blow the whistle on them to that website can thus be protected from suffering any legal action in Australia because any records of them would be unavailable to courts and police.

            Commenter
            Ziggy
            Date and time
            May 14, 2011, 4:11AM
            • I was married to a victim of a sexual abuse by a family member. She was abused for 15 years from the age of 5. She told me about when we were dating. It was ultimately the reason why our marriage broke down after 17 years. I was never allowed to tell her family upon her request, until the time we broke up and the bastard started visiting the house where my ex and two daughters were living. So I told her family to save my children as the cops couldn't do anything about it unless he molested them. I was told that if I didn't shut my mouth I would end up with a bullet in my head and they then threatened to have my children taken away from me. It was hell. My family are now victims of this bastard because of the after affects, so it touches many more than just the victim. Who is looking after the children? You Derryn, well done and thank you for your tireless fight against these evil bastards!

              Commenter
              Ken
              Date and time
              May 14, 2011, 7:20AM
              • Come on we have all supported Derryn on our fight,it's not just Derryn's fight."name them shame them" The 20th of May is coming around fast, the courts are open to the public. We must fill this court room, the Corridors, the steps and out onto the streets. More of us must turn out than did on that dark day when Derryn and only Derryn was arrested. To the people of Melbourne Victiria this is the time our chance to stand as one this is a must. Fight the fight as one show Government that we Elicited they are only there because we put them there and the they are there to Govern our state, it is not there state. If you do not want to speak now, it's your state going to shit!

                Commenter
                Glenn
                Date and time
                May 14, 2011, 11:41AM
                • In the conversation with the accused mans niece Derryn states that he accepted the victims statement as truthful. The niece stipulated that her uncle did not even reside in any of the places mentioned, so how can Derryn defend the victims account that she is even talking about the same person, the deceased man that has now been accused of being a pedophile? Apart from the heartache the niece now has to endure based only on hearsay, just how does Derryn propose to seek justice for these allegations? For this very reason alone Derryn deserves to go to jail. During his jail time society will at least have the benefit of not having to endure his persistent witch hunts based on unproven accusations.

                  Commenter
                  Greg
                  Date and time
                  May 15, 2011, 11:56AM
                  • Because of the media bias displayed by 3aw and Derryn, more harm than good will result with accused pedophiles being allowed to walk free. Any person named at parliament house today will have their case thrown out of court by the magistrate who will have no other choice and they will instead be allowed to continue their vile acts on children. Vigilantism is not and never has been the answer to a just society. That is not the kind of society I want to be a part of. Shame on 3aw for supporting this ridiculous cause. I cannot believe the naivety of so many making comment on this blog, wake up to yourselves!

                    Commenter
                    Greg
                    Date and time
                    May 15, 2011, 12:24PM
                    • Part 1 of 3
                      I am deeply, deeply offended by this despicable and scathing attack on a person who is no longer around to defend themselves. This, in itself, is completely wrong. To wait 45 years to destroy the reputation and integrity of this kind and gentle man, is even worse.

                      These are the facts as I know them.

                      I am 60 years old. My parents were in the television industry in it's infancy, and my brothers and I spent many hours at the studios whilst programs such as Peters Fun Fair, Happy Hammond Show, Club 7, the Sundowner, Sunnyside Up, amongst others, were being produced. We pretty much grew up around the studio and it's corridors.

                      When I was 7, I was a flowergirl at the wedding of Doug McKenzie (Zag). Whenever we were in the studio, both Zig and Zag were there, along with Cousin Roy. My father, and our family were particularly close to Roy Lyons, and because of that we called him Uncle Roy (not Cousin). My father and he were best mates and had a love of the simple life, nature, going bush, and spending time with family and friends.

                      As stated in your article, and based on the above, if there was any 'ring' , then I was in the middle of it. Growing up, I too, took my girlfriends into the audience. Uncle Roy, would always be welcoming, and made everyone feel 'special'. This was the very nature of the man he was.

                      Commenter
                      Edwina
                      Date and time
                      May 15, 2011, 4:58PM

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