Headteachers from some of the country’s top private schools wrote in support of Ball including Ian Beer, former head of Harrow. Lancing College and Ellesmere College
Ellesmere College 2011
The buzz and chatter in Big School on Saturday evening was palpable, the occasion was a very special dinner to celebrate the 80th Birthday of past Headmaster, Mr Ian Beer CBE. Members of the College Common Room and old boys gathered with great excitement, as many had not been back to the school since the 1960’s.
Ian was a very young Headmaster when, in 1961, he became Head at Ellesmere at just 29 years old
Victims of the retired bishop described him as a sadistic predator who groomed, controlled and abused them.
Ian Beer first met Ball In 1961
Beer was a young headmaster at Ellesmere College when he met Ball. Ball was setting up the Community for the Glorious Ascension pigsty in Stroud.
It was Ian Beer who asked the Bishop of Shrewesbury if Peter Ball could be elected a Governor.
Ball governed several schools since, as well as becoming a Chaplain to the Headmasters’ Conference for a period of time.
In 1993, when he wrote this letter of support for Peter Ball, Ian Beer had known Peter Ball for 32 years :
“On several occasions in all the three schools that I led I was faced with having to help (*redacted*) sharing in the monastic life so that he could help them. On each occasion the boy returned to school and resumed normal school life…”
And Beer says, “At Harrow, we hosted a group of the young Christians involved in the Bishop’s scheme in Sussex.”
Ian David Stafford Beer, (left) was an old chum of Denis Thatcher and Beer read a poem at Denis Thatcher’s Funeral
Dame Alun Roberts @ciabaudo
If he didn’t know, he’s hardly fit to be King …
Richard Scorer: My clients accept the PoW has many interactions with Church of England clergy. However our clients do not accept that he claims he was not aware that a caution means an acceptance of guilt.
Scorer claims senior leaders in the Church knew of Peter Ball’s offending but Lambeth Palace did not hand over letters to police: http://ow.ly/M5yK30l4wJe
Mr William Chapman: There’s a reluctance to trust the secular authorities to handle the matter and a willingness to forgive and reintegrate Peter Ball, no matter what he’d done
Elizabeth Hall, Nat Safeguarding Advisor, recommending a further review of Peter Ball information which should involve trying to find all files/documents
Both Michael Ball and brother Peter Ball were not shy about using the name of the Prince of Wales to seek to influence others. Bishop Michael Ball wrote to Lord Carey in Dec 1992 saying that his brother was receiving support from 2 Cabinet Ministers and Prince Charles Peter Ball often mention their friendship.
On 8 March 1993 Peter Ball received a caution for one count of gross indecency against Neil Todd. He resigned immediately. Peter Ball alleged to the Church of England shortly that he either did not wish to resign, and accepted a caution to avoid a trial.
“This Inquiry has been provided with details of allegations made by a total of 32 individuals. These all relate to an alleged abuse of power by Peter Ball for the purposes of his sexual gratification.”
The former Bishop of Lewes, Peter Ball was convicted of two offences of indecent assault, and an offence of misconduct
Peter Ball admitted when pleading guilty that he received sexual gratification from the deliberate manipulation of vulnerable young men, that the contact was consistent with grooming and that he abused his position as a Bishop in the Church of England
In January 1996, Ball was permitted by Archbishop Carey to preach at a particular public school and, to conduct confirmations at other specific schools later on in that year
(1) Why he was permitted to return to ministry in this fashion? (2) Why did no-one think to carry out some kind of risk assessment? (3) Whether or not senior clergy simply thought that Peter Ball’s pleas of innocence should be believed?
Prince Charles gives evidence to inquiry into Peter Ball
The Prince of Wales says he was aware that Peter Ball, who lived in Aller, near Langport, had been given a police caution, but claims he did not realise it amounted to an admission of guilt.
Details of Prince Charles’s relationship with Ball will be revealed at an inquiry into the case on Friday.
The next in line to the throne had “decades of correspondence” with Ball and occasionally sent him “small gifts of money”, according to the draft copy of his statement to the inquiry, The Times has reported.
The statement will add that Ball confided in him in 2009 that he had been involved in an “indiscretion” years previously, which he blamed on a person with a grudge.
Bishop Peter Ball – was a founder member of the Thatcher Foundation set up by the former prime minister.
While Bishop Suffragan of Lewes, he had come to public notice through his close friendship with Ian Gow
Margaret Thatcher and Jimmy Savile at Christmas time… one of many spent together
Christmas Eve 1982 Party at Chequers
1982 Dec 24 Fr
Archive (Thatcher MSS)
MT Engagement Diary
1340 To Chequers
1830-2000 Small drinks party
Carringtons, Tim Smith, Ian Beer (Headmaster of Harrow), Station Commander of RAF Halton, Jimmy Savile, Mr. Hooker, Davids, Hamiltons, Nicholsons, Alison Ward:
Background on some of the guests:
Lord Peter Carrington
(Considering the time frame and roles in government -“The Carringtons” referred to on the guest list are likely the Peter Carringtons)
Peter Carrington served 4 years as Secretary General of NATO. He served under four prime ministers, McMillan, Home, Heath and Thatcher. He also chaired Bilderberg for several years in the late 1990s.
Carrington was Foreign Secretary in 1982 when the Falkland Islands were invaded by Argentina
As it happens, Jimmy Savile declared that he had been in Margaret Thatcher’s company on Sunday 2nd May 1982:
Whilst walking together, on receipt of a note her face had turned ashen. Jimmy Savile had looked at her with concern “What is the matter, Margaret”, he said. ” The Belgrano has been sunk”, was her reply.
Tim Smith – Leon Brittan’s PPS 1983-1985 He has no memory of the ‘Dickens Dossier’.
Harrow graduate and a Tory Party ex-vice chairman
Parly under-sec NI Office 1994
On 3 July 1997 he was found guilty of taking cash for questions from Al Fayed, along with Neil Hamilton
Mr. Hooker – likely Michael Ayherst Hooker
‘Managing Director of first institutional fund raising consultant in the UK’, specialising in ‘Christian stewardship
A lifelong friend of the McWhirter twins, Ross and Norris. In 1959, he co-founded Britain’s first fund-raising consultancy Hooker, Craigmyle & Co (now Craigmyle) with his friend Justin Shaw who is the son of the late Thomas Shaw, 3rd Baron Craigmyle.
Obitituary of Hooker in the Independent:
Michael Hooker was an early pioneer in the art of charity fund- raising.
In an earlier age and time he would have been described as a confirmed bachelor
In recent years, however, his existence was frequently enlivened by a succession of handsome young men friends, including at one time a budding pop singer
Hooker worked briefly as a schoolmaster in Britain and South Africa.
Hooker spent two years with the British Council ( before taking up a post in 1947 as a prep-school master at St John’s in Johannesburg)
From 1956 to 1957 he learned about fund-raising while working for the American Wells Organisation in Britain and New Zealand.
Conservative politicians were regular guests at his table, along with churchmen, academics and headmasters – and, as often as not, a rehabilitated young offender to act as waiter.
(“Confirmed bachelor”) Hooker was a fount of good advice to parents privately seeking information on the best education for their children and he tirelessly gave of his own time and money to favourite good causes including Aids charities, the NSPCC and the Police Convalescence and Rehabilitation Trust.
When his friend and fellow old Marlburian Ross McWhirter was murdered by the IRA in 1975 he became one of the chief founders of a special trust, set up in McWhirter’s name
A founding governor since 1991 of Newton Prep, the London preparatory school in Battersea for intellectually gifted children…
he also remained dedicated to the cause of the Anglican Church. An appointment, in 1952, to the London Diocesan Board of Education, happily combined the two great driving interests of his life – education and religion.
“The Hamiltons” are listed on Thatcher’s party guest list
(Again, given the time frame and roles played in government, it is likely to be Archie Hamilton and his wife)
Above DAVID DAVIS MP and SIR ARCHIE HAMILTON (right) at a dinner attended by the Conservative leader Michael Howard and David Davis and David Cameron held at the Banqueting Hall, Whitehall, London in 2005
Archibald Gavin Hamilton, Baron Hamilton Of Epsom was a whip for 4 yrs and PPS to Thatcher
John lived in Surrey for many years and was Lord Lieutenant from 1973 until 1986. He served in the Coldstream Guards during the Second World War and was awarded the MC;
He was also a Lord in Waiting to the present Queen.
More recently in the news…2014
Margaret Thatcher was told about alleged sex parties with under-age boys held by one of her closest aides claims her former personal bodyguard.
Margaret Thatcher ‘Told Of Sir Peter Morrison Paedophile Claims’ But Promoted Him Anyway
Former bodyguard John Strevens (left) claims he told Margaret Thatcher and her private secretary Archie Hamilton about rumours surrounding her close aide Peter Morrison (right) before he was promoted to be deputy chairman of the Tory party
Top policeman Strevens passed on information to Lady Thatcher and her private secretary Archie Hamilton at a meeting in Downing Street that one of her senior aides was suspected of holding sex parties for underage boys
Mr Strevens spent years by Mrs Thatcher’s side – he worked as Mrs Thatcher’s personal bodyguard, said that he passed on allegations about her confidant Sir Peter Morrison.
He said that Lady Thatcher appointed Sir Peter deputy party chairman of the Conservatives despite learning of the rumours.
Strevens said that he “immediately” passed on the information to Lady Thatcher and her private secretary Archie Hamilton at a meeting in Downing Street.
“She listened to what he said and that was it.
“A senior officer in Chester had told me there were rumours going around about under-age boys – one aged 15 – attending sex parties at a house there belonging to Peter Morrison,” he said.
“After we returned to No10 I asked to go and see her immediately. It was unusual for me to do that, so they would have know it was something serious.
Top Policeman: “I told them exactly what had been said about Peter. Archie took notes and they thanked me for coming.”
“There was no proof but the officer I spoke to was certain and said local press knew a lot more.“
Responding to the claims, Hamilton said that he remembered that the officer had been at No10 but could not recall any mention of under-age boys.
“I don’t remember him saying they were under-age,” he said. “There may have been but the point he was making to her was that there were only men involved.
Tory grandee Lord Tebbit has previously stated that he confronted Sir Peter over the allegations
Former Conservative MP Edwina Currie also described him as a ‘noted pederast’ with a liking for young boys.
Margaret Thatcher, “open secret” pederast Leon Brittan and noted pederast Sir Peter Morrison on holiday in Islay, Aug 1979
Three Conservative Cabinet Ministers on four separate occasions (in various combinations) told me between 1982 and 1985 that Brittan’s paedophilia bent was “an open secret” among senior Tories. They had nothing to gain in saying this, and no motive to influence me: I was a very peripheral communications supplier doing advertising work for the Central Office of Information (the COI) – later abolished by the Camerlot Coalition and transferred to the Cabinet Office. In truth, the subject was a matter for amusement and gossip rather than smear.
For example, one high-profile Minister at the time remarked, “Leon isn’t interested in sex with anything over three feet tall” – a crack I took to be an accusation of bestiality until the civil servant involved in the project set me straight. I was told later (at a private dinner) that Margaret Thatcher banished the Peer to the EC when his proclivities were confirmed to her by the security services.
Now today the Telegraph has a piece confirming that ‘Newly uncovered files show former MI5 director general Sir Antony Duff wrote to the then Cabinet Secretary Sir Robert Armstrong in 1986 over claims made by two sources about the MP….’; the Telegraph doesn’t directly mention Brittan at that point, but his name heads a paragraph shortly afterwards. Following a further conversation this morning, I have no doubt whatsoever that first, Leon Brittan is the name in the documents quoted; and second, they have not suddenly ‘been uncovered’.
The papers were suppressed because Nick Clegg had been given a job working for Brittan in the EC, and Cameron later hired the former Home Secretary as a temporary trade secretary in 2010. (Given that the PM hired the greatly cloud-covered Baron Green for the permanent post in the end, we can see that – as with Andy Coulson – David Cameron’s reference-checking has never crept above slapdash).
On the guest list – Alison Ward, Thatcher’s secretary
She is a Deputy Lieutenant of Hampshire, and is patron or trustee of a number of local and national charities and organisations.
Alison Ward, now Lady Wakeham MBE DL had been involved in arranging a vacation for Thatcher at Peter Morrison’s home in Islay…
1979 Mar 14 We
No.10: Alison Ward letter to Peter Morrison MP (invitation to holiday with your family on Islay)
[MT’s “need for a proper holiday”] [released 2010]
^ Margaret Thatcher, Leon Brittan and Sir Peter Morrison on holiday in Islay, Aug 1979
Thatcher spent summer holidays in Islay with Peter Morrison and Leon Brittan and
Christmas/New Year holidays with “Jim’ll Fix-it”, Jimmy Savile
Alison Ward/Lady Wakeham is married to a “fixer”, John Wakeham, Baron Wakeham,
Prince Philip, Lord Wakeham, Paul Turnock
John Wakeham, Baron Wakeham, PC, DL (born 22 June 1932) is a British businessman and Conservative Party politician, and former Chancellor of Brunel University.
Lord Wakeham with Prince Charles and Prince William
As Chief Whip in the most turbulent Thatcher years, he could be seen padding through the corridors of the Commons with a difficult rebel Tory MP for a quiet word over a whisky in the leather chairs and fug of the smoking room.
He is proud of being called the ultimate Whitehall “fixer”, and Lady Thatcher made good use of his abilities. Skilled with an iron fist in a velvet glove, he handled all the big problems that beset her Government, from advice on whether Cecil Parkinson should return to office after the scandal of his love child, to the privatisation of the energy industry.
His first wife, Roberta, was killed in the Brighton hotel bombing in October 1984 and he was trapped in rubble for seven hours, suffering serious crush injuries to his legs. The couple had two children. Wakeham married his secretary, Alison Ward MBE in 1985
…the ultimate accolade as a Whitehall operator came when he was appointed by Tony Blair to chair a review of the House of Lords.
Lord Wakeham and Prince Charles
It was in another role, as chairman of the Press Complaints Commission from which he stepped down last week, that Lord Wakeham was able to show his prowess as a fixer, defusing the continuing battles between the tabloids and Buckingham Palace, placing a restraining hand on editors here, holding back politicians there from legislation to impose new privacy laws on the press.
Last year, on the PCC’s 10th anniversary, an A-list cast – headed by Prince Charles, Camilla Parker Bowles and Prince William – of PCC complainants were invited to a party at London’s Somerset House. The event was a real publicity coup; more importantly, it seemed to vindicate Lord Wakeham’s strategy for handling the tricky relationship between a hungry press and a publicity
The great fixer, always treading a fine line between Fleet Street, St James’s Palace and Downing Street, had tried to protect the rich and the famous from intrusions into their privacy while allowing newspapers to report on their lives. He did not please all the people all the time. Last week Charles Moore, editor of the Daily Telegraph, said it was time for a “new era” at the PCC, accusing the body of having a “collusive” relationship with some newspapers. According to The Spectator’s media commentator, “the PCC is as frightened of upsetting the Prime Minister as some newspapers are of writing about Lord Wakeham.”
Lord Wakeham, 69, lists yachting among his private pleasures. He has a small cruising yacht, and is a member of the Royal Yacht Squadron.
Director, NM Rothschild & Sons 1995
He was a director of Enron (close ties with George Bush) from 1994 until its bankruptcy in 2001.
As a non-executive director and a member of Enron’s auditing committee, paid a reported £80,000 a year, Lord Wakeham was meant to ensure that the company’s accountants were happy with the way that it was reporting to Wall Street.
Alison Ward/Lady Wakeham and Kids Company Camila Batmanghelidjh & James Sainsbury
Kids Company founder and trustees may face action amid Insolvency Service probe
The founder and former trustees of the collapsed charity Kids Company could be banned from holding company directorships.
The youth organisation folded amid a storm of controversy in August 2015 – just days after receiving a £3 million Government grant in a final bid to keep it afloat.
Kids Company received more than £42 million of Whitehall funding between 1996 and 2015, thanks in part to founder Camila Batmanghelidjh winning favour with former prime minister David Cameron.
The Insolvency Service is investigating the financial circumstances of the charity and is allegedly bringing disqualification proceedings against Ms Batmanghelidjh.
Former trustees of the collapsed charity, including ex-BBC creative director Alan Yentob and Richard Handover, previously a boss of WH Smith, may also face sanctions.
The trustees, who also include Sunetra Atkinson, Erica Bolton, Francesca Robinson, Jane Tyler and Andrew Webster, responded to the “unconfirmed reports” in a joint statement.
Mr Colman was an Eton contemporary of the Most Rev Justin Welby, while his father, Sir Michael, oversaw the Church’s investment portfolio between 1993 and 1999, holding the post of First Church Estates Commissioner. He was subsequently awarded the Archbishop of Canterbury’s Cross of St Augustine.
A catastrophic charity collapse. Two inquires that hit the buffers. As a musical lampoons the fiasco… Will Kids Company Camila and her BBC stooge EVER face the music?
- Stage production depicts the hugely publisised fall of Kids Company charity
- Comes two years after the controversial charity met its demise amid allegations
- Inquiries are ongoing but there is not indication of when they might conclude
- Camila Batmanghelidjh’s autobiography, due out this year, is similarly delayed
Alan Yentob, BBC creative director, throws up his arms in despair. His rich baritone trembles with bathos as he sings: ‘Michael Gove even said it was an inspirational charity!’
The audience titters. The line does not have the lyricism of a Rodgers and Hammerstein, but it is genuinely funny.
And true. The real Mr Yentob — rather than the actor playing him in this stage production — really did say, rather than sing, it.
Just like the BBC bigwig himself, who became embroiled in the scandal surrounding the collapse of the Kids Company charity of which he was chairman, there is something more than a little unconventional about this new musical being previewed in London last week.
First, there is the title: ‘The Public Administration And Constitutional Affairs Select Committee Takes Oral Evidence On Whitehall’s Relationship With Kids Company.’
Then there are the lyrics, taken verbatim from the Hansard transcript of the testimony given by two witnesses who appeared before that committee of MPs on October 15, 2015.
One was Mr Yentob. The other was enigmatic charity supremo Camila Batmanghelidjh, once known as ‘the angel of Camberwell’.
The pair had been summoned to the Commons to explain how Kids Company, the charity of which Ms Batmanghelidjh was founder and CEO, had gone bust amid allegations of financial irregularity and sexual abuse, having received almost £50 million of public money.
That was almost two years ago. And while the musical is opening this week, the public still awaits a definitive official explanation of the charity’s controversial modus operandi and dramatic demise.
The select committee had no powers to act on its own damning findings of an ‘extraordinary catalogue of failures’. Two statutory bodies that do have such powers — the Charity Commission and the Insolvency Service — were supposed to deliver their own reports on Kids Company last autumn. They did not.
Both bodies say inquiries are ‘ongoing’ but there is no indication as to when they might end. Ms Batmanghelidjh’s autobiography, due out late last year, is similarly delayed.
And so the extraordinary saga rumbles on.
The woman at the centre of it all, 54-year-old Camila, keeps, in contrast to her life before the scandal, a low profile these days.
On a rare outing last summer, she was photographed as she went to lunch with representatives of a foreign government ‘which is having to deal with a lot of young refugees’ at the Michelin-starred Pied a Terre restaurant.
Ms Batmanghelidjh says she is continuing to help many Kids Company children, with the financial backing of donors who stayed loyal.
Kids Company rented a £4,000-a-month Grade II-listed art-deco mansion in North London, in which a member of the finance department and one of Ms Batmanghelidjh’s PAs lived
While the Metropolitan Police found insufficient evidence to press any criminal charge, anecdotal evidence of institutional anarchy and excesses at Kids Company still has the power to shock.
Brown envelopes stuffed with cash were handed to troubled children as a matter of course. Twelve-year-old clients were given £150 trainers; others were flown first class to America. Some £50,000 alone was allegedly spent on taxis at the charity’s Christmas party.
Kids Company received £46 million from the UK taxpayer over 13 years, including £3 million days before it shut. Former Mayor of London Boris Johnson is pictured with Camila Batmanghelidjh London Evening Standard’s ‘1000: London’s Most Influential People’ in 2014
Flamboyant, Iranian-born Camila could charm the birds from the trees. Then prime minister David Cameron was said to be ‘mesmerised’ by her, while his wife Samantha was a backer, along with Prince Charles and a host of other A-list celebrities and City financiers.
Kids Company received £46 million from the UK taxpayer over 13 years, including £3 million days before it shut. Rock band Coldplay ploughed in a further £8 million from royalties.
Ms Batmanghelidjh claimed her charity had 36,000 young ‘clients’.
No doubt there was and remains a very real need for children from splintered families to be supported in Britain’s troubled inner cities.
But something within the organisation was not right. It needed only a small push for the already teetering edifice to collapse. That pressure came from an unlikely quarter.
Pensioner Joan Woolard was the catalyst to Kids Company’s spectacular downfall and remains one of Ms Batmanghelidjh’s fiercest critics.
Having heard the charity boss speak on Radio 4, Mrs Woolard was inspired to sell her home and donate the proceeds — more than £200,000 — to the Kids Company.
Doubts began when she asked how the money had been spent.
The answers were unsatisfactory. Her experience of spending some time at Kids Company offices alarmed her further — and she asked for her money back.
Hers was the first public voice of dissent against this fashionable and feted good cause. Ms Batmanghelidjh denied any wrongdoing.
But the money remained in Ms Batmanghelidjh’s hands. Kids Company needed it desperately.
Encouraged by Mrs Woolard’s public stand, whistle-blowers from inside the organisation began to come forward.
The unsubstantiated allegations of sexual abuse were the final straw.
In August 2015, the charity shut down, laying off scores of staff and abandoning thousands of children.
Some of the evidence subsequently given to the Commons select committee presented a shocking litany of financial chaos, rampant nepotism and very dubious methodology.
The committee concluded: ‘There appears to have been a catastrophic confluence of factors that have conspired to allow this charity to operate as it did, for as long as it did.’
Their report said the ‘approach of successive governments and ministers towards Kids Company has proved to be an improper way to conduct government business or handle public money’.
Alan Yentob had failed to restrain his ‘unaccountable and dominant’ CEO. His employer, the BBC, was also ‘accused of poor leadership for failing to take action against him when he tried to make suggestions about the BBC’s reporting of Kids Company’.
One of the committee’s witnesses, a high-ranking worker who was granted anonymity, gave a particularly damning insight into what Kids Company had become.
She said: ‘The charity was run by the CEO as her personal fiefdom, with no regard whatsoever for the financial implications. It was simply unsustainable to continue to take in anyone who asked for assistance and, in certain specific areas, ridiculous amounts of money were spent wantonly and inappropriately.’
Ms Batmanghelidjh had favourites among the youngsters she helped. ‘One group of young adults — many of them in their late 20s — were known throughout the organisation as “Camila’s kids” and inordinate amounts of money and resources were lavished on them; creating envy and resentment among others.’
But staff were also treated lavishly, the witness stated, and nepotism was rife. ‘Sasha and Jamie Handover (the children of former WH Smith boss Richard Handover, a trustee) were both employed at KC,’ the witness said.
‘The so-called “Operations Manager” — a sweet but totally inefficient woman who kept odd hours — turned out to be the mother of one of the IT chaps.
‘Magbule Mulla — who worked in the finance department — is the sister-in-law of Jeton (Tony) Cavolli, who was Camila’s driver.’
(While her Linked In page still describes her as ‘Assistant Accountant Kids Company’, Mrs Mulla was described by Ms Batmanghelidjh in one interview as ‘the woman who sews for me’.)
Ms Batmanghelidjh would eventually admit that her charity had paid for both of Mr Cavolli’s children to be put through private schools; one of them a boarding establishment where the chairman of governors was one Richard Handover (a trustee).
Mr Cavolli had been described by Ms Batmanghelidjh as a ‘therapist tasked with dealing with difficult young men and only had a car in order to go to their aid late at night’. But in the time she worked there, the witness only ‘heard him referred to as “Tony the Driver”.’
Some of the evidence subsequently given to the Commons select committee presented a shocking litany of financial chaos. Squatters are pictured at the former offices of Kids Company in Kenbury Street, Camberwell
It was ‘Tony the Driver’ who was pictured holding the car door open for Ms Batmanghelidjh prior to that lunch at Pied a Terre restaurant last summer.
He was not her chauffeur, she later explained. He was working as an Uber driver and had given her a lift as a ‘favour’.
A university academic whose role as an Ofsted inspector in South London alerted her to Kids Company more than 15 years ago had watched its progress with alarm.
‘The whole history of Kids Company is one of a failure of due diligence by local government, donor charities, the Tory Party, Prince Charles. They all failed. It is astounding,’ she told me.
Hers is only one of many critical voices. But there is an approaching counterblast. Approaching, but repeatedly delayed. Ms Batmanghelidjh’s autobiography was due to be published last autumn. Her ghost-writer is Tim Rayment.
In early 2015 he was sent by his newspaper to investigate Ms Batmanghelidjh. Now he is firmly in her camp.
One view is that Rayment fell under her spell; like so many financiers, pop stars, politicians and royals before him, he was ‘hypnotised’, one colleague said.
‘I want to give voice to someone who has been silenced,’ Mr Rayment told me last year, rather generously of someone who had the ear of royalty and prime ministers.
‘Have I been naïve? Have I been mesmerised?’ he asks. ‘The time to make that judgment is on publication.’
The fall-out has indeed been complex and messy for those involved. Last December, Mr Yentob stepped down as Creative Director of the BBC as a direct result of his involvement in the Kids Company collapse
Last night, a spokesman for Ms Batmanghelidjh’s publisher, Biteback, said she expected the book to appear in August. She explained: ‘We had initially hoped to do a very fast turnaround on this title, and therefore gave it a very ambitious publication date.
‘But it has turned out to be far more complex, both legally and in terms of the science involved, than we had first anticipated.’
The fall-out has indeed been complex and messy for those involved. Last December, Mr Yentob stepped down as Creative Director of the BBC as a direct result of his involvement in the Kids Company collapse.
Earlier this year, it was reported that the Insolvency Service had written to lawyers acting for Kids Company’s former board members to warn them it was minded to ban them from holding directorships.They included Ms Batmanghelidjh, Mr Yentob and Mr Handover. Which brings us back to the musical.
Flamboyant, Iranian-born Camila could charm the birds from the trees. Then prime minister David Cameron was said to be ‘mesmerised’ by her
‘Mr Yentob’ bewails the sudden denial of the public purse gold seam. He had mined it for years thanks to his contacts with David Cameron and the latter’s desire to give his Big Society slogan some substance and street cred.
Last night, a Charities Commission spokeswoman said: ‘When an inquiry is under way, we do not provide updates on when it is likely to conclude.
‘This is a high-profile case and when a report is available it will be posted online with full findings.’
An Insolvency Service spokesman said: ‘Our investigation into Kids Company remains ongoing. Each case has its own complexities and differences depending on the number of directors involved. There is no timescale for us to reach any conclusions. As such, it would not be appropriate for us to comment further at present.’
Miles Goslett, the journalist who first raised questions about Kids Company, in February 2015, is sceptical about the delay.
‘Both inquiries were set up the best part of two years ago and I was told privately last year they’d be published by Christmas 2016 at the latest,’ he said this week.
‘Even if these bodies are short on manpower, I’d have no difficulty believing that someone in Whitehall has taken the decision it would be politically sensible to keep them from public view for a while yet.’
Letters in Support of Bishop Peter Ball Make Extraordinary Reading.
Harrow-Related Paedophile Rings/Raids:
Child Porn Raids on Public Schools; Four Teachers Quit
Daily Mail (London), September 20, 1996
AT LEAST three public schools have been raided by Scotland Yard detectives investigating claims of a paedophile ring
Videos, computer disks and books were seized from a master at Harrow School. And four teachers at two other schools have left their jobs.
Harrow head Nicholas Bomford defended his teacher last night
Nicholas Bomford and Queen Elizabeth
Harrow head Nicholas Bomford defended his teacher last night, saying no charges were brought against the man, who was still in his post.
He said the matter had also been fully investigated by the London borough of Harrow’s child protection unit `but nothing of concern was discovered and it was decided no action was necessary.
`There was never any suggestion that anything happened within the school,’ he added. `As far as I’m concerned that is the end of the matter.’
The teacher’s solicitor said all the material taken from the master’s quarters at Harrow had been returned except for art photos which were still being studied.
`My client has stressed he is not a paedophile. I think he may be unfortunate in his friends,’ the solicitor added.
He said the teacher came to police attention following a Scotland Yard investigation into an alleged paedophile network involving public school teachers throughout Britain. It is understood his name appeared in address books seized during raids at other schools.
Schools raided: They included Hurstpierpoint College in West Sussex, where two teachers were raided in their homes by police.
Hurstpierpoint bursar Martin Sherwin said last night that one of the teachers was dismissed and the other resigned after being cautioned by police for possessing indecent material last February. He added: `No pupils were involved.’
Martin Sherwin BSc
Martin was educated at Hurstpierpoint College and Nottingham University. He spent 24 years in the oil industry and has extensive senior level experience in commercial and general management appointments both in the UK and overseas. Martin spent 14 years as an independent school Bursar at Hurstpierpoint College (1994 – 1997) and then Wellington College (1997 – 2007). A Governor of Milton Abbey School since 2008, Martin is also a Trustee of the School Fees Charitable Trust. He was previously Governor of an Academy school in Wiltshire and chairman of the National Schools Symphony Orchestra. He is married to Ruth and lives in Dorset. His three grown up sons were educated at Charterhouse, Hurstpierpoint College and Tonbridge.
The Harrow teacher was interviewed as part of a Scotland Yard investigation which began 18 months ago when a former teacher at Abberley Hall preparatory school in Hereford and Worcester alleged that an ex-colleague had admitted being in a public school paedophile ring.
Members allegedly swopped child pornography and organised tours to Third World countries, where they had sex with children.
Andrew Marsden-Smedley, Abberley Hall’s chairman of governors, said: `The matter never involved the school. One teacher was made redundant, another left through illness. I do not know the outcome of any police investigation.’
Scotland Yard said last night: `Our inquiries are continuing.’
ANDREW SADLER was linked to Peter Righton and Charles Napier in the child sex video ring (“Operation Fledgeling”). Andrew Sadler was accused of a sex act on a boy at Abberley Hall preparatory school in 1995, convicted of child rape in Romania in 2000 and convicted of child grooming in Britain in 2007.
Child Porn Raids on Public Schools; Four Teachers Quit
Daily Mail (London), September 20, 1996
Harrow master guilty of theft
Tuesday 19 May 1998
A FORMER geography master at Harrow, one of Britain’s leading public schools, was found guilty yesterday of stealing more than pounds 36,000 from a school holiday fund.
Peter Jackson, 36, over-charged wealthy parents for a school expedition to Tanzania and Zanzibar that he had organised in July 1996.
Wood Green Crown Court, in north London, where Jackson will be sentenced on Friday,heard how had he spent “vast sums” on his own children’s private school fees and piano lessons, his mortgage, and renovations including a new thatched roof at his country cottage.
After the jury delivered unanimous guilty verdicts on 12 sample counts of theft and one of forgery between April 1995 and November 1996, Judge Leonard Gerber warned Jackson that prison was almost certainly the only option.
In his defence Jackson, of Charminster, Dorset, had argued that there was a “culture” at Harrow that allowed him and colleagues to operate as one-man travel companies, and profit for the time and effort involved in organising overseas expeditions.
The headmaster of Harrow, Nicholas Bomford, said: “One assumed one was dealing with someone one could trust. He slipped through the net.
Paedophile ring alleged at top public schools (19.09.96)
Evening Standard, 19th September 1996
by Eileen Fairweather
DETECTIVES from Scotland Yard’s paedophile and child pornography unit have raided six masters at leading public schools, including Harrow.
A number of videos, computer discs and books were taken from one teacher at the £13,000-a-year school.
His innocence was last night vigorously defended by the headmaster of Harrow School where he remains in his post. His solicitor confirmed the teacher had been questioned by Harrow police and Scotland Yard but not arrested.
The lawyer said all the material had been returned by police except a book of art photos, which is still being studied. “My client has stressed he is not a paedophile. I think he may be unfortunate in his friends.”
He confirmed that the teacher came to police attention as a result of a Scotland Yard investigation into an alleged paedophile network involving public school teachers throughout Britain.
His name figured in address books seized by police during earlier raids on staff at other top schools.
His solicitor said: “A couple of them are – or perhaps ‘were’ might be a better word – friends. One of them has disappeared, possibly abroad.” The lawyer could not name the men but it is believed they were teachers at Hurstpierpoint College in Sussex. Two were raided at their homes at the college.
Hurstpierpoint’s bursar, Martin Sherwin, last night confirmed the teachers were dismissed after police cautions for the possession of indecent material. “No pupils were involved in the material.”
The teacher at Harrow was visited later as part of a secret Scotland Yard investigation which began 18 months ago, when a former teacher at Abberley Hall preparatory school – angry after being made redundant – alleged a colleague still in his post had admitted he was involved in a paedophile ring spanning top schools.
The ring allegedly swopped child pornography and organised tours to Third World countries where they could safely indulge in sex with “rent boys”.
Abberley Hall’s headmaster John Walker confirmed that the school dismissed the teacher and passed on the information to police. But, he said: “Nothing came of it and there was never any suggestion that any pictures he might have looked at had anything to do with the school.”
Harrow’s headmaster Nicholas Bomford said no Harrow pupils were questioned either. “The police brought no charges, having inspected what they took from the teacher’s house,” he said.
“I’m perfectly satisfied that a full investigation took place and that nothing of an incrimination or a dangerous kind was found. The last thing I’d want is his name blackened.”
Mr Cartledge’s solicitor admitted however that police have not yet returned to Mr Cartledge a book of photographs showing young men from about age 16 upwards in “Greek and Roman poses”.
The photographs are by German turn of the century photographer Baron Wilhelm Von Gloeden.
Investigations into other former and current public school masters continue.
In 1996, video tapes were seized from the premises belonging to director of music Philip Cartledge at Harrow School, though Cartledge was not arrested or charged (Gary Jones, ‘Sex Cops seize Videos at Top School’, News of the World, May 12th, 1996)
New conductor Philip Cartledge with choir directors. The Churches Together Good Friday Evening Meditation in Words and Music will take place on March 29 at Buxton Methodist Church. Photo contributed.
1 February 2013
REHEARSALS are due to get underway for the ‘Churches Together Good Friday Evening Meditation in Words and Music’ on March 29, at 8pm. There will be a performance of John Stainer’s Crucifixion with reflective readings. Kate MacLean, secretary of the Churches Together Music Group, has handed over the conductors’ baton to Chapel-en-le-Frith musician Philip Cartledge. Rehearsals take place every Friday at Buxton Methodist Church
Philip Cartledge – Trustee and Treasurer of Friends of Buxton Festival
Formerly director of music at Harrow 1976 – 2000
Administrator of HIV Lighthouse charity
PHILIP CARTLEDGE I’ve recently been appointed Trustee and Treasurer of the Friends. Born and brought up in Chapel-en-le-Frith, I went to New Mills Grammar School and then to the Royal Academy of Music and London University. I was Director of Music Schools at Harrow School where I taught music from 1976 to 2000. Later I became Administrator of Lighthouse, South London, which is part of the HIV/AIDS charity, Terrence Higgins Trust. In 2006 I moved back to Chapel and have become involved with music-making in and around Buxton, including as singer and pianist with Susie and the Bad Habits. My big break came in 2013 when Michael Williams broke his leg and I stepped in to conduct the Puccini Gloria with Buxton Musical Society. An opera fan and a loyal supporter of the Buxton Festival right from the start, I’m already enjoying getting to know the other Trustees and am greatly looking forward to the closer relationship with the Festival and with the Friends that my new role afffords me.
Hurstpierpoint College, a boarding school in West Sussex whose alumni include TV presenter Jamie Theakston and former First Sea Lord and Chief of the Defence Staff Admiral Michael Boyce.
Police Investigate Public School Paedophile Ring’
The Times, 25 August 1996.
SCOTLAND YARD detectives are investigating allegations of a paedophile network involving teachers from some of Britain’s top public schools, writes Stephen Grey.
The paedophile and child pornography unit is inquiring into a ring of private school staff who allegedly exchange information, boast of abusing youngsters and travel abroad together on “sex tours”. At least six teachers have been questioned and their homes raided as inquiries continue into the ring that has links to some of the most notorious paedophiles in Britain.
The paedophile unit has been assisted by detectives from forces around the country as well as social workers.
The inquiry began after a former teacher at Abberley Hall preparatory school in Herefordshire allegedly confessed to a colleague to being part of a huge network of paedophiles. Abberley Hall, which charges £2,500 a term for boarders, confirmed last week that both teachers were no longer on staff.
The former teacher claimed that he had had sex with “hundreds and hundreds” of boys and named teachers at six other leading establishments. There was no suggestion that any abuse took place at the schools.
Trips for the teachers to indulge in child abuse with “rent boys” have allegedly been organised to countries including the Philippines, Czech Republic, Romania, Albania, Thailand and even Bosnia.
“These people decided a few years ago it was no longer safe to talk openly of abusing kids in this country, but decided they were perfectly safe abroad. At home they content themselves with sick pictures of child abuse,” said one source.
Although full details cannot be revealed for legal reasons, the investigation has involved a series of police raids, including one at the home of a head of department at a prominent London public school, where pornography was removed.
Another raid took place at Hurstpierpoint College in Sussex.
Stephen Meek, headmaster confirmed that two staff had been dismissed after a police caution for the possession of indecent material. “It was nothing to do with pupils at the school,” he said.
Prince Charles walks the schoolgrounds with the school Principal Stephen Meek during his visit to the Geelong Grammar on March 3, 2005
Stephen was previously Headmaster of Hurstpierpoint College, in West Sussex, U.K., a co-educational Boarding and Day School for nine years.
Norman Jordan Smith –
Chaplain of Geelong C of E Grammar School
Norman Jordan Smith
1930 – 2012
After he was demobbed he worked for the West Sussex County Council in County Hall, Chichester. From 1952-57 he was Captain of the Cathedral Ringers.
Church of England accused of cover-up over abuse claims against chaplain at school attended by Prince Charles
Reverend Norman Smith, accused of raping a pupil at Geelong Grammar School, Australia, now faces further accusations
The Church of England has been accused of a cover-up over allegations that a chaplain at the Australian school attended by the Prince of Wales was a paedophile.
At the Australian royal commission into child abuse in September, the Reverend Norman Smith was accused of raping a pupil at Geelong Grammar School in the late 1960s.
Now a 68-year-old former churchwarden has come forward to say that the Church dismissed his earlier claims that he was abused by Mr Smith in Sussex in the early 1960s.
Alan Baker, from Gloucestershire, has also written to Prince Charles to ask if he can provide any information that would help his case for damages.
“I would like to know what the links were between Geelong and the Church of England and the Anglican Communion,” said Mr Baker.
“Was it a coincidence that Smith abused me and then moved to Australia and then abused a child in Australia and moved back to the UK to take up a position as a vicar? The Church of England has treated me disgracefully and dismissed my complaints even though they must have known about the Australian allegations.”
Mr Smith died in 2012 and an obituary stated “Norman would certainly have known him [Charles] and administered Communion to him”.link)
Geelong Grammar: Child Sexual Abuse Royal Commission report set to be tabled in parliament
February 13, 2017
SURVIVOR of abuse at Geelong Grammar School has slammed its trademark positive education program as “crap”, as the royal commission’s findings on the elite Corio school are set to be tabled in Parliament.
Libby O’Brien attended Geelong Grammar in the 1980s and said she hoped the commission’s report did not “get swept under the carpet”.
“There are so many more perpetrators out there,” she said, despite the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse having been in progress since 2013.
“The cover-ups were really frightening,” she said. “I just want to make sure (the royal commission finding) doesn’t go under the radar.”
Ms O’Brien said the decades-long fight for justice had been “an extremely painful process”. She and a group of survivors and friends covered Geelong Grammar’s gates with coloured ribbons in February of last year, transforming it into a “Loud Fence” symbolising those who were sexually abused and couldn’t be heard.
“I’m so sick of telling this story,” Ms O’Brien said. “I keep getting slapped in the face — it’s really, really hard.”
In a November, 2016, submission to the royal commission, counsel assisting David Lloyd said former Geelong Grammar principal John Lewis had failed to protect students under his care.
“Mr Lewis did not treat the issue of child sexual abuse seriously and preferred the reputation of the school to the interests and welfare of the students,” Mr Lloyd said.
A spokesman for Geelong Grammar said the school would be responding to the royal commission’s findings when they become available.
The school was at the heart of a debate in South Australian politics last weekend, when it emerged SA schools had forked out more than $620,000 for Geelong Grammar to teach educators from Adelaide’s northern suburbs how to “nurture and sustain positive relationships”. SA Opposition treasury spokesman Rob Lucas described the program as a “massive waste of taxpayers’ money”.
A spokesman for the SA Department for Communities and Social Inclusion said Geelong Grammar was “one of the world leaders in the adoption of positive education”.
Ms O’Brien said she was “pretty disgusted” that the school was profiting from a program espousing student wellbeing.
“It’s such crap,” she said.
She urged anyone with information on historical abuses to go to the authorities.
“Anyone who knew anything, just report it to police,” she said. “Every report counts.”
Commissioners are holding a public hearing on Catholic Church authorities until February 27. From March 6 they will hold hearings on Commonwealth and State governments, the Uniting Church, Anglican Church, Yeshivah Melbourne and Bondi, and Australian Christian churches and Pentecostal authorities.
Geelong Grammar principal failed to act on abuse: royal commission
February 14, 2017
Principals and senior staff at Geelong Grammar knew that teachers were accused of child abuse but failed to respond in the best interests of students, according to findings of the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse.
The findings follow 13 former students telling public hearings in late 2015 that they were sexually abused by staff between 1956 and 1989, and describing a culture of cover-ups and negligence at the prestigious private school.
The royal commission found that John Lewis, who was principal from 1980-1994, allowed convicted paedophile Jonathan Harvey unsupervised access to students despite knowing that the former maths teacher was accused of abuse, including trying to have sex with a student.
Mr Lewis went on to become headmaster of Eton College, where he taught Prince William.
John Buckley was a teacher and housemaster at Geelong Grammar’s Glamorgan primary school campus in Toorak
Nicholas Sampson, who who was principal at Geelong in 2004 and is now the headmaster of prestigious Sydney school Cranbrook, received allegations about Harvey that dated back to the 1970s, but allowed Harvey to remain at the school on full pay for the remainder of that year.
He did not report Harvey to police or the teaching regulator, the Victorian Institute of Teaching, or make a record of the reasons for Harvey’s departure at the end of the school year.
The royal commission said Mr Sampson should have kept better records, but accepted that he was trying to act in the victim’s best interests and would now behave differently if faced with a similar situation.
It was also found that Geelong Grammar allowed a former teacher, BIM, to work at the school in the late 1990s, despite knowing the teacher was or may have been jailed for paedophilia.
The school “preferred its financial interests” to the victim’s best interests, in failing to tell a victim about the abuser’s employment history at the school, while the victim was seeking compensation, according to the royal commission.
In the late 1980s, a former headmaster at the school’s Highton campus, John Robert Bugg, forced a student known as BIW to leave the school, after the boy told other students that he had been sexually abused. Mr Bugg told the student to keep the matter secret, the royal commission found.
“In removing BIW from the school and not investigating the complaint, Mr Bugg failed to protect BIW’s interests and the interests of other students at Highton”, the royal commission report said.
Five former Geelong Grammar School staff members – Graham Leslie Dennis, John Hamilton Buckley, Stefan Van Vuuren, Philippe Trutmann and Jonathan Harvey – have been convicted of child sex offences.
The royal commission found that while the school has since introduced formal systems, policies and procedures to deal with child abuse (which they did not have before 1994) there is no system in place to ensure teachers are reporting allegations properly.
The school also keeps what is called the ‘K files’, which contain confidential information about staff or students which are stored separately to the general files to limit access.
Another raid took place at Hurstpierpoint College in Sussex.
Stephen Meek, headmaster confirmed that two staff had been dismissed after a police caution for the possession of indecent material. “It was nothing to do with pupils at the school,” he said.
The Harrow teacher was interviewed as part of a Scotland Yard investigation which began 18 months ago when a former teacher at Abberley Hall preparatory school in Hereford and Worcester alleged that an ex-colleague had admitted being in a public school paedophile ring.
ANDREW SADLER was linked to Peter Righton and Charles Napier in the child sex video ring (“Operation Fledgeling”).
Andrew Sadler was accused of a sex act on a boy at Abberley Hall preparatory school in 1995, convicted of child rape in Romania in 2000 and convicted of child grooming in Britain in 2007.
Other teachers also named include three masters at another leading public school, two masters at two famous preparatory schools in the home counties, and a choir school teacher.
The teachers were said to exchange paedophile videos. When they feared police raids, they allegedly worked together to conceal material.
“Many of these teachers will be secure in the knowledge that they will never be prosecuted,” said one police source.
Paedophile Information Exchange – PIE Members involved
Also named as allegedly linked to the network are Peter Righton, the former childcare expert exposed as a paedophile, and Charles Napier, a former treasurer of the Paedophile Information Exchange and a former staff member of the British Council in Cairo who was jailed last year for sex assaults on youngsters in London.
Charles Napier and half-brother John Whittingdale
Napier was former treasurer of the Paedophile Information Exchange which campaigned in the 70s and 80s for what they called the age of ‘child love’ to be reduced to four.
He also has links to Peter Righton – one of Britain’s most high-profile paedophiles.
When police raided Righton’s house in Evesham, Worcestershire, in 1992 they found hardcore child abuse images from Amsterdam and a ‘quarter-century of correspondence’ between paedophiles in Britain and around the world.
The probe led police to the kitchen of a flat in south London where they found a letter from Napier, who was convicted in 1995 for sexually abusing a 14-year-old boy, boasting of his life in Cairo as a British Council teacher.
He boasted of easy access to young boys and how he could send obscene images back to Britain in diplomatic bags.
Mr Whittingdale refused to comment when contacted about the guilty pleas.
When his half-brother was charged, Mr Whittingdale said: “I am aware that my half-brother has been charged with an offence alleged to have occurred over 35 years ago.
“I have no knowledge of this, particularly as I had only just left school at that time.”
St John’s School
St John’s School, Leatherhead, Surrey
Adrian Stark previously taught at Hurstpierpoint School in West Sussex. Hurstpierpoint’s school chaplain, the Reverend Brian Boucher, and a junior science teacher, Trevor Jones, were sacked after being cautioned by police for possessing child pornography.
Body in sea thought to be child porn teacher
2 August 1997
A Body believed to be that of Adrian Stark, the public school teacher charged last week with possessing child pornography, was found in the sea yesterday near one of Britain’s most notorious suicide spots.
The car belonging to Mr Stark, the director of music at St John’s School, Leatherhead, had earlier been found abandoned on top of the 550ft cliffs at Beachy Head, near Eastbourne, Sussex.
Mr Stark, 33, had not been seen since Wednesday when he was charged by police and released on bail pending further inquiries.
The grim discovery followed a public appeal from Surrey police, who are carrying out the investigation into the pornography allegations, about the whereabouts of Mr Stark. Police had said they were concerned for his welfare.
Mr Stark, who was single, had been arrested after officers found pornographic material at a property in the Surrey school grounds, and was charged with three counts of possessing indecent photographs of children.
He joined the school in 1995 from Hurstpierpoint School in West Sussex. Hurstpierpoint hit the headlines last year when the school chaplain, the Reverend Brian Boucher, and a junior science teacher, Trevor Jones, were sacked after being cautioned by police for possessing child pornography.
Officers from Burgess Hill seized items from the men’s living quarters at the Sussex school after reportedly acting on a tip-off from police investigating a paedophile ring in Eastern Europe.
Yesterday a spokesman for Sussex Police said colleagues in Surrey had not asked for information about its inquiry into Hurstpierpoint College in 1995.
The spokesman said: “As far as I am aware, there was no suggestion at the time that any other persons were involved in that investigation.”
Governors of pounds 8,000-a-year St John’s, who suspended Mr Stark from his post on the day of his arrest, met yesterday morning. “We will be writing to all parents to update them of the situation,” said the bursar, Christopher Pelley. ”
St John’s School was founded in 1851 in north London to educate sons of the clergy, and moved to Leatherhead in 1872. St John’s has 395 boys, including 100 boarders, and 45 girls in its sixth form.
A SUICIDE last August pointed the way to a wide-ranging paedophile investigation that culminated yesterday with 15 raids involving eight police forces.
The body of public school master Adrian Stark, who disappeared after being charged with three counts of having indecent photographs of children, was pulled from the sea near Beachy Head in East Sussex a year after three public schools had been raided by Scotland Yard detectives investigating a paedophile ring.
But it later emerged that address books believed to have been seized by police at Stark’s home probably led detectives further in the direction of a paedophile network involving public school teachers across Britain.
Stark, director of music at St John’s School, Leatherhead, Surrey, had proved to be a gifted musician and talented teacher during his two years at the school, according to the bursar, Christopher Pelley.
He had come to the school in 1995 from Hurstpierpoint College, West Sussex, where the chaplain, and a science teacher, were cautioned by police last year for possession of indecent material. The Rev Brian Boucher, aged 57, and Trevor Jones, 44, left their jobs – although it was stressed at the time that none of the material was connected with pupils.
With police inquiries intensifying, a teacher from the Yehudi Menuhin school for gifted musicians was charged last month with child pornography offences.
By then, Scotland Yard’s Paedophile and Child Pornography Unit was investigating allegations of a network involving teachers from some of the country’s major public schools.
In August last year, with the inquiry in its infancy, at least six teachers had been questioned and their homes raided.
A month later it emerged that videos, computer discs and books had been seized from a master at Harrow School, although the head said the matter had been fully investigated by the child protection unit at the London Borough of Harrow and that “nothing of concern was discovered and it was decided that no action was necessary”.
The teacher’s solicitor said later: “My client has stressed he is not a paedophile. I think he may be unfortunate in his friends.”
Yesterday’s raids for the first time involved public schools in the north – the City of Durham, and Sedbergh, in Cumbria.
A Catholic priest from Durham, Father Adrian McLeish, was jailed a year ago after being convicted of sexual abuse and having pornographic material, much of it on computer discs.
(Fr Adrian McLeish, former parish priest of St Joseph’s, Gilesgate, in Durham had been found to own one of the world’s largest collections of Internet pornography, and to have abused four children. A paedophile priest says he preyed on children for four years AFTER his evil perversions were revealed to a senior member of the Catholic Church.link link)
Swift moves were made yesterday to reassure anxious parents.
Sedbergh’s headmaster, Christopher Hirst, said in a statement: “I can confirm that the police have requested the school’s co-operation in certain inquiries they are conducting. It is the school’s policy to co-operate fully with the authorities at all times. As yet, we have not been made aware in detail of the reasons for the inquiries.”
But last night Dick Davison of the Independent Schools Information Service (ISIS) said that, although there were statutory checks which independent schools had to make on prospective teachers, they only identified people with established criminal track records.
“It is difficult to know what we can do short of searching every teacher’s home and computer system,” he said. “But this is a problem not only for independent schools, but state schools too and any organisation which attracts interest from those with a sexual interest in children, such as church choirs and cub and scout troops.”
He stressed that schools were obliged to check with the Department of Education’s list of persons deemed unsuitable to teach, to check with police criminal records and to obtain personal and professional references when appointing a new staff member.
Teachers’ unions were anxious yesterday to reassure parents that their children are safe in public schools, strongly denying that the checks used to vet potential teachers in independent schools are less stringent than those used in the state sector, while admitting that it was inevitable that some paedophiles would slip through the net.
Peter Smith, general secretary of the Association of Teachers and Lecturers, whose membership includes around 16,000 teachers at independent schools said: “Paedophiles with sexual obsessions will always be attracted to certain professional activities, but the checks upon teachers and intending teachers are very stringent indeed. Equally, whatever the outcome of this case, all the evidence is that paedophiles are brilliant at covering their tracks.”
David Hart, general secretary of the National Association of Head Teachers, said: “I think that the public can be reassured that children are safe in public schools. They have to check criminal records as well as ‘List 99’, listing all teachers banned from teaching for criminal offences. That’s as tough a check as you could wish for.”
But last night the launch of a pounds 250,000 campaign designed to dispel old -fashioned images of boarding schools was cancelled because of the adverse publicity generated by the police raids.
The Boarding Education Alliance (BEA), representing 170 schools and 45,000 pupils, was due to have been launched on Monday, providing parents with a “shop window” to help them choose schools.
The aim was to try to revamp the image of boarding schools, which has barely changed since the 1930s, putting Tom Brown “out to pasture”. But last night a spokeswoman said the launch would not now go ahead as it would be “inappropriate” at this time.
The problems faced by even the most diligent of schools were highlighted by the National Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Children yesterday.
“Research suggests that people who do abuse children work their way into positions of authority and responsibility and trust and are well entrenched, often working in senior positions across many years,” said an NSPCC spokesman.
Detective Chief Inspector Jim Reynolds, who co-ordinated yesterday’s raids, agreed. “Obviously they (paedophiles) can’t make their activities legitimate, they have to conceal their activities at all times which makes it difficult for us.”
By chance, the raids come in the very week that the risks faced by children living away from home were highlighted by the publication of Sir William Utting’s disturbing report into children in care.
The investigation which preceded the report, his team concluded, “seemed at times a crash course in human (predominantly male) wickedness and in the fallibility of social institutions . . . The fact that the bad is only a tiny proportion of the whole should not obscure the fact that it tarnishes the lives of many children.”
The report concluded: “Abusers may be good at their jobs, winning respect, affection or fear from their colleagues and admiration from the parents whose children they corrupt. They are adept at avoiding detection and disciplinary or criminal charges – in which they are inadvertently assisted by the assumptions and values of our social institutions. They are very dangerous people.”
Now the officers from the forces who carried out yesterday’s raids – the Metropolitan police, Cumbria, Durham, Merseyside, West Mercia, Hampshire, Surrey and Wiltshire – have the task of examining the material seized.
Then they must decide whether, in the wake of the scandal of children in care – many of whom had come from some of the most under-privileged homes in the country – a second scandal exists which affects those who teach children from quite the other end of the spectrum.
November 22, 1997 national child pornography operation raid – Durham school
The raid was one of 15 carried out by police forces across Britain on Friday.
Police are also examining a large quantity of books, letters, computer equipment videos and other evidence of paedophile activity seized for fresh leads.
The National Confederation of Parent Teachers’ Associations added their voice to those calling for a better vetting system for teachers in independent schools as two private schools were raided by officers looking for child pornography.
Durham School was also searched. Computers, videos and documents were removed.
The operation was co-ordinated by the Paedophilia Unit at Scotland Yard, which has been investigating a suspected major paedophile ring distributing and producing child pornography.
Three teachers and one former teacher at independent schools and a customs officer are reported to be among those being investigated.
Sussex CofE School Chaplain Admits to involvement in child pornography ring
“The Chaplain of Hurstpierpoint College Sussex, a top public school, has been suspended after admitting being involved in an international child pornography ring. (Source: News of the world March 10th: 1996) “
In July 1997, Mark Williams-Thomas led an investigation into public school teacher Adrian Stark, who was charged with possessing child pornography. Stark committed suicide at Beachy Head, East Sussex days after his arrest.
Revealed: Lady Thatcher’s FIVE attempts to secure knighthood for Jimmy Savile while her aides warned about his ‘lurid’ sex life. He was finally knighted in 1990, Lady Thatcher’s final year in office
Peter Ball abuse inquiry requests statement from Prince Charles
By Press Association
The Prince of Wales has been asked to give a witness statement to a public inquiry about a paedophile bishop who was jailed after abusing young men.
Peter Ball was sentenced to 32 months in 2015 for a string of offences between the 1970s and 1990s, and the handling of allegations against him is now being examined by the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA).
At a hearing on Wednesday, counsel to the inquiry Fiona Scolding QC said that statements had been requested from the prince and his principal private secretary.
According to a transcript posted on the inquiry website, she said: “We have also requested a witness statement from both His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales and his principal private secretary.
“The Prince’s solicitors have indicated their client’s willingness to assist us and have raised a number of important issues for us to consider.
“This has led to lengthy and complex discussions and we are currently considering the latest points they have raised. We hope to be able to provide an update to core participants on this in the next couple of weeks.”
Charles had exchanged a series of letters with Ball, the former Bishop of Gloucester, whose diocese covers Highgrove, the prince’s country home.
A spokesman for the prince told the Daily Mail last year that the correspondence contained nothing of relevance to the clergyman’s offending.
Lawyer Richard Scorer from Slater and Gordon, who is representing complainants at the IICSA, said: “It is imperative that the inquiry leaves no stone unturned in its efforts to establish how Peter Ball was able to evade justice for two decades.
“If this means calling Prince Charles and other prominent establishment figures as witnesses then the inquiry should do so without fear or favour.”
DISCLAIMER: THE POSTING OF STORIES, COMMENTARIES, REPORTS, DOCUMENTS AND LINKS (EMBEDDED OR OTHERWISE) ON THIS SITE DOES NOT IN ANY WAY, SHAPE OR FORM, IMPLIED OR OTHERWISE, NECESSARILY EXPRESS OR SUGGEST ENDORSEMENT OR SUPPORT OF ANY OF SUCH POSTED MATERIAL OR PARTS THEREIN.