Barrister misled court to block abuse trial, claims Tory MP
Cheryl Gillan alleges QC failed to disclose evidence to judge, blocking prosecution
22 May 2019
A former cabinet minister has accused a barrister of deceiving a court to successfully block the prosecution of a headmaster who had been accused of sexually abusing five boys.
In a debate in the House of Commons on Wednesday, the Conservative MP Cheryl Gillan alleged that the QC, Andrew Bright, “gravely” misled the court while he was representing the headmaster.
Gillan alleged that the QC failed to disclose evidence to a judge who ruled that the headmaster, Peter Wright, would not be prosecuted for the offences.
The MP alleged that had this “hidden” evidence been disclosed, it would probably have undermined the attempt to have prosecution blocked.
A decade later, Wright was convicted in a related case of abusing five other boys while he was headmaster of Caldicott prep school in Buckinghamshire and jailed for eight years.
The allegation against Bright was made by Gillan in parliament, which means she is protected from being sued.
Bright now sits as a judge at St Albans. A spokesman for the judiciary said: “The Solicitors Regulation Authority conducted an independent investigation and rejected the complaint that the court had been misled. It maintained that conclusion after a review.”
Gillan, the MP for Chesham and Amersham, also alleged that a series of authorities – including the attorney general’s department, the crown prosecution service and legal regulators – did nothing to correct the failure to disclose the evidence.
The MP, who was secretary of state for Wales in David Cameron’s government, highlighted the case of Wright, who was the headmaster of Caldicott between 1968 and 1993.
He and three other members of staff have been convicted of sexually abusing boys at the fee-paying school in the 1960s and 1970s.
In 2003, prosecutors prepared to bring Wright to court on 16 charges of sexually abusing boys at the school between 1964 and 1970 while he was a teacher and then headmaster.
Before the case came to trial, lawyers for Wright, then 73, submitted an application to block the prosecution on the grounds that he would not get a fair trial as the allegations were three decades old. In legal terms, this is called a stay of indictment.
On Wednesday, Gillan alleged that Wright’s lawyers misled the judge at Aylesbury crown court, Roger Connor, by failing to disclose relevant information.
“The information could have meant that Connor could probably have considered the stay of indictment not at all justified,” she claimed.
She alleged that Wright’s lawyers had corresponded with the school about obtaining lists of former boys who could be called as witnesses for him. She alleged that his lawyers had “acted improperly” when they told the judge that these lists could not be obtained from the school.
Pupils at Caldicott School, Farnham Royal, Buckinghamshire suffered child sexual abuse over a number of years and a number of abusers. It is now a charity , as are many “public” schools. It is not known what the status of the school was when child sexual abuse offences were being committed by its teachers and covered up by the school.
Known abusers so far were
Peter Roland Wright, former Caldicott pupil , was finally charged and convicted in 2014. Previous attempts to indict him failed in 2003 due a Judge deciding it was too great a the length of time since offences and the defendants health. A stay on that indictment meant he only faced charges from new victims who came forward. He was sentenced to 8 years. He was tried with offences from 1964-1970 . Victims were mainly 11-13 years old . He was at the school from 1952 -1993, the last 25 years as Headmaster. Wright, and when Headmaster covered up Marton Carsons abuse  See also Court Appeal Roland Peter Wright 5 August 2014 Court of Appeal Peter Wright still lived at a cottage overlooking the school after he retired, before his recent vacation in prison.
Peter Roland Wright – Serial Child Abuser
Hugh Edward Henry admitted 13 counts  including two counts of incitement to gross indecency and eleven counts of indecent assault . He is thought to have been at Caldicott between 1958-1963 and offences on one boy were from 1962-63 . He committed some of his offences at his bedsit and on a school skiing trip with Peter Wright. He was also charged with offences at Gayhurst School, Gerrards Cross. Little else is known of his offending, where else he worked and any other possible offences. He killed himself by walking in front of a train before sentencing. 
John Addrison, another former Caldicott pupil , was charged in 2012 with offences at Caldicott between Jan and July 1978 and at Moor Park School, Ludlow between 1985 and 1988 and sentenced to roughly 5 years. It is also not clear what he did straight after leaving Caldicott; when he started at Moor Park school or what he did after being dismissed from Moor Park School in 1988, although he was teaching in 2010 . It is not known if he committed further offences after 1988. Also see Government UK National College for Teaching and Leadership Mr John Addrison: Professional Conduct Panel outcome Panel decision and reasons on behalf of the Secretary of State for Education  pdf download, and reproduced in Appendix 1 below
Martin Carson, a science teacher, was found to be committing child sexual abuse offences at Caldicot in 1973, but it was covered up by the school and he received just a 5 year ban from teaching . Carson was charged with two charges of buggery, eight charges of indecent assault and one count of possessing indecent photographs. He pleaded guilty in 2003 and was sentenced to just 2 years in prison. Details are lacking of offences, when employed at Caldicott. Carson resumed his career in 1980 at prep school in Eastbourne where he was appointed Head of Pastoral care  and he taught at Harrodian School, Bath, at the time of the video Chosen in 2008. It is not known if the committed further offences at these school or elsewhere .
David Keith Geddes, another teacher, was acquitted of offences between 1975-77 after a retrial 
George Hill Peter Wrights deputy in the 1970s killed himself which probably saved him from facing charges 
There is a good summary of legal outcomes on the Mandate Now website The Caldicott Trials and Outcomes  where there is also a video interview of Tom Perry with Jon Snow.
the boarding school that British politician Nick Clegg attended as a child; Caldicott School
Caldicott Preparatory School became a charitable trust in 1968 under the Headmaster at the time Peter Wright.
Today there are around 250 boys. The present headmaster, Simon Doggart, was appointed in 1998; he came from Eton College where he taught history and was master-in-charge of cricket. He is a member of IAPS and the school’s governors include past parents, old boys and headmasters of public schools.
According to the school’s website, many pupils at Caldicott subsequently “win” places at major independent schools, such as Eton College, Harrow School, Winchester College, Marlborough College, Wellington College, Haileybury College and Radley College.
On 30 September 2008 the school was the subject of a feature documentary, Chosen, transmitted on More4 as part of the “True Stories” strand, about the sexual abuse that went on at the school during the late 1960s and early 1970s. The headmaster Peter Wright was active in this, as well as a number of other teachers, targeting boys good at sports and, to a lesser extent, in the choir. In The Guardian published on the same day, a former parent alleged that Lord Justice Scott Baker former Chairman of the Board of Governors, and Simon Doggart the current headmaster, mishandled a case of alleged sexual abuse of their son by a teacher in the early 2000s. Martin Carson was dismissed for sexual abuse of a pupil in 1972, and went on to teach at the Harrodian School. He was subsequently prosecuted and found guilty of indecent assault and possessing indecent images of children in 2003.link
Caldicott Summer Fete
The Headmaster, Simon Doggart finished off the fete with a very popular raffle.
Thank you to everyone for coming along and supporting the school fete. It was a great success and all the money raised by the boys will go to The Prince’s Trust.
Caldicott…under the current headmaster Simon Doggart, another incident of alleged child sexual abuse was reported in the late 2000s. The headmaster and the chairman of the board of governors, Lord Justice Scott Baker, suspended the teacher (who did not return) but failed to report the incident to the police or social services, contrary to the school’s written policy on this matter.
Another victim, Andy Morse, described how, to continue the beatings, Mr Smyth recruited boys from among victims to take over while he watched. These were often more brutal than Smyth’s attacks. Mr Morse named Simon Doggart as one of these substitutes. “The strokes he gave me were probably the equivalent of three of John’s. Simon was completely brainwashed. I think even then I sensed that it wasn’t my friend beating me: it was actually John Smyth beating me, using my friend to carry out his abuse.”
Another victim spoke of Doggart’s strokes as “far, far worse than Smyth. There was no discussion, no emotion, I recall, just a fit sportsman using all his force.”
The alleged beatings took place in a shed, equipped, Mr Morse said, with dressings to be applied after the beatings. “John Smyth had every single bandage, dressing, iodine, anything that had been invented, but even though he had all that equipment and, I would call it, paraphernalia, we were bleeding everywhere. Even with these dressings on, wearing these adult nappies, we bled all over his house. . .”.
The beatings stopped in 1982, when Mr Morse tried to take his own life.
One survivor who has come forward is the Bishop of Guildford, the Rt Revd Andrew Watson (News, 10 February), who described the beatings as “abuse perpetrated by a misguided, manipulative, and dangerous man.
Review to begin into alleged sexual abuse by late Bishop of Chester Victor Whitsey
22 May 2019
AN inquiry into reports of sexual abuse by a former Chester bishop will begin imminently – two years after it was first promised.
The Church of England has today (Wednesday, May 22) disclosed details of a ‘learning lessons case review’ into the actions of the late Hubert Victor Whitsey.
Cheshire Police began an investigation in 2016 after a church safeguarding adviser in Chester passed on details of alleged abuse by Whitsey.
A year later detectives revealed that they would have spoken to him in relation to 10 of the witness allegations if he had been alive.
Whitsey died in 1987.
The review will be carried out by His Honour Judge David Pearl, an independent reviewer commissioned by the Church’s National Safeguarding Team (NST).
Documents outlining its ‘terms of reference’, shared with this newspaper by the Diocese of Chester, reveal it intended to cover a timespan of alleged abuse from 1974 to 1982.
However, specialist abuse lawyer Richard Scorer, who represents nine of Whitsey’s alleged victims, said the abuse began earlier and he had requested to have the timeframe extended to 1966.
He told The Standard today: “I welcome the fact that the review has been announced. It is important that the reviewer leaves no stone unturned in investigating what was known within the church, by whom and at what point in time.
“These issues have to flushed out and the reviewer needs to be determined and forceful in his pursuit of answers to these questions.”
Mr Scorer had previously been critical of the way the Church and the Diocese of Chester had handled the Whitsey case, alleging a cover-up had taken place.
His suspicions were reaffirmed earlier this year when it emerged the Diocese had missed two opportunities to report paedophile Warrington vicar Charles Gordon Dickenson who was jailed in March.
A separate NST review is expected to begin shortly to investigate these failings and to determine whether the current bishop of Chester, Dr Peter Forster, was aware of any cover-up.
Mr Scorer, who works for Slater & Gordon, said at the time: “The church cannot be relied on to police itself – we urgently need all these instances of possible cover-up to be investigated independently, and until that happens victims will have no confidence that the church is serious about rooting out abuse.”
A Church spokesman has since apologised for the delay in starting the review into the Whitsey case.
He said: “We apologise for the length of time this has taken to sort and for any distress this may have caused survivors.
“A separate ‘lessons learnt review’ will be carried out into the case of the Revd Dickenson.”
The terms of reference for the Whitsey review state that a total of 19 people have come forward with allegations of abuse by the late bishop.
Outlining its remit, the document states: “This review (“the Review”) will allow those individuals who have indicated that they have sustained harm at the hands of Hubert Victor Whitsey or another Church body or officer to describe their experiences.
“The Review will identity both good practice and failings in the Church of England’s handling of the allegations relating to Hubert Victor Whitsey, including its safeguarding practice, in order that the Church of England can take steps to enhance and improve its response to allegations of abuse and, thereby, ensure a safer environment for all.”
It will focus on two questions: what the Church of England knew about alleged abuse perpetrated by Whitsey and what the Church of England’s response was to those allegations.
The reviewer will investigate whether any further abuse could have been prevented and will pledge to be “transparent and open” about information collected, the document states.
The news comes as the Church faces continued scrutiny over its safeguarding processes in the wake of the Dickenson case – first reported by The Standard and sister paper the Warrington Guardian – and the BBC Panorama investigations team which broadcast a programme on church-related abuse last month.
Gazette was correct about ex-mayor’s pro-paedophile past, top lawyer concludes
07 November 2018
A top barrister has confirmed former Islington councillor Sandy Marks’ past links to a pro-paedophile campaign group.
An independent review by Sarah Morgan QC, published on Wednesday, vindicates the Gazette’s revelations about Sandy Marks’ past links to radical campaign group Fallen Angels – whose publication 18 months ago triggered the lawyer’s probe.
It also confirms Ms Marks and then-colleagues at Islington would have been aware of allegations about the abuse of children in the care system before the horrific scandal emerged in 1992.
But it stops short of suggesting an inquiry into the abuse be re-opened, and asserts that Ms Marks’ involvement with campaign group Fallen Angels had “no impact” on her later oversight of children’s services.
Ms Morgan’s 127-page paper comes at the end of a review spanning eight months and involving thousands of pages of documents, as well as interviews with victims and survivors, with Ms Marks herself, and with the Gazette staff who originally worked on the story in May 2017.
It will make disappointing reading for the Islington Survivors Network (ISN), which is led by social worker Dr Liz Davies – the original whistleblower into physical and sexual abuse taking place across Islington’s children’s homes in the 1970s, 1980s and 1990s.
The group hoped it would recommend the 1995 White Report into the scandal be reopened, as they believe it failed to uncover evidence of organised abuse rather than simply the poor management and negligence it did find.
In the report, Ms Morgan says Ms Marks’ work as chair of the social services committee, which covered children’s services, was likely not affected by her past involvement with Fallen Angels, a radical pro-paedophile activist group.
But she admits it doesn’t “sit easily” that “someone could be associated with an organisation so malign and yet, in the years following that association, it had no detectable impact on her conduct of a role in a public office which included the oversight of the welfare of children in care”.
Former Islington council leader Margaret Hodge said: ‘If Sandy Marks did hold those views, I was not aware of them.’
‘If Sandy Marks did hold those views, I was not aware of them’.
Social worker Dr Liz Davies, the original whistleblower on the scandal, tried to alert senior Islington officers and councillors – including then leader Mrs Hodge – to fears a paedophile sex ring was operating in the borough.
“Sandy Marks was at the centre of the council throughout this time,” said Dr Davies.
“This new information about her and our research about PIE and its widespread connections in Islington emphasise the importance of a police-led investigation, because many of those who held pro-paedophile views remain within professional systems and still have influence.”
No senior Islington councillors or officers were ever held accountable for the decades of abuse that went on in the council’s kids’ homes.
After 1995, Ms Marks’ career went from strength to strength.
She took up a role at the National Children’s Bureau and became mayor of Islington in 1996.
Today, she is a noted disabilities campaigner within the borough.
DRAFT AIM OF BURBIDGE & RIGHTON’S JOINT COUNCIL FOR GAY TEENAGERS, 25 NOVEMBER 1978
Burbidge kept Nettie Pollard (PIE member #70) in the loop on how he and (Peter) Righton were progressing with establishing the National Joint Council for Gay Teenagers. Copies of JCGT minutes in archive are addressed to Nettie in Burbidge’s handwriting.
During this period Burbidge was also active in lobbying for the legal defence of PIE by meeting with Dutch youth parliamentary people (as introduced by the British Youth Council), at Burbidge’s Department of Environment offices to discuss options to report back to CAPM.
A number of the invitees to the Council’s Gay Groups Meeting were of the same view as the Fallen Angels, the pro-paedophile rights groups Councillor Sandy Marks had been involved approximately 18 months before becoming elected – that paedophile rights to liberation such as the abolition of the age of consent – should be campaigned for within the mainstream gay rights movement.
CAPM’s third meeting was attended by (Lord Justice) Adrian Fulford, (Islington Chair of Social Services Committee) Sandy Marks, and two PIE members and NCCL Gay Rights Committee members Nettie Pollard and Tom O’Carroll. As Burbidge was already keeping Pollard appraised of how far progress was being made in pushing his pro-paedophile rights agenda in the gay youth movement, particularly in Islington, it is unsurprising he would document his attempts to network on behalf of CAPM.
Keith Veness recruited Sandy Marks to the Labour party in 1975 and is currently campaigning for her suspension to be lifted following Morgan QC’s Review determining Marks was more likely than not a Fallen Angel and involved with Conspiracy Against Public Morals, campaigning for PIE
Hailed as a PIE supporter by PIE chairman Steven Adrian Smith, Eric Presland, was invited to the meeting by Cllr Bob Crossman and met with Cllr Sandy Marks and Cllr Keith Veness. Veness, who was soon to become Jeremy Corbyn’s electoral agent for the next 9 or so years, has since defended Sandy Marks’ various denials of her involvement with Fallen Angels and following her suspension has demanded her reinstatement to Islington North Constituency Labour Party.
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118. The fact that Cyril Smith’s public standing and professional career were never negatively impacted in any significant way by the suggestion that he was involved in child sexual abuse has given rise to considerable speculation that he was in some way protected by other politicians.We may consider the possibility that Smith was actively supported at the level of national politics, or at the very least, had a blind eye turned towards allegations against him, as part of the Westminster investigation.
Resigned Rochdale council leader ‘lied to child abuse inquiry’
Richard Farnell faces police investigation after inquiry says he lied while giving evidence
Rochdale’s recently resigned council leader is facing a police investigation after an official inquiry concluded that he lied over evidence he gave about child sexual abuse allegations.
The Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) said the evidence given by Richard Farnell about his knowledge of abuse in the Greater Manchester town “defies belief”.
In a report, published on Thursday, the inquiry took the extraordinary step of stating that it believed Farnell lied under oath while giving evidence in October 2017.
Farnell, who is still a councillor in Rochdale, quit on 8 December after weeks of mounting pressure over his testimony at the public inquiry.
In its 154-page report, IICSA described Farnell’s refusal to accept responsibility for events as “shameful”.
Prof Alexis Jay, the chair of the inquiry, said: “After listening to the evidence presented by a number of victims and survivors in Rochdale at the time, I am deeply disturbed at the evidence of extensive abuse and the institutional responses to that abuse.
“Many of those who testified to their abuse have never had the opportunity to seek justice through the courts. I hope that the public hearings and this report has offered them some measure of acknowledgement for their suffering.”
The report, the inquiry’s first into abuse in the UK, follows three weeks of evidence about allegations spanning from the early 1960s to the mid-90s. It concluded that there was “no deliberate cover-up by the authorities” but “a careless and wholly inadequate response” to the serious sexual abuse of children at Knowl View school.
The report also criticised Margaret Thatcher’s “remarkable” decision to award a knighthood to the suspected child abuser Cyril Smith. It said the knighthood in 1988 showed the “unwillingness of those at the highest level” to believe his victims.
The report is concerned with the institutional responses of the council, the police and the Crown Prosecution Service into child sexual abuse in Rochdale between the early 1960s and the mid 1990s.
It highlights the vulnerability of the children at the council-run Knowl View School and how the institution failed to keep pupils safe from harm for 25 years. It finds staff complacent and arguably complicit.
Sexual exploitation of boys was also happening in the town centre, the bus station and the Smith Street public toilets which were across the road from the council’s offices. The report catalogues the total lack of urgency on the part of the authorities to treat the matters as serious sexual assaults; boys as young as 11 were not regarded by those in authority as victims but as authors of their own abuse.
The Inquiry heard evidence about sexual abuse at Cambridge House Boys’ Hostel. It outlines the lost opportunities to prosecute former Rochdale MP Cyril Smith (who was Honorary Secretary of Cambridge Boys’ Hostel) in relation to allegations of child sexual abuse, and the unwillingness of those at the highest level to recognise that a person of public prominence was capable of perpetrating child sexual abuse.
The report is also clear that the Inquiry did not believe the evidence of Richard Farnell, then leader of Rochdale Council, who resigned some weeks after giving evidence about child sexual abuse in council-run establishments. His refusal to accept responsibility for events is described by the Inquiry as shameful.
Professor Alexis Jay, Chair of the Inquiry, said:
“After listening to the evidence presented by a number of victims and survivors in Rochdale at the time, I am deeply disturbed at the evidence of extensive abuse and the institutional responses to that abuse.
“Many of those who testified to their abuse have never had the opportunity to seek justice through the courts. I hope that the public hearings and this report has offered them some measure of acknowledgement for their suffering.”
Thirty years of child abuse – the many missed chances to save Rochdale’s victims
The Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse has published a report many people have waited decades to see – here are some of the report’s key findings, including the abuse taking place right outside the window of the town hall’s social services department.
12 APR 2018
Today the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse published a report many people have waited decades to see.
As reported earlier today, the inquiry’s investigation into four decades of abuse in Rochdale , including by the late MP Cyril Smith and on the streets of the town, issues a damning verdict on former council leader Richard Farnell, finding that he lied under oath.
But the wider inquiry is about the victims, what they went through between the 1960s and mid-1990s, and why the abuse was not stopped or prevented.
Here we run through some of the report’s key findings, including the abuse taking place right outside the window of the town hall’s social services department.
Cyril Smith and Cambridge House
The late Liberal MP Cyril Smith was not the entire focus of the inquiry, but he was the ‘starting point’.
IICSA outlines his considerable power within the town – even while still a councillor in the 1960s – and his close involvement with the council’s decisions over where children would be placed in care, more so than would appear to be ‘usual’. Over the course of his political career he was governor of up to 30 different schools in the town.
In particular the inquiry focuses on his activities at the Cambridge House boy’s hostel in Rochdale, set up under by the Rochdale Hostel for Boys Association – of which he was honorary secretary – in 1962.
It heard the testimonies of several men who described assaults and molestations carried out under the pretext of medical examinations during the three years it was open, some of which were later reported to the police.
One victim said he believed the couple who ran the hostel had it under ‘instruction’ that any time any boy felt ill, he would be called in to examine them.
When questioned about the allegations in 1970, Smith said that he had been acting ‘in loco parentis’ to the boys there.
“But we found it inexplicable that he thought his role permitted ‘medical examinations’ when he had no medical qualifications,” finds the report.
“He had considerable control over which boys were admitted to the hostel and, in general, showed a strong, perhaps unduly detailed, interest in children in care as his political career developed.
“This interest appeared to go unchallenged by the council.”
It finds he tried to use his power in the town to exert undue influence, including by trying to keep victims quiet – but that the police were not leant on and, in fact, were not well-disposed to Smith at any rate.
Neither does it find evidence of a cover-up by the Director of Public Prosecutions, who in 1970 recommended that he not be charged, or by the committee in charge of awarding knighthoods under the Thatcher government in 1988.
However it is still critical of those discussions, finding: “While there was never any expression of concern for boys who had made allegations against Smith, there was considerable discussion about whether it would be fair to Smith to refuse him a knighthood, and worries about the potential reputational risk to the honours system.
“There was little further investigation into the allegations against Smith by the political honours scrutiny committee, demonstrating a considerable deference to power and an unwillingness to consider that someone in a position of public prominence might be capable of perpetrating sexual abuse.”
The Smith Street toilets
The report identifies a particularly stark fact about the child exploitation taking place right under the nose of Rochdale council .
By the late 1980s the Smith Street toilets, slap bang across the road from the town hall’s social services department and visible from its window – pictured below – had become a well-known place for grown men ‘from all over the north west’, as far away as Blackpool, to seek out sex with young boys, including youngsters from the council’s own Knowl View school.
The report describes how police recorded that ’14 children from various children’s homes had been organised into a ring’ and were ‘extracting money for sexual favours’, organised by an ‘older’ boy – of just 13.
Another child of just 11 is described asking a man for 50p for sexual activity.
All the activity was taking place directly opposite the department charged with protecting them.
The Smith Street toilets in Rochdale (1) and the council’s social services department at Rochdale council (2). Children were abused at the toilets in the 1980s despite being visible from the department over the road
“Sexual exploitation of children from (Knowl View) school at Smith Street public toilets was known about by the authorities from at least 1989,” finds the report.
“Indeed, some social services staff could see the toilets from their offices, recognised some of the boys as children in care and were deeply suspicious of what was going on, although there was no apparent follow-up.”
Records of individual children convey a ‘total lack of urgency’ on the part of the authorities to address the problem, however.
“One boy’s file recorded that he had contracted sexually transmitted hepatitis through ‘rent boy’ activities,” says the report.
“We concluded that no-one in authority viewed any of this as an urgent child protection issue. “Rather, boys as young as 11 were not seen as victims, but as authors of their own abuse.”
Police ‘did not turn a blind eye’ to this abuse but were unable to get enough evidence to prosecute, it says.
However there was ‘no satisfactory answer’ as to why they did not charge the men involved, despite knowing the names of perpetrators and having spoken to some of the victims.
Not only was the now-notorious Knowl View school – which was run by the council between 1969 and 1996 – rife with abuse, but even its fabric was not ‘homely, safe, secure, caring or therapeutic’, finds the report, which adds that it also ‘failed in its basic function’ to keep children safe.
Despite widespread abuse within the school by pupils and paedophiles, including known sex offender Rodney Hilton, staff did little or nothing about it, it finds.
In 1990 Hilton managed to get back inside the school – six years after first abusing children there, but staff still did not act.
Even while out on licence a year later he continued to be a ‘malign presence’ there, it finds, yet still ‘little’ was done.
Staff were ‘at best complacent but arguably complicit in the abuse they knew to be taking place and they must take their share of the blame for what was allowed to occur’, says the report.
Meanwhile the council’s handling of appalling abuse at the school – a residential institution for vulnerable youngsters with learning and behavioural difficulties – draws scathing criticism from the inquiry.
It is ‘incredulous’ that Ian Davey, acting director of social services in the late 1980s, did not choose to pursue the child protection issues at the school through formal procedures, including pupils being abused at the Smith Street toilets.
“It was his decision alone; it was inexplicable, professionally indefensible and extremely poor judgment on the part of the most senior social work officer in the council’s employment,” it concludes.
Even when Diana Cavanagh took over his role, there were still major flaws in her handling of the allegations, it finds.
While she disagreed with Davey – by concluding that action did need to be taken – and commissioned an independent review in 1992, before also writing her own, the resulting reports were factually inaccurate and ‘flawed’.
There was ‘no urgency’ in resolving the allegations either, it finds, adding: “Matters were allowed to drift.
“All this occurred on Mrs Cavanagh’s watch, made worse by a feeble board of governors who seemed unable to fulfil their governance responsibilities.
“Regardless of the board of governors, Rochdale council was the provider of the facility and its external manager.”
By 1992, the matter was still drifting, it finds, including under the leadership of Liberal Democrat Paul Rowen, who took over from Coun Farnell in May of that year.
“Mr Rowen bore considerable responsibility for the school as council leader from 1992 to 1996,” it concludes.
“As with Richard Farnell, he was prepared to blame others without acknowledging his own failures of leadership.
“At best, he was insufficiently inquisitive about Knowl View school, despite having knowledge of the serious problems that persisted at the school; at worst, as council leader, he turned a blind eye to these problems and chose to give them low priority.”
It does not make a judgement on whether the former MPs Jim Dobbin and Liz Lynne failed to act on this issue once allegations were raised by the school’s former head of care, Martin Digan, due to conflicting testimonies by those involved.
However it does find that Mr Digan – who has campaigned on the scandal at Knowl View for more than 25 years – did pass on his concerns to the MPs.
Police and prosecutors
The report finds no evidence of any cover-up by any institution, including the police.
In particular the Rochdale police officers who investigated the initial claims about Cyril Smith at Cambridge House hostel in 1970 did a ‘comprehensive’ job and were not swayed by his status, it finds.
All the evidence suggests Lancashire police – under which Rochdale fell at the time – were very keen to prosecute, it notes, to the point where they had even drawn up a timetable for the process.
But their 80-page dossier on Smith was knocked back by the Director of Public Prosecutions, the predecessor to the Crown Prosecution Service, in just three days, it finds.
The inquiry is ‘troubled by the cursory nature of this analysis’, as well as the DPP’s denial to the local paper Rochdale Alternative Press nine years later that a file had ever been passed to them. That may well have helped fuel conspiracy theories ever since, it believes.
However it again concludes that there was no evidence of a cover-up and makes no judgement on whether the DPP was legally correct not to pursue a prosecution.
In the early 1990s it finds the police did investigate the Smith Street abuse, although it is unclear why nobody was charged due to a lack of records. Had a better report been commissioned by the council at the time, the police may have more easily been able to act, it adds.
Later, in the 1990s, allegations of abuse surfaced again and were looked at under Greater Manchester Police ’s Operation Cleopatra.
The inquiry does not direct criticisms at GMP but does find the Crown Prosecution Service wanting.
“A valuable opportunity was lost in 1988 and 1999, not only to charge and to prosecute Smith during his lifetime but also for the complainants to seek justice,” it says.
Nevertheless it was the CPS’s advice, not a ‘cover up’, that caused that failure, it finds.
Ultimately the inquiry is fundamentally about the many victims who were abused in Rochdale between the 1960s and the 1990s, some of whom reported their suffering but were ignored.
Some of them ‘may have been very young indeed’, finds the report, which says that not only were they abused in residential care homes such as Cambridge House and Knowl View themselves, but also ‘targeted on the streets of Rochdale’, which it says was a ‘compelling’ reason to investigate abuse in the town.
Many came forward and gave evidence to the inquiry under anonymity.
The report describes the backgrounds of the teenagers and young men who were offered places at Cambridge House in the mid-1960s, often in unhappy foster placements and wanting an escape, or in one case, having moved down from Glasgow to work in a factory in the town.
One victim describes how Smith simply turned up one day at his home and offered him a place at the hostel – and says he was initially ‘happy’ there, but that things later took a darker turn.
Others experienced abuse straight away.
One boy, who was 16 at the time, was told on his second day to have a bath and go to the ‘quiet room’, where Cyril took off his clothes on the pretext of a ‘nit’ check and molested him.
He ran away the next day.
“But the police were called and someone from Cambridge House came to pick him up,” says the report.
“When he was brought back to Cambridge House he was again taken to see Cyril Smith, who shouted at him and asked him to take his clothes off onces more.”
Smith would later pressure him to withdraw his police allegation, which he refused to do, but he was still never prosecuted before his death in 2010.
The children at Knowl View were vulnerable in a whole range of additional ways, some having autism, others with learning disabilities and mental health problems.
At least two children taken into care at the school in 1989 – both aged 11 – were already known to be engaging in sexual activity at the Smith Street toilets, one of them walking up to a man and asking for 50p in return.
Yet while at Knowl View, matters only got worse.
“Not only did his exploitation continue after [he] was placed at Knowl View, he was also being exploited out of the area,” says the report, describing how he had sex with a man at a house in Salford for £5 six months later.
“We conclude that no individual, not any institution with responsibility for them, took decisive action to address what was happening to these exploited children,” it concludes.
Rochdale council leader Richard Farnell faces vote of no confidence
7 Dec 2017
Next Wednesday opposition councillors will table a motion calling on Coun Farnell to step down until the findings of an inquiry into claims of historic abuse at the former residential school for boys are published
Under-fire Rochdale council leader Richard Farnell is to face a vote of no confidence in protest at his handling of the Knowl View child sex abuse scandal.
Next Wednesday opposition councillors will table a motion calling on Coun Farnell to step down until the findings of an inquiry into claims of historic abuse at the former residential school for boys are published.
The motion, which will be put forward by Rochdale’s Lib Dem leader Coun Andy Kelly, states: “This council has no confidence in the leader of the council and calls for him to step down and resign his position until such time that the findings of the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) are made public.”
Rochdale Labour group have accused Kelly of ‘using the tragic events at Knowl View for party political mud-slinging.’
His motion comes after Coun Farnell, who was also leader in the early 90s when much of the abuse was taking place, was criticised after giving evidence at the IICSA.
Coun Farnell repeatedly told October’s hearings, which examined claims Cyril Smith, the former Lib Dem MP for Rochdale, and others abused boys at Knowl View and Cambridge House boys hostel, that he had never heard of any allegations relating to Knowl View until recently, adding: “I am not prepared to accept personal responsibility for… failing to take action in this matter.”
He was repeatedly challenged by Brian Altman QC, who pointed out the director of education, director of social services, education chair and opposition members were all on record as having been aware of the allegations, but Coun Farnell insisted he had never been briefed.
During summing up, barrister Laura Hoyano, counsel on behalf of the victims, said it was ‘inconceivable’ Coun Farnell did not know about the abuse, but, she added, if he did not, he was guilty of ‘wilful blindness’ – pointing to ‘a cover up at the level of the leadership of the borough council’.
As the Lib Dems have just two councillors to Labour’s 48, the motion is not expected to gather enough votes to be passed, but Coun Kelly called on his political rivals to ‘do the right thing’ and support him.
He said: “I would call on Labour councillors to vote with their heart and do the right thing.
“Do they honestly believe that Richard Farnell remaining in position is the right thing for this town? That’s the question they should ask themselves.
“If the inquiry comes back and says Richard Farnell has not done anything wrong I will be the first to hold my hands up and say fair enough, but until that point he should step down.
“This is about justice for the victims of Cyril Smith, and let’s also not forget [Former Lib Dem council leader and MP] Paul Rowen was also on the stand during the inquiry, but neither he nor Cyril Smith are serving councillors.
“I will fully support the outcome of the inquiry, whatever it says, because it is about closure for the people who suffered abuse and about the recognition that the people in power at the time did not do what they were supposed to do. That’s the most important thing.”
But a Rochdale Labour group spokesman said in a statement: “If Coun Kelly gets more than two votes for his motion he will be lucky. Just how low can you get? Trying to use the tragic events at Knowl View for party political mud-slinging is appalling. We should be concerned about the victims and not trying to score nasty political points.
“The Inquiry has examined over 140,000 pages of documents relating to Knowl View. There is not one single report, letter, briefing note or memo addressed to Coun Farnell informing him of the events at Knowl View.
“Coun Kelly is deafeningly silent on the Liberal Democrats’ appalling failure to deal with the allegations of abuse made against Cyril Smith. They knew of the allegation going back almost 40 years. What did they do? Nothing.
“It is interesting that Coun Kelly has nothing to say about the former Lib Dem council leader and MP Paul Rowen’s evidence to the Inquiry.
“And just when are the Liberal Democrats going to apologise to the victims for Smith’s horrific abuse?”
Coun Kelly’s motion comes a week after the secretary of Rochdale Constituency Labour Party resigned in protest at the party’s handling of the scandal.
The findings of the IICSA are expected to be published before April.
Theresa May and Amber Rudd suppress Westminster child abuse documents for national security reasons
November 20, 2017
Labour MP Lisa Nandy just revealed in parliament the embarrassing inconsistencies between Prime Minister Theresa May and Home Secretary Amber Rudd over documents being hidden from the inquiry into allegations of child abuse by MP Cyril Smith.
“The Home Secretary told me that some papers would be withheld from the Cyril Smith inquiry for national security reasons,” Nandy told the House of Commons, yet she added: “this week the Prime Minister has written to me to say we are clear that the work of the security services will not prevent information being shared with other such inquiries.”
– And she challenged Amber Rudd to confirm “for the survivors of Cyril Smith who have waited for decades” for justice – whether papers on historic allegations of child abuse against Smith will be withheld from inquiries for reasons of national security.
Cyril Smith was a Liberal MP for Rochdale in the 1970’s after Liberal Party leader Jeremy Thorpe – who later resigned amid sexual scandal – insisted the local party have Smith as a candidate even though police had investigated serious allegations of sexual abuse of young boys in care homes in Rochdale where he had been Mayor.
The police investigation was dropped in 1970. Smith died in 2010 and two years later the Crown Prosecution Service admitted that he would have faced prosecution for allegations of child abuse where he still alive with allegations that had surfaced since.
The Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse last month heard how Smith was a governor at several schools in Rochdale, including Knowl View, where one abuse survivor attended as a boy when Smith was governor. He gave horrific testimony of a rape by Smith.
The inquiry is investigating historic abuse in Rochdale schools and care homes and heard how police had warned that Smith had “used his unique position to indulge in a sordid series of indecent episodes with young boys towards whom he had a special responsibility.”
The inquiry was provided evidence by MI5 that the security service had been aware at the time that the Director of Public Prosecutions had lied to journalists about not charging the MP, saying a case hadn’t been referred to them. MI5 appear to have not pursued this serious allegation as their role was “to defend the realm”, the inquiry heard.
A police report into Smith when he stood for election in 1970 read: “he has used his unique position to indulge in a sordid series of indecent episodes with young boys towards whom he had a special responsibility.”
The inquiry also heard that Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher would have been likely to be aware of the allegations against Cyril Smith when she awarded him a knighthood in 1988.
Lead counsel Brian Altman QC told the inquiry: “It is important to bear in mind the extent to which Cyril Smith continued to involve himself in serious issues related to the welfare of children. A knighthood would only have reinforced Smith’s veneer of respectability and power.”
Government papers relating to Cyril Smith will not be withheld, PM pledges
Prime Minister Theresa May has given assurances to an MP that Government papers relating to the late Cyril Smith will not be withheld.
Former shadow minister Lisa Nandy told the Commons that she had received a letter from the Prime Minister which stated the “work of the security services will not prevent information being shared”.
The letter prompted Ms Nandy to ask Home Secretary Amber Rudd whether she had been wrong to assert last month that some papers would be held back “under national security”.
The Wigan MP said: “Last month in this House the Home Secretary told me that some papers would be withheld from the Cyril Smith inquiry for national security reasons.
“This week the Prime Minister has written to me to say we are clear that the work of the security services will not prevent information being shared with other such inquires.
“So can she can confirm to the survivors of Cyril Smith (pictured) who have waited for justice for decades that she was wrong and that the Prime Minister is right?”
Ms Rudd replied: “Well I am happy to confirm the Prime Minister is always right and I will certainly look carefully at the letter that she has received to ensure that we comply with it.”
Smith, who was an MP for Rochdale between 1972 and 1992, is accused of sexually abusing a number of boys.
The Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse has heard evidence of the abuse and will publish its findings next year.
In her letter to Ms Nandy, the Prime Minister said: “As with the Government’s co-operation with the investigation into allegations of abuse at Kincora Boys’ Home in the 1970s, we are clear that the work of the security services will not prevent information being shared with other such inquires.
“Material relating to the allegations of abuse at Kincora Boys’ Home was disclosed to the Historical Institutional Abuse Inquiry team in full.
“To assist with disclosure, a memorandum of understanding was established between the inquiry team, government departments and security services with regards to viewing and securing potentially relevant material.
“If material was identified as relevant to the inquiry, government department and security services would consider it for public disclosure, in line with UK Government disclosure obligations.”
Claims council leader knew about Knowl View child abuse allegations in early 90s – inquiry told
25 Oct 2017
Leader Richard Farnell told the inquiry yesterday he only heard about allegations relating to Knowl View ‘two or three years ago’
Claims Rochdale’s council leader has known about the Knowl View boys scandal since 1992 were reported to the Labour Party three years ago – but they did nothing to investigate – an inquiry has told.
Richard Farnell – who is both the current leader and was also in charge of the town hall between 1986 and 1992 – was also accused of ‘not telling the truth’ by a fellow councillor in the latest explosive hearing of evidence relating to the scandal.
Yesterday the leader had told the inquiry he only heard about allegations relating to the notorious school, at which boys were abused throughout the 1980s and 1990s, ‘two or three years ago’ when they were raised in parliament.
But this morning his fellow Rochdale Labour councillor Peter Joinson told the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) that the leader would have ‘automatically’ known what was going on at the time.
He also said Coun Farnell had admitted to him in 2014 that he had known about the allegations as far back as 1992 – a claim Coun Farnell says is a ‘lie’.
However Coun Joinson said he was sufficiently concerned to have reported their conversation to the regional party.
Those concerns were bounced to the party’s headquarters, he said, passed back to the regional office and then eventually put on hold, because by that point the police were investigating.
This morning’s meeting of the national inquiry – which is currently looking at abuse in Rochdale institutions between the 1960s and 1990s – follows yesterday’s evidence from Coun Farnell himself, in which he repeatedly insisted no senior officer or political colleague had ever told him about abuse taking place at the school.
But Coun Joinson claimed that at a meeting in 2014, when he himself was still chief whip, the council leader had admitted to having seen a draft report into the scandal at some point between March and June 1992.
Following that conversation – shortly after Coun Farnell had told the media he had never been aware of the allegations at the time – Coun Joinson says he raised concerns with the then deputy leader, Coun Peter Williams.
He then raised it with the regional office of the Labour party.
“I felt there was a conflict between what was in the press and the information he’d offered to me,” he said.
“There was a clear difference. As a consequence I sought advice from the regional director of the Labour Party because I felt at that point, because he was council leader, the people who should do the investigation were in fact the people from the regional party.”
Asked what happened next, he said the complaint bounced backwards and forward before being left to the police to follow up as part of their own child abuse inquiry, Operation Clifton.
“I spoke to the regional director,” he said.
“She referred me to a further senior officer in the Labour party in London. I had a discussion with them. They referred me back to the regional director.
“By that time Operation Clifton was going on and the comment of the regional director is ‘we will have to let the police investigation take its course’.
Coun Farnell told the inquiry yesterday that Coun Joinson had made up the conversation about Knowl View, arguing it was a ‘smear’ and the result of an internal civil war raging at the time.
Under questioning by Brian Altman QC, the councillor was asked: “Did you invent any of this, Mr Joinson?”
He replied: “I did not.”
Mr Altman then asked him: “Which means Richard Farnell lied to this inquiry?”
Coun Joinson replied: “I don’t like using that word, but he’s probably not telling the truth.”
Yesterday Coun Farnell told the inquiry repeatedly that at no point had any senior officer or political colleague told him of the emerging allegations around Knowl View at the time.
That included his chair of education, the late Mary Moffat, who he said had not breathed ‘a word’ of the claims to him.
However Coun Joinson suggested that claim was not credible.
“Up to 2004 I held senior positions as a councillor,” he said.
“I was chair of education, then I moved on to be the deputy leader. I was responsible for human resources, finance. It would have been common practice for the chief executive or any chief officer to discuss any area of massive concern with the appropriate member of the council or chair of that committee.
“For me, as chair of education at the time, if that was part of my portfolio I would have automatically gone to the leader of the council.”
When asked whether that would have also been the case during the 1990s, he said: “Yes.”
Cyril Smith Cyril Smith was born in 1928 and became active in local politics in his teens. He promoted himself as working tirelessly for the welfare of deprived boys. Suspicions of child abuse began in the 1950s. In 1956 he bought St Mary’s Gate newsagent and tobacconist. In the late 1950s, according to Mike Smith of the CID, this was put under police surveillance because of concerns about the number of young boys seen going in through the back door. Specific complaints began in 1961: for instance, he supported a boy to have singing lessons, groomed and sexually abused him. Why were these leads not followed up?
Smith gradually developed connections with paedophiles both locally and elsewhere in the country. Without these connections, and without sympathisers protecting him on a large scale, he would not have been able to offend as he did. One notable connection was with his later friend Jimmy Savile, born in 1926. Savile similarly presented himself as a dedicated fund raiser for charity. He volunteered at Broadmoor from his early 20s, and as a porter in other hospitals. The first complaint of abuse against him came in 1955, at a Manchester dance hall he managed. Some abuse is recorded from 1960, for example with autograph hunters being taken into hotels and abused. Just as Smith’s abusing can be traced over the next decades, so too there are records of complaints about Savile at the BBC, at Leeds general infirmary, and at Stoke Mandeville hospital.
Smith and Savile continued to live parallel lives as predatory paedophiles for half a century, both becoming well-known members of the establishment and escaping public disclosure and judicial convictions during their lives. However, once their behaviour began coming out in 2012, after their deaths, the offending of Savile, the media figure, led to the establishment of five separate inquiries, most notably Operation Yewtree. Other media figures began to be effectively followed up. But in the case of Smith, the high-level politician, all investigations have been so far resisted, just as they have been for other politicians who have been implicated.
Thanks to the public reaction to all this, one strand of IICSA, the independent inquiry into child sexual abuse, is assigned to Rochdale. We are not powerless. They govern by consent, and when ordinary protest is wide enough, they back down, at least until they think we have forgotten.
Like Smith and Savile, once he surmounted initial setbacks, Righton thrived as a predatory paedophile within the establishment.
Like Righton and Savile, Smith organised access to institutions with children whom he could abuse with relative impunity, first at Cambridge House and Moorland Home, and later at Knowl View School. He maintained a power base on the local council,
Peter Righton, another paedophile born in 1926, also became a close friend of Smith, and like him and Savile rose high in the establishment.
Smith escaped prosecution through corrupt pressure from friends on the council and senior police officers, and later from the British political establishment, who used the security services to steal files and cover up any charges by claiming ‘national security’. This is part of what we hope IICSA will investigate. Smith escaped prosecution through corrupt pressure from friends on the council and senior police officers, and later from the British political establishment, who used the security services to steal files and cover up any charges by claiming ‘national security’. This is part of what we hope IICSA will investigate.
Despite hostile reporting in the alternative press, an increasing tide of critical reports from local professionals, renewed police investigations, and referrals to the DPP, the director of public prosecutions, Smith was knighted in 1988, recommended by David Steel. Questions about this recommendation were covered up for some time, but the fact was forced out under an FOI request in January 2014
In 1972 Smith became the MP for Rochdale. Without the intervention of the DPP Norman Skelhorn, empowered by the long term AG Michael Havers, to protect Smith, this could not have happened. The prosecution would have gone ahead, he would almost certainly have gone to jail, and he would have had a criminal record. His power in the community would have been curbed, and decades of abuse might have been prevented. Instead, for the next twenty years Smith operated with impunity under establishment protection
Another official who culpably failed to do anything was John Pierce, the chief executive of Rochdale council. He has gone on record as claiming he knew nothing about the three separate reports in 1988, 1991 and 1992 that paedophiles were abusing children as young as eight years of age. Yet Pierce was sent copies and Paul Rowen, who was leader of the council in 1992, said he had a number of meetings with Pierce in which the abuse at Knowl View was discussed. Shepherd’s report then appears to have been buried. It was certainly withheld from DS Bob Huntbach when he was assigned to carry out a police investigation in 2000, and asked for all the papers.
Rochdale’s council leader was subjected to an excruciating grilling at the child sexual abuse inquiry this morning:
Councillor Richard Farnell gave evidence about what he knew about horrific abuse at Knowl View boys’ school during the 1980s and 1990s
…grilling from the government’s national inquiry on child abuse today – over what he knew about horrendous abuse at Knowl View boys’ school during the 1980s and 1990s.
Coun Farnell was also leader of the council between 1986 and 1992, when horrific rapes and sexual assaults – including by paedophile Roderick Hilton, who managed to enter the school in September 1990 – were taking place.
In today’s hearing Coun Farnell repeatedly denied ever having been informed about abuse at Knowl View at the time, despite senior officers having commissioned a damning report into the welfare of boys there in early 1992.
He never read about Roderick Hilton’s crimes in the local paper, he said, despite another witness – former Liberal Democrat politician Paul Rowen – previously testifying that it had been reported in the Rochdale Observer.
Here is part of an exchange between Coun Farnell and Brian Altman QC, who pointed out that in the early 1990s the town’s infamous satanic abuse scandal had already severely embarrassed the council.
BA: You will remember that pretty well, Mr Farnell?
BA: That led to a pretty bad publicity for the council, yes?
RF: Yes, I think that would be a fair assessment.
BA: And not only politically embarrassing for Labour, but those with whom you worked were politically sufficiently astute to have realised that?
RF: Yes, I would say so, yes.
BA: So what did she [Mary Moffat] tell you about Knowl View?
RF: I have no recollection of Mary Moffat raising Knowl View with me.
BA: So Mary Moffat was – for a short period of time during your leadership – your deputy, who was throughout the whole period of time of your leadership the education chair. You say you have got no recollection at all of her ever raising Knowl View with you?
RF: I have no recollection whatsover.
about Hilton’s activities in the last three years.
Neither were emerging worries over abuse of boys in the school ever raised with him by his chair of education Mary Moffat – who for a short period was also his deputy – or by his director of education, director of social services, chief executive or any Tory opposition councillors, he said.
BA: When you say, Mr Farnell, ‘I Richard Farnell have no recollection whatsoever’ what does that really mean?
RF: I do not recollect Mary Moffat mentioning to me any issue concerned with Knowl View. If she’d raised it I wouldn’t have forgotten.
BA: So what you are really telling us is she never did.
RF: Yes. Yes I’m saying that.
BA: So Mary Moffat, in all the years we know there were problems at Knowl View, not a word?
RF: Not a word.
BA: So she left you, your erstwhile deputy and education chair, completely and utterly exposed as Labour leader of the council, to a scandal at Knowl View? Is that what you are telling us?
RF: What I’m saying is Mary Moffat’s style wasn’t to come running to me every five minutes with problems within the department. She was a formidable politician in her own right. She got on with the job and she was confident in her own ability to deal with the issues that were put before her.
BA: But just think what you are saying, Mr Farnell. You are the leader. She was the education chair. And however formidable she was, any astute education chair would not leave the leader un-sighted by the kind of issues this inquiry has heard about going on at Knowl View between 1989 and the time you lost your seat on the council in May 1992. Is that what you are seriously telling the inquiry? She never brought it to your attention?
RF: She never brought it to my attention.
BA: And nor did anyone else?
BA: Not any single chair of any single committee who sat on your ‘chair’ panel?
BA: Not your chief executive John Pearce? Not the borough solicitor?
BA: So you were completely and utterly oblivious to what was going on at Knowl View for all those years?
RF: All those people you have mentioned did not bring that to my attention.
BA: Did anybody else, Mr Farnell?
BA: Is that the reality, do you think?
RF: It’s what happened in Knowl View.
BA: Is it the truth?
RF: It is the truth.
The leader of Rochdale Council has told an inquiry he had no knowledge of the sexual abuse of children at a residential school in the town despite mounting evidence in the early 1990s.
The Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse is examining how the late MP Cyril Smith and others were able to target youngsters at institutions in Rochdale over several decades.
It has heard how senior council staff knew about serious allegations of sexual abuse involving children at Knowl View School by the early 1990s.
But Richard Farnell, who regained the position of Labour council leader in 2014 after a gap of 22 years, told the inquiry he was never informed of the scandal during his first stint in office between 1986 and 1992.
The inquiry heard that a paedophile had been admitted to Knowl View in September 1990, where he had sexually abused at least one boy.
The council’s education chairwoman, Mary Moffat, knew about the incident but Mr Farnell insisted the information was not passed on to him.
Brian Altman QC, lead counsel for the inquiry, suggested the idea he had not been told by his political colleague was “ridiculous”.
The inquiry heard that by April 1991, the council was also dealing with the sexual exploitation of Knowl View boys at the town’s Smith Street toilets as well as an “epidemic” of “peer on peer” abuse at the school.
A report submitted on March 20 that year from a worker from the Rochdale health authority detailed claims that boys as young as eight were being targeted by men from as far afield as Sheffield.
It said most people would be “horrified” by the allegations, which had the potential to become a “public scandal”.
Mr Altman asked the council leader: “You knew absolutely nothing at that time of the scandalous nature of what was going on in Knowl View?”
Another report on Knowl View was submitted in February 1992, while Mr Farnell was still in office, but the politician denied he had been shown it at the time.
Mr Altman asked: “You were still completely and utterly ignorant of the problems in Knowl View?”
Mr Farnell replied: “I was unaware of the problems at Knowl View.”
I am not the only regional journalist to find a remarkable absence of reporting of #RochdaleCSA from @InquiryCSA in the national media.
24 Oct 2017
hearing evidence from Vince Hill, a former @GMPolice officer who was part of Operation Cleopatra in late 90’s looking into #CSA.
As part of Cleopatra, Mr Hill was handed a police investigations file from a 1970 investigation into #RochdaleCSA and Cyril Smith.
Vince Hill says 11 lines of recommendations at the end of his report into #RochdaleCSA were scribbled over and then omitted from final copy
“My own view is that a further investigation would be merited, now … sooner rather than later in order to show the police to be acting.”
Who removed Vince Hills last paragraphs from his @GMPolice review of #RochdaleCSA that recommended a further investigation?
We’re now hearing read evidence from officer who claims Mr Hills claims are not possible and that all @GMPolice entries were typed directly.
We’ve now had some clarity – Vince Hill’s letter recommending investigation was in an advice file sent to CPS.
Lawyer representing victims of Knowl View abuse calls for council leader Richard Farnell to stand down
The last week has seen senior local figures from Labour and the Liberal Democrats give evidence to the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse
The lawyer representing victims of Rochdale’s Knowl View abuse scandal has called for council leader Richard Farnell to stand down in the wake of his evidence to the national child abuse inquiry.
Richard Scorer, who is suing the town hall on behalf of eight abuse victims, has called for a ‘new generation’ of politicians to take the reins in Rochdale.
The last week has seen senior local figures from Labour and the Liberal Democrats give evidence to the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse about abuse scandals at Knowl View school and Cambridge House boys’ hostel.
At his hearing Coun Farnell – who was also in charge between 1986 and 1992, when much of the abuse at Knowl View was taking place – refused to take personal responsibility for the scandal.
He denied knowing about it at the time and blamed senior officers for not informing him, saying he had only become aware of the allegations ‘two or three years ago’.
Mr Scorer, of the Manchester-based firm Slater and Gordon, said his clients were ‘astonished’ and ‘dismayed’ that Coun Farnell said he was unaware of the abuse.
“The victims feel that he isn’t fit to be leader of the council now”, he added.
Former pupils at Knowl View school, which closed in 1995, say they were subjected to horrendous abuse during the 1980s and 1990s.
But Coun Farnell told the inquiry on Tuesday that although the director of education, director of social services, chief executive, Labour education chair and Tory health authority chair had all known about emerging allegations when he was first leader, they had never informed him at the time.
He also denied admitting to fellow Rochdale Labour councillor Peter Joinson in 2014 that he had in fact known.
On Wednesday Coun Joinson was called to give evidence himself and reiterated his allegation.
He said Coun Farnell – during a private conversation that he had later reported both to the regional Labour party and subsequently to the police – had admitted to having known about the scandal in 1992, including to having seen a draft report into the allegations at the time.
Mr Scorer says both Labour and the Liberal Democrats emerge badly from a ‘shabby tale’.
Last week Lib Dem Paul Rowen, who ran the council after Coun Farnell between 1992 and 1996 – and was later the town’s MP – told the inquiry he had been unaware of the scale of the problems at Knowl View until later.
He had not read papers on the subject offered to him by officers when he took up office in May 1992 because he was too busy, he said, adding that he would have expected officers or political colleagues to have made him aware if there were serious ongoing concerns.
When appointing Cyril Smith as a governor in 1994 he had not recalled that sexual abuse allegations had already been made against him 15 years earlier, he said.
“I had no reason to doubt his integrity or his honesty at that particular time,” he said, adding that he had not heard any ‘rumours’ about him either.
Cyril Smith was Rochdale’s Liberal MP for 20 years. After his death allegations emerged that he had abused boys at both Knowl View and Cambridge House, a boys’ hostel that closed in the 1970s, for years.
“Neither the Liberal Democrat nor Labour parties come well out of this shabby tale,” Mr Scorer said. “Both parties need to change. The victims are dismayed at the evidence from politicians during this hearing.
“They feel strongly that Rochdale needs a new generation of political leaders who can tackle these problems effectively.”
Hearings into exploitation of boys at Knowl View School. What did @Richardfarnell1 know & do as leader?
“I have no recollection of Mary Moffatt raising Knowl View with me … no recollection whatsoever.”
QC: “You were completely and utterly oblivious to what was going on at Knowl View over the years?” RF: “No one.”
“The idea that you never knew about it and was never told is just ridiculous, isn’t it?” “That’s your view.”
It does appear form the evidence being put to @Richardfarnell1 that just about every senior official at the council knew about Rochdale CSA
“I was unaware of those incidents because (they) had failed to inform me of those incidents.”@Richardfarnell1@InquiryCSA
Others who have given evidence from Rochdale say they were aware of Roderick Hilton and his abuse at Knowl View residential school.
Farnell was in charge during ‘Middleton cases 1991’ – satanic accusations. Farnell has denied anything scandalous during his tenure
Despite saying he cannot remember there is the issue of 20 children who were wrongly taken into care after false “Satanic” allegations.
Many, many people at #Rochdale council have known about #CSA of boys at KVS for many, many years. But not their leader @Richardfarnell1
Brian AltmanQC is now showing @Richardfarnell1 a copy of a note form meeting from April 4th 1991
The note appears to show a report of the meeting went to Councillor Farnell. Diana Cavanagh says she was certain he was “informed.”
RF: “I’ve not seen any copy of the minutes of that meeting … certainly the director of education did not speak to me.”
BA: What you mean is that it was never brought to your attention RF: It was never brought to my attention, yes.
We’re now being shown a cutting from Rochdale Online from June 2014 where RF described the use of Knowl View as a “political football.”
Mr Altman is “struggling to understand” what @Richardfarnell1 is saying. RF: I have no recollection of being told about these events.
Going over HiV Report prepared into the risks pupils at KVS faced. An 11yr old had already contracted Hep through sex.
“Parents of children at the school would be horrified” if they knew. BA: A public scandal was the last thing you needed in 1991, wasn’t it?
This was a couple of weeks after the High Court judgement following the false Satanic Abuse allegations.
BA: Are you still saying you knew absolutely nothing RF: In order for me to know I would have to have been told
.. in the end, Mary Moffat who was your dep and ed chair, she was bound to have told you, wasn’t she?
RF: That’s your suggestion. She did not raise it with me.
BA: Not one of the breathed a word throughout your whole period of leadership RF: It was for them to tell me and they did not.
BA: Mr Farnell, you are not being realistic.
BA: Even in Feb 92 you were still completely and utterly ignorant of the problems at Knowl View RF: I was unaware of the problems.
We’re back to March 1992 and the presentation of the Val Mellor report in #RochdaleCSA against boys at Knowl View School.We’re back to March 1992 and the presentation of the Val Mellor report in #RochdaleCSA against boys at Knowl View School.
All main political parties Education Spokespeople were present at the meeting in March 1992. But @Richardfarnell1 says he was never told.
Mr Farnell says electioneering became such a priority that no one would have had the opportunity to raise the issue of #RochdaleCSA with him
Mr Altman has pointed out that other senior officials seem to have had the time to meet and discuss #RochdaleCSA when Mr Farnell did not.
We’re now being shown a council memorandum from May 1992 asking for a statement of action that has been taken “so I may advise the leader.”
This memorandum is from the Chief Executive, Mr Pearce, at #Rochdale. Soon after Mr Farnell lost his seat.
Mr Altman is putting a series of allegations about Mr Farnell’s character that he “bullied and browbeat people” “Interfered inappropriately”
RF: Definitely not, no. Mr Farnell has batted away criticism of his alleged “hands-on” management style at #Rochdale Council
We’re now onto the dealings – direct or otherwise – he may have had with Cyril Smith. What was his reputation? A larger than life figure
BA: Did you hear any of the rumours about his sexual involvement with young boys? RF: He was alleged to have spanked boys …
RF: Cyril Smith was investigated at the time but nothing was done with it … it had been investigated but nothing came of it.
BA: Was there ever a pack between the Labour and Liberal parties? (to not disclose abuse) RF: The idea of a pact – absolute nonsense.
RF: I’m not sure what there was to cover up.
Now discussing type written note from the Chief Whip in Rochdale who spoke with @Richardfarnell1 over what he did and didn’t know
The note says; “at the end of the meeting I raised the issue of press articles that questioned Mr Farnell’s knowledge of the KVS report.”
The notes form the meeting say Mr Farnell received a draft copy of the report into HiV risks. BA: He’s made all that up?
The notes says “Councillor Farnell says he’s only seen a draft report” BA: Those are words put in your mouth. Completely untrue? RF: Yes.
BA: This meeting with you is utterly invented? RF: Yes Mr Farnell say the Joinson note is an illustration of how “nasty” politics was.
RF: This is a complete invention to try to politically damage me and undermine me as the new leader.
If it was an illustration of civil war and bad blood in the #Labour group in #Rochdale the BA says it was never used. RF: He’s lying.
BA: Either he’s lying or you are lying RF: it is certainly my contention that he is lying
BA: Several boys went through that school and their lives were blighted. Presumably you will accept responsibility for that as leader?
RF: I bitterly regret the senior members of the council never approached me about these matters. They never did.
Head of Ed – Diana Cavanagh, Social Services – Ian Davey, Chief Exec – John Pearce “they are the people who should shoulder responsibility”
BA: You are not prepared to accept personal responsibility for this? RF: For me to have taken action I would have had to have been informed
25 Oct 2017 – IICSA – hearing from former Labour Chief Whip Peter Joinson
Peter Joinson has been called to th InquiryCSA into Rochdale CSA He claims Richarf Farnell told him in 1992 that he’d seen a draft CSA report.
MrJoinson says he doesn’t like the word “liar” and would prefer to say “Richard Farnell didn’t tell the truth”
Rochdale Council leader accuses colleague of lying over abuse claims
A note of a meeting on June 11 that year made by Peter Joinson, the Labour group’s chief whip at the time, read: “At the end of the meeting I raised with the leader the issues of press articles that questioned his knowledge of the Knowl View abuse reports.” The note, handed to police in October 2014, made reference to a report from a sexual health worker employed by the Rochdale health authority. “As a consequence of that report the council was preparing a report, this was between approx March and June 1992,” it continued. “Cllr Farnell said he had only seen a draft report and the full report wasn’t complete until June. By that time he had lost his council seat and ceased to be council leader.” Mr Altman said Mr Joinson was questioned by police about the note in April 2016. “He (Mr Joinson) said you told him there were allegations of sexual abuse in the draft report you had seen,” said the barrister. Mr Farnell said: “No.” Mr Altman continued: “So Mr Joinson completely and utterly invented the content of this meeting with you on June 11?” “Absolutely, yes.” Mr Farnell replied. The council leader suggested Mr Joinson made up the content of the conversation as part of a “bitter election campaign”, which he described as a “civil war within the party”. “Either he’s lying, or you’re lying,” said Mr Altman. Mr Farnell replied: “It’s certainly my contention that he’s lying.”
War of words between Labour colleagues Richard Farnell and Peter Joinson over knowledge of Knowl View sex abuse report escalates
26 October 2017
“I am disappointed that Councillor Farnell is denying a meeting had taken place and, more importantly, to use this to further obfuscate the main issue that he had offered to me the information that he had seen a draft report.
“There should not be any issue for Councillor Farnell here, he had seen a draft report, lost his seat and therefore the leadership of the Council. The responsibility for taking this issue further was therefore in the hands of Councillor [Paul] Rowen who had taken up the position of council leader and not Councillor Farnell. That is all he had to say in any press release he gave in June 2014 prior to our meeting and this particular part of the wider issue would not have occurred.”
Priceless – Richard Farnell – brands calls for his resignation “appalling political mud-slinging” then slings the political mud himself:
Councillor Richard Farnell, Leader of Rochdale Borough Council, has hit back following the call for his resignation by Councillor Andy Kelly, Leader of the Borough’s Liberal Democrats.
Councillor Kelly has called for the “immediate resignation” of Councillor Farnell “as both leader of Rochdale Council and as councillor for Balderstone and Kirkholt” over Councillor Farnell’s evidence to the government’s national inquiry on child abuse.
“Kelly is deafeningly silent on the Liberal Democrats’ appalling failure to deal with the allegations of abuse made against Cyril Smith. They knew of the allegations going back almost 40 years when it was exposed in the RAP article in 1979. What did they do? Nothing.
“It is interesting that Kelly has nothing to say about the former Lib Dem council leader and MP Paul Rowen’s evidence to the Inquiry. He was told about the abuse at Knowl View and refused to meet officers to discuss it, stating he was too busy.
“And just when are the Liberal Democrats going to apologise to the victims for Smith’s horrific abuse?
“Just when is Councillor Kelly going to apologise for the decision of the Lib Dem council who – despite knowing of allegations of abuse carried out by Cyril Smith – unbelievably put him on the governing body of Knowl View school?
Sir Cyril Smith with MP Paul Rowen and Rochdale Childer chairwoman Maureen Cooper
SIR Cyril Smith’s 80th birthday party raised almost £4,000 for charity.
Proceeds from the gala concert, featuring Jimmy Cricket and the Debrose Choir at the Town Hall in June, will be donated to Rochdale Childer, a charity which helps children in the borough.
He said: “The fact that we raised so much money for such a worthwhile cause was tremendous. As a founder of Rochdale Childer, I know the excellent job that they do for some of the most vulnerable young people in Rochdale.
MP Paul Rowen added: “Sir Cyril had a great night and we raised much more than we had anticipated. We are working with the Rochdale Childer team looking at a number of options of how to spend this windfall.”
Maureen Cooper, chairwoman of Rochdale Childer, said: “We are absolutely delighted that Sir Cyril’s big bash raised so much money. I can solemnly declare that not a penny will be wasted.
THE big man celebrated his birthday with a big party on Saturday night.
MP Paul Rowen opened the gala concert by introducing a video montage of tributes from political colleagues and celebrity friends, including Lib Dem leader Nick Clegg, Paddy Ashdown, Lord David Steel, Coronation Street star William Roache and comedian Jim Bowen, before guests joined in a sing-a-long of his adopted theme tune.
Sir Cyril was as straight-talking as ever during his speech as he praised Mr Rowen,
Council leader Alan Taylor thanked Cyril for being ‘a great inspiration and teacher’.
Alan was of course the olden days Hennigan type character. Cyril Smith’s agent. Party to all the party intrigue. And still sitting pretty. Perhaps young Alan was Cyril’s favoured candidate when Rowen stole the crown? Seen here Alan is barefoot, as is the Rochdale Lib Dem wont even today, as the Rochdale Alternative Paper’s 1975 “playmate of the Century” or something like that.
Born in Rochdale, Rowenwent to the Bishop Henshaw RC Memorial High School (became St Cuthbert’s RC High School in 1989 when Rochdale scrapped its three-tier system) on Shaw Road in Rochdale. From the University of Nottingham, he graduated with a BSc in Chemistry and Geology in 1976. From 1977-80, he taught Science at Kimberley School in Nottinghamshire. From 1980-6, he was Head of Chemistry at St Albans RC High School, Warren Lane in Oldham (now closed), then Head of Science at Our Ladys RC High School from 1986-90. From 1990-2005, he was Deputy Headteacher of Yorkshire Martyrs Catholic College on Westgate Hill Street in Tong, West Yorkshire.
Disgraced RE teacher found with 200 indecent images of children can continue teaching after Michael Gove gives go-ahead
Bettley, who joined St Mary’s in September 2001 from Yorkshire Martyrs Catholic School in Bradford, West Yorkshire,
By the time police seized his computer in December last year, he had viewed 143 images, assessed to be on the lowest “level one” on the scale for seriousness.
He downloaded another 46 more serious “level three” images, including scenes of child abuse, but they had not been viewed.
Instead of being taken to court, however, he was given the option of accepting a police caution.
Paul Rowen WBro David Action who is also inevitably a big wheel in the local Rotary Club as well as one of the Rochdale Chapters of the hell’s Angels Freemasons – hence the strange handshake. I believe he is Mr Big in beds. Meanwhile a Mr Mason is Mr Big in used cars. Both are long time associates of Paul Rowen for his charidee activity – mainly to do with orphanages in East Africa.
Paul is in Keen-ya. Apparently sunning himself whilst doing charidee work at children’s homes.
Does anyone picture portly Paul Rowen in a pith helmet whilst on a colonial verandah, G&T in hand? The Happy Valley of Kenya has a reputation for “fun and games”. Were table tennis paddles packed in Paul’s trunk? Or will Rochdale’s current MP be too busy having slap up meals at various african Rotary clubs?
Will he be planning a trip to the bush? Is he popping over to Uganda to conduct some business in his second paid job working for a property company called Corinya?
So how do young Rochdale people become Parliamentary interns for Paul Rowen. Unlike Hazard County, surely this is not a “job for the boys”?
“I’ve been very lucky over the last few months to have had a number of young people from Rochdale working as interns in both my London office and in Rochdale. These have included Natassa Malik whose father is a good friend of Sir Cyril Smith
Hancock has been the chairman of the southern region of the NSPCC since 1989
Savile, Hancock, Bonner Pink. Emery Wallis, connected friends , also Ted Heath, and more. add Peter Ball into this mix, you have a flaming disgusting group
Did you know ex MP Hancock worked for childrens TV at BBC, on same corridor as Savile. Hancock and Savile also friends, and Bonner Pink!
5 June 1990
Leaders of some of the 19 councils that are fighting a poll-tax capping order line up outside the High Court. (l-r) Richard Farnell (Rochdale), Marie Rimmer (St Helens), Peter Ballard (Basildon), Joan Twelves (Lambeth), Sir Jack Layden (Rotherham), Margaret Hodge (Islington),Jim Dobbin (Rochdale, deputy), and Mike Goodman (Hammersmith).
Any Knowl View cover-up may also involve 1990s NW Labour personnel
…the Manchester Evening News carried a story claiming that the disgraced, deceased Liberal MP Cyril blackmailed an unnamed council leader into covering up Smith’s actions by threatening to reveal an incident of abuse by the council leader against a child in a public toilet.
Over a month ago, in early September when the issue of child abuse at Knowl View home in Rochdale started to hit the news again because of its inclusion in the public inquiry into child sexual abuse, whistleblowers contacted the SKWAWKBOX with a number of allegations.
The first was that Greater Manchester Police (GMP) had stated that it would be making a ‘full disclosure’ of all evidence it had gathered in its investigation of events at Knowl View.
The second was that part of that disclosure would be that the leader of Rochdale Council had information about the abuse – and had kept it quiet. The person – a councillor – who knew he had received this information had, allegedly, subsequently been removed from all positions of responsibility by the council leader.
The SKWAWKBOX contacted Rochdale Council’s leader’s office and asked whether these claims were true. We were told – via a press officer – that the council leader absolutely denied them and would not be discussing them further.
The councillor said to have direct knowledge of events declined to take our calls. GMP was asked whether the information would be included in its disclosure – but its reply was essentially non-responsive:
Op Clifton report will be heard in full at the IICSA hearing in London in mid-October. You would need to ask IICSA as it is their inquiry.
IICSA had not yet heard the evidence, so this was a dead end. In the absence of options to corroborate the claims, there was no option but to shelve them and wait for developments.
Those developments have now begun.
Last week, evidence was given to the inquiry that matched the reports given to the SKWAWKBOX more than a month earlier. The comments began on the first day that evidence was taken, as the transcript of the session shows:
Despite its closure over two decades ago, Knowl View has continued to resurface, provoking concerns that investigations into what happened were deliberately concealed. It has been suggested that the local politicians were party to this and to suppressing allegations about Smith, regardless of their political allegiances. There has been rumour and speculation about some form of deal/pact between local political parties not to make allegations about Cyril Smith. We will call some of those politicians in the final week of the hearings so they can be asked more about that.
ITV news correspondent Matt O’Donoghue tweeted about it three days later, as claims were detailed:
He then asked council leader Richard Farnell:
A day later, the inquiry spoke to the then-head (in 1992) of social services about events at the time. That witness alleged not merely silence but interference:
Q: You made a distinction in your statement about inappropriate interference in departmental matters between Smith, on the one hand, and the then-leader of the council, Richard Farnell.
Q. The distinction you made was that Cyril Smith interfered on a sort of granular level, in the cases of individuals, whereas Farnell was perhaps more to the sort of generalised approach to his interference.
Yesterday, the Manchester Evening News carried a story claiming that the disgraced, deceased Liberal MP Cyril blackmailed an unnamed council leader into covering up Smith’s actions by threatening to reveal an incident of abuse by the council leader against a child in a public toilet.
The SKWAWKBOX contacted Rochdale Council’s press office again today with the following:
In early September I called you about allegations that Richard Farnell knew about abuse at Knowl View and did not act. You told me he had absolutely denied it.
In view of the evidence coming out at the public inquiry about a council leader covering up information and indeed being involved in at least one act of abuse, do you wish to revise that position?
The response this time was different:
The Head of Communications subsequently emailed to add:
And just to reiterate.. the leader maintains his denial
Labour’s HQ did not cover itself in glory in its handling of this blog’s enquiry, either. We wrote to the party at the same time as to the council and the police, detailing the information received, including the name of a councillor who alleged that Mr Farnell had told him privately that he had ignored a report on the abuse at Knowl View when the institution was still open.
The same councillor also claimed that he had informed Labour’s North-West regional office about that conversation – but that the report had been ‘buried’.
We asked Labour HQ the following questions:
Did ________ make such a report?
If so, what if any action did Labour take?
_________ used to be Rochdale Labour Group Whip, but says that Richard Farnell has since removed him from all positions. Why?
Labour HQ failed to respond until the SKWAWKBOX sent a follow-up email advising that we were about to publish an article on the matter and telling the party to provide any comments quickly if they wished to have the information included in the article.
We received a statement in reply that contained answers to none of the questions asked over a month ago:
The Labour Party is fully co-operating with the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse.
The allegations against Richard Farnell were put into the public domain by the IICSA (Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse) session transcripts and subsequently by the mainstream media.
They remain allegations only and the SKWAWKBOX does not claim that they are accurate, but their existence is indisputably of overwhelming public interest. There is no evidence so far to indicate that Mr Farnell is the unnamed council leader in the Manchester Evening News article and his continuing denial of cover-up allegations should of course be recognised by all, unless and until the allegations are proven in a court of law, should a case ensue.
However, should the police decide they merit investigation, officers should also be talking to people who worked in Labour’s north-west office at the time, because any cover-up is alleged to have extended there as well.
Alarm over sexual activities at a Rochdale council home has taken years to emerge.
9 September 1995
THEY were boys aged eight to 16 with learning difficulties, and what they needed from Knowl View special school in Rochdale was care. What they got, according to Phil Shepherd, a council HIV-prevention officer, was the risk of Aids.
Mr Shepherd was horrified by the situation he discovered when he made a sex-education day visit to the residential school in March 1991. In a report he made within a week to the town’s director of education, Mrs Diana Cavanagh, he set out a picture grimmer than anything Dickens imagined for Dotheboys Hall.
“Reputedly five of the junior boys have been or are involved in ‘cottaging’ in and around public toilets. Men as far away as Sheffield are believed to be aware of this activity and travel to Rochdale to take part.
“One eight-year-old is thought to have been involved. The police are aware of the problem. What action has been taken is not known.
Mr Shepherd was a member of the Rochdale Health Authority Aids unit. “We are committed to preventing the spread of HIV,” he wrote. “The boys in this school look to us to be increasingly at risk.”
He added: “Most people, not least parents of children at the school, would be horrified were these facts to be made known.”
They were not. Mrs Cavanagh assured him the problem was being addressed “through concerted professional action”. She asked him to circulate his report no further, and “not to undertake any independent action”.
The Aids team was not asked back in. Mr Shepherd’s report has remained unpublicised, and it is only now that parents of the boys in Knowl View are becoming aware of the risk their children ran and what they may have gone through.
The full story of Knowl View, which opened in 1969 and closed nine months ago, has never been made public, but is clearly visible in confidential council documents seen by the Independent on Sunday.
In essence, boys as young as eight were put at risk of Aids through prostitution and liaisons with known sex offenders, after a disintegration of control over several years.
Concerns about the sexual behaviour of the boys were first passed to the council as far back as 1988 by Dr Alison Frazer, a child psychiatrist at Rochdale’s Birch Hill Hospital, yet it was three years later that Mr Shepherd issued his dire warning about the Aids dangers facing them, and another year before the council received recommendations on restoring management control after its own inquiry.
That report, by Valerie Mellor, a consultant clinical psychologist, came in February 1992. In it, Mrs Mellor said there was no doubt up to a quarter of the pupils at the 48-place school had been involved in serious sexual incidents and the activity had continued “over a very long period of time …. It is very difficult to believe that this behaviour had not come to the attention of at least some members of staff.”
Although her report suggested that sexual activity was at an end, five months later a pupil and a former pupil, both 14, were cautioned by police for soliciting in the town’s Smith Street lavatories.
At the height of the affair, a known sex offender gained overnight access to the school and allegedly plied pupils with cider and cannabis cigarettes before sexually assaulting them. Official details are scant.
In her 1992 report Valerie Mellor said only: “In September 1990, an incident occurred involving an adult male intruder at the school. That intruder had sexual contact with one or more of the boys on school premises.”
But one boy says he was raped and that at least one other boy in his house was forced to have oral sex with the intruder. He claims their cries for help went unanswered because the member of staff on “sleeping-in” duty was not there. The offender returned the next night, but that time was beaten off.
The alleged rape victim says he was never interviewed by the police. The teenager was awarded a legal-aid certificate last week to sue for damages, and on Friday Mark Walker, of solicitors Molesworths, who are representing him, applied to the council for the release of files. Mr Walker said there were serious questions about the way Rochdale handled the incident. “We are concerned that not enough was done afterwards to help our client.”
John Pierce, Rochdale council’s chief executive, said police had reviewed the case again recently and found nothing requiring further action.
He added: “The police have also stated quite clearly that they do not believe there is any substance in allegations of a ‘cover-up’ relating to incidents at the school and that all the issues involved were discussed and investigated at the time by a number of agencies and the necessary action taken then.”
The authority was already taking action before Mr Shepherd’s report, Mr Pierce said.
“Both social services and the police had become involved in dealing with issues related to inappropriate sexual activities involving Knowl View pupils and adults unconnected with the school,” he said. “Arrangements appropriate to each boy’s circumstances were made in relation to counselling and health advice.”
Mr Pierce said that staff had received sex-education training and advice on how to warn pupils of the dangers of sexually transmitted diseases.
But one care worker at the school said: “I would never work for this authority again. It is appalling that those people who were in charge still have jurisdiction over so many children’s lives.”
Martin Digan, 36, another former care worker, said: “I believe there has been a cover-up. Only a public inquiry can place responsibility where it should be placed.”
Parents are also dissatisfied. One 41-year-old mother believes the deterioration in her son’s behaviour was a direct result of the sexual activity he became involved in at the lavatories in Rochdale’s Smith Street – and of a vicious school environment in which, she says, on one occasion he was hit with a cricket bat.
Another mother, whose son is now in jail for causing grievous bodily harm, was informed of what happened at the school only six weeks ago by one of the other parents.
“I should have been told,” she said. “They’re pretty disgusting, aren’t they? All of the reviews I’ve sat at and none of this ever came out.”
Neither were staff and parents alone in their surprise. Bill Hopkins, who became a lay member of the governing body in late 1990, looked shocked when told last week about the prostitution. “I don’t know anything about that. I don’t know if any of the other governors did. As far as I understood it, the problem was [the known sex offender],” he said.
“It seems to me that everybody at the time was contemplating their navel,” one adviser said.
“All the reports were on how the system failed and there was only a one- line reference in all the documents to the fact that the children might need some help. Rochdale let those kids down.”
CHRIS (not his real name) can only now bring himself to admit what happened to him at Knowl View School. The memory leaves him furious.
He claims that when he was 14 he was raped by a known sex offender who gained access to the school one night and plied him with alcohol and cannabis.
He says: “I was hysterical. I couldn’t do anything. It was physical force. He threw me against the wall, threw me around the room.
“I was shocked and scared. He threatened to kill me if I told anybody.” Afterwards, he says, he lay in his bed terrified, hearing other pupils screaming.
Nobody came to help. He says the duty member of staff was not in his room.
Though Chris was later questioned by the school, he says he was never interviewed by the police.
Eventually he decided that nothing was being done – and began lashing out. He threw another pupil through a window. Once he was locked up in his bedroom for a week.
“I got to the stage where I was going to run off and find help elsewhere,” he said.
Then he decided that he had to learn to live with the experience. But that is difficult.
“If I saw [the intruder] now I’d kill him. I’ve been close to suicide and I’m extremely lucky I haven’t gone to prison.
“There were six in my dorm and two are in prison. One is serving ten- and-a half years for rape. The other shot a boy in the eye and blinded him.”
Chris was sent to Knowl View at the age of 12 because he had been disruptive at his previous school, but he believes he was too bright for the special school. He describes the lessons there as “a joke”.
He has no job and feels Knowl View deprived him of a chance in life.
“Before I went there I had a life. I don’t have one now. Sometimes I want to go to the Black Box [council offices] and just blow the whole lot of them,” he says.
“I was in care. That place was supposed to be full of qualified people to look after me and I don’t think they did. So they deserve to pay, don’t they?”
Cyril Smith MP for Rochdale 1972 to 1992. Died in 2010 age 82.
He was unmarried had a brother Norman. Interestingly, Cyril Smith’s brother Norman was on Rochdale Council and was Rochdale Mayor 1986 – 1987 when Richard Farnell was Head of Council.
Harold Shipman had a practice at Todmorden and Hyde 1977 (31 years old) to 1998 (52 years old), during a period when Shipman was murdering one person a week, and where Jimmy Savile cycled passed regularly and Cyril Smith lived nearby (30 min drive – Emma Street, Rochdale) . It is known that Savile undertook necrophilia and was associated with Rochdale NHS Trust. The Janet Smith review – the Harold Shipman Inquiry, I am told, did not look into these matters. Savile died October 2011 age 85. Cyril Smith died Sept 2010 aged 82 and Harold Shipman found hanged in prison 2004 age 58. Harold Shipman ‘s wife Primrose was a child minder.
Cyril Smith MP behind (1) the 1962 Cambridge House, hostel for boys – by November 1965 social worker had reported Cyril Smith for abusing boys
(2) and the 1969 Knowl View school in Rochdale. Cyril Smith was Rochdale Mayor 1966 – 1967. Knowl View School was labelled a “boy brothel”
In 1989 it’s alleged that Rochdale social workers were replaced by Londoners to sort out matters.
This would have been under Flowers and Farnell as they left council in 1992.
1994 Rochdale Council closed Knowl View School (Farnell and Flowers had left Rochdale Council in 1992) but nobody was ever prosecuted over abuse said to have taken place there.
Knowl View School had the 1991 Shepard Report and 1992 Mellor Report and closed 1994;
Rev Paul Flowers’ links to Cyril Smith
The Rev Paul Flowers had close political links to Sir Cyril Smith, the late Liberal Democrat MP accused of several child abuse offences
Smith was originally a Labour councillor in Rochdale and later a Liberal then Liberal Democrat MP for the town from 1972 to 1992. His brother, Norman Smith, who was mayor of Rochdale in 1986-87, said that Mr Flowers sat on council committees with Sir Cyril.
“Cyril was more involved with [Paul Flowers] than me. Cyril was a councillor and MP at the time,” he said.
“They knew each other by being on the council, and of course he was a prominent minister. They were on committees together.”
Mr Smith said Mr Flowers was the minister of Champness Hall in Drake Street, in the centre of Rochdale.
A spokesman for Rochdale Borough Council confirmed that Mr Flowers was a councillor from 1988 to 1992. The minister served as vice-chairman of the social services committee in 1990/91, and sat on the committee in the previous and following years.
During that time, 16 children in the town were taken into care because it was alleged that they had been abused and forced into Satanic rituals.
Paul Flowers (ex Co-Op bank) was Vice Chair Rochdale Social Services 1988-92 conducted a review of alleged satanic csa at Knowl View School and it’s this report that seems not to have been made public, although requests have been made to Rochdale Council and Simon Danczuk MP for it to be public .
Its alleged that both Savile and Cyril Smith attended the satanic csa rituals.
“Currently nine alleged victims are suing Rochdale council over abuse they say they suffered while at the school.
Several also claim they reported that abuse to GMP both in the early 1990s and later during the Operation Cleopatra investigation into child abuse across the region in the late 1990s, but that nothing was done.
Manchester police chief Michael Todd found dead at bottom of cliff
12 Mar 2008
A police spokesman said officers were unaware of any scandal in Mr Todd’s private life.
But Max Clifford, the publicist, said: “Someone phoned me a week ago and they had a Liverpool or Manchester accent. All they said was that they had a story about a top copper and that it was a big scandal and that they wanted to get a lot of money. I didn’t hear from them again and there was probably no connection at all with this.”
He played host to the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh when they visited Manchester.
Mr Todd began his career with Essex police in 1976, serving as a uniformed officer and a detective and was appointed Assistant Chief Constable of Nottinghamshire in 1995 before joining the Metropolitan Police.
He rose to the rank of assistant commissioner and supervised the policing of the Queen’s Golden Jubilee celebrations.
He became Manchester’s £122,000-a-year police chief in 2002
Todd was appointed an Assistant Chief Constable in Nottinghamshire in 1995, initially managing support services and then operational policing. In 1998, he was appointed as the Deputy Assistant Commissioner back in the Metropolitan Police. In 2000, following his promotion to Assistant Commissioner in the Metropolitan Police, he was responsible for Territorial Policing, covering all 32 London Boroughs. In 2002, he was selected as Chief Constable of Greater Manchester Police from 2002 and in 2006 he became a vice-president of ACPO (Association of Chief Police Officers), both posts he held until his death.
In 2012, it was announced that Police officials are examining new claims of financial malpractice against Todd. Greater Manchester’s new Police Commissioner appealed for information about Michael Todd, former chief constable of the force. The claims centre on Todd’s role in drawing up unique contracts that allowed some staff to get enormous payoffs when they left the force.
After his death, ManchesterChamber of Commerce Chief Executive Angie Robinson was reported to have been having an affair with Todd. It was later revealed that he was conducting numerous affairs with up to 38 different women
Todd’s numerous affairs over the past decade were an “open secret” among senior officers at Greater Manchester Police, his former employers Metropolitan Police and senior figures at Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary.
However, they turned a blind eye to his “reputation” – despite him suffering occasional depressive episodes, the risk of him being blackmailed and one of his mistresses being caught up in a police corruption scandal.
“alarm bells were being rung constantly by health professionals 1988-1992 when Flowers” was head of social services and Farnell head of Rochdale Council.
But “no one would ever believe the story that ‘lovable Cyril’ would be abusing those he pretended to help – a man who could present himself as a saviour of the needy, while at the same time abusing them.”
Paul Flowers vice chair social services Rochdale 1988-92 under Farnell -Knowl View satanic csa – 2011 “resigned” from Bradford council due to inappropriate material
“Former Rochdale council leader Colin Lambert – who previously passed detectives a dossier on alleged abuse ” this was reported in MEN (Manchester Evening News) 8 & 11 & 17 June 2014
September 2014 Jim Dobbin MP dies of alcohol poisoning/ excess on an official Council of Europe visit to Poland* with Lord John Prescott and Sir Alan Meale MP.
Jim Dobbin MP was very critical of Farnell and Simon Danczuk. After Knowl View survivors were sent to his office, by Simon Danczuk’s office, the family banned the Danczuks from his funeral.
Councillor Richard Farnell, Samaritans branch Director Janet Murphy and Simon Danczuk celebrate 50 years of the Samaritans
Prince Philip, Duke Of Edinburgh (R) laughs with Simon Danczuk MP for Rochdale
Rochdale MP Danczuk is no stranger to scandal, having been suspended from the Labour Party in December 2015 over allegations of sending sexually explicit text messages to a 17-year-old girl.
Now, Vaz – Chair of the Home Affairs Select Committee – is hitting headlines for allegedly paying male prostitutes for sex and discussing the possibility of paying for cocaine.
Soon after the Vaz scandal erupted, disgraced member of parliament Simon Danczuk leapt to defend his colleague, tweeting his support for Vaz.
“I’ve known Keith since I entered parliament. He makes a positive contribution to politics. He serves his constituents very well.
HAVE standards slipped at Liverpool council’s press office since spinmeister general Matt Finnegan was suspended? According to official council documents seen by the Insider, the reading matter of choice at the press office has taken a distinctly comic turn. For on an order form for national and local daily newspapers there is one very special request – for a copy of the Beano (young lads magazine) for senior press officer Richard Farnell. Could it be that one time parliamentary candidate Mr Farnell has a bit of Dennis the Menace about him or is he simply reliving his childhood days
He has worked on newspapers throughout the North West and worked in local government public relations for several years. He recently retired from Liverpool City Council where he ran their Press Office and was an advisor to the directly-elected Mayor of Liverpool, Joe Anderson.
“Richard was elected a Labour Councillor for Balderstone and Kirkholt ward in 2012. It is his second stint on the Council after a 20-year break. Richard was previously Leader of the Council in the 1980s. He was elected Leader of the Labour Group and Leader of the Council in May 2014 and is responsible for the policy direction of the council. He is also responsible for regeneration and special projects and sits on the Board of the Rochdale Development Agency and Rochdale Boroughwide Housing.”
Coun Richard Farnell, Rochdale Council leader, a position he came to as a result of a so-called “coup” in 2014 within the local Labour Party group.
Farnell was the former head of Liverpool City Council’s press office. In early 2013 it was reported that “Richard Farnell has made it to 26 out of 29 meetings at Rochdale council since last May – despite being unable to work as office manager for Liverpool’s elected mayor Joe Anderson since last summer.” 
First broadcast in September 2013, this is the Channel 4 Dispatches documentary that explored the horrific scale of Cyril Smith‘s sexual abuse of children and the how the police, crown prosecution service and MI5 not only knew of his activities but actively protected him from being prosecuted for his crimes.
Of course, no one in the police forces involved, the CPS or in MI5 has been held to account for aiding and abetting Smith’s vile crimes against children
Secret service infiltrated paedophile group to ‘blackmail establishment’
BRITISH security services infiltrated and funded the notorious Paedophile Information Exchange in a covert operation to identify and possibly blackmail establishment figures, a Home Office whistleblower alleges.
The former civil servant has told detectives investigating the activities of paedophiles in national politics that the Metropolitan Police’s Special Branch was orchestrating the child-sex lobbying group in the late 1970s and early 1980s.
The whistleblower, who has spoken exclusively to the Sunday Express, says he was also warned off asking why such a notorious group was being handed government money.
It emerged late last year that PIE was twice gave amounts of £35,000 in Home Office funding between 1977 and 1980, the £70,000 total equivalent to over £400,000 in today’s money.
Those details surfaced only after the whistleblower highlighted his concerns to campaigning Labour MP Tom Watson and his revelations have triggered an ongoing Home Office inquiry into why the cash was given to PIE which was abolished in 1985 after a number of prosecutions.
Until now, speculation about the grant has centred on Clifford Hindley, the late Home Office manager who approved the payments. However, the whistleblower told the Sunday Express he thought higher and more sinister powers were at play.
He has given a formal statement to that effect to detectives from Operation Fernbridge, which is looking into allegations of historic sex abuse at the Elm Guest House in south-west London
PIE, now considered one of the most notorious groups of the era, had gained respectability in political circles. Its members are said to have included establishment figures, and disgraced Liberal MP Cyril Smith was a friend of founder member Peter Righton.
In 1981, Tory MP Geoffrey Dickens used Parliamentary privilege to name Sir Peter Hayman, the deputy director of MI6, as a member of PIE and an active paedophile. In 1983 Mr Dickens gave the Home Office a dossier of what he claimed was evidence of a paedophile network of “big, big names, people in positions of power, influence and responsibility”. The Home Office says the dossier no longer exists.
Whistleblower Mr X, whose identity we have agreed to protect, became a very senior figure in local government before retiring a few years ago. In the late 1970s and early 1980s, he was a full-time consultant in the Home Office’s Voluntary Services Unit run by Clifford Hindley.
In 1979 Mr X was asked to examine a funding renewal application for PIE, but he became concerned because the organisation’s goal of seeking to abolish the age of consent “conflicted” with the child protection policies of the Department of Health and Social Security and asked for a meeting with Mr Hindley, his immediate boss.
PIE was being funded at the request of Special Branch which found it politically useful to identify people who were paedophiles. This led me not to pursue my objections. At that time, questioning anything to do with Special Branch, especially within the Home Office, was a ‘no-no’.
“I was under the clear belief that I was being instructed to back off and that his reference to Special Branch was expected to make me to do so.
He asked for a file the Home Office kept on PIE, but his request was refused. However, he was certain then Tory Home Office Minister Tim Raison, who died in 2011, must have signed the 1980 funding application.
Mr X has given a formal written statement to the inquiry set up last year into former Home Office links with PIE but has refused to meet the inquiry in person because he fears “repercussions” under the Official Secrets Act.
Special Branch was an integral part of the intelligence service gathering intelligence on spies and political threats to the state.
Keith Harding had members of the royal family as clients and appeared with Jimmy Savile on Jim’ll Fix it
Savile with the Duke of Gloucester
Savile’s brother canvassed for Cyril – he even stood for election-Battersea with Honor Blackman as celeb attraction. And of course Honor was around Hebden Bridge – another Savile haunt – all palsy walsy.
Smith, who died in 2010 aged 82, reportedly bonded with Savile after meeting him at a medieval banquet forty years ago.
In his autobiography Big Cyril, the MP whom police have now acknowledged abused young boys, recounts meeting the DJ.
He said: “I once attended a medieval banquet at Worsley, Lancashire, along with Jimmy Savile. When I joined in the community singing, Jimmy blurted out: ‘You’ve got a nice voice there, Cyril, you must come on my programme!’ That’s how I ended up singing ‘She’s a Lassie from Lancashire’ on Clunk Click.”
Paedophile MP Cyril Smith was in league with another appalling child sex abuser who set up satanic rituals and raped children as young as TWO, the Sunday People has discovered.
Victim Michael Roberts, 40, today bravely puts aside his right to anonymity to tell for the first time how he was only six when he was sexually abused by 29-stone politician Smith.
And shockingly he has revealed his devil-worshipping stepdad Michael Horgan organised the horrendous ordeal. Horgan made a deal with the man who went on to be knighted after years as a respected Member of Parliament.
Michael claims Smith, who was also a close pal of Jimmy Savile, told him he had been “a naughty boy” before forcing him to take part in a perverted spanking and groping ritual.
Now studying for a counselling qualification, Michael fought back tears as he recalled: “I was frightened of him because of his size. But by then I was getting abused by so many people I’d just got used to it.”
Horgan, who has also used the name Shaun O’Donnell, became known as the High Priest of Satan.
He was jailed for 10 years and placed on the sex offenders’ register after he was found guilty of six sex abuse charges in 1992. Smith died in 2010 aged 82.
Horgan organised a series of satanic-themed orgies for like-minded paedos.
In one of them he raped little Michael and an even younger female child before watching on as others did the same.
He organised outdoor “parties” for these activities on Saddleworth Moor, where child killers Ian Brady and Myra Hindley had buried their victims.
Youngsters from two to 13 were drugged, tortured and sexually abused during the satanic “ceremonies”.
The shock revelation over the satanist and MP’s friendship raises questions over any role Smith and Jimmy Savile may have played in Horgan’s paedo ring.
Horgan was also pals with Raymond Hewlett, the child rapist questioned in relation to the disappearance of Madeleine McCann.
Michael added: “Michael Horgan used to take me out to ‘visit’ people regularly. It didn’t seem that far away. It didn’t take us long to get there. We went there in a taxi. Just me and Michael Horgan.
“I can’t remember where it was, just that it was a long row of houses and that it wasn’t far from where we lived in Rochdale.”
Michael says the visit had obviously been set up beforehand as local MP Smith greeted him by his first name when he walked in the room.
He added: “We went into the house. He was a big fat guy. They (Horgan and Cyril) were talking between themselves. It looked like it had been pre-planned because he (Cyril) said, ‘Hello, Michael.’
According to police records, prosecutors were given evidence about him in 1970, 1998 and 1999 but charges were never brought.
He was finally exposed as a paedophile in November last year. The Crown Prosecution Service admitted he should have been charged.
One of his victims claimed he was sexually abused in a room in the Houses Parliament as MPs walked past.
High priest of evil set free to prey on children 14 March 1999 The News of the World Paul McMullan and Amanda Revell Walton
Satan sex monster abused his own kids..then let sick disciples do the same
A sick ‘high priest’ of Satan who raped his own kids, then handed them to devil worshipers for more abuse will this week be FREED to prey on other tots.
Michael Horgan hung his naked daughter and stepson on HOOKS and tied them to a CROSS so his ‘disciples’ could torture and film them.
Yet he only served half his ten-year jail sentence before being transferred to a bail hostel last May.
And on Tuesday the monster- whose youngest victim was only TWO -will be back on the streets unsupervised.
Vile Horgan, 50-who has changed his name to Shaun O’Donnell-would normally have his identity cloaked by the same laws which guarantee his victims anonymity.
But today his daughter Philomena, now 21, and stepson Michael, 26, have taken the amazingly brave decision to reveal themselves.
For they want the world to see the evil that is their father- and every parent to be warned that he is back on the loose. Philomena and Michael even found the courage to tell of the torment they suffered at Horgan’s hands as they grew up in Rochdale, Greater Manchester.
How the world’s biggest asbestos factory tried to stop campaigners exposing the killer dust’s dangers
Turner and Newall spied on journalists and activists before trying to accuse the of being communists in the 1980s
…executives at Rochdale-based asbestos giant Turner and Newall monitored people they considered to be “subversive” and kept a dossier on their activities at the height of the debate about the mineral’s safety in the 1980s.
They also enlisted the help of disgraced Rochdale MP Cyril Smith in a clandestine but ultimately unsuccessful bid to discredit the makers of an award-winning documentary that told how asbestos workers were dying from cancer.
The boy who grew up to be Blair’s favourite priest
By FATHER MICHAEL SEED
Along my path, I met the late Cardinal Basil Hume. (Who invited Jimmy Savile to the Athenaeum Club.) This holy and humble man, with such a lively sense of fun and serenity, would become my mentor and friend. I was ordained a deacon in 1985.
On January 1, 1988, Cardinal Hume asked me if I would become his secretary for ecumenical affairs.
I accepted with joy and gratitude and began an eventful and extremely happy 11-year association with him, which I still cherish.
I was even more delighted when his successor, Cardinal Cormac Murphy- O’Connor, asked me, in spring 2000, if I would continue in that role during his tenure as archbishop – a ministry I still hold to this day.
Why did the CPS abandon investigation into Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O’Connor?
As the full scale of the British Establishment’s cover-up of child sex abuse becomes apparent, Alistair McBay argues it is time for the Crown Prosecution Service to make public its reasons for dropping the investigation into Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O’Connor 12 years ago.
Below is a timeline for Sir Cyril Smith MBE which we hope will provide a quick and easy reference resource. It is by no means definitive and if anyone has information that can help make it better then please post it as a comment. Even if we don’t add them to the timeline, such comments will be useful to anyone researching Cyril Smith in the future.
Timelines like this can be useful but they can also have their drawbacks. As a positive this one clearly highlights no less than 12 occasions when the police became aware, to a greater or lesser degree, of Cyril Smith’s offending or his unhealthy and illegal interest in young boys, These 12 entries are in bold. In my view, this timeline also clearly demonstrates a cover-up and complicity by the authorities which allowed Cyril Smith to continue to offend.
As a negative, this timeline does not adequately illustrate the fact that Cyril Smith was continuously offending throughout the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s. As I understand it, Greater Manchester Police are still investigating Cyril Smith’s sexual offending against young boys and hopefully a report will be published in due course which will better illustrate the appalling scale of Cyril Smith’s offending. However, until such a report is published this is the best that can be done.
Sir Cyril Smith MBE. This Is Your Life.
Knowl View School Timeline
1969 Knowl View Residential School for opened for children with learning difficulties.
1988 Concerns about the sexual behaviour of the boys were first passed to the council by Dr Alison Frazer, a child psychiatrist at Rochdale’s Birch Hill Hospital 
1990 Sept An incident occurred involving an adult male intruder at the school. That intruder had sexual contact with one or more of the boys on school premises. Mellor report 
1991 Rev Flowers, disgraced ex boss of Coop was vice-chair of the social services committee in 1991 
1991 Mar Phil Shepherd visited Knowl View. 1 week later Phil Shepherd had written the report and submitted it to Mrs Diana Cavanagh, Director of Education. 
1991 Apr 11 Investigation by police and social services requested by DOE 
1991 May 31 Social Services say No case to answer!! 
1992 Feb Report by Valerie Mellor, a consultant clinical psychologist. In it, Mrs Mellor said there was no doubt up to a quarter of the pupils at the 48-place school had been involved in serious sexual incidents and the activity had continued “over a very long period of time …. It is very difficult to believe that this behaviour had not come to the attention of at least some members of staff.”  Her report suggested that sexual activity was at an end.
1992 c.Jul A pupil and a former pupil, both 14, were cautioned by police for soliciting in the town’s Smith Street lavatories 
1995 Knowl View School Closed down Whistleblower Martin Digan, whose appointment as the school’s head of care heralded its closure 
1995 Sep 10 Independent  John Pierce, Rochdale council’s chief executive, said police had reviewed the case again recently and found nothing requiring further action. He added: “The police have also stated quite clearly that they do not believe there is any substance in allegations of a ‘cover-up’ relating to incidents at the school and that all the issues involved were discussed and investigated at the time by a number of agencies and the necessary action taken then.”
2013 Sep 11 Exaro Nick Fielding  Knowl View files. Council warned of scandal
2014 Apr 12 Telegraph Melanie Hall  and Liberal party allegedly ‘covered up’ MP Cyril Smith’s four decades of abusing children
2014 April Police began a fresh investigation into allegations of abuse and a possible cover-up at Knowl View. A separate independent inquiry is investigating whether Rochdale Council could have done more. 
2014 Jun 3 BBC Richard Bilton  Knowl View: Report into abuse at Rochdale school ‘suppressed’
2014 Jun 3 FOI Request  for Shepherd Report on Knowl View
2014 Jul 7 ITV Council suspends review for police investigation 
2014 Sep 17 Shepherd Report  heavily redacted released in reply to Jun 3 2014 request.
28th June 1928- Cyril Smith is born in Rochdale Lancashire, the illegitimate son of Eva Smith who worked in service to a local cotton mill-owning family. He has a sister, Eunice and a brother Norman. They never learn who their father is.
1945- Cyril Smith joins the Liberal Party
1951- Cyril Smith leaves the Liberal Party and joins Labour
1952- Cyril Smith was elected a Labour Party councillor for the Falinge ward of Rochdale. As a councillor, Cyril became governor of twenty-nine local schools and would often visit them.
1956- Cyril Smith buys St Mary’s Gate newsagent and tobacconist. (It was demolished in 1959 as part of a re-development scheme).
Late 1950s-Smith’s newsagent on St Mary’s Gate was put under police surveillance as there had been concerns that boys were entering from the rear of the property. (Source Mike Smith, CID).
Late 50s- Cyril Smith gets a criminal record and is bound over to keep the peace for twelve months after breaching public lottery laws and trying to sell a lottery ticket to the chief constable of Rochdale.
1960- Cyril Smith sets up and manages Rochdale’s first bingo hall with Fred Ratcliffe, the Rochdale football club chairman.
1961- The first victim of Smith that the police know of was groomed in December 1961 after a visit to a school carol service. The boy was fourteen years old and Cyril pays for singing lessons for him and soon sexually abuses him.
1962- Cyril Smith helps to set up Cambridge House, an independently run hostel for homeless boys funded by Rotary club and Rochdale council .
1964- Ronald Neal is physically attacked by Smith at Cambridge House, his head smashed against a wall and two teeth knocked out. He is taken to hospital for stitches and but when he explained what had happened to him was advised to say he had fallen over.
Lyndon Price, Head of Social Services, Rochdale (1965-1971)
1965 – Lyndon Price, Head of Social Services, Rochdale (1965-1971) goes to the Chief Constable Patrick Ross concerning allegations of improper behaviour by Cyril Smith at Cambridge House.Nothing was done at this time but soon after Cambridge House closed.
1966- Cyril Smith was appointed the Mayor of Rochdale and visits every single school in Rochdale that year. He claimed that children love meeting him – ‘It’s like a fairy story for them’.
June 1966- Cyril Smith is appointed Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) ‘For services to youth’ in the Queen’s Birthday Honours.
1967- Cyril Smith MBE resigns the Labour whip and becomes an independent until 1970.
Knowl View Special School
1969- Cyril Smith helps to found Knowl View Special School. He will be a governor of the school with his own access all areas pass key for the next 34 years.
Jack Tasker, Detective Constable Lancashire Police CID (1966-1973)
1969-1970- Rochdale Borough Police Force begin new investigation under the leadership of Chief Inspector Derek Wheater into Cyril Smith regarding Cambridge House allegations, 8 former residents are witnesses. Finding his investigation being subtly obstructed, he asks Detective Constable Jack Tasker of the county CID to investigate. Tasker interviews Cyril Smith under caution. Smith denies the allegations but Tasker believes the 8 witnesses. However, before Jack Tasker can make his report 2 senior police officers demand all the evidence and order Tasker to cease his investigation. However, this was not a cover-up. The investigation was in fact taken over by Detective Superintendent Jack Watson who concluded that Smith “used his unique position to indulge in a sordid series of indecent episodes with young boys toward whom he had a special responsibility.”
Jack McCann MP
Cyril Smith asked the then Rochdale MP John ‘Jack’ McCann for help and he spoke to the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP). Despite the evidence file running to 80 pages to case was swiftly dropped, the DPP commenting that “any charges of indecent assault found on these allegations, as well as being somewhat stale, would be in my view be completely without corroboration. Further, the character of some of these young men would be likely to render their evidence suspect.”
1970- Cyril Smith rejoins the Liberal Party and is controversially selected as the parliamentary candidate in the 1970 general election. He comes second.
1970- CPS records indicates file received on Smith, aged, 42, for allegation(s) relating to indecent obscene publications. (Source)
May 1972 – Smith is stripped of committee chairmanships when Labour regained control of council.
October 1972- Following the death of the Labour MP John ‘Jack’ McCann in July, Cyril Smith is elected in a by-election and becomes the member of Parliament for Rochdale.
1974- Smith is returned as Rochdale’s MP in both of the general elections of that year (Feb 28th and Oct 10th).
June 1975- Smith is appointed as the Liberal Party Chief Whip.
Detective Sergeant Tony Robinson of Lancashire Special Branch (1964-1981)
It is around this time that Detective Sergeant Tony Robinson of Lancashire Special Branch saw the Cyril Smith criminal file which had been locked in a safe at Lancashire Special Branch since the police investigations of 1969-1970.
Mid 1970s-Jimmy Savile appears with Cyril in a Liberal Party political broadcast giving his backing to the party.
1976- Following the election of David Steel as leader of the Liberal Party, Cyril Smith resigns as Chief Whip for ‘health reasons’.
Detective Constable Paul Foulston, Thames Valley Police CID (1976-1988)
1976- In an unconnected investigation , Detective Constable Paul Foulston, Thames Valley Police CID visits a youth at Ashford Young Offenders Centre to eliminate him from a murder inquiry. He and his sergeant are spoken to outside of the centre by two Metropolitan Police Special Branch officers who attempt to stop them interviewing the youth as it would “not be in the national interest” to do so. They ignored the warning and interviewed the 18 year old youth anyway. After the youth had been eliminated from the murder inquiry he proceeded to tell the two police officers that he had been in a relationship with Cyril Smith for many years and that he had been discarded for a younger boy who had in turn been discarded in favour of a boy even younger. Detective Constable Paul Foulston quotes the youth as saying ” that when they were young and tight, they excited him [Cyril Smith] when they became older he lost interest in them.”
March 1977- The parliamentary Liberal Party enter into a confidence and supply agreement with the Labour government (Lib/Lab Pact).
Soon after this Detective Sergeant Tony Robinson of Lancashire Special Branch was contacted by MI5 using the code term ‘Box 500’ demanding that the Cyril Smith file that was locked in their safe be sent by special courier that day to them in London.
Late 1970s- Martin Digan, a social worker, begins work at Knowl View School. He complained that Smith and his friend, the Conservative councillor, Harry Wild, chair of the board of govenors at Knowl View, would enter the school for no reason but to look at the boys. Digan put in several complaints but was threatened with disciplinary action by the headmaster and warned not to complain about Smith again or else he would face dismissal.
Late 1970s- Ron Foynes, a member of the Royal Military Police Company based in central London says that Smith was detained on a number of occasions in the late 1970s by the Royal Parks Constabulary after he was caught ‘in acts of gross indecency with young lads’ in the public toilets close to the junction of Marlborough Road and the Mall. On each occasion they had been told to discontinue their inquiries due to Smith’s status.
1978- Cyril Smith molests an 11-year-old boy at the National Liberal Club in London.
May 1979- Smith is returned as Rochdale’s MP in the general election of that year.
May 1979- The Rochdale Alternative Press(RAP) publish the Cambridge House allegations. The story is taken up by The New Statesman and Private Eye but none of the mass circulation newspapers take the story up. It is revealed following the death of Jeremy Thorpe that Thorpe’s defence barrister, George Carman QC, has put pressure on the press not to report the RAP allegations as it could prejudice his clients trial for Conspiracy to Murder.
In response to the RAP story about Smith a spokesman for the Liberal Party was quoted as saying, “All he seems to have done is spanked a few bare bottoms”
The Director of Public Prosecutions tells the Rochdale Alternative Press that they could not ‘confirm or deny’ receiving files of evidence incriminating Smith.
1980s- Smiths car was pulled over on the motorway and a box of indecent images of children found in the boot. He was put in a cell but police received a phone call from London and he was released without charge. Senior officers had threatened the officers involved with dismissal if Smith was not released immediately.
1981- Police operation started in 1981. It targeted south London addresses including a flat in Coronation Buildings, Lambeth – a tenement block less than a mile from Parliament and found substantial evidence of men abusing boys aged about 14. A hidden camera was installed in the flat with the help of a caretaker. Cyril Smith and a senior member of Britain’s intelligence services were among the suspects filmed. The investigation also had evidence on two senior police officers.
Cyril Smith was later arrested after reportedly taking part in a sex party with teenage boys but he was released that night and a sergeant who wanted to keep him in custody was reprimanded.
June 1982- Following the police raid on the Elm Guest House, Barnes, South West London, allegations are made against Cyril Smith regarding the sexual abuse of a young boy. Much later in Sept 2013 Cyril Smith’s attendance at the guest house is confirmed by police.
1983/1984- CPS records indicate file received on Smith, aged 55, for allegation(s) in relation to Public Bodies Corrupt Practices Act 1889 [Bribery] (Source)
June 1983- Smith is returned as Rochdale’s MP in the general election of that year.
Summer 1984- According to Don Hale, then editor of the Bury Messenger, he received a dossier concerning the Paedophile Information Exchange (PIE) and supporters within Parliament from Barbara Castle who was then a member of the European Parliament. Cyril Smith, who was not named in the documents visited him at his office and tried to persuade him that the allegations were “poppycock” and that he should not publish them. Later, Special Branch seized the documents. (Source)
June 1987- Smith is returned as Rochdale’s MP in the general election of that year.
1987-1989- Cyril Smith is investigated as part of Operation Hedgerow, an investigation which would expose two paedophile rings. Smith’s involvement is never followed up.
1988 – A former police officer has told how he called at a house in Stockport in 1988 after a complaint that the occupier had been committing a lewd act in his window in front of a newspaper boy. When he arrived he said Cyril Smith was there, together with a police officer in civilian clothes and two teenage boys, aged about 14 to 15 yrs old, both drunk – one a runaway from a children’s home.
Cyril Smith and the police officer left the house and the other man, a known offender, was cautioned. The retired police officer further alleges he was summoned to a meeting with a senior officer and mentoring officer and told ‘in no uncertain terms’ to say nothing about the incident (source).
3 March 1988- The Liberal Party merge with the SDP to form the Liberal Democrats
June 1988- After being nominated by David Steel, the leader of the Liberal Party faction, Cyril Smith MBE is knighted in the Birthday Honours list and becomes Sir Cyril Smith MBE.
July 1988- Paddy Ashdown is elected as the leader of the newly created Liberal Democrats.
1990s – Police investigate Smith regarding abuse Knowl View
April 1992- Sir Cyril Smith steps down as Rochdale’s MP.
Martin Digan, former head of care at Knowl View Special Needs School in Rochdale
1994- A boy under the age of eleven at Knowl View came to Martin Digan one night after having been sexually assaulted by a man fitting the description of Harry Wild. The police were called. Digan knew that Smith and Wilde both had keys to the school, but they did not have the alarm code and he could not understand how they were gaining access at night. He eventually noticed that the headmaster’s office door was being left ajar at night. In this office, he also discovered a report by the local health authority that had been presented to the council’s direction of education, Diana Cavanagh. Cavanagh had instructed the author of the report ‘not to undertake any independent action’ or circulate the report any further.
It stated that boys aged eight to sixteen at Knowl View were at risk of AIDS and had been subjected to severe sexual abuse and violence by men from as far away from Sheffield who had travelled to Rochdale for this purpose. The boys were being sold to paedophile gangs.’ Digan copied the papers, returned the originals, and made the report public although he omitted Smith and Wild’s names. The publicity resulted in the closure of the school but Digan lost nearly everything and had to move home. He also received phone calls from paedophiles threatening to target his children.
3 September 2010- Sir Cyril Smith MBE dies of cancer in a Rochdale nursing home.
November 2012, Greater Manchester Police Assistant Chief Constable Steve Heywood said there was “overwhelming evidence” that young boys were sexually and physically abused by Sir Cyril Smith MBE.
April 2014- It was reported that there had been 144 complaints against Sir Cyril Smith MBE from victims as young as eight.
A former colleague of Steel, David, now Lord, Alton, tells Channel 4Dispatches that he discussed the allegations made by the Rochdale Alternative Paper about boys being stripped, beaten and subjected to bizarre “hygiene examinations” or “chastisements” from Smith at Cambridge House, with Steel. He claims Steel made “a facetious remark” saying that what Smith was accused of was “no different” from what went on in public schools all over the country.
Michael Meadowcroft, a former Liberal MP and colleague of Steel, tells the programme that: “Essentially as long as a colleague turns up and votes the right way you don’t really do much about their own problems.”
Former MP Michael Meadowcroft in an obituary wrote of how Freud became the MP for the Isle of Ely.
“My recollection is that the contact came via Jeremy Thorpe,” wrote Meadowcroft, describing how Freud won the nomination in 1973.
“He won the nomination by thirteen votes to eight – a total vote hardly evidence for a massive association membership, particularly as he stated that the thirteen were residents of a care home across the road, drafted in to make the numbers look more respectable.”
From: Michael Meadowcroft, Honorary Alderman, City of Leeds.
THE death of Sir Jimmy Savile has reminded me of my failed attempt to get him elected to the Leeds City Council as its last elected Alderman. In early 1972, Labour Alderman John Underwood died and, as the Local Government Bill then wending its way through parliament abolished the office of Alderman as a member of borough and county councils, this was likely to be the last ever vacancy. Jimmy had already made a name for himself locally and on the media and I had met him briefly when he “dropped in” at the Liberal party conference in Scarborough some years earlier. It occurred to me that it would bring some much-needed colour to the City Council if we had Jimmy as a member, not least because, despite his appearance and his gimmicks, he had a very serious side. I therefore contacted him and he asked me to call at his terrace house in Lower Woodhouse. We discussed what it would entail to be a City Council member, even if only for a couple of years, and he said he was prepared to be nominated but only on condition that it had cross-party support. I next went to see Alderman Frank Marshall, the Conservative Leader of the City Council but, alas, he was not prepared to back the proposal and I had to report back to Jimmy that we couldn’t take it forward. And so the chance to have Jimmy Savile on the City Council was missed!
Sir Cyril Smith, former Rochdale MP and friend of Manning, said: “Bernard was a heavyweight in more ways than one. A heavyweight to the literally hundreds of charitable causes that he supported all his life and raised thousands of pounds for.
Mayor of Liverpool Joe Anderson added: “I’m delighted that the new Lord Mayor has taken the opportunity to visit the city so early in her tenure.
“We have developed very cordial and positive relationships with the Lord Mayor’s office since establishing a presence in London and we are grateful for her help in promoting the UK’s International Festival for Business in Liverpool next year.”
JOE ANDERSON was elected mayor of Liverpool in May 2012. Anderson, 56, was born in Liverpool and raised in a tenement in the city centre. One of six children, he left school at 16 to join the merchant navy and then P&O Ferries. Anderson spent 12 years at sea, during which he became the National Union of Seamen’s youngest ever convenor, aged just 20. He then took a degree in social work at Liverpool John Moores University before joining Sefton council as a social worker in 1992. He was elected to the city council in 1998, becoming Labour leader in 2001. He became council leader in 2010.
Liverpool teacher acccused of downloading child porn quizzed over deleted files
8 MAY 2013
Labour Party Councillor & School teacher Ben Williams gets a tip off from Labour Mayor Joe Anderson & Deletes 207 files from his computer the day before the section 47 police raid a jury at Liverpool Court heard Ben Williams admit.
A FORMER councillor accused of downloading child porn deleted hundreds of files off his computer the day after his party leader revealed he was under investigation.
One-time Clubmoor councillor Benjamin Williams, 35, admitted he had removed 207 files from his computer’s memory the day after speaking to Liverpool Labour leader Cllr Joe Anderson in December 2007.
He was arrested two days later on suspicion of making indecent images. But Williams, of Townsend Avenue, Norris Green, yesterday insisted he had deleted the files to simply make his computer work more quickly.
History and politics teacher Williams had originally fallen under suspicion in October 2006 after the IT manager at Southport’s King George V (KGV) college discovered he had been putting explicit terms such as “Lolita” and “child porn” into school computers.
Theresa May and Joe Anderson
During his second day of evidence yesterday, Williams confirmed Cllr Anderson had told him a section 47 enquiry was underway. A section 47 enquiry is a joint social services and police investigation into child protection issues.
But Williams insisted he did not realise the police would be involved.
But prosecutor Peter Davies questioned Williams over why the very next day he deleted 207 files from his computer’s temporary internet cache.
He said: “I never, ever thought it was a sinister activity. I thought it was a way of making my computer work more effectively.
“I guess I would do it every week or two. The reason was totally innocuous.”
He insisted he regularly removed files from his computer when it was running slowly or freezing.
Williams denies 10 charges of downloading indecent images.
Shameless councillors cash in on rate rises with bumper pay hikes of up to 67 per cent
Rochdale Borough Council’s Labour leader Richard Farnell treated himself to a 51 per cent pay day – up to £47,304 from £31,224.
Grasping local government members are filling their pockets as ordinary people buckle under pressure of council tax increases
“It’s outrageous that in this time of austerity, when services are being cut to the bone, cabinet members are awarding themselves massive pay rises.
“The council is forever pleading poverty and has just started charging extra for garden waste collection – but there seems to be plenty of money to line the pockets of the powerful.
“This is absolutely sickening.
“What exactly have these politicans done to deserve these pay rises?
“How many taxpayers struggling with tax bills will have seen a pay rise of up to 50 per cent?
“Families expect their taxes to pay for social care and road maintenance, not to line the pockets of greedy politicans.”
Councillor Richard Farnell is a trained journalist and communications professional. He has worked on newspapers throughout the North West and worked in local government public relations for several years.
He recently retired from Liverpool City Council where he ran their Press Office and was an advisor to the directly-elected Mayor of Liverpool, Joe Anderson.
Richard was elected a Labour councillor for Balderstone and Kirkholt ward in 2012. It is his second stint on the council after a 20-year break. Richard was previously Leader of the council in the 1980s.
He was elected Leader of the Labour Group and Leader of the Council in May 2014 and is responsible for the policy direction of the council. He is also responsible for regeneration and special projects.
Richard, as a member of the Greater Manchester Combined Authority, was appointed by the new major of Greater Manchester Andy Burnham in May 2017 as the City’s Region’s Lead for the Digital Economy. He also serves as national vice-chair of the Cooperative Councils Innovative Network.
Regeneration of the boroughs town centres, attracting new firms and jobs to the area, and improving education, skills and opportunities for young people are major priorities for the Leader. Richard also wants to see Rochdale become one of most customer-friendly councils in the country.
Richard lives in Rochdale and is a supporter of Rochdale Hornets Rugby League Club, which is one of the first member-owned Co-operative clubs in England.
When I was a rentboy I often serviced Cyril Smith at the Strand Palace Hotel in the Charringcross Road. Cyril was unbelievably brutal and made me dress up as a Boy Scout. He used to give me thirty bob and my bus fare home.
Cyril Smith’s Tory councillor boyfriend Harry Wild ‘groomed’ young prison inmates
Liberal MP Sir Cyril Smith’s councillor boyfriend preyed on young male inmates of a jail in Rochdale, a previously confidential police report reveals.
Harry Wild, who was a Conservative councillor in Rochdale and chairman of the council’s social services committee, is suspected to have shared with Smith a sexual interest in under-age boys.
Greater Manchester Police investigated Wild in 2000 over allegations that he, while a member of the board of visitors at Buckley Hall prison in Rochdale, attempted to groom young male inmates and indecently assaulted at least one of them.
A confidential 17-page report on the investigation, codenamed ‘Operation European’, described its findings as “somewhat disturbing”.
Prison staff told detectives that Wild used his position on the board of visitors, which acted as a watchdog for the prison, “to further his own sexual gratification”.
The report says: “The prison staff who have been interviewed at Buckley Hall have expressed concern about Wild and his unhealthy interest in young males and what they describe as ‘grooming’ of certain individual inmates.”
The national inquiry into child sexual abuse heard last month that Wild was also suspected of indecently assaulting a pupil at Knowl View special school in Rochdale. The inquiry’s “Rochdale” investigation was also told at hearings in October that Wild was Smith’s boyfriend.
Smith, who was Rochdale’s MP, and Wild were both governors of Knowl View, where child sexual abuse was rife.
A barrister to the inquiry referred to the Operation European report, but it was not made public. I asked for the report, and the inquiry has released the document.
It comes amid growing concerns about the scale of sexual and physical abuse of inmates at youth offender institutions and prisons.
On Tuesday, Durham Police announced that seven former members of staff at Medomsley detention centre near Consett have been charged in relation to allegations of abuse of young men there. More than 1,480 men have come forward to the police investigation, ‘Operation Seabrook’, with allegations of sexual or physical assaults at Medomsley.
GMP launched Operation European in 2000 because Wild had become a trustee of the Rochdale and District Youth Fitness Foundation, which claimed to promote physical education for people in the town aged 11 to 23.
Wild was then aged 66 and living in Rochdale with his mother. The police became aware of his role in the group because Wild wrote to the chief constable three months after it was founded to seek active support for it from the police.
Detectives wanted to establish whether he was a “fit and proper person to be involved with young people”.
Wild was 6’5 tall, an imposing figure who liked to dress in a Crombie coat down to his ankles and to wear black polished boots. He pretended to have been an army officer in the Household Cavalry, and inmates called him “the colonel”.
However, detectives found that he was never an officer, but joined the army under national service in 1951 and transferred to the Household Cavalry.
The report is marked, “IN STRICTEST CONFIDENCE”. It records the fact that he had long been a “big friend” of Smith. It adds that Smith was believed to have sponsored Wild for an MBE, which he was awarded for “services to the community”.
An official from the secretariat for the Home Office boards of visitors was to interview Wild about the allegations in 1997. But the interview did not go ahead after Wild resigned from the board of visitors.
Operation European investigated Wild’s activities at the prison as well as his background.
The report on the operation was sent to the GMP’s then chief constable, but said that there was insufficient evidence to charge him. Wild died the following year in 2001.
The report describes how Wild is alleged to have groomed young male inmates, for example, buying tobacco and chocolate for them, giving money to them, helping them secure parole, and picking them up on their release and taking them for meals.
It referred to one prisoner who was at Buckley Hall from 1996, saying:
“WILD took a personal interest in him. He brought in to him tobacco and chocolate and sent in, anonymously, presents of money, clothing and an electronic spell checker. [Name redacted] realised that WILD was homosexual and was attempting to groom him, but he decided to take advantage of the situation.”
After the prisoner was released in 1998, says the report:
“WILD picked him up on his release and took him for a meal. When WILD dropped him off in Burnley later the same day [name redacted] made it clear that there would be no relationship and he has not seen or heard of WILD since.”
The report then turns to the case of another prisoner, saying:
“WILD took an unhealthy interest in him and on one occasion grabbed his backside, an incident which was investigated by the prison authorities. [Name redacted] did not then, nor does he wish to now, make any formal complaint, although he has provided a statement for information purposes. On one occasion WILD asked him if he could take him for a meal on his release. [Name redacted] realised that WILD was homosexual and did his best to avoid him. There has been no contact since his release.”
The prison governor, Walter MacGowan, told officers that Wild was full of his own self-importance and a predatory homosexual:
“He described WILD as an overbearing bully who was arrogant and full of self important [sic] and through his dealings with him formed the opinion that he was a ‘predatory’ homosexual. He was extremely concerned about WILD’S excessive visits and as soon as the [name redacted] incident became known he ordered a full enquiry.”
Other staff described Wild as pompous, saying that he would boast of being well connected in political and social circles. He claimed to be a good friend of the then home secretary, Michael (later Lord) Howard.
The report sets out what several other staff told officers:
“Mary LOWERY was the Residential Manager for Alpha and Bravo units at Buckley Hall Prison. She too was concerned at WILD’s over familiarity with prisoners and recalls him telling her that he was making arrangements for a third party to give items of clothing to a prisoner upon release. She told him that this was totally inappropriate. WILD also asked her to watch over the previously mentioned prisoner, [name redacted] because he was concerned that older prisoners found him ‘attractive’. She describes WILD as having a tendency to be pompous with a ‘large’ presence and one who liked to make it known that he was well connected in political and social circles.”
“John McLAUGHLIN is a prison officer who was Visits and Segregation Supervisor at Buckley Hall Prison. He recalls WILD as a man who presented himself as a powerful figure both in and out of prison. The prisoners began to refer to WILD as the Colonel which he played upon. McLAUGHLIN was also concerned about the amount of attention WILD gave to the younger, fresh-faced prisoners, not appearing to take any interest in the older prisoners. McLAUGHLIN was aware of the [name redacted] incident and also knew of a letter which WILD had written to the Parole Board in support of an application made by [name redacted]. This was most unusual and not within the remit of a Board of Visitors Member.
“McLAUGHLIN recalls the previously mentioned [name redacted] and another prisoner by the name of [name redacted] as being two inmates in whom WILD has a particular interest. McLAUGHLIN described [name redacted] as different from the majority of prisoners, being of good family background and very sensitive. He recalls one occasion when [name redacted]’s parents came to visit and how WILD had hovered round [name redacted] for the whole two hours.
“He also recalls another prisoner, [name redacted (1)]… who also took a strong interest in [name redacted (2)]. [Name redacted (1)] was well versed in prison life and was serving a long sentence for violence. McLAUGHLIN believed that [name redacted (1)] was using [name redacted (2)] for his own personal gratification. Interestingly, WILD requested that [name redacted (1)] be moved from Buckley Hall, albeit that the transfer and movement of prisoners was not the concern of a Board of Visitors member. McLAUGHLIN felt that WILD saw [name redacted (1)] as direct opposition and an obstacle between himself and [name redacted (2)]. He too described WILD as a predatory homosexual who used the position as a Board of Visitors member to further his own sexual gratification.”
“Gary WALSH is a Security Manager at Buckley Hall and was informed by [name redacted] that WILD had put a letter in his parole file supporting his application. WALSH found this to be most unusual as never before had he heard of a Board of Visitors member doing so.”
“Thomas FOLEY, a prison officer… was involved with his colleague, WALSH, in interviewing [name redacted] with regards to the incident when WILD grabbed his backside. [Name redacted] also told FOLEY on the day of his release that WILD had asked him for his telephone number so that he could contact him later and take him for a drink or a meal.”
“Irene Veronica BIRD, was a Prison Controller at the Prison and now works as a Governor at a prison in Gloucestershire. She too had grave concerns with regards to WILD’s excessive visits and improper conduct towards prisoners. WILD told her that he was a computer expert and often travelled abroad. Interestingly WILD used her as a reference, and without her knowledge, when he reapplied to become a Board of Visitors member at six other prisons in the North West in 1998, an application which was immediately withdrawn when he was reminded of the allegations at Buckley Hall.”
“Trevor KAY is employed as a Probation Officer at Buckley Hall and had concerns regarding WILD when WILD submitted a letter supporting the parole application made by [name redacted]. It was unheard of for a Board of Visitors member to write such a letter and he had further concerns when WILD offered to make housing arrangements for a prisoner on his release. KAY was also involved in interviewing [name redacted] regarding allegations. [Name redacted] told him that WILD had made comments about him looking nice in shorts and had also asked him for his phone number so that he could take him for a meal and a drink upon his release.”
“Sandra KNIGHT, a Parole Clerk at the Prison, told WILD that his submission of a letter supporting the parole of a prisoner was inappropriate and irrelevant.”
“Janice WALTON was a Prison Officer at Buckley Hall and had met WILD previously whilst working as a store detective at Tesco’s, Rochdale. Although she didn’t know him by name at that time she remembers him always seeking the assistance of young trolley boys to help him with his shopping. One in particular, who she knew to be called [name redacted] had told her that WILD had said he would help him out when needed. WALTON was aware of the allegations made against WILD at Buckley Hall and on one occasion had put his arm around a prisoner called [name redacted] and had apparently spoken to him in a suggestive manner.”
“John Henry CLEMENTS was Chairman of the Board of Visitors at Buckley Hall at the time. He was concerned about the excessive number of visits WILD was making and that he was too familiar with prisoners with some of them calling him ‘Harry’. On another occasion he referred to an unknown prisoner as ‘a dear boy’. CLEMENTS was responsible for initially telling WILD about the allegations being made against him and showing him a letter outlining matters. WILD, having read the letter, replied ‘TOTAL AND UTTER RUBBISH AND UTTER NONSENSE.’ WILD then further stated, ‘IF THAT’S THE CASE, I AM RESIGNING’.
“Alan CROSSLAND is the Residential Manager at Buckley Hall Prison and he was aware of the allegations against WILD. He recalls bumping into WILD on Leeds Railway Station in 1997 and seeing him talking intensely to a young man who was introduced as WILD’s son (false). CROSSLAND was so concerned about matters that he submitted an internal intelligence memorandum regarding this event. The young man on the railway station has never been traced.”
“John LYNCH was Deputy Controller of Buckley Hall at the time and describes WILD as a pompous man who liked to name drop. He even stated that he was a good friend of Michael HOWARD, the then Home Secretary.
“Ian LOCKWOOD is HMP Area Manager for the North West Area, Prison Governors Manager and directly answerable to the Minister for Prisons and the Home Secretary. WILD told him that he was an agent for the Home Secretary. It was LOCKWOOD who instructed Walter MacGOWAN to carry out an investigation into the allegations against WILD.”
Detectives also asked Lyndon Price, then Rochdale’s director of social services, about Wild. The report says:
“PRICE describes WILD as ‘pompous’ and ‘overbearing’, he was bright and well connected to Cyril SMITH. He showed great interest in youth work with particular regards to young boys. WILD in his position had free access to, and would visit, children’s homes. Though PRICE had no evidence that he had acted in an improper manner towards children, he felt uneasy with regards to his interest and motives for involvement with children’s services. PRICE would follow up any visits by WILD. Around 1971 WILD told PRICE that he was being posted to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil by ICI to set up a fertiliser company. He disappeared, returning around the early 1980’s… In 1991, WILD became a member of Knowl View Governors having been co-opted by Cyril SMITH. Around 1995 WILD was elected to the Committee of Age Concern, Rochdale, and the following year became Chairman. In 1995 Cyril SMITH wrote to PRICE asking him to provide a written reference to support WILD’s nomination for the MBE. PRICE confirmed his previous work, and the following year WILD received his MBE. PRICE stated that WILD always sought positions that gave his [sic] respectability and that Cyril SMITH always promoted WILD’s rapid rise within any committee he sought to join.”
On Sylvia Kelly, who then ran Age Concern in Rochdale, the report says:
“Sylvia KELLY, when Chief Executive of Age Concern, Rochdale, was approached by Cyril SMITH with a request that she find suitable voluntary work for WILD within the organisation. She initially found WILD charming and was told by him that he had been proposed to be a Prison Visitor by Michael HOWARD, the then Home Secretary. He also told her that SMITH had told him to get a ‘gong’ by getting involved in a charitable organisation such as ‘Age Concern’. Once WILD became a committee member his attitude changed and he made it clear that he wanted people out of the organisation. WILD quickly introduced an associate of his… to the organisation… WILD made life very, very difficult for KELLY and she resigned about the same time as WILD got his MBE. WILD himself resigned shortly after getting the award.
“When being interviewed, Mrs KELLY intimated that she suspected that WILD had used Age Concern money to pay for a legal bill which she thought he had incurred and that an invoice had been sent to his home address by a firm of solicitors in Manchester, and that this somehow had been put through Age Concern’s accounts. This prompted further enquiries into the affairs of Age Concern in order to establish if a fraud had been committed.”
“No documentation or evidence was found to suggest that WILD had committed fraud whilst at Age Concern, Rochdale.”
The inquiry plans to publish a report on its “Rochdale” investigation by next April.
One of Smith’s close friends who was later implicated was a councillor and Freemason called Harry Wild, who chaired the education committee.
Where were the other councillors in all this? Why did they allow it, when they had a fair idea of how Smith, and Wild, were behaving? Why could the decent ones not manage to stop it? How many others of them were part of Smith’s paedophile network, and swung the voting, or succumbed to his forceful personality or simply accepted bribes? Predictably, Smith dominated Knowl View as he had Cambridge House, and used it as his personal brothel, shared with his friends, including the 21 men the GMP interviewed – who were they? Who was visiting Knowl View, which was functioning in the same way as Bryn Estyn in Wrexham? Councillor Harry Wild, chair of governors and of social services, was one, named along with Smith as at least voyeurs by Martin Digan, soon after Digan started working at Knowl View; and also at various times by the police. Teacher David Higgins was another, as we shall see.
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He was a Royal Air Force pilot during World War II in clandestine operations in India, Burma and Thailand. It was during the war that White became friends with Bill Hanson, British show-jumping star and younger brother of James Hanson.
Lucan also failed to arrive for his 1:00 pm lunch appointment with artist Dominic Elwes and banker Daniel Meinertzhagen, again at the Clermont.
“You have to be prepared to say no when no is the best advice,” was one of his dictums. The formidable takeover player Lord Hanson once told an interviewer: “I could always confide in Meinertzhagen. His impartial advice would be based on my needs, not his.”
Peter Richard Meinertzhagen was born in London on April 16 1946 into an Anglo-German dynasty which had been prominent in the City since a Daniel Meinertzhagen from Bremen married the daughter of another émigré, Frederick Huth, and became a partner in his London banking house in 1833. Though Huth & Co lost much of its trade-finance business during the First World War and closed in 1936, the Meinertzhagens became part of the City establishment — and lived in appropriately grand style at Mottisfont Abbey in Hampshire.
Peter’s father, also Daniel, was one of four so-called “Colonels” (managing partners) who ran the merchant banking house of Lazards — in a style so relaxed that he habitually snoozed at his desk after lunch with a copy of The Times over his face, and argued against competitive “touting for business”. Peter’s uncle Luke Meinertzhagen was senior partner of Cazenove, while another uncle, Sir Peter, ran the Commonwealth Development Corporation.
THE father of a teenage student who fell to her death after drinking 17 tequilas has called for a tightening of licensing laws.
Georgina Meinertzhagen, 16, fell from a second-floor bedroom window of lodgings in Oxford, where she was attending a tutorial college. Georgina, a great-niece of the industrialist Lord Hanson, had spent an evening with friends at an Oxford bar where tequila was served at 50p a measure.
Nicholas Gardiner, the Oxford coroner, said he accepted the police theory that she sat on the window ledge to get fresh air, but lost her hand-hold. He recorded a verdict of accidental death.
After the hearing her father, Daniel Meinertzhagen, a Lloyd’s name, of Chelsea, south-west London, said he would not be taking civil action against the bar, Pier 19. ‘Nothing can bring my daughter back.’
Gambling expert Dan Meinertzhagen, who has died at 72, was the last surviving member of a group of six of Lord Lucan’s friends who met at John Aspinall’s Belgravia home after the peer vanished 40 years ago.
An Oxford boxing blue, Old Etonian Dan’s life was set when, aged 21, the morning after an all-night gambling session, he was being driven home in a Rolls-Royce.
Spotting his father at a King’s Road bus stop en route to his City job as chairman of Lazard, Dan, in black tie, rolled down the window and enquired: ‘Daddy, do you want a lift to work?’ Meinertzhagen Sr ‘frothed at the mouth’, we’re told.
Lady Lucan, widow of Lord Lucan, found dead in London
Jeffrey Epstein’s ‘sex slave’ Virginia Roberts wins round in defamation lawsuit against British socialite and alleged ‘pimp’ Ghislaine Maxwell who ‘passed her around for sex’ and trained her to be ‘everything a man wanted’
Virginia Roberts, 33, persuaded a judge to throw out a motion preventing her from suing British socialite Ghislaine Maxwell, 55, for defamation
The defamation suit alleges Maxwell instructed her spokesman to attack Roberts’ honesty and truthfulness and to accuse her of lying’
Roberts claimed Maxwell recruited her as a sex slave when she was 15 for convicted pedophile billionaire Jeffrey Epstein and passed around to his friends
Maxwell, who was Epstein’s girlfriend at the time, is also accused of forcing her to have sex with Maxwell and other underage girls
The 55-year-old responded to the allegations with a damaging press release
In February 2016, a judge denied Maxwell’s request to throw out Roberts’ lawsuit when she said she was just defending herself against allegations
Roberts also alleges she was involved in an 11-person orgy with Epstein’s friend Prince Andrew
The Truth Will Come Out! Jeffrey Epstein’s Alleged Madam Loses BIG In Court
May 3 2017
A lawsuit brought by a former ‘sex slave’ will move forward
“With the assistance of Maxwell, Epstein was able to sexually abuse Giuffre for years until Giuffre eventually escaped,” the lawsuit says. “As part of their sex trafficking efforts, Epstein and Maxwell intimidated Giuffre into remaining silent about what had happened to her.”
It was while working for Epstein, Roberts claimed, that she had sex with Prince Andrew. She also said she took part in an orgy that the Prince attended on the financier’s private Caribbean island. (The royal has strongly denied all her claims.)
Jeffrey Epstein, Ghislaine Maxwell (top) and Virginia Roberts Giuffre (bottom)
The defamation trial against Epstein’s friend Ghislaine Maxwell was set to start Monday — more than a decade after the billionaire was first arrested for soliciting underage girls — but it has been postponed because lawyers are close to negotiating a settlement, sources say.
Virginia Roberts Giuffre is suing Maxwell, whose late father owned the Daily News, in Manhattan federal court because Maxwell called her a liar.
Giuffre — who was 15 and working as a towel girl at Mar-a-Lago when Maxwell met her — claims Epstein turned her into a slave and forced her to have sex with his friends, including Prince Andrew, Duke of York, who denied her allegations.
Since Epstein was also friends with Bill Clinton, and was defended by Alan Dershowitz, their names were dragged into the case, too. But sources say they were never going to be called as witnesses.
Now, in a big disappointment to journalists, anti-sex-trafficking activists and Clinton haters, there may be no trial.
“After 11 years and much high drama, [Giuffre’s lawyer] David Boies asked his client to settle the case,” one insider told me.
Giuffre has already collected a settlement from Epstein and sold her story to the UK’s Daily Mail, but her testimony was hotly anticipated.
The blonde was expected to tell in sordid detail how Maxwell routinely recruited young girls and taught them how to give erotic massages that led to sex and prostitution.
If they don’t settle, the trial is now set for May 25.
Career maker: Prince Harry’s ex-girlfriend, aspiring actress Cressida Bonas, poses with Hollywood mogul Harvey Weinstein at a screening of the latter’s new film Big Eyes in London
Prince Harry’s ex-girlfriend Cressida Bonas slopes off to hobnob with ANOTHER Epstein pal
6 January 2015
When Prince Harry’s former girlfriend Cressida Bonas agreed to go skiing with her chum Princess Eugenie, she had no idea she would be caught up in the storm engulfing the Duke of York.
After Prince Andrew joined his daughter and her model friend at their £22,000-per-week chalet in the Alps, it was besieged by the world’s media amid a growing furore over claims Andrew had sex with an under-age girl ‘procured’ for him by his close friend, convicted paedophile Jeffrey Epstein.
So it was an unfortunate coincidence that Cressie’s first public engagement on returning to London on Sunday was a bash thrown by another of Epstein’s friends, film producer Harvey Weinstein.
Sloping off: Cressida has recently returned to London from spending time in Verbier in the Swiss Alps with her old friend Princess Eugenie and her family
Dressed in a midriff-baring outfit with her glossy mane worn loose, the 25-year-old posed next to Weinstein, 62, at a screening of his latest offering, Big Eyes.
(Lurking behind was Charles Dance, who in 2004 famously seduced vicar’s daughter Sophia Myles, 33 years his junior, and then cruelly dumped her.)
Despite the movie mogul’s long-standing association with Epstein — the two even made a failed bid for New York magazine in 2003 — the screening was an occasion not to be missed for aspiring thespian Cressida.
Weinstein, who is married to 38-year-old fashion designer Georgina Chapman, a friend of the Duchess of York, is known for mentoring young actresses.
(L to R) Harvey Weinstein, Princess Eugenie of York and Georgina Chapman at attends a VIP screening of ‘Lion’ hosted by Harvey Weinstein and Georgina Chapman at Soho House on December 19, 2016 in London, England
He is credited with propelling Gwyneth Paltrow (pictured below) to A-list status, having collaborated with her on eight films, including Shakespeare In Love, for which she won an Oscar in 1999.
So it is understandable that Cressida, who scored a small part in Harvey’s forthcoming movie Tulip Fever, is keen to nurture her relationship with the Hollywood tycoon.
Aptly she plays a ‘society lady’ in the film, which is based on Deborah Moggach’s novel.
Since splitting with Harry, ambitious Cressida has been taking her acting career seriously.
Last month, she attended a private vocal training school on Orkney to improve her articulation and projection skills.
Meanwhile, her first play, There’s A Monster In The Lake, is being revived later this month at Waterloo Vaults.
Perhaps Cressie, who has given few signs she wants to rekindle her romance with Harry, has set her sights on an even more desirable prize than a prince: an Oscar.
Belvoir Castle, seat of the Duke of Rutland – Harvey Proctor had been living and working on their estate until child abuse allegations recently re-surfaced.
James Hanson Memorial Service:
Those who attended included Baroness Thatcher and former Home Secretary Kenneth Baker. From TV and show business, Sir David Frost and lifelong friend Michael Caine.
Lord Palumbo, Lucas White and his wife Normandie Keith, Susan Sangster, Lord Rothschild, Claus von Bulow, Ned Sherrin, Anthony Andrews, Lord Rees-Mogg, Richard Whiteley and gallery director Timothy Jefferies (also in Jeffrey Epstein’s book) – Jefferies wed Prince Andrew’s ex, Koo Stark
Will the Prime Minister confirm that she is willing—even eager—to sell off PowerGen at a knockdown price to Lord Hanson, another friend of the family?
There is private enterprise, and there is looking after your friends. I think that the country can tell the difference between the two. [Hon. Members: 294“Withdraw!”] How can anyone who is selling off the electricity industry say that he is trying to get a good deal for the country, in any case? Most of all, how can anyone who is selling off that industry at a third of its value say that he is getting good value for the country? Whatever happened to the undertaking given by the Secretary of State for Energy that no one—neither organisation nor individual—would ever be allowed to own more than 15 per cent. of the company?
The Prime Minister can twist and turn all she likes. The truth is that, in breach of the promises that she has already made, she is selling off at a fraction of its value a highly profitable company to a bosom chum and major contributor to the Conservative party. Is not it obvious that this Session is ending as it began—with sleaze and shadiness at the heart of the Government?
THE MAFIA, MONEY LAUNDERING AND THE LAST SECRET OF MRS T’S FAVOURITE TYCOON;
Revealed: The Explosive Dossiers Linking Lord Hanson to the Mob – and How Both Reports Were Suppressed
IN ITS obituary of Lord Hanson, who died earlier this month aged 82, the Financial Times chose its words guardedly: “After his marriage to the American divorcee Geraldine Kaelin in 1959, he settled down and became very protective of his privacy. Like [Lord] White however, he continued to enjoy the company of attractive young women.”
They liked to fool around, did the peer and his late business partner. As they built their fortunes, taking over company after company, Gordy White and James Hanson lived the swashbuckling life to the full. Buccaneering and charismatic, the debonair duo were far removed from the stereotypical British businessman. In America, they were feted and revered: English lords who knew how to charm and to play, and to make a buck.
But there was a darker side to the legend of Hanson and White, which only now – given his reputation for resisting perceived intrusion into his personal life – can be told. Hanson and White were long suspected by Scotland Yard, the Drug Enforcement Agency in the US, and some of their business enemies in this country, of having close ties to the Mafia.
Repeatedly, in the 1970s and early 1980s, Hanson’s name and those of some of his companies cropped up in official investigations. In 1983, two Scotland Yard officers – DCI Sparks and DC Summers – visited the US to examine links between Hanson and the Gambino and Genovese crime families. In the subsequent report, by Scotland Yard’s C1 department, a copy of which has been obtained by the Evening Standard, detectives appealed to be allowed to probe further.
Having concluded there was insufficient evidence to block Hanson from sitting on the board of Trident Television, which owned a casino as well as a TV station, the report, dated 9 September 1983, states: “Equally there is clearly sufficient doubt created by some of the company connections to suggest that further research is needed … ” None of these suspicions was ever publicly aired at the time. The detectives’ doubts remained a closely guarded secret. If they had ever been revealed, they would have caused a sensation, for under the Thatcher government, no businessman enjoyed the ear of the Prime Minister more than Hanson.
They surfaced again, albeit behind closed doors, when, in 1986, Hanson launched an audacious takeover bid for Imperial Tobacco. The Evening Standard has spoken to those who worked on Imperial’s defence at the time. They remember how they sent a former Scotland Yard Deputy Commissioner to the US to look into his business dealings there. To their astonishment, the corporate gumshoe returned with a list of associations between Hanson and the US underworld.
In which case, why was it never used?
Why didn’t they release the dirt they had gathered, or even hint at it, to discredit the corporate aggressor?
“It went to the top of Imperial. They wouldn’t let it be used,” was an ex-Imperial adviser’s far from satisfactory explanation. He said he thought that Imperial was literally terrified of using the material they’d uncovered.
Hanson, he was certain, knew they had it and at least one very senior Imperial director was warned against disclosing it and told in no uncertain terms to call off the investigators. “We didn’t do anything with it, but if you recall, Hanson never did a high-profile hostile takeover again after Imperial.”
HE DID plenty of deals but nothing that would provoke a backlash. The only time he appeared to be gearing for an all-out attack, against ICI, in 1991, he backed down. That was after investigators hired by ICI had found Hanson and White had poured millions of pounds of shareholders’ money into investments in racehorses in the US which had not been disclosed.
Perhaps if he had launched an assault on ICI, the Mafia connection would have come to light. In the event, the racing revelations were enough to force him to back down.
A copy of the study compiled by Imperial has been supplied to the Evening Standard. Together with the official Scotland Yard document, it presents a quite different picture of the charming tycoon, and raises questions which, given his prominence, should have been answered.
The Imperial report is headed Enquiries into Hanson Trust. It says: “The results of enquiries conducted into corporate activities of the Hanson Trust and its subsidiaries in the UK and the US are such as to believe that if they were brought to the attention of the relevant authorities, a full investigation might have to be carried out before the bid for Imperial Group was allowed to proceed.”
Suspicion fell on Hanson in three areas. In 1978, Hanson Trust took over a Chicago company called Interstate United Corporation for $29.5 million in cash. It was described as a foodservice business but it also had subsidiaries involved in gaming and vending machines – industries in the US viewed as being under the control of organised crime. Indeed, Interstate and its employees had been the subject of a series of law actions and investigations before Hanson bought the firm.
The Scotland Yard report states about Interstate: “The Denver, Colorado police suspect that this was a laundering operation.”
In 1976, the New Jersey police were pursuing the Gambino family.
Interstate owned restaurants in the New Jersey area and one of them, Valentino’s, in Cherry Hill, was sold to a member of the Gambino family for $150,000. In 1979, a year after Hanson had bought Interstate, records of the New Jersey Alcohol Beverage Control Bureau showed the English entrepreneur’s acquisition held a $100,000 mortgage on Valentino’s.
Peter Tullio, the president of Interstate at the time of the takeover, admitted in court that he approved $40,000 in payoffs to a restaurant union official. In March 1980, two years after Hanson had taken charge, the city commissioner of Portland, Oregon, described an Interstate company, Volume Services Inc, which had been awarded a contract-for food sales, as a “summary of a corporation with a history of making payments to union officials – some with known Mafia connections”.
STANLEY “Sonny” Singer, the former local president of Interstate in Colorado, was quoted in a written document submitted to a court in 1980 to have established a “slush fund” of $60,000 to make loans to several of the company’s best cigarette customers.
In 1982, an inquiry was held into the way Volume Services won the contract to supply beer at Soldier Field for the Chicago Bears’ football games. In 1985, Hanson disposed of Interstate.
Another Hanson operation to interest the authorities was a trucking business. It changed its name to Canadian Freightway Eastern and moved out of the jurisdiction of the US to Hamilton, Ontario – but not before it had attracted the attention of the DEA. The US drug busters suspected its vehicles were being used to ferry narcotics from Mexico across North America.
But by far the most important strand of the authorities’ investigations concerned a 1975 payment to a US government employee by a suspected Mafia member and gunrunner. The woman official was paid a large sum of money – the Scotland Yard report doesn’t say how much – by one Jaime Moreno.
According to the Scotland Yard report, the “payment was believed to be connected with a large gambling debt incurred by the official while she was stationed in Nice”. She had met Moreno, “who she stated was a wealthy man who owned a yacht in which he commuted between England and the South of France”.
(The detectives later suspected the yacht belonged to Hanson.) The only Jaime Moreno the police could find was a gunrunner from Arizona. What whetted their appetites, though, was the address the woman official gave for Moreno: PO Box 2266 Palm Springs, California. This was a postal pickup address. Four people used the PO Box, including Moreno and Hanson, and the address they gave was that of Hanson’s winter home in Palm Springs, which he used between November and April each year.
One of the four was identified as a Canadian, retired employee of Hanson’s trucking company. He and his wife were caretakers of Hanson’s house. The police interviewed the local postal inspector who said the only mail sent to PO Box 2266 consisted of “small blue papers, folded in half and bearing a return address in Canada”. They examined telephone records for the house “for a period when Hanson was resident … calls had been made to two individuals of note to the DEA”, names we cannot reveal for legal reasons.
The Scotland Yard report says that one of them was a Beverly Hills boutique owner. He had been named in an FBI file as being “part of the second French Connection heroin smuggling ring”. The other was known to the Hollywood police as an associate of the notorious mob boss, Meyer Lansky.
THE DEA had details on file of Hanson meeting Moreno and two associates at the Beverly Hilton Hotel. Then the Scotland Yard document says: “Confidential informant of the FBI stated that the Palm Springs residence was being used for ‘illegal activities’ and named Hanson. The informant alleged that the PO Box was being used as a mail drop.”
In their report, the London detectives conclude of Hanson: “There is further circumstantial evidence of connections to organised crime which, while not being conclusive by itself, does reinforce the doubts about Hanson which arise from putting all the fragments together”.
But the investigation ceased.
According to one source, the detectives handed their report up the command line. It carried a clip as having been seen by two people, with the initials HW and PM.No action was ever taken. If he knew he was the subject of such intense speculation, Hanson never let on. Who knows what more strange ties a proper investigation would have uncovered. There may have been an innocent explanation, of course. The point is, the police never had the chance to find out.
THE MAFIA, MONEY LAUNDERING AND THE LAST SECRET OF MRS T’S FAVOURITE TYCOON; Revealed: The Explosive Dossiers Linking Lord Hanson to the Mob – and How Both Reports Were Suppressed The Evening Standard (London, England), November 18, 2004
Morning Cloud with a spinmaker? It’s just Mr. Edward Heath’s little joke as he points to a photograph of the Isle of Wright area being presented to him as a suprise gift by US Ambassador Mr. Walter Annenberg at No. 10, Downing St. tonight. The photograph was taken from outer space by American astronauts. The Ambassador also handed the Prime Minister a sample of moon rock as a gift from the American people to the British people.
Walter Annenberg paid for redecoration of the official residence of the American ambassador, donated money for a pool at Chequers, the country home of British prime ministers and even set up a fund to bankroll a concert series that Prime Minister Ted Heath conducted.
1974 Prince Charles, Gov. & Mrs. Reagan, and the Annenbergs outside Sunnylands
And on February 27, 1983 the Queen and Prince Philip made a historic stop at Sunnylands to visit their friends, the Annenbergs. The Queen has rarely ever visited a private home in the United States. As a result of the close friendship the visit was scheduled and Leonore and Walter prepared a luncheon in honor of the event.
GOGA Ashkenazi, the glamorous oil and gas tycoon, has vociferously defended her “close friend” Prince Andrewand offered insight into his “distressed” state of mind.
In an exclusive interview with the Evening Standard, she says that the Duke of York(who has not yet spoken to the press) had messaged her on his Black-Berry over the weekend, asking, “Have you seen the papers?” and saying that he was “very, very upset” about the way he has been portrayed and “very, very worried” about whether he’d be able to continue his role as a trade envoy.
Andrew is under “massive and unfair media pressure”, she says, following revelations concerning his friend of 15 years, Jeffrey Epstein, 58, who was sentenced to 18 months in prison in 2008 for soliciting a minor for prostitution.
“I told Andrew not to worry, that he’d done nothing wrong, and that it was being blown out of proportion. Of course, he knows it was unwise to fraternise with this Epstein character, and it was silly to be photographed with his arm around Epstein’s masseuse [Virginia Roberts]. But I know Andrew as a lovely, lovely man — kind-hearted, impeccably behaved and honourable — and I’m quite sure that at the time he had no idea that she was underage or anything more than a masseuse to Epstein.”
The Oxford-educated socialite who lives in a [pounds sterling] 28 million mansion in Holland Park and has known Andrew since the late Lord Hanson’s son Robert introduced them at a party in 2001.
Andrew Is Not the Villain He’s Being Made out to Be. I Have Seen Him in Action and He Is a Superb Trade Envoy’; the Glamorous Tycoon Who Helped the Duke of York Sell His Marital Home Defends Her Royal; Friend but Distances Herself from Wolf-Hunting ‘Acquaintance’ Saif Gaddafi. David Cohen Reports
The Evening Standard (London, England), March 8, 2011
Close: Not only was Ghislaine Maxwell friends with Prince Andrew, but his ex-wife Sarah Ferguson as well. The pair are pictured together at the opening of the Asprey Flagship Store on 5th Avenue on December 8, 2003, in New York City
Sarah Ferguson, Duchess of York, Sir Philip Green, Simon Cowell and Heather Kerzner
Sarah Ferguson – friend of convicted paedophile Jeffrey Epstein accepted an award for her work with children just after she was exposed offering access to Prince Andrew for £500,000.
The reception was held at LA’s five star Renaissance Hollywood Hotel. She had been expected to stay there but cancelled her reservation after the scandal broke and decided to stay with friends instead.
‘Phew, I’ve had a heavy day’: Fergie tries to put on a brave face over £500,000 cash-for-access scandal at star-studded charity dinner
Sarah Ferguson, Duchess of York, £500,000 cash-for-access scandal
The ‘penniless’ duchess was at a black tie reception in Los Angeles having flown in from the South of France where she had been a guest at Naomi Campbell’s 40th birthday party.
She was at the top table alongside Simon Cowell, who was receiving an award for his humanitarian work, and his fiancée Mezhgan Hussainy.
The duchess received the Catherine Variety Sheridan Award, which is given each year by the charity to someone for their philanthropic work with underprivileged and disabled children.
Society shock as Lord Hanson’s eligible son Robert finally settles down
Robert Hanson married Masha Markova, a Russian businesswoman 25 years his junior.
Robert Hanson: The happy family man steering Hanson empire into new territory
26 Aug 2010
Barely three months after Robert Hanson married Masha Markova, a Russian businesswoman 25 years his junior, the son of the late industrialist Lord Hanson has found himself embroiled in an unseemly courtroom battle involving a pornographic film company.
Hanson, 49, is being sued by David Newnham of Victoria, in Australia, who claims to be owed £350,000, including interest, after he was sacked as the chief executive of Woodman Entertainment, a Spanish company involved in making pornographic films such as Psycho Sex, Wide Open and Sex Carnage.
Newnham says he met Hanson at the Mayfair offices of his company Hanson Capital. It is a Hanson Family Holdings company, of which Hanson is the chairman.
The deputy chairman is Sir Hayden Phillips, the chairman of the National Theatre and charities consultant to the Prince of Wales. Its directors include the Earl of Dartmouth, the Ukip MEP
Naomi Campbell and Masha Markova Hanson attend The Serpentine Gallery Summer Party
Markova is slightly hazy about her origins. Her parents left Russia in the 1990s for Panama, and their business involved “some freight trucks, transport,” she told Tatler, with probably about as much interest as her squeeze has in haulage. Her parents now live in Miami, and she met Hanson Jr. in Palm Springs. Now “the whole of London is talking about the union of the long-legged Russian and the most eligible British bachelor,” the magazine wrote.
…. a few intriguing hints about Hanson and Markova’s lifestyle. They have a Filipino housekeeper whom Hanson will never sack because she might write memoirs, Markova said. And the whole apartment is decorated with blown-up photos of Markova, some with her in a bikini and some with no clothes at all. Markova charmingly explains that she wanted smaller ones but she thought that she was ordering the size in centimeters, not inches.
Markova is running a fashion store — of course — after studying at Columbia University. But she wouldn’t be a Russian It Girl if she didn’t have artistic aspirations, too. She displays paintings of guns and beautiful thin women on her web site Mashamarkova.com.
There’s plenty of name-dropping in the interview. Markova went to the Raisa Gorbachev Foundation gala dinner organized by Alexander Lebedev & Son at Hampton Court Palace this summer and said she was told about Michael Jackson’s death by Elton John, no less.
The Hon. Robert Hanson was being sued by David Newnham in Australia claiming he was owed £350K including interest after he was sacked as chief executive of Woodman Entertainment, a company based in Barcelona in Spain that produces rough sex “Hardcore Sex Films“.
It is claimed The Hon. Robert Hanson held a financial investment in Pierre Woodman company Woodman Entertainment.
The company in question, based in Spain, is Woodman Entertainment, founded by fashion photographer- turned-pornographer Pierre Woodman, the creator of more than 60 X-rated films, who claims to have bedded more than 3,500 women.
Hanson, who once dated model Sophie Anderton, herself exposed as an escort girl by a tabloid newspaper, tells me: ‘I am talking to my lawyers and I am not allowed to say anything.
‘But I take this seriously, I can assure you.’
In the writ, it is claimed that Hanson guaranteed the salary of David Newnham, who joined the company as chief executive in August 2008, on a two-year contract on £147,000 a year.
But Newnham left two months later, claiming he had not been paid. Newnham is now claiming the money, plus interest and court fees from Hanson. says a friend: ‘This writ is somewhat absurd. There are two sides to every story.’
But it is all a far cry from when Robert Hanson joined Rothschilds in the eighties, later joining the eponymous company of his tycoon father, who was Baroness thatcher’s favourite industrialist.
From 1982–84, John Whittingdale was head of the political section of the Conservative Research Department. He then served as Special Adviser to three successive Secretaries of State for Trade and Industry, Norman Tebbit, 1984–85; Leon Brittan, 1985–86, and Paul Channon, 1986–87.
He worked on international privatisation at NM Rothschild in 1987 and in January 1988, became Political Secretary to Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher.
Upon her resignation Whittingdale was appointed OBE and continued to serve as her Political Secretary until being elected to Parliament in 1992.
But two entitled “Cementation contract: Mark Thatcher and the Omanis” covering the period from 1981 to 1988 are listed as being “retained” for 65 years – meaning they will not be released until 2053 when Sir Mark would be aged 99.
Two others – one entitled “Mark Thatcher and the Omanis; other allegations against Mark Thatcher” and “Request by Electronic Data Systems to employ Mark Thatcher” have been “temporarily retained” with no date for release.
The decision to keep the files closed was ultimately taken by former Culture Secretary John Whittingdale, who served as Mrs Thatcher’s political secretary in the last months of her tenure in No10 and who signed off on the secrecy.
John Whittingdale’s half-brother Charles Napier was treasurer of PIE Paedophile Information Exchange
John Whittingdale signed off the decision to keep the files closed
It emerges that the one-time Labour business secretary’s humble bucolic retreat is, in fact, a four-bedroom house owned by the billionaire Rothschild dynasty, which enjoys uninterrupted views over the Marlborough Downs.
Lord Mandelson is famously well-acquainted with Nat Rothschild, the natural resources investor known for his ill-fated foray into Indonesian coal miner Bumi, thanks to the pair’s shared trips to Siberian saunas and Mediterranean jaunts aboard the yacht owned by Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska.
But Diary understands that Nat, who is these days based mostly in Switzerland, spends little time at the farmhouse. The property is owned by his parents, Lord Rothschild, the RIT Capital Partners chairman, and Lady Serena.
About AICO: Calvista is a founding member of the Adult Industry Copyright Organisation, which operates on a not-for-profit basis, both as an educator, and to discourage breaches of copyright in adult films in Australia. AICO is funded by its members, who are comprised of international, adult-film producers and distributors.
More on David Newnham’s businesses at bottom of post
Revealed: Robert Hanson’s secret involvement in pornography business
Sir Hayden Phillips, an adviser to the Prince of Wales (Prince Charles),
Barely three months after Robert Hanson married Masha Markova, a Russian businesswoman 25 years his junior, the son of the late industrialist Lord Hanson has found himself embroiled in an unseemly courtroom battle involving a pornographic film company. Hanson, 49, is being sued by David Newnham of Victoria, in Australia, who claims to be owed £350,000, including interest, after he was sacked as the chief executive of Woodman Entertainment, a Spanish company involved in making pornographic films such as Psycho Sex, Wide Open and Sex Carnage.
In documents filed at the High Court, Newnham alleges that Hanson has a financial interest in Woodman and, in August 2008, guaranteed his salary for two years. He was, however, sacked in October that year and is now seeking to compel Hanson to honour the agreement.
Newnham says he met Hanson at the Mayfair offices of his company Hanson Capital.
It is a Hanson Family Holdings company, of which Hanson is the chairman.
The deputy chairman is Sir Hayden Phillips, the chairman of the National Theatre and charities consultant to the Prince of Wales.
Its directors include the Earl of Dartmouth, the Ukip MEP. There is no reference on the company’s website to Woodman.
Hanson, who was once engaged to the model Sophie Anderton and whose father was a close ally of Margaret Thatcher, declines to comment. He was on holiday yesterday with his wife.
Hayden Phillips has business and charitable interests, including a finger in the rather posh pie that is the Prince’s Trust.
He sits on courts and councils, always a useful player at the table, a man with an excellent contacts book.
Hayden Phillips is a famously deft Whitehall figure to whom colleagues offer admiring tributes like “the mandarin’s mandarin“; a man who has “supped the royal jelly of ministerial private offices” for 30 years;
Sir Hayden Phillips has been the Independent Reviewer of ASA Adjudications since 1 January 2010.
Sir Hayden is currently a Director of Westhouse Holdings, of St Just Farms Ltd and of the Energy Saving Trust. He is Chairman of the Digital Cinema Funding Partnership. From 2004 to 2010 he was Chairman of the National Theatre. He was Charities Consultant to HRH The Prince of Wales from 2004 to 2009. He and his wife have a farm in Wiltshire where he is a Deputy Lieutenant, a Lay Canon of Salisbury Cathedral, Chairman of its Fabric Advisory Committee and Chairman of Marlborough College.
Sir Hayden’s previous career was in the Civil Service. He served in senior positions in the Home Office, the European Commission, the Cabinet Office and the Treasury before heading two Departments as Permanent Secretary – the Department for Culture, Media and Sport from 1992 to 1998, and the Lord Chancellor’s Department (now the Ministry of Justice) from 1998 to 2004. He has published two reports – on the Reform of the Honours System in 2004, and on the Reform of the Funding of Political Parties in 2007.
In Lord Ashcroft’s absence, the committee beat up Sir Hayden Phillips, a retired Whitehall eminence who once held the claret jug for Roy Jenkins and later Derry Irvine. Jowly Sir Hayden is florid of face. His hooter is the colour of a lunchtime burgundy.
I sometimes come across him during interval drinks at the Royal National Theatre, where he is chairman. Beautifully-mannered Sir Hayden has the rich creaminess of a ripe Stilton.
Sir Hayden Phillips was Clerk of the Crown in Chancery a decade ago. That fancy title meant he was the top wallah on honours and it was up to him to ensure the formalities of procedure were observed.
Lord Ashcroft has been helping Mr Prentice’s Tory opponent in the marginal seat of Pendle. Mr Prentice is very, very cross about this, believing his Commons career to be in peril.
He accused Sir Hayden of ‘swallowing’ assurances from Lord Ashcroft about his tax status. In effect, Sir Hayden was accused of supervising a lax regime.
Well, dears, of course. The last thing Tony Blair wanted ten years ago was a system which subjected possible new peers to minute examination. Lord Levy would have been horrified!
The Ashcroft affair is undoubtedly whiffy and William Hague was foolish to have become quite so enmeshed with one big donor. But it was hardly surprising. Tory donors make it to the Lords, just like Labour’s trade union friends.
(Left) Quincy Jones – friend of paedophile Michael Jackson
Sarah Ferguson and Robert Hanson – friends of Jeffrey Epstein
^ As millionaire financier Robert Hanson helps to cheer up the near-bankrupt Duchess of York,Sarah Ferguson, while they celebrate the 75th birthday of billionaire hotelier Sir Sol Kerzner, in Sardinia, he is also preoccupied with his own difficulties.
Sol Kerzner is also listed in Jeffrey Epstein’s black book
Sarah Ferguson, Duchess of York, Sol Kerzner and Heather Kerzner attend the landmark Grand Opening of Atlantis, The Palm Resort, and the Palm Jumeirah on November 20, 2008 in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
left to right, Melania , Donald Trump, Heather Kerzner and Sol Kerzner together.
The indictment on which Salerno was convicted in 1988 and sent to prison, where he died, listed the nearly $8 million contract for concrete at Trump Plaza, an East Side high-rise apartment building, as one of the acts establishing that S &A was part of a racketeering enterprise. (While the concrete business was central to the case, the trial also proved extortion, narcotics, rigged union elections and murders by the Genovese and Gambino crime families in what Michael Chertoff, the chief prosecutor, called “the largest and most vicious criminal business in the history of the United States.”)
FBI agents subpoenaed Trump in 1980 to ask about his dealing with John Cody, a Teamsters official described by law enforcement as a very close associate of the Gambino crime family.
How Donald Trump (also a friend of paedophile Jeffrey Epstein) knows about South Africa
The world’s two major real estate developers, Donald Trump and Sol Kerzner, have been working together quite a bit in the Bahamas and Dubai. No doubt, Donald has been hearing the reality about South Africa from his friend Sol. As regards to what the degree they “hang out together”, the following images may perhaps clarify the situation.
He first came to The Bahamas in the late 1960s “when they started developing Paradise Island, and I came here because I was interested always to go and see new hotel developments. I was only here for two days, and then only returned in the 90s.” That was when he acquired more than 600 acres of prime land and a number of not-so-prime properties from Merv Griffin for only $125 million. Griffin had been involved in a struggle with Donald Trump for control of Paradise Island, which left him with no funds to modernize or refurbish the resort once he acquired it.
The vulgar tycoon – There could hardly be a more vulgar or notorious billionaire than South Africa-born casino magnate Sol Kerzner
He created the infamous Sun City in an independent black state within South Africa, symbol of the worst excesses of that country during the apartheid years. There, white people could indulge their every whim, be it soft porn or gambling, and blacks were there only to serve them.
In the U.S. he has been investigated by the New Jersey gaming authorities who concluded that he had bribed a leading African politician
It is little short of extraordinary that a New Labour government should consider him a ‘fit and proper’ person to usher vast casinos into Britain.
…his vast £900million Atlantis Casino on the Bahamas, where according to one recent visitor you can find children of 12 playing some of the 1,200 slot machines.
Kerzner’s second marriage, to Shirley Besthier, came to an end in 1978, when she killed herself. The couple had a three-year-old son and a ten-month-old daughter at the time.
Many saw Sun City as the hideous, patronising and manipulative face of apartheid.
In December 1986, Kerzner was embroiled in fresh bribery allegations, this time that he paid the then Prime Minister of Transkei, George Matanzima, to gain exclusive gaming rights there.
Documents discovered by the New Jersey gaming authorities a decade later confirmed that one of Kerzner’s companies had indeed transferred £600,000 to the trust account of a middle man “for the ultimate benefit of G Matanzima”.
Matanzima was jailed for nine years and a warrant was issued for Kerzner, but he was never to stand trial. Although Kerzner eventually admitted paying the money, he insisted that it was extorted from him.
He made a secret donation of £600,000 to Nelson Mandela’s African National Congress party
Like James Hanson, Donald Trump has ties to the Mafia
After graduating in 1968 from the University of Pennsylvania, a rich young man from the outer boroughs of New York City sought his fortune on the island of Manhattan. Within a few years Donald J. Trump had made friends with the city’s most notorious fixer, lawyer Roy Cohn, who had become famous as lead counsel to Senator Joseph McCarthy. Among other things Cohn was now a mob consigliere, with clients including “Fat Tony” Salerno, boss of the Genovese crime family, the most powerful Mafia group in New York, and Paul Castellano, head of what was said to be the second largest family, the Gambinos.
The indictment on which Salerno was convicted in 1988 and sent to prison, where he died, listed the nearly $8 million contract for concrete at Trump Plaza, an East Side high-rise apartment building, as one of the acts establishing that S &A was part of a racketeering enterprise. (While the concrete business was central to the case, the trial also proved extortion, narcotics, rigged union elections and murders by the Genovese and Gambino crime families in what Michael Chertoff, the chief prosecutor, called “the largest and most vicious criminal business in the history of the United States.”)
FBI agents subpoenaed Trump in 1980 to ask about his dealing with John Cody, a Teamsters official described by law enforcement as a very close associate of the Gambino crime family.
Unbeknown to many of the revellers, who included Naomi Campbell and Ivana Trump, Old Etonian Robert, 49, son of industrialist Lord Hanson, is being sued for £358,000 by the former chief executive of a porn film company who claims Robert agreed to guarantee his salary.
So far, so unremarkable.
But what makes this particular writ embarrassing to Robert and his loftily beautiful new wife, Ivy League-educated Masha Markova – at 25, almost half his age – is that the man issuing the legal action against him is the ex-boss of a pornographic film company.
Magic time: Illusionist David Blaine, left, joins Naomi Campbell and the Duchess of York in Sardinia on Monday
David Blaine was good friends with paedophile Michael Jackson and is also listed in Epstein’s black book
Jun 23, 2016
Michael Jackson Stockpiled Nude Images Of Children, According To Police Report
Authorities seized more than 80 video recordings and computer hard drives, as well as notes, diaries, documents, photographs and audiotapes.
The company in question, based in Spain, is Woodman Entertainment, founded by fashion photographer- turned-pornographer Pierre Woodman, the creator of more than 60 X-rated films, who claims to have bedded more than 3,500 women.
Hanson, who once dated model Sophie Anderton, herself exposed as an escort girl by a tabloid newspaper, tells me: ‘I am talking to my lawyers and I am not allowed to say anything.
‘But I take this seriously, I can assure you.’
In the writ, it is claimed that Hanson guaranteed the salary of David Newnham, who joined the company as chief executive in August 2008, on a two-year contract on £147,000 a year.
But Newnham left two months later, claiming he had not been paid. Newnham is now claiming the money, plus interest and court fees from Hanson. says a friend: ‘This writ is somewhat absurd. there are two sides to every story.’
But it is all a far cry from when Robert joined Rothschilds in the eighties, later joining the eponymous company of his tycoon father, who was Baroness thatcher’s favourite industrialist.
His grandfather was also named Robert Hanson and was an Ex-Bankrupt. who effectively and with the help of other Hanson family members and some close friends allegedly swindled their customers from their rightful claim for compensation for loss of property due to a fire.
Robert Hanson sold assets of the company before he was made Bankrupt. His grandfather was severely reprimanded by the court for his unscrupulous actions and his Bankruptcy was latter extended. The Hon. Robert Hanson’s own father Lord (James) Hanson had a long association with asset stripper Jim Slater.
Lord Hanson was miss-informed there was already a casino at The Ritz Hotel. The reason London Clubs International re-locating their casino The Ritz Club Casino from The Ritz Hotel, was due to the fact David Barclay and Ex-Bankrupt Frederick Barclay who own The Ritz Hotel were demanding a totally unrealistic premium of £20 Million for a new lease of the basement. London Clubs International decided to purchase the Freehold grade II listed building at 50 St James’s Street, London for just over £13 Million a more desirable street, then Piccadilly.
Robert Hanson – his dad was Thatcher’s favourite tycoon, but now he’s accused of selling out Venezuelan newspaper to socialists Caracas staff say son of Thatcherite peer has made his paper a Socialist Party mouthpiece
16 November 2014
His current involvement with the media is… as owner of Venezuela’s best-selling newspaper. He used his company, Hanson Family Holdings, to acquire the paper last year, reportedly for $98m (£62m).
Now the son of Baroness Thatcher’s favourite industrialist, the late Lord Hanson, is attracting media attention again after reporters on Ultimas Noticias became disgruntled over government insiders apparently influencing editorial decisions.
Political observers in Caracas might have been forgiven for expecting Old Etonian Hanson, 54, with his Thatcherite family ties, to be unenthusiastic about Socialist Party President Nicolas Maduro, who succeeded Hugo Chavez in April last year.
During Mr Hanson’s partying years, he reportedly wowed Tom Cruise and other attendees at one of George Clooney’s New York birthday bashes with his “feverish dancing skills” before loudly exclaiming: “I love America! This is the place where things happen!” Not the sort of sentiments to go down well with supporters of the Chavez legacy in Venezuela.
But despite anticipation that the paper would lurch rightwards, the Socialist Party’s former elections adviser Hector Davila has been appointed to the senior role of President-Editor.
And whereas Ultimas Noticias had a history of investigative journalism in exposing features of the Chavez regime, now reporting staff complain that the ruling party exerts editorial control.
One of the reporters, José Rafael Mata, tweeted what he said was a picture of a handwritten note ordering a story to be pulled from the paper’s website because it detailed a former minister’s complaints about the Socialist Party stifling internal dissent. Mr Mata cited the episode as one of the reasons he felt compelled to leave the paper.
However, Mr Davila, a computer scientist, told Reuters that Ultimas Noticias had not abandoned its willingness to criticise the government. “If you’re looking for complaints about the government, pick any edition of the paper and you’ll have [as many as you want],” he said, citing critical stories on problems ranging from decay of public hospitals to corruption by state-backed community groups.
He also said the only instructions he received from the paper’s British owner were merely to run a balanced and profitable newspaper.
Mr Hanson’s father was famous for his close relationships with politicians, including the disgraced Tory MP Neil Hamilton.He set up Hanson PLC in 1964 and built it up by buying under-preforming assets and turning them around. Hanson bought a succession of high-street names, including John Collyer and Allders department stores, before making his most famous acquisition: Imperial Tobacco Group, bought for £2.5bn in 1986.
Lord Hanson was a founder of the anti-European Business for Sterling group and a member of the Bruges Group, which seeks to reduce the influence of Brussels. It is a very different philosophy from that of the United Socialist Party of Venezuela, founded in 2007 by Chavez, with whom Thatcher’s old political adversary Ken Livingstone struck up a rapport – and an oil deal – when Mayor of London.
IN AUGUST OF 1985, SIR GORDON AND LORD HANSON WERE BEING driven to London’s Heathrow Airport for the Concorde to New York. Sir Gordon had just returned from a vacation in the Mediterranean aboard his 176-foot yacht, which serves as a floating office; Lord Hanson was on his way to his house in Palm Springs, where he stays about three months of the year. In the car, Sir Gordon mentioned in passing that he had scheduled a meeting with Robert S. Pirie, president of Rothschild Inc. in New York, to talk about a run at SCM, the old Smith-Corona company. There was no further discussion of the matter, Lord Hanson says, because corporate raids are Sir Gordon’s turf: ”He’s the one with the gift for takeovers.”
He made a lunch appointment with Kidde chairman Fred R. Sullivan on July 6 at the office of Rothschild Inc., Hanson’s sometime investment banker. Over foie gras, Sir Gordon tried to pre-empt the auction and, when that didn’t work, he proceeded to outbid Kohlberg, Kravis, Roberts & Company, the leveraged buyout specialists; by the end of October, he had gained control of Kidde.
Lord Hanson keeps a finger on British operations and serves as company front man. A confidant of Prime Minister Thatcher, who made him a peer in 1983, seven years after he had been knighted by the former P.M., Harold Wilson
By the late 60’s, Hanson’s and White’s names were showing up on the business as well as the society pages. At night they were at the gaming clubs with James D. Slater, the high-flying head of Slater, Walker Securities Ltd., a multimillion-dollar conglomerate. By day, they were among the most successful of the ”Slater Boys,” expanding steadily by buying industrial companies with stock. When the London market collapsed in 1973, Slater’s stock empire collapsed, too.
London Brick has since become one of Hanson’s most profitable units: It happens to be the sole British manufacturer of fletton bricks, which are used for British public housing – a priority of the Thatcher administration.
Liberal Party leader David Steel commented, ”Anyone disposed to cause mischief might be tempted to suggest that the Hanson bid was given the all clear as a ‘thank you’ for Lord Hanson’s role in the Westland affair.”
In January 1986, Westland, a faltering British helicopter company, was the object of rival bids. After disclosures that the Government had sought to influence the sale in favor of the Sikorsky division of United Technologies, two cabinet officers resigned and Mrs. Thatcher’s political future was threatened.
Hanson Trust swept in, bought 15 percent of Westland’s stock for $14.5 million – $1.4 million above market price – and announced that it, too, favored a merger with United Technologies. That was that. (On a more formal level, Hanson Trust has been making annual contributions to the Conservative Party of more than $85,000.)
1986 Jan 4
Westland: Armstrong minute for Wicks (Lord Hanson’s position) [MT would wish to see Hanson letter to Wyatt] [declassified Feb 2016]
LIKE LORD HANSON, SIR Gordon is a Thatcher supporter, but he is less visible on Downing Street. He is, however, gradually raising his profile in the United States.
Sir Gordon received the Congressional Medal of Honor in 1984 as a result of his fund-raising for the Congressional Awards, a series of achievement medals for teen-agers. And Hanson Industries is a sponsor of the ”Wall Street Week” television show, although Sir James Murray, Hanson’s United States consultant on politics and public affairs, winces when he mentions the $1 million-a-year price tag.
Lord Hanson was unafraid of accusations of nepotism, appointing his Eton and Oxford-educated, polo-playing son Robert to the industrial conglomerate’s board in 1992 at the age of 31. The appointment, after years of speculation about the group’s succession, sent Hanson’s shares into reverse.
Lord Hanson also gave a board position to his niece’s husband, Christopher Collins. Robert, whose previous career included a spell at the merchant bank NM Rothschild, was put in charge of Hanson’s search for expansion opportunities in the Far East. In 1995, he became corporate development director, replacing Mr Collins who moved up to become vice-chairman. He remains in the same post at the Hanson rump following the recent demerger.
James Hanson first served as a Territorial with the Duke of Wellington’s Regiment at Halifax, he was called up in 1939, and commissioned in the Royal Army Service Corps. For a time he was an announcer on Forces radio. Demobbed in 1946, he joined his father’s company.
James Hanson was knighted in 1976, in the notorious honours listcompiled for Harold Wilson by his secretary Marcia Williams (later Lady Falkender) on lavender notepaper.
His support for her preferred rescue plan for Westland Helicopters cost his company some £6 million. Mrs Thatcher returned the admiration, citing Hanson’s American interests as a model of what British companies could achieve abroad. He was created a peer in 1983.
When in London, Lord Hanson worked long hours in his relatively austere headquarters overlooking the gardens of Buckingham Palace. But later he would spend several months of each year at a second home in Palm Springs, California, whence he continued to run his empire from a poolside telephone.
He enjoyed the trappings of great wealth – his Bentley carried the numberplate JH 1 – and occasionally moved in celebrity social circles, hosting parties for Frank Sinatra and giving the Duchess of York helicopter-flying lessons as a wedding present. But he also placed a high value on family life and privacy.
James Hanson was Thatchers favourite industrialist.
Who was responsible for fundraising again. Lord Mc (Alpine) wasn’t it.
Lord Alistair McAlpine and Lord Hanson
In his heyday, Alistair had drawn support for the Tory Party from some of the leading industrialists of the time, whom he knew could be relied upon to have made their money honestly and who would be unfailing in their support of the Thatcherite project.
He brought in donors such as Lord Hanson, Hanson’s buccaneering colleague Gordon White, Lord King, who became chairman of the newly-privatised British Airways, and shipping and property magnates the Barclay brothers.
Several high profile businessmen and politicians were yesterday revealed as secret backers of Neil Hamilton’s disastrous “cash for questions” libel action against the Harrods owner, Mohamed Al Fayed.
Father and son: Mohamed and Karim at the gallery
Father and son: Mohamed and Karim at the gallery
The business tycoon Lord Hanson, and Sir Robert McAlpine Ltd, the company set up by the former Tory party treasurer, and the Duke of Devonshire, a former Tory minister, were all named in the high court by lawyers acting for Mr Fayed, (another friend of paedophile Michael Jackson) who is demanding Mr Hamilton’s backers pay a contribution towards his outstanding £1.3m costs bill.
Lord Hanson with his son Mark Hanson at a celebrity party 6th July 2004 hosted by broadcaster Sir David Frost in Chelsea
A Ruthless Operator
02 Nov 2004
With charm, good looks and fearsome entrepreneurial rigour, Lord Hanson was both loved and loathed by many, but rarely ignored.
He regularly drank whisky with Lady Thatcher, with whom he shared a strong mutual admiration, was once engaged to Audrey Hepburn and supported the disgraced MP, Neil Hamilton.
With an estimated personal fortune of £50 million, Lord Hanson was used to attracting attention and controversy. He was a swashbuckling entrepreneur who built up a £6 billion empire and a reputation as a ruthless asset-stripper. He was knighted by Harold Wilson in 1976 and made a life peer in 1983.
The business which bears his name, which he formed in 1965 with Lord White, reached the height of its success in the 1980s and became a symbol for British boom.
Lord Hanson was one of the largest Conservative Party donors during Thatcher’s leadership and an outspoken Eurosceptic. He was a founding member of the anti-EU organisation Business for Britain and a member of the Eurosceptic thinktank, the Bruges Group.
Known for his fastidious attention to his appearance, he was a striking figure, at 6ft 4ins, and both his dress and his office conveyed an old-fashioned grandeur. A fan of controversial causes, he notably supported the disgraced Conservative MP Neil Hamilton, who lost his libel case against Mohamed Fayed and The Guardian over “cash for questions” allegations.
For three decades, Hanson plc was one the most feared corporate predators in London and New York, taking in chemicals, energy, tobacco and much else.
Keen on quoting Napoleon, Lord Hanson used one of his hero’s sayings, “Circumstances? What are circumstances? I make my circumstances” as a business motto. He once explained his allegiances by saying: “Always be nice to bankers. Always be nice to pension fund managers. Always be nice to the media. In that order.”
As a young man, Hanson had a reputation as a playboy and was one of the founding members of the exclusive nightclub Annabelle’s.
He met Audrey Hepburn at a reception when he was 28 and they dated for two years before she cancelled their wedding in 1952.
He recently said of the broken engagement: “It was a strange situation. My mother had got the 50 chickens ready for the wedding reception and we had all the presents, but the fact was Audrey just did not want to get married at the time.”
In 1959 he married the former model Geraldine Kaelin, an American divorcee. She died of leukaemia in February at the age of 75 after 45 years of marriage.
The couple had a son Robert, now 43, and adopted a son, Brook, now 40. Lady Hanson previously had a daughter, Karyn. They had homes in Palm Springs, California, and Knightsbridge, west London.
James Hanson was born in Huddersfield, the son of a haulier, Robert Hanson. In his youth he served in the Second World War.
Lord Hanson retired as chairman of Hanson Turst in 1997 at the age of 75. Two weeks ago he suffered a fall at his home and had to cancel a lecture and lunch in Leeds.
Marie-Hélène de Rothschild, threw a party in 1972 that was so different; it still inspires the dark theory that behind the doors of their mansions, the ultra rich are occultists engaged in unspeakable acts of Evil.
Marie-Hélène’s “Surrealists Ball” was held on December 12, 1972, and its combination of opulence and elaborate, odd imagery is said to have inspired the ritual orgy scenes of Kubrick’s EYES WIDE SHUT.
One of the party’s attendees, aristocrat and banker Alexis von Rosenberg, documented the party, and conspiracy theorists maintain that his photos and descriptions are hard evidence of the occult customs of the top levels of the Illuminati.
The Baroness Hanson, wife of the City legend and corporate raider, the Baron Hanson, died 22 February, 2004, in hospital in Los Angeles. She had been suffering from leukaemia.
Lady Hanson had been the wife of the life peer since 1959. The former Geraldine Kaelin, daughter of Mrs S. Kaelin, of East 76th Street, New York, she was a slightly-built, dark haired American divorcee when she met the then James Hanson in the late 1950s.
The swashbuckling playboy millionaire had been engaged in the fifties (for 354 days) to Audrey Hepburn, and had courted the actress Jean Simmons. Geraldine Kaelin bore more than a passing resemblance to Miss Hepburn.
She married – aged 25- the Yorkshire-born James Hanson, then 36, at Upper Agbrigg Register Office, Huddersfield, West Yorkshire, on 17 January, 1959.
She was the mother of two sons, Robert and Brook, and had a daughter Karyn from a previous marriage. (Karyn took the surname Hanson and was married 20 years ago to C. Cheever Hardwick III, of New York.)
Lady Hanson was _a small, elegant woman who dressed in Chanel or
Valentino when she was being casual. She was a private person with a charming public warmth. Most of her time was devoted to her family and running their homes in London, Berkshire, Florida and California_.
The Today newspaper in 1991 said that at Lady Hanson’s dinner parties the food was served by numerous servants and the grub was devoured with gold-plated cutlery.
Her husband was knighted in 1976 (in Harold Wilson’s infamous
resignation honours) and raised to a life barony in 1983.
The funeral service takes place at St Margaret’s Church, Palm Desert, California, Thursday 4 March, 2004.
Why was that comment removed about Lady Hanson being a drunk and jealous of Lord Hanson’s “ladies”?
John GlenJan 19, 2009
I think you want to get your facts right!! There never was a home in the South of France they always stayed at the hotel du Cap. The House in Palm Springs was Norwood West. Fifi was Fiona and a great friend of both Lord and lady Hanson. Lady Hanson liked a glass of wine but was not, not an alcoholic. Robert is the natural son of Lord and Lady Hanson, it is Brook who was adopted and Lady Hanson`s daughter is called Karen. Lady Hanson always spoke with a gentle American accent and I never saw Gregory Peck. I was Lord and Lady Hanson`s butler and personal chef for 15 years.
kimber cottageJul 20, 2008
James Hanson married Geraldine, and they are now both deceased. They had homes in the South of France, Palm Springs (Las Palmas Area), and in the UK (Kimber Cottage). FiFi was a young lady, similar in looks to Audrey Hepburn, whom was a “friend” of the family”, though Lady Hanson did not care for her much at all! Geraldine suffered from alcoholism which she tried to keep hush. They have one adopted son “Robert” and his half-brother “Brook”, and “Susan” if I recall, was Geraldine`s daughter`s name. Geraldine was born in New Jersey, but spoke with a british accent! The Hanson`s had celebrity friends, including Margaret Thatcher, Gregory Peck, Frank Sinatra, Sydney Sheldon, and Kirk Douglas.
The late industrialist, one of the largest Tory party donors during the Margaret Thatcher years and whose marriage to American divorcee Geraldine Kaelin lasted 45 years, enjoyed a clandestine affair with Seventies pin-up Francoise Pascal.
Now almost 40 years after their liaison, the Mind Your Language actress, whose other lovers include actors Warren Beatty and Sir Michael Caine, speaks out about their trysts for the first time in her forthcoming memoirs, As I Am.
Lord (James) Hanson, who died in 2004 aged 82, met Mauritius-born Francoise when she was 22 at a dinner party she attended as David Niven Junior’s date.
Hanson, who was once engaged to Audrey Hepburn, slipped her his contact details, but it was not until their second encounter at Francoise’s flat that the pair consummated their bond.
‘James was always very cautious how he ate. I guess he needed to have some room for his dinner with Lady Hanson.’
After the affair ended, Francoise adds: ‘We kept in touch for a while but he had to be careful because of his political career, his business and his wife.’
Although most businessmen keep their Freemasonry secret, a few openly admit it. Sir Michael Richardson, chairman of the stockbroker Smith New Court and adviser to many powerful businessmen including Lord King and Lord Hanson, is one.
Society shock as Lord Hanson’s eligible son Robert finally settles down
It is an announcement that London society had almost given up hope of hearing: Robert Hanson, the 49-year-old son and heir of the late Lord Hanson, is to marry.
Lord Hanson’s eligible son Robert is engaged to Masha Markova, a Russian former model
09 Mar 2010
Mandrake can disclose that the seemingly perennial bachelor is engaged to Masha Markova, a Russian former model 25 years his junior.
Hanson, whose industrialist father was a close ally of Margaret Thatcher, numbers Martine McCutcheon, the former EastEnders actress, Tara Palmer-Tomkinson (also listed in Jeffrey Epstein’s black book), the televison presenter, and Sophie Anderton, the model, among his previous girlfriends. Although Masha may be young enough to be his daughter, she is no ingénue.
Two years ago, she declared publicly that she planned to sue Lindsay Lohan, the hard-living Hollywood actress, after the reported loss of a £5,000 mink coat. Masha, who was still a student, said she would take the legal action against the 23-year-old star of Mean Girls after her coat, which was a gift from her grandmother, disappeared during a party the pair attended at the 10ak nightclub in New York.
Masha’s lawyer alleged that Lohan was later pictured wearing the coat and, when it was finally returned, Markova complained that it smelled of “cigarettes and liquor”. The New York state court filing added that Lohan’s actions were “intentional, oppressive and malicious and carried out with reckless disregard”. Lohan settled out of court.
Hanson’s father, incidentally, was once engaged to Audrey Hepburn. The wedding, planned for 1952, was postponed and then cancelled, amicably, after work on her film Roman Holiday overran.
Raisa Gorbachev Foundation Gala – Champagne Reception
LONDON, ENGLAND BY DAVE M. BENETT/GETTY IMAGES REQUIRED) Edward Spencer Churchill (L) and Robert Hanson attend a champagne reception at the Raisa Gorbachev Foundation Gala held at the Stud House, Hampton Court on September 22, 2011 in London, England.
Mikhail Gorbachev with Robert Hanson and Masha Markova arrive at the Raisa Gorbachev Foundation Annual Fundraising Gala Dinner, at the Stud House, Hampton Court Palace on June 6, 2009 in Richmond upon Thames, London, England. The night is in aid of the Raisa Gorbachev Foundation – an international fund fighting child cancer. on June 6, 2009 in London, England. (Photo by Dave M. Benett/Getty Images)
2002Robert Hanson And Tom Parker Bowles, New York Socialite Paris Hilton Celebrated Her New Movie And Her 21st Birthday
Peter Pan of Posh
The ‘playboy’ eldest son of industrialist Lord Hanson, is famed for his fondness of life in the fast lane and was, until recently, a seemingly permanent fixture on the London party circuit and a regular at society and royal events.
His own parties are legendary.
Texan model and heiress Normandie Keith – now married to Hanson’s best friend Lucas White – is an old flame, as is It-Girl Tara Palmer Tomkinson. He was briefly engaged to the troubled underwear model Sophie Anderton and dated Lord Halpern’s daughter Jenny, and Lord Baybrooke’s daughter Cazzy, now the Countess of Derby.
His more unusual past amours include former EastEnders actress Martine McCutcheon, native American model Brenda Schad and Waffa Bin Laden, would-be pop diva and niece of Osama.
This year, the 44-year-old was seen squiring stunning blonde and wealthy Russian socialite Victoria Smirnoff, his guest at the Grand Prix in Monaco, Chicago-born model Kat Mack and, more recently, actress Anouska de Georgiou, 26, daughter of a multimillionaire financier.
Quite the womaniser, then, is Robert Hanson. Yet as he grew older and the girlfriends grew younger, friends nicknamed him ‘The Peter Pan of Posh’ because of his apparent refusal to grow up – something which reportedly drove his exasperated parents at times to despair of him.
But now, with the death of his father from cancer at the age of 82, there has been a profound shift in Robert’s gilded life – and not only because he has become even richer.
He, his adopted brother Brook, 40, and half- sister Karyn, 50 – his mother’s daughter from her first marriage – who were all at Lord Hanson’s side when he died at his mansion near Newbury in Berkshire on Monday, are expected to share an estate worth close to [pounds sterling]50 million.
Lord Hanson’s [pounds sterling]4 million winter mansion in Palm Springs, California, the Mail can reveal, is already technically owned by Robert, presumably to avoid inheritance taxes, and there are also homes in Berkshire and Knightsbridge which form part of the estate.
However, the question being whispered among his circle is: will he carry on being the ultimate ladies’ man – merely richer and even more spoilt for choice – or will the loss of both his parents in the space of just eight months force him to grow up?
One of Lord Hanson’s friends in California, Dr Frank Ercoli,…
Robert used to run with a Brit pack of party animals, including actress Liz Hurley, and socialised with Princess Diana’s lover Dodi Fayed
In 1959, he married American divorcee Geraldine Kaelin, a part-time model who was working as a buyer at a New York department store and struggling to bring up her five-year-old daughter Karyn. Robert was born the following year. In 1964, they adopted a second son Brook.
And what of Robert’s current on/off girlfriend, actress Anouska de Georgiou, whose bedroom scene in the new film Alfie is the talk of the town? She was discovered as a model aged 17 while at a party at Robert Hanson’s home
Seven months after his death at the age of 82, Hanson’s son Robert hopes to enshrine the peer’s memory by closely overseeing a biography of his late father.
‘By supervising an authorised book about his father, he is rather hoping it will dissuade any muckrakers intent on digging up scandal from doing likewise.’
According to friends, Old Etonian Robert, 44, who inherited his father’s playboy style, is preparing to pay an American writer who knew his father to pen the biography.
‘Robert will then hawk it around publishers because he is keen not to have any interference,’ I am told. ‘This way he can ensure there are no negative bits in the book.’ I understand that interviews with many of Lord Hanson’s friends, including Lady Thatcher – with whom he shared late night glasses of whisky – and former British Airways chief Lord King, are now being planned.
A spokesman for Robert confirmed that the biography is on the cards.
HE IS a young man whose playboy image has always been fuelled by his own fortune. So it was no surprise when a legion of his many friends were whisked away on a glossy mystery tour.
The 45th birthday that Robert Hanson was marking was hardly a milestone, but as they boarded a private jet at Luton Airport at the weekend, his 90 guests – who included the Hollywood star Val Kilmer and singer Dannii Minogue – knew that he has long been a generous host.
They were flown to the Black Sea resort of Alushta in the Ukraine, where an armed police escort was on hand to ensure their two days of celebrating could not be interrupted by anything so mundane as a traffic jam. Once settled in their comfortable hotels, the guests were entertained by an army band, musicians from the famous Bolshoi Theatre and Cossack dancers.
Curiously, what many of Hanson’s guests did not know was that the real host of the weekend was someone else. In fact, the party was financed by a former KGB agent who has become fabulously wealthy in the new Russia and who accommodated the group in his own hotel.
He is Alexander Lebedev, the forty something son of a university professor, who now owns the Russian National Reserve Bank and 30 per cent of the former state airline, Aeroflot.
So just why would Robert Hanson accept so much hospitality? ‘He certainly found it quite amusing that the Russians were so deferential to him,’ a friend tells me.
Actress and model Lisa B – wife of property tycoon Anton Bilton – who was among the revellers, says: ‘I am exhausted. It was a fantastic weekend.
We stayed at a fabulous hotel and we had a great time.’ Other guests included Lucas White, the son of Lord Hanson’s business partner, Lord White; the Duke of Marlborough’s son, Edward Spencer-Churchill; hotelier Sir Rocco Forte; and party animals Tim Jeffries and Nicky Haslam.
Robert Hanson has a five-month-old son called Max.
The family’s haulage firm, founded in Huddersfield 170 years ago by Mr Hanson’s great-great-great grandmother, Mary, was nationalised in 1948.
In January, Mr Hanson returned to his Huddersfield roots to launch a new business venture with storage specialist pH Europe offering specialist plastic crates, boxes and pallets to small and medium-sized businesses.
“It fits into the international story of where we’re going,” Mr Hanson says. “A few years ago, we, as a company, decided to become more international and because my brother and I lived for six years in Hong Kong…we picked China as the place we wanted to expand.” Asia is a huge focus for Mr Hanson who is in the process of buying a Chinese speciality chemicals business, Sinojie Hanson, of which his company currently owns 42 per cent. He is also looking to build a logistics business in China by setting up another joint venture. “The British economy can’t compete and I don’t want to just sit here and try and find customers, I actually want to have businesses and develop them,” Mr Hanson says. “Quite a lot of my time is spent in Asia setting things up and then I leave it to other people to run.” Hanson Family Holdings also includes a group of financial services companies. In 1998 Mr Hanson founded Hanson Capital to capitalise on his worldwide network of close relationships with high net worth individuals. In 2006 Hanson Westhouse was formed by linking Hanson Capital and Westhouse Securities but Mr Hanson switched his allegiance in 2009, selling his 20 per cent stake in Westhouse to form a joint venture investment bank with Strand Partners called Strand Hanson. Mr Hanson says his group of companies has weathered the recession well due to their diversity. He made an early decision in 2008 to sell the delivery business, Home Delivery Network. “We couldn’t figure out whether it was going to be a stupid decision or a brave decision but we sold that business and cut our business in two. It proved very successful,” he says. As a result, Mr Hanson says the businesses avoided making redundancies and instead concentrated on reducing costs, mainly those associated with the Home Delivery Network operation. Now he is looking to build up his portfolio by buying other companies in the chemicals, packaging, logistics or freight forwarding sectors, which will complement the existing businesses.
He grew up in Huddersfield until the age of five when the family, including his brother, Brook, and sister, Karyn, moved to Berkshire.
Mr Hanson was sent to boarding school from the age of eight and was educated at Eton followed by St Peter’s College, Oxford. After graduating he became a banker at N M Rothschild & Sons where he worked initially in London and later at its subsidiaries in Hong Kong, Chile and Spain. In 1990, he joined the family firm becoming a main board director in 1992 responsible for strategy, mergers, acquisitions and disposals. However, he was involved in one of the group’s most high profile mistakes with the attempted takeover of chemical group ICI in 1990 when it bought a 2.8 per cent stake in the firm. Although a formal bid was never made, ICI launched a desperate defence, which severely dented the Hanson empire his father had built.
Mr Hanson resigned from the public company at the end of 1997, after his father broke up the business, to chair Hanson Transport Group, now Hanson Family Holdings.
Robert Hanson Factfile Title: Chairman of Hanson Family Holdings Date of birth: October 3, 1960 Education: Eton, St Peter’s College, Oxford First job: Assistant keeper at a reptile house at Windsor Safari Park at the age of 16. Favourite holiday destination: Bali Favourite film: Blade Runner Favourite song: Golden Brown by The Stranglers or Raindrops Keep Falling on My Head Car driven: Porsche Cayenne, which I now drive with a baby seat in the back What I am most proud of: My son
Hanson House is a “home away from home” for the loved ones of critically ill and injured hospitalized patients. We also serve the needs of cancer patients receiving chemotherapy and radiation treatment, parents of newborn babies critically ill in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU), military families from the Marine base at Twenty Nine Palms and all families of First Responders. Our services are provided at low or no cost. No one is turned away because of an inability to pay.
Frank R. Ercoli, M.D., FACS, Medical Director of Trauma and Critical Care Services at Desert Regional Medical Center conceived and developed the idea to create a place that provided comfort and care to the families of those patients being cared for in the intensive care units of local hospitals. Dr. Ercoli met project benefactor Lord James Hanson, a British industrialist and part-time resident of Palm Springs. Lord Hanson made a very generous seed donation to start the fund for the facility that is now named for him.
Shock death of tycoon Lord Hanson’s adopted son in Belgravia bar
22 May 2014
When he was adopted as a child by Margaret Thatcher’s favourite businessman Lord Hanson, Brook Hanson entered a glamorous world where top-level business met high politics.
Sadly, the dashing blond previously seen as one of society’s most eligible bachelors has died suddenly of a suspected heart attack at his local pub in Belgravia, London, to the great shock of fellow regulars.
‘It is very sad,’ says one drinker who witnessed his death at the Duke of Wellington in Eaton Terrace. ‘Brook was a much-loved figure at the pub.’
The death of Brook, whose buccaneering father was once engaged to Audrey Hepburn, came a month after he turned 50 and the party he had hoped for failed to materialise.
Ten years ago, his 40th birthday celebrations were a lavish affair held at the London townhouse of his brother, Robert Hanson, 53, whose ex-girlfriends include former EastEnders actress Martine McCutcheon, It-girl Tara Palmer-Tomkinson and model Sophie Anderton.
Friends such as Lady Eloise Anson, daughter of the late royal photogapher Lord Lichfield, had toasted Brook with champagne and presented him with a camera-shaped cake to reflect his love of photography.
‘Brook had become increasingly disillusioned and reclusive after his on/off affair with an Italian socialite foundered,’ says a friend. ‘He had given up drinking and put on a lot of weight, while his hair turned grey.’
Despite the multi-million-pound fortune of Yorkshireman Lord ‘Moneybags’ Hanson, who died in 2004 within eight months of his wife Geraldine, Brook is said to have struggled to form genuine friendships.
His last dinner party in March ended in disaster when the ‘friend’ he had sent out to buy wine from the nearby Duke of Wellington absconded, pocketing the cash.
‘There was a very curious collection of people there, with whom I can’t imagine he had much in common,’ says one guest. ‘I got the impression he was not having fun.’
Since his parents’ deaths and Robert’s move to Los Angeles in 2010 following his marriage to Masha Markova, a Russian model 25 years his junior, there was no one close to offer support. Friends and family will gather for a memorial service at St Paul’s Church in Knightsbridge next month.
John Brook Hanson, British marketing professional. Recipient Photography award Nikon School, United States of America. Trooper British Army, 1982. Member Science Exploration Society, The Brook New York, Brooks London
Bachelor of Business Administration in Marketing, American College London, 1994.
Investment analyst Chin Tong Securities, 1985, James Capel Pacific, Tokyo, 1989. Marketing agent Science Exploration Society, since 1994.
Party affiliation: Conservative Party of United Kingdom
American College London
Management, trainee Babcock Power
Glasgow, Kentucky, United States
recce office operation Raleigh
London, Mpumalanga, South Africa
market researcher, Walmsley Limited
investment analyst, Chin Tong Securities
investment analyst, Chin Tong Securities
marketing agent Science Exploration Society
“After leaving Pangbourne Brook wanted to join the Army but failed his Army Officer Selection Board. He went into banking and worked for Rothschilds Bank in Hong Kong for about six years before returning to London. Sometime after this he studied photography in London and became a professional photographer.Outside of work, Brook had a talent for learning languages and learnt Italian and Japanese and apparently could recite Haiku which is difficult for non Japanese. Ten years ago both his parents and sister passed away in a short space of time, which affected him deeply.”
GERALDINE Hanson, American wife of Huddersfield-born business tycoon Lord Hanson, died from leukaemia in a hospital in Los Angeles on February 22.
A memorial service will be held in London in June, led by the Hansons’ close friend, the Archbishop of York.
The couple had a son Robert, a daughter Karyn, and an adopted son, Brook.
Hanson once had a reputation as an international playboy, but his engagement to Audrey Hepburn in the 1950s fell apart over whether her career or marriage should come first. He met New Jerseyborn Geraldine on a U.S. business trip.
Hanson married Geraldine Kaelin, whom he met in New York, in 1959.
Lord Hanson, launched a withering attack on “destructive journalism” and accused tabloid and broadsheet newspapers alike of lurid disclosures of the private lives of even minor politicians and public figures.
“Of course he had critics, because he had strong political views. He was very much against the idea of nationalisation and one of Margaret Thatcher’s earliest supporters.”
Tory Party leader Michael Howard said Lord Hanson would be greatly missed.
Mr Howard said: “James Hanson will be remembered as one of the great British industrialists of recent times who played a leading role in the economic regeneration of Britain.”
The Evening Standard reported that the so-called Assassins club carried out some of Oxford University’s most debauched behaviour in the ’80s.
A court case in 1982 heard that 19 members of the club went to the Thatcher’s pub in Thame (above, now just The Thatch), where they went through 57 bottles of vintage wine and took part in such drinking games as “Drink if your public school cost less than £3,000 a year” and “Drink if your family name became double-barrelled during the last 100 years”.
Members were seen “vomiting and urinating in the garden, smashing plates on walls, and trying to burn tablecloths, causing £600 in damage.”
Robert Hanson, who was there, told the Standard: “I was there on the night, covered in pink blancmange. So I remember it well.”
THE PLAYBOY WHO MADE BILLIONS; the Amazing Huddersfield to Hollywood Life Story of James Hanson, Hedonist Turned Hard Man
At the London memorial service for his wife: Lord Hanson, 82, greeted the powerful congregation including Lady Thatcher and David Frost, relying for support on his two sons and his family friend of many years David Hope, the Archbishop of York.
Mr Ward said he came from a poor background in Salford and joined the cathedral choir in Manchester at the age of seven.
Four years later Dean Waddington, a former headmaster and then the most senior education official working for the Church’s parliament, the General Synod, arrived in the city.
He said the Dean showed him special favour, helping him with his homework, picking him up in his car to take him to choir practice, asking him out to tea and taking him for days out. He asked Mr Ward’s mother if the boy could stay with him overnight.
The room in which the boy slept had a large poster of a horrifying painting by 16th century artist Hieronymus Bosch, which gave him nightmares.
Cathedral: Waddington targeted a Manchester choirboy as well as a pupil at an Australian boarding school
Mr Ward said: ‘He turned round to me one day and said, “Would you rather stay in my room? Is that painting too scary for you?” and of course I said yes.’
Mr Ward began sleeping in the Dean’s bed.
Mr Ward said that he was told by the Dean that if questioned by the Press he should lie about what was going on.
After a senior cathedral official did begin to inquire about the relationship, the Dean told Mr Ward to quit the choir in 1989 and he did so.
Mr Waddington was ordained Deacon in 1953, and began his career as curate at St John’s in Bethnal Green from 1953 to 1956. Afterwards he was Chaplain at Slade School in Warwick, Queensland, Australia from 1956 to 1959.
After 18 months as curate of St Luke’s Chesterton, in the Ely Diocese, he returned to Australia to become headmaster of St. Barnabas School, Ravenshoe, where he remained until 1971.
On returning to England he became a Canon Residentiary at Carlisle Cathedral and Bishop’s Adviser for Education 1972 to 1977, then General Secretary of the Church of England’s General Synod Board of Education and General Secretary of the National Society from 1977 to 1984 until becoming Dean of Manchester Cathedral in 1984.
Robert Waddington’s cycle of abuse stretches beyond 50 years
THE Church of England banished serial pedophile priest Robert Waddington to Australia, where he abused children across a decade, after suspicions were raised about him molesting choirboys in his London parish.
In an alleged church cover-up spanning almost 60 years, Waddington was suddenly and unexpectedly sent to a small school in regional Queensland in 1956 amid claims he was molesting the son of an English politician.
Last month the Church of England ordered an independent inquiry into the handling of allegations against Waddington, after a joint investigation by The Australian and The Times of London.
But it can now be revealed that Waddington – who died in 2007, facing allegations he abused students in Australia in the 1960s and English choirboys in the 80s and 90s – was molesting children as soon as he joined the church in 1953. The latest allegations have been made by Ray Munn, 70, who was recruited by Waddington, then a curate at St John’s church in Bethnal Green, East London, to sing in the choir in 1953.
He was almost immediately groomed by the Cambridge University-educated clergyman, who took him on holidays in the English countryside, before he began molesting the then 11-year-old.
Convinced of the Bishop’s homosexuality – largely because Dr Hope had been head of a notoriously gay seminary – Tatchell delivered by hand what he still claims was intended to be a private letter. It urged the bishop to be true to what OutRage! believed to be his nature and, by admitting his sexuality, help to convince the church that it was an honourable estate.
The letter, he insists, contained no threat of exposure, but was just a plea for help and understanding. “But a journalist went to see Hope and told him that we were going to out him. So he called a press conference and talked about his sexuality being a grey area.” Dr Hope, now Archbishop of York, upstaged Tatchell and his would-be tormentor clearly resents it. “The letter was intended to be private and he gave it to the press without the courtesy of letting me know.”
In April 2013, it was reported that in 1999 and 2003, Hope had been made aware of allegations of child sexual abuse against a former Dean of Manchester, Robert Waddington.
Hope removed Waddington’s right to officiate at services but did not refer Waddington to the authorities.
Following the 2014 report of the Cahill Inquiry, Hope resigned his post as honorary assistant bishop in the Diocese of Leeds on 27 October 2014. He retired from the House of Lords on 30 April 2015.
More significantly, the good times were facilitated by Gordon White, a fellow “playboy businessman” who had been a close friend of Bill Hanson during the war. White had a cavalier attitude to life: more interested in having fun than building a business, and possessing the panache which Hanson lacked, and setting himself up as a Hollywood impresario in the early 1950s. White became a surrogate brother to the bereaved James, and was eventually the brains of the Hanson takeover machine.
The pair first ventured into business together in the late 1950s, using their American connections to import greeting cards. But their entry into serious business, and the world of takeovers, came through White’s connection to Jim Slater, the accountant turned stock market whizz kid who introduced them to the potential in public company shares.
In 1960, Hanson left the family haulage business in his father’s hands, to concentrate on building his own empire. He occasionally had other interests, such as backing Yorkshire Television and was its non-executive chairman for a couple of years in the early 1970s. But he and White concentrated on emulating Slater’s takeover techniques, building up a public company through acquisitions and disposals.
Unlike Slater, they survived the British slump in the early 1970s, but the “quantum leap” which Hanson had promised shareholders did not come until 1979. That coincided with the beginning of the Thatcher era, which saw a return to unbridled capitalism and a new respect for businessmen such as Hanson and White, who were not afraid to take on trade unions and break up established companies in pursuit of profit.
From 1979 to 1986, Hanson Trust rampaged through stock markets on both sides of the Atlantic, acquiring a string of ever-larger companies, often in bitterly fought takeover battles masterminded by White but fronted by Hanson. In private, he had a fierce temper, but he could be immensely charming, and used that on City contacts as well as the senior financial journalists who could influence City opinion.
Guided by Mrs Thatcher’s favourite public relations guru, Sir Tim (now Lord) Bell*, he was a master of PR, using his growing notoriety in financial circles to provide material to favoured journalists, while rationing his own public appearances. There were defeats, but these were overshadowed by successes in the United States and Britain – such as the Ever Ready company Berec, the retail group UDS, and finally Imperial Group, a conglomerate whose businesses included hotels, the Courage brewery and Golden Wonder crisps.
The Imperial takeover was then the largest ever seen in Britain – almost £2bn – but it was also the most bitter. The battle was conducted in public, through full-page newspaper ads, but also behind the scenes using private investigators who, unsuccessfully, tried to prove allegations of criminal activities in Hanson’s US businesses.
Hanson narrowly won the battle, but was beginning to lose the war. Some of the mud flung by Imperial and other targets was beginning to stick. The Times newspaper awarded him the title Capitalist Of The Year for 1986, but focused on a controversial attempt to take £70m from the Courage pension fund. “This displayed the true lack of sentiment of the pure capitalist”, it said. Critics also attacked a quadrupling of his own salary to £1.3m in 1987, while the City was wondering how the takeover juggernaut could keep rolling, and was increasingly looking for a succession strategy as Hanson and White moved past normal retirement age.
The pair had no intention of standing down, but attempts to continue the proven formula were becoming more difficult. In November 1990 Thatcher was ousted as prime minister, seriously weakening Hanson’s political support. And in the following year that loss proved fatal in what was intended to be the ultimate takeover, but proved to be the beginning of the end.
This time the target was not an anonymous conglomerate, but ICI, the chemical group which had been a symbol of British industry for decades. Success would perhaps have created Imperial Hanson Industries and brought the respectability in the business establishment that Hanson never quite achieved. But the group was symbolic of Britain’s manufacturing and research base, while Hanson was symbolic of financial wheeler-dealing. More to the point, perhaps, ICI had plants and offices all over Britain, which made it a highly political issue for the many MPs whose constituents might be affected – including several in marginal Tory seats. ICI’s defence directly targeted Hanson and White and the way they ran their empire. It unearthed the astonishing facts that White was not on Hanson’s board, that the company owned three of White’s racehorses, and that the group had a string of companies in tax havens. Worse still, Hanson’s son Robert had been in charge of the battle, and had been shown to be naive. Hanson was forced to retreat without launching a formal takeover, with his reputation bruised and plans to hand over to his son shown to be wishful thinking.
He remained chairman of Hanson until 1997, when he finally retired from active business life. But those years saw the decline of the empire he had built, as the City turned against his style of wheeler-dealing and left no option but to break up what he and White had put together. Their legacy survives as Hanson Plc, a building products company that has grown from the group’s brick and aggregates business.
But the conglomerate approach finally came to be seen in the 1990s as primarily destructive, with the value coming from financial engineering rather than business acumen. Indeed, Hanson and White always remained aloof from the operating businesses. Hanson directed operations from his head office overlooking Hyde Park Corner in London, paying more attention to the state of his employees’ desks – he commanded that they be cleared every evening – their hair (he engaged a trichologist) and their cholesterol levels than to the state of his factories.
Hanson occasionally, very occasionally, re-entered the public arena in recent years: he gave his opinion on the Tory leadership race in 2001, and joined the anti-Euro campaign as a founder member of Business for Britain and a member of the Bruges Group.
Hanson’s wife died in February. He is survived by a stepdaughter and two sons.
· James Edward Hanson, Lord Hanson of Edgerton, businessman, born January 20 1922; died November 1 2004
*On 19 November 1977 Hanson’s “guru” Tim Bell was fined £50 for indecency. He had exposed himself while masturbating at his Hampstead bathroom window on 21 October in full view of female passers-by.
The British ad men – the surreal world of the controversial Saatchi brothers, by LORD BELL
2 October 2014
HOW MARGARET THATCHER STOPPED CHARLES SAATCHI SHAFTING ME
When I finally left Saatchi & Saatchi, the brothers didn’t want me anywhere near the Conservative Party account. But everyone had reckoned without Margaret Thatcher, then Prime Minister, who said that they’d become too ‘gimmicky’ and negative.
I brought in my new agency, Lowe Howard-Spink & Bell. We came up with a dozen or so examples of what the Government was doing well and added the line: ‘Life’s better with the Conservatives. Don’t let Labour ruin it.’ Margaret took one look and immediately said: ‘That’s it! At last.’
Charles Saatchi wanted revenge. So they mounted an all-out attack. Rumours started about my private life. Then they launched what’s known as a bear raid on the share price of my new agency — which caused £12 million to be wiped off our share price on one Wednesday alone. Shortly afterwards, Margaret rang me at home and said: ‘I understand that those brothers are trying to damage your company. Tell me what I can do to help.’
I replied: ‘Margaret, please don’t. You’ve got a f***ing country to run. I’m perfectly capable of looking after myself.’
She said: ‘I know. But all of us need our friends. I’ll speak to James Hanson.’
James Hanson: He helped Tim Bell at Mrs Thatcher’s asking
Hanson, then one of Britain’s leading industrialists, was a strong Conservative supporter who had Saatchi & Saatchi working on his brands. The next thing I knew, I’d been summoned to a meeting in his office, to which Maurice and Charles had also been invited.
Maurice then rambled on about how much they hated me, adding that I was a disgusting person. To which Hanson told him: ‘If you don’t stop your activity, I am going to mount a bear raid to destroy your share price. In the meantime, I’m going to invest a quarter of a million pounds in Lowes in order to return their share price to the correct level — and you will stop this nonsense.’
Thus my agency’s share price went back to where it had been before. Soon after, Margaret asked me round for a drink at Downing Street. ‘I believe James has sorted it out,’ she said.
I said: ‘Yes, it’s absolutely fine.’
She continued: ‘Those people (the Saatchis) are not the kind you can do business with.
‘I understand they want to buy the Midland Bank. Well, I’ve spoken to the Governor [of the Bank of England] and they won’t.’
Holly Hamill, his personal assistant for over 30 years, said that Lord Hanson died peacefully at his cottage near Newbury, Berkshire, with his son Robert at his side yesterday afternoon.
Lord White and Lord Hanson were a winning partnership. Hanson was knighted in 1976 – in Harold Wilson’s famous “lavender list” – and created a life peer by Margaret Thatcher in 1983.
Martin Taylor, worked for the peer between 1969 and 1995, latterly as vice-chairman of Hanson plc.
Derek Rosling, Lord Hanson’s other vice-chairman, who worked for him from 1964 to 1997, paid tribute to him, rating him as one of Britain’s “best businessmen of the last 50 years”, ahead of the modern business heroes such as Sir Richard Branson.
James Edward Hanson – retired chairman of global conglomerate Hanson PLC and a member of the British House of Lords – has been named an honorary trustee of the University of Southern California.
Hanson built his company, originally the Oswald Tillotson Ltd., into an international presence with interests in areas including gas, electricity and vehicle distribution, coal mining and building materials. He retired in 1997.
“We are pleased and honored to have Lord Hanson with us on our board of trustees,” said USC President Steven B. Sample. “He’s a remarkable man.”
Hanson joined the British Army in 1939 at the age of 17 and left in 1946, holding the rank of acting major. He went to work for the family’s logistics company and managed its Canadian interests in Ontario from 1949 to 1963.
Hanson built Hanson PLC into one of the largest British-owned conglomerates through a partnership with the late Lord Gordon White, who died in 1995.
In 1995, Hanson PLC consolidated 34 of its companies in the United States, and the new company was named U.S. Industries Inc. Together with its subsidiaries, the corporation manufactured and marketed bath and plumbing products in North America under brand names such as Jacuzzi, Sundance Spas and Rainbow.
In 1996, the Hanson conglomerate started to divide its operations and created four separate public companies focused on chemicals (Millennium Chemicals), tobacco (Imperial Tobacco), energy (Energy Group PLC) and building materials and equipment (Hanson PLC).
When Hanson retired the following year, he became a lecturer and frequent contributor to newspapers and magazines.
He is a former director of Lloyds Bank and is currently a director of Hanson Capital Limited.
He was the founder of the London radio station Melody FM.
Breakfast presenter Bill Bingham (seated) with Melody Radio owner Lord Hanson on launch day. Later Melody FM presenters including David Hamilton – colleague and admirer of Sir Jimmy Savile:
Jimmy Savile: David Hamilton on his former Radio 1 colleague Above everything else, Sir Jimmy Savile was a showman.
His death at home in Leeds at the age of 84 is a real loss because he had a massive impact on the music world.
We were colleagues together at Radio 1 when I joined in 1973. He had been at the station for five years by then and was enormously popular.
He is also former chairman of Trident Television Limited
Trident Television Limited was a British holding company with broadcasting interests. Trident acquired Halas and Batchelor (well known for their cartoons), Scarborough Zoo, Windsor Safari Park, Trident Casinos, Playboy Club, Watts & Cory Scenery, Victoria Casino, The Clermont Club, as well as Trident Holdings (Australia Pty Ltd) and several other companies.
Hanson founded the Hanson Fellowship of Surgery at Oxford University and is a member of the Court of Patrons of the Royal College of Surgeons of England.
Through the Hanson White Foundation he founded with his former business partner, Hanson gave financial support to the Keck School of Medicine of USC in 1995 to support urology research programs and create the Hanson-White Chair in Medical Research.
Hanson’s various memberships cross a range of fields. He is an honorary fellow of the Royal College of Radiologists; a fellow of the National Cancer Research Campaign; a freeman of the city of London; and a fellow of the Royal Society of Arts.
Hanson holds honorary degrees from the University of Leeds and the University of Huddersfield.
Vincent Gordon Lindsay White, businessman: born Hull 11 May 1923; chairman, Welbecson 1947-65; deputy chairman, Hanson Trust Ltd 1965-73, with special commission to open Hanson Trust’s opportunities overseas 1973-83; KBE 1979; chairman, Hanson Industries 1983-95; created 1991 Baron White of Hull; married 1958 Elisabeth Kalen (two daughters; marriage dissolved 1968), 1974 Virginia North (one son; marriage dissolved 1979), 1992 Victoria Tucker; died Los Angeles 23 August 1995.
After changing hands three times in fairly quick succession over the past decade, the UK’s PremiAir Aircraft Engineering appears to be settling down and renewing its commitment to business aviation. In fact, it was recently appointed by Raytheon Aircraft as an authorized service center for the Premier I.
In November the company was reformed under its new name, after being acquired by Sir Robert McAlpine–the long-established British construction, property and wind energy group. Before this, the firm, which is based at Blackbushe Airport 35 miles southwest of London, had been owned in succession by the Hanson group, Lynton and BBA (encompassing Signature Aircraft Engineering’s Blackbushe and Denham operations). Combined hangar space at Blackbushe and Denham totals 43,000 sq ft, and these facilities are now being upgraded.
It was also home to a large pop festival in 1978, organised by Harvey Goldsmith.
Rolls-Royce Corniche convertible
Rolls-Royce Corniche Convertible
This Corniche was originally supplied to Sir Jimmy Savile OBE in 1977 for the use of his mother, ‘The Duchess’. However, the car was too large for her to drive personally and was soon returned to Jack Barkley of London.
A FATHER and son died when a helicopter crashed in dense woodland near Crowthorne, Berkshire, yesterday. Another two children and a man were in hospital last night with serious injuries.
Lord Hanson, chairman of Hanson Trust, of which Air Hanson is a subsidiary, said last night that Capt Bates was ‘a highly experienced helicopter pilot’ who had worked for the company for many years. ‘
Captain Colin Bates, Air Hanson’s chief pilot, 46, and his son, Nicholas, 12, were certified dead at the scene.
Nigel Whiteman, 33, Air Hanson’s chief engineer, suffered severe chest and abdominal injuries. He and Capt Bates’s other son, Christopher, 9, were taken to Frimley Park Hospital in Camberley, Surrey, where both were said to be in a serious but stable condition after surgery.
James Coulter, 12, a friend of the Bates family, suffered serious head injuries and multiple injuries and was taken by the London Ambulance helicopter to the London Hospital in Whitechapel, east London. His condition was said to be very serious.
The aircraft was en route from Newmarket, Suffolk, to Blackbushe airport, where Air Hanson is based. A spokesman for the company said that Capt Bates had taken the boys on a day out.
“A FATHER and son died when a helicopter crashed in dense woodland near Crowthorne, Berkshire, yesterday Another two children and a man were in hospital last night with serious injuries. The Bell 206 Jet Ranger helicopter, owned byAir Hanson, came down on Forestry Commission land a few miles from Blackbushe airport in Hampshire shortly after midday.”
In May 2009, Strand Hanson announced its successful management buyout of the company from its founding shareholders. The company is 90% owned by staff and the remaining 10% (previously held by EPIC Investment Partners) has now been acquired by Robert Hanson. Operating out of its head office in Mayfair, London, with a further office in South Africa, the Strand Hanson team will continue to focus on providing market leading, independent investment banking advice and will maintain its strong presence across the oil and gas and natural resources sectors – areas in which Robert Hanson has extensive experience.
Background to The Hon Robert Hanson
Robert Hanson joined N M Rothschild & Sons in 1983 where he initially worked in London and later at its subsidiaries in Hong Kong, Chile and Spain. In 1990, he joined Hanson PLC, becoming a main board director in 1992 responsible for strategy, mergers, acquisitions and disposals. Robert Hanson resigned from Hanson PLC at the end of 1997, after the demerger, to chair Hanson Transport Group. In 1998 he founded Hanson Capital Limited to capitalise on his worldwide network of close relationships with private venture capitalists, entrepreneurs, financiers and high net worth individuals. He is non executive director of Nasdaq-listed Ivanhoe Mines Ltd and of South Gobi Energy Resources Ltd. He is also non-executive director of; SUNWING Energy Ltd, the China-based oil and gas development subsidiary of Ivanhoe Energy Inc; Sport & Artist Management Ltd (a boutique sports marketing company); and ECL (e-commerce Logistics Ltd), a Hong Kong based company which provides fulfilment and logistics facilities in Greater China.
Sir Hayden Phillips, an adviser to the Prince of Wales
Sir Hayden Phillips
interviewed by Malcolm McBain on 16 May 2011
PPS to Roy Jenkins
Good friends with Ted Heath defender, Robert Armstrong
I was very fortunate because Robert Armstrong became Permanent
Secretary to the Home Office whilst I was in Brussels and we had become friends. I talked to him about coming back and what I was going to do and when I came back Robert gave me, and I had no reason to expect this, possibly the best job I had ever had in my career, which was in charge of terrorism and riots. Fortunately, we had a great deal of both (laughs), and so I came back into an absolutely critical job, which also, particularly in relation to the te
rrorism angle, had wide international ramifications.
Over that issue, because it involved threats of terror and other things, I had to go and have meetings with Peter Carrington and Malcolm Rifkind, who was then the Minister of State at the
In 1992 I became Permanent Secretary for the first time at what was then called the Department of National Heritage under John Major, whom I worked for in the Treasury when he was Chief Secretary. I did that for six years and then I went to look after the Lord Chancellor, Lord Irvine of Lairg at what is now the
Ministry of Justice. So from 1992 to 1998 I was in Media, Culture, and Sport and then from 1998 to 2004 it was the Courts, the Law and Justice.
I remember Robin Butler who was then Cabinet Secretary, said to me, “you can’t stay at Culture and Sport forever, we must send you
somewhere else”. Various suggestions were made and I wasn’t sure I wanted to do any of them. Finally he said “I’ve got it!
We need someone to look after Lord Irvine of Lairg and so go to the Lord Chancellor’s Department” to which I replied “You can’t do that, you have to be a lawyer”, which was true, and I wasn’t a lawyer. He
said “That’s all right. We are going to change the law”. So I got the job. It’s a very unusual anecdote this, nothing to do with international diplomacy, but I think I am the only permanent secretary who got his job as a result of primary legislation. They had
to put through a Bill in the House of Commons and the House of Lords saying that the Permanent Secretary of the Lord Chancellor’s Department could be an ordinary person. So that was me.
the BBC in connection with Culture, Media and Sport, I mean that largely fell within your remit didn’t it? That presumably would be the major part of the BBC, the home service …
MM: Is it your opinion that the BBC is a good organisation?
HP: Oh I think it’s an outstanding organisation
I admire Chris Patten very much
MM: Would you like to say anything about the Churchill Archives and their relationship with the Heritage Lottery Fund?
We set up the Heritage Lottery Fund out of the National Heritage Memorial Fund which was a tiny organisation. Jacob Rothschild became the chairman of the Heritage Lottery Fund – the three people most involved in this were Lord Rothschild, myself and Robin Butler the Secretary of the Cabinet. The first issue we confronted
was about the Churchill archives. They were going to be sold, distributed to the far flung corners of what is no longer the empi
re, the United States and countries like that. And we took the view that if we received an application, as we indeed did, to purchase the archives, we should do so in the national interest. It was so evident to us that this was the right thing to do, but what we hadn’t grasped was that it wasn’t at all evident to a large section of the British press or the British public, who firstly thought that the state already owned the Churchill archives and secondly were very resentful
of the idea that the first big slug of lottery money should appear to go to a single member of the Churchill family.
So what we thought was going to be a decision that would be applauded by the British public as a whole, turned out to be absolutely ghastly. I have had one similar experience of whatever the truth may be, the truth can be well out of kilter with what the British public thinks it ought to be. This was when Windsor castle burned down while I was in charge of royal palaces. Peter Brooke was my Secretary of State and we explained to the press when they asked who would have to pay for the damage, that Windsor castle was not owned by the Queen, it was owned by the nation and that the nation at the end of the day would have to foot the bill. I’m telling you this story because it is rather like the Churchill archives story.
Has the time come for super-smooth ex-Whitehall mandarin, Sir Hayden Phillips CB, KCB, GCB, to finally secure the peerage that cruelly eludes him? This week the favoured protege of Lord Jenkins – the ultimate smoothie – pops up as chair of appointments at Ipso, Fleet Street’s outlaw response to the Leveson reforms. The job follows his doomed, decade-long efforts to square another impossible circle, the funding of political parties. That was preceded by a review of the honours system (also doomed). A man of many grand hats, he chaired the National Theatre until 2010. There is also Marlborough College, Princess Kate’s alma mater, which is holding up quite well under his stewardship, despite the occasional controversy on his watch. Cometh the hour, cometh the man, but has Fleet Street picked the right one?
The Phillips compromise has to be good for the Party, as well as the country
10 Downing Street is reportedly hoping the Conservatives will – through Sir Hayden Phillips’ review – accept capping constituency campaign expenditure in return for the unions voluntarily ceasing to give large donations to the Labour Party. This potential deal is a little one-sided.
There is of course a cap in place already but it only counts within four weeks of election day. Conservatives usually outspend the other parties in the period before this by having more active and affluent Constituency Associations, and by receiving funding from safe seats, and donors such as Lord Ashcroft who orchestrated a large private funding scheme for marginal seats at the last election.
Labour’s National Executive Committee published its review into party funding in June, specifically mentioning Ashcroft’s target seat support as something a local cap could curtail. The only justification being that it didn’t make sense to merely cap four weeks out of a four year electoral cycle. Downing Street is also hoping that spending caps will start as soon as candidates are selected, thereby reducing the impact of the Conservatives choosing some candidates very early. Bizarrely there is also mention of only applying such caps to the 100 most marginal seats.
The Labour Party’s position seems motivated purely by political expediency which in itself is hardly shocking, but at least the Conservative proposal to cap individual donations will be healthy for democracy. If there is to be a cap on such donations, then why limit how much a campaign can raise from diverse sources and popular support?
Sir (Gerald) Hayden Phillips
(born 9 February 1943)
GCB 2002 (KCB 1998, CB 1989).
Home Office, Assistant Principal, 1967 –
Home Office, Economic Adviser, 1970–72
Home Office, Principal, 1972–74 – Assistant Secretary, and Principal Private Secretary to Home Secretary, 1974–76
Deputy Chef de Cabinet to President, European Commission, 1977–79
Assistant Secretary, Home Office, 1979–81,
Assistant Under-Secretary of State, Home Office, 1981–86
Deputy Secretary, Cabinet Office (MPO, subsequently Office of the
Minister for the Civil Service), 1986–88
Deputy Secretary, HM Treasury, 1988–92
Permanent Secretary, Department for Na
tional Heritage, later
Department for Culture, Media and Sport, 1992–98
Permanent Secretary, Lord Chancellor’s Department, 1998–2003
Hearing no evil: the IPSO panel covers its ears – Brian Cathcart
Having refused to meet Hacked Off, Sir Hayden Phillips, the man in charge of appointments to the big press groups’ planned son-of-PCC, now wants to opt out of email correspondence with Hacked Off and victims of press abuses.
This is a further sign of what can be expected from ‘IPSO’, a body which is the result of consultation by press executives with other press executives – and nobody else.
The Murdoch papers, the Mail and the Telegraph group would like us all to believe that IPSO will deliver a higher level of press accountability than the ‘toothless poodle’ PCC, but even before it has been launched IPSO is proving that it is not accountable at all.
We have written to Sir Hayden Phillips several times since he and the other non-industry members of his panel, Dame Denise Platt and Lord Brown of Eaton-under-Heywood, rejected our requests for face-to-face meetings. Now he has written back to say that ‘we are just going to have to agree to differ’.
This withdrawal from dialogue leaves unanswered several important questions we put to him, and through him Lord Brown and Dame Denise.
1. How do the panel members justify engaging with a process that is explicitly designed to defy the recommendations of the Leveson Inquiry, the wishes of all parties in Parliament, the views of all the leading victims of press abuses and the preference of the public at large?
2. Do the panel members accept the analysis of IPSO by the Media Standards Trust which shows that IPSO only satisfies 12 out of 38 Leveson recommendations on press self-regulation? (No one has published any response finding fault with this analysis.)
3. Do the panel members agree that PCC-IPSO cannot be independent of the press industry when (a) the two ‘industry representatives‘ among their number can effectively exercise a veto over their work (thanks to the requirement for consensus) and (b) an industry body called the ‘Regulatory Funding Company’ will dominate IPSO by retaining veto powers in several policy areas and by holding the purse-strings?
4. Do they acknowledge that they were themselves appointed to the panel under a process that breached written public undertakings of openness given when IPSO was unveiled last November? (In a behind-closed-doors administrative process, the rules were simply altered without public consultation or announcement to permit a behind-closed-doors appointments process.)
5. What grounds have they to believe that the people who oversaw the PCC during the worst years of press abuses, and who still oversee it, and who are now responsible for setting up PCC-IPSO, can now, suddenly, be trusted to put the public’s interests before those of their own newspapers?
The failure to answer these questions is, in our view, a failure to show accountability. Instead Sir Hayden and his panel appear to be prepared to answer only to their industry paymasters.
Sir Hayden, Dame Denise and Lord Brown have all had long careers in public service. It is sad that they have chosen to risk their reputations by participating in what Lord Justice Leveson would undoubtedly classify as another cosmetic reform of the PCC.
It would be far sadder, however, if their reputations and their involvement helped to encourage anyone to believe that PCC-IPSO could deliver effective, proportionate and fair remedies for press wrongdoing and proper press regulation. PCC-IPSO will not do that. It is designed to prevent it from happening.
Sir Hayden has had a professional career in public service comprising Home Office, Cabinet Office, Treasury and the European Commission. He was former Permanent Secretary for Culture, Media and Sport and the Ministry of Justice, former Chairman of the National Theatre and an adviser to HRH The Prince of Wales. He has held various private sector directorships, was Chairman of Marlborough College and is a Lay Canon of Salisbury Cathedral. He chairs the Fabric Advisory Committee and the Close & Environment Committee of Salisbury Cathedral, Vice-Chairman of the Wiltshire Historic Buildings Trust and Chairman of the Reviewing Committee on the Exports of Works of Arts. Sir Hayden lives and farms with his wife in Homington , near Salisbury.
Kerzner’s son, Howard “Butch” Kerzner died on 11 October 2006 when the helicopter he was travelling in crashed near Sosua, in the Puerto Plata province of the Dominican Republic. His daughter, Andrea, is the founder and CEO of Lalela, a charity dedicated to bringing the arts to at-risk youth in South Africa.
2009 One&Only Cape Town: Lunch To Benefit The Mandela Children’s Foundation
Sol Kerzner, Nelson Mandela and Graca Machel laugh during a lunch to Benefit the Mandela Children’s Foundation as part of the celebrations of the opening of the new One&Only Cape Town resort on April 3, 2009 in Cape Town
Hon Robert Hanson’s business partner David Newnham
Digital Sinema Pty Ltd & Jim Karakikes
Australian Industry Group Moves Against Alleged Pirates
Established three years ago by the adult industry when video piracy was at its worst in Australia, AICO began making headway through the courts against suspected pirates. Although it didn’t win its cases at first, the group began making political inroads.
Established three years ago by the adult industry when video piracy was at its worst in Australia, AICO began making headway through the courts against suspected pirates. Although it didn’t win its cases at first, the group began making political inroads.
About AICO: Calvista is a founding member of the Adult Industry Copyright Organisation, which operates on a not-for-profit basis, both as an educator, and to discourage breaches of copyright in adult films in Australia. AICO is funded by its members, who are comprised of international, adult-film producers and distributors.
Digital Playground Announces Exclusive Distribution Deal with Calvista
Digital Playground is pleased to announce the execution of an exclusive distribution deal with Calvista. The terms of the agreement allow Calvista full representation of Digital Playground products in Australia and New Zealand. Company President, Samantha Lewis is excited about the new relationship, “we wanted to be aligned with a company that knows the territory and can effectively saturate the market. Calvista is highly respected and they have achieved great visibility. Under their representation, I am looking forward to attending the 2007 Adult Ex in Cairns with Jesse Jane.” Hui Newnham, the General Manager of Calvista says, “we are delighted to establish a new partnership with Digital Playground, and represent this pioneering brand in Australia and New Zealand. Digital Playground is an iconic studio and sits well with the family of premier brands that Calvista has a long history of representing. We are thrilled with the opportunity to work with Samantha, Joone and the team, and finally give true local presence to one of America’s leading adult film producers.”
Io Group Inc., parent company of multi award-winning gay adult producer, Titan Media, announced the signing of an exclusive Australian distribution agreement with Calvista Australia Pty. Ltd.
According to Bruce Cam, CEO/President of Io Group, under the terms of the agreement, Calvista will be the exclusive distributor of the TitanMen and ManPlay brands of DVDs for Australia, and these brands will be the only gay U.S.-studio brands distributed by Calvista.
Cam and Keith Webb, Titan’s Vice President of Sales and Marketing, recently visited Australia where they represented and launched the TitanMen and ManPlay brands at the Adultex 2005 show. Adultex is the largest adult trade show in Australia.
“I am very pleased that my new friend David “Hui” Newnham is committed to strengthening the partnership between our two companies by making us his exclusive gay distribution partner for Australia,” said Cam. “David and his team at Calvista have proven they are the leaders in the Australian marketplace with high-end partners such as Private, Wicked, and Jill Kelly Productions. When expanding into the gay market, it was a perfect fit that they would choose the very best gay brand in the world, Titan Media.”
By Dempster, Nigel| The Mail on Sunday (London, England), September 16, 2001
FARMER Tony Martin, jailed for life for shooting dead a burglar, has received financial help from an unexpected source – Lord Hanson’s wife, Geraldine.
Unlike her husband, who built an empire worth billions, American-born Geraldine keeps a low profile.
But after my item that law-and-order campaigner Peter Cadbury was keen to increase his contribution to Martin’s fighting fund, Geraldine, 68, has also come foward to help.
Chocolate heir Cadbury, 83, former chairman of Westward TV, says: ‘She sent me a [pound]1,000 cheque which I’m passing to Martin’s solicitors and I’m sending a further [pound]1,000 myself.’ Martin was jailed for killing teenager Fred Barras– but Brendon Fearon, who led the raid at Emneth Hungate, Norfolk, was released last month after serving half of a three-year sentence for attempted burglary.
Geraldine, always perfectly groomed, became the ideal spouse and hostess, mistress of all her husband’s immaculately decorated homes on both sides of the Atlantic.
Hanson owned his own executive jet (which in 1967 was hijacked and taken to Algeria with the former Congolese Prime Minister Moise Tshombe on board).
In those summers when James and Geraldine entertained friends aboard their yacht, the Boule Dogue in the South of France, the cash flowed like the local wine.
Every day the boat would cruise the coastline and dock at the best shopping areas of the Mediterranean while Geraldine added to her already considerable wardrobe in every port.
While she would change into a fresh outfit for every meal, Hanson would play the generous host in all the local watering holes, such as Tetou and the Hotel du Cap.
At home he was also running around in his own helicoptersand fittingly – for one who would be knighted by Prime Minister Harold Wilson in his resignation Honours List – buying the very one in which Wilson had flown around canvassing for the 1974 election.
Hanson was close to Wilson in those days sharing with him a love of Gilbert and Sullivan and entertaining him along with Gordy (by now on to his second marriage) at lavish dinners in London.
Hansonused his helicopters to ferry guests such as actor Kirk Douglas to his country pad near Newbury. Throughout the Eighties and Nineties, while Gordy moved on to a third, much younger wife, Hanson maintained a highly respectable profile on both sides of the Atlantic, venturing into arts sponsorship in Britain and even showing his ecological credentials by donating [pounds sterling]2 million to put otters back into the river Ure in Yorkshire.
After his retirement in 1997, he spent his time firing off advice in letters and articles about Labour inefficiency and Tory principles – but the high life continued.
If it was summer it had to be Ascot and Wimbledon with dinners and lunches in Mark Birley’s elegant Mayfair establishment Harry’s Bar.
There Hanson would entertain his Palm Springs neighbours, including former U.S. ambassador Walter Annenbergand the ageing Kirk Douglas.
He was still booking lunch dates and discussing the future of the Tory Party in his outspoken way right to the end.
A more complete list of those who attended James Hanson’s
Baroness Thatcher, LG, OM, attended a service of thanksgiving for the life of Lord Hanson held yesterday at St Paul’s, Knightsbridge. The Rev Alan Gyle, Vicar of St Paul’s, officiated, and the Right Rev Lord Hope of Thornes led the prayers and pronounced the Blessing.
The Hon Lucas White and Sir David Frost read the lessons.
Mr William Creasy read from the works of Theodore Roosevelt.
Lord Palumbo gave an address.
The Band of the Corps of REME, directed by Major I. R. Peaple played during the service Last Post and Reveille were sounded by Lance Corporal Stephen Martin, Blues and Royals, by permission of Colonel H. P. D. Massey, Commander Household Cavalry.
The Hon Robert Hanson and Mr Brook Hanson (sons), Mr and Mrs Cheever Hardwick III (son-in-law and daughter), Mr Charles Hardwick IV (grandson), Mr Christopher Collins (representing Hanson) and Mrs Collins, Mr and Mrs Donald Hayward, Mr Edward Collins.
The Marquess of Salisbury, Earl Alexander of Tunis, the Earl and
Countess of Dudley, the Earl of Halifax, the Earl of Liverpool, the
Earl of Suffolk and Berkshire, the Earl of Westmorland, Lord Archer of Weston-super-Mare, Lord Baker of Dorking, CH, and Lady Baker, Lord Bell, Lord Brabazon of Tara, Lord Brougham and Vaux (Association of Conservative Peers).
Lord and Lady Chadlington, Lord Cope of Berkeley, Lord and Lady de
Mauley, Lady Fanshawe of Richmond, Lord Feldman, Lady Foley, Lord Glenarthur, Lord Henley, Lord and Lady Kalms, Lord Kimball, Lord King of Bridgwater, Lady Palumbo, Lord Patten, Lord Powell of Bayswater, Lord and Lady Plumb, Lord Rees-Mogg, Lord Rothschild, Lord Savile, Lady Elizabeth Anson, the Hon Jamie and Mrs Bruce, Hon Rupert and Mrs Fairfax, the Hon Rachel Marckus, the Hon Sir Peter Ramsbotham, the Hon Jacob Rees-Mogg, the Hon Mrs Lucas White, Sir Tobias Clarke, Sir Tatton Sykes.
Sir Win and Lady Bischoff, Sir Gordon and Lady Booth, Sir Michael and Lady Caine, Sir Ralph and Lady Carr-Ellison, Sir David and Lady Davies, Sir Paul Fox, Sir Owen Green, Sir Angus Grossart, Sir Hayden Phillips, Sir Brian Pitman, Sir John Quinton, Sir Patrick and Lady Sargeant, Sir Nigel and Lady Southward, Sir Rodney Sweetnam and Sir Peter Morris (Royal College of Surgeons of England), Councillor Kevin Gardner and Baroness Gardner of Parkes, Mr Jonathan and the Hon Mrs Aitken, Mr and the Hon Mrs David Heimann, Mr and the Hon Mrs Charles Wilson.
Mr Peter Roe and Mr Russell Graham (Hanson Transport), Mr and Mrs David S Allsopp, Mr and Mrs Anthony Andrews, Mr Antony Ansell, Mr Robert Atwater, Mr and Mrs Jonathan Azis, Mrs Henie Backhouse, Mr and Mrs Nicholas Baldwin, Mr Alan Bennett, Lieutenant-Colonel Gordon Birdwood, Mr Peter P Bland, Mr and Mrs Peter Blond, Mr and Mrs Derek Bonham, Mrs Karen Bonham, Mr John M Bostock, Mr Robin Boudard.
Mr and Mrs Leslie Bricusse, Mr Derek Brierley, Dr J R Briggs, Mr and
Mrs Jack Brignall, Miss Isabelle Brotherton-Ratcliffe, Mr Iain R Bryce, Mr Julian Burney, Mr Charles Butter, Mr and Mrs Justin Cadbury, Mr Leander Cadbury, Mrs Humphrey Carmichael, Mr and Mrs Adam Carnegie-Brown, Mr and Mrs Timothy Chenevix-Trench, Dr H B J Chishick, Mr Peter Clarke, Mr and Mrs Algy Cluff, Mr Stephen Compson, Mr Geoffrey Cretin, Mrs Mark Cubitt, Mr Adolfo de Alvarado, Senora de Rafael Valls.
Mr and Mrs Paul Dimond, Mr and Mrs Denis Doble, Mr and Mrs Nigel Doughty, Mr Duncan Farrell, Mr and Mrs Nicholas Fawcett Mr Keith Fielding, Mrs Harry Fitzgibbons, Mr Jonathan Fountain, Mr William B Fraser, Dr Jeremy Gilkes, Mr and Mrs John Glen, Mr Mark Greaves, Mrs Valerie Greenwood, Mr and Mrs Stephen Hall, Miss Holly Hamill, Mr Aubrey Harding, Mr Jonathan Harris, Mr and Mrs Anthony Hawser, Mr Doug Hayward.
Mr Stanley Hodges, Mr Philip Hoffman, Mr James C Hopkins, Mr Derek Howe, Mr Greg Hutchings, Mr and Mrs David Jacobs, Mr Graham Jaffe, Mr Eric James, Mr Timothy Jefferies, Mr Paul Johnson, Mr Peter Johnson, Mr Rod Johnson, Mr David Keating, Mr James Kenward, Mr and Mrs Nicholas Kerman, Mr Philip Kingsley, Mr Peter Kirwan-Taylor, Mr and Mrs Alex Krasner, Mr William Lamarque.
Mr Charles Lewis, Mr and Mrs Euan Lloyd, Mr and Mrs Peter Lord, Mr Robert D Mackenzie, Mr and Mrs Jeremy Marshall, Mr Bill Martin, Mr Jamie Matheson, Mr David Mayhew, Mr N S Mayhew, Mr and Mrs Malcolm McAlpine, Mr and Mrs Peter Meinertzhagen, Mr John Menzies, Mr and Mrs David Metcalfe, Mr Cedric Middleton, Mr and Mrs Michael Minto.
Mrs George Morris, Mr Alan Murray, Mr Michael Nathanson, Mr Charles Neave-Hill, Mr Anthony Newbold, Mr Paul Nicholson, Mr Richard Northcott, Professor Anthony O’Hear, Mr Anthony Osmond-Evans, Mr Stuart T Painter, Mr Stephen Park, Mr John H Pattisson, Mrs N J Peyton-Jones, Mr and Mrs Colin Purves, Mr Peter Reynolds, Miss Isabel Riberio, Mr Peter Riley, Mr David A Roper.
Mr and Mrs Michael Rose, Mr and Mrs Derek Rosling, Mr Roddy Sale, Mrs Susan Sangster, Mr David Savage, Mr Jonathan Scott-Barrett, Dr Nigel Scott-Moncrieff, Mr and Mrs William Shand Kydd, Mrs Elizabeth Sharp, Mr Ned Sherrin, Mr and Mrs Henry Shires, Dr David Skeggs, Mr John D Smith, Mr Stephen Smith, Mr Timothy J Smyth, Mr and Mrs David Snowdon, Mr and Mrs Paul Spencer, Mr Tim Stewart.
Mr Robin Stormonth-Darling, Mr and Mrs Huw Thomas, Mr and Mrs Ward Thomas, Mr Nicholas Turner, Mr Peter J Turner, Mr Philip G Turner, Mr and Mrs William Turner, Mr Rafael Valls, Mr Claus von Bulow, Mr Nigel Walker, Mrs Philip Walker, Mr and Mrs Gerald Ward, Dr and Mrs Francis Warner, Mr David Webster.
Mr Richard K Westmacott, Mr Jamie White, Mr Richard Whiteley, Mr and Mrs Michael Wigan, Mr and Mrs John Wilford, Mr and Mrs Edward Willis, Mr and Mrs Anthony Wilson, Mr Michael Wilson, Mr Mark Worthington, Mr David Yelland, Mr Gordon Young with many other friends and former colleagues.
More of Annenberg’s friends
Dec 1993 Former US President Bill Clinton (L) applauds philanthropist Walter Annenberg
Leonore Annenberg, Melanne Verveer (Deputy Chief of Staff to Hillary Clinton), Walter Annenberg, Hillary Clinton, Margaret Williams (Chief of Staff to Hillary Clinton). January 1995.
Mrs. Annenberg and Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher in the greenhouse at Sunnylands.
George Bush and Annenbergs
A Project of The Walter and Leonore Annenberg Public Policy Center
Kathleen Hall Jamieson – Director of FactCheck.org
Kathleen Hall Jamieson is the Elizabeth Ware Packard Professor of Communication at the University of Pennsylvania’s Annenberg School for Communication, the Walter and Leonore Director of the university’s Annenberg Public Policy Center, and Program Director of the Annenberg Retreat at Sunnylands.
Jamieson’s work has been funded by the FDA and the MacArthur, Ford, Carnegie, Pew, Robert Wood Johnson, Packard, and Annenberg Foundations. She is the co-founder of FactCheck.org and its subsidiary site, SciCheck, and director of The Sunnylands Constitution Project, which has produced more than 30 award-winning films on the Constitution for high school students.
The Prince of Wales was allegedly targeted as a potential investor by agents working for the alleged fraudster Bernard Madoff’s £34 billion Ponzi scheme.
The heir to the throne is named alongside European aristocracy in documents supplied to US prosecutors. He was allegedly approached by Prince Michael of Yugoslavia at a Polo tournament in 2002 which was also attended by Prince William and Prince Harry.
Prince Michael, a distant cousin of Crown Prince Alexander of Yugoslavia, was an investment executive of Access International Advisors, which was a Madoff feeder fund.
Among British investors named as “customers’‘ of the alleged fraudster are Lady Rothschild, former wife of Sir Evelyn de Rothschild and a Conservative Party treasurer until 2006, and Lord Jacobs, former owner of BSM and a Tate Gallery donor.
Kate Reardon, The Hon Rupert Fairfax and Catrina Skepper
Hubert Fairfax was additional assistant Private Secretary to HRH The Prince of Wales between 1986 and 1988.1
From Freemason site – Alexandria-Washington Lodge No. 22
…meeting today with Rupert Fairfax and Hugh Fairfax, both brothers to Nicholas Fairfax, the current and 14th Lord Fairfax of Cameron. Nicholas, Rupert and Hugh are all direct descendants of Thomas Fairfax, 6th Lord of Cameron for whom Fairfax County is named. The portrait pictured in the photograph is the only original painting of Thomas Fairfax, 6th Lord of Cameron, known to exist.
Mr Bannister’s grandfather on his mother’s side, Per Jacobsson, was chairman of the International Monetary Fund in the 1950s
Swiss prosecutors investigate HSBC for money laundering over claims it helped hide millions for arms dealers and blood diamond traders
Investigators have searched Geneva offices of HSBC’s Swiss private bank
Probe stems from ‘recent published revelations’ it helped clients evade tax
Stolen files claim bank helped dodge taxes on accounts containing $119bn
Leaked memo revealed HSBC were willing to help a ‘blood diamond’ trader
Aided smuggler despite knowing he was being investigated for tax evasion
20 February 2015
The Geneva offices of HSBC were raided by Swiss prosecutors yesterday in an investigation into alleged money laundering.
Public prosecutors said they were searching for evidence of ‘aggravated money laundering’ after ‘the recent published revelations ’ about HSBC’s Swiss private bank.
It is the latest damaging twist for the banking giant embroiled in a scandal over claims staff helped rich clients dodge tax.
Although the Geneva prosecutor’s office said the probe was against the bank, it added that it could target individuals ‘suspected of committing or participating in acts of money laundering.’
Those found guilty could face a fine and up to five years in prison.
Authorities in France, Belgium, the US and Argentina have already launched criminal inquiries.
Former HSBC executive Clive Bannister – the son of four-minute-mile legend Sir Roger – could face questions from the Geneva public prosecutor.
The 55-year-old spent 17 years at the bank and was the boss of its global private banking business from 1998 to 2006.
Oxford-educated Mr Bannister, a father of three sons who is also a keen runner, was based in London. He was instrumental in turning the private bank into a global powerhouse with profits soaring to almost £1billion by 2007.
HSBC’s Swiss private bank was a key part of his empire. Although there is no suggestion Mr Bannister was aware of any wrongdoing, the alleged misconduct occurred from 2005-2007, overlapping part of his service. Prosecutors may also choose to summon former trade minister Lord Green, who joined David Cameron’s government in 2011.
He was the chief executive and then chairman of HSBC until stepping down in 2010 and sat on the board of the Swiss banking arm for a decade.
… the controversy has touched his current role as chief executive of insurance firm Phoenix Group as his chairman Sir Howard Davies has asked him to explain his role at HSBC.
Male Models Say Mario Testino and Bruce Weber Sexually Exploited Them
It looks like Kate Moss has a new lodger. And he is a Count. Nikolai von Bismarck, 28, is said to be living in the basement of Moss’s Highgate home. He is the son of Moss’s close friend and mentor Debonnaire (yes, really) and rent in London being what it is, she decided to invite him into the place she shares with her daughter Lila Grace, 13.
But is Moss, 41, more than just his landlady? Von Bismarck accompanied her to the opening of Richard Caring’s Sexy Fish restaurant in Berkeley Square last week; they nursed their hangovers over a pub lunch in the Cotswolds.
Moss never complains, never explains, and her camp has not confirmed that she has separated from her husband, musician Jamie Hince. But they haven’t been seen together in public since early summer, and whispers about break-ups are turning into assumed truths.
So is Moss playing by the mantra “The best way to get over someone is to get off with a mate’s 28-year-old son”? His mother aside, the pair have plenty of mutual friends, but since you probably don’t, here’s everything you need to know about Nik.
The NvB CV
Londoner Nikolai is the eldest of the four Bizzy boys. They often wear matching clothes and call him Nick Nock. He went to Harrow — the same school as actor Benedict Cumberbatch, where fees are £36,150 a year.
Paparazzi are waiting to catch a shot of him with Moss but NvB is more used to being behind the camera — he is rarely seen without one around his neck. He started taking photos at 13, visiting the Maasai in Kenya. Even then, he was resourceful — he heard the tribe believed photos stole their soul and took a Polaroid so that they could keep the snaps (probably worth a bit on eBay).
Being an aristo doesn’t preclude hard work — at 16, he had a holiday job assisting fashion photographer Mario Testino, shooting New York strippers. He played Leonard Cohen songs and refused to talk to his subjects to create moody pieces.
Debbie Von Bismarck with Bea and Eugenie
Another model is his friend Princess Beatrice. She chose him to photograph her official 18th birthday portrait and his art teacher gave him a shout-out for it in the Harrow newsletter. Nik and Bea hiked the Inca Trail together on his gap year, cue rumours about a royal romance. But there was no time to let that develop because he was off to hone his skills at Parsons art school in Paris and then help out Annie Leibovitz in New York. The Duchess of Cambridge did work experience with him.
One blot on his CV is social networking. Don’t bother looking for him on Facebook — he uses it under a pseudonym. Reportedly, he was once banned from the site after a fracas around a group whose name might have been considered racist.
His first solo exhibition, In Ethiopia, was at 12 Francis Street in Victoria two years ago. Fatima Bhutto, Ronnie Wood, Jerry Hall and family friends Pixie and Bob Geldof came to show support and a reviewer called his work “provoking and personal, featuring countless art-historical references”— so all that education paid off. The pictures were taken while he lived in Ethiopia and he has fond memories of that time:
“I drank cow’s blood for breakfast and slept in a tent that was guarded by kids with AK-47s. I painted with them, drank ouzo with them, fired guns with them — I became one of them.” It’s a long way from Chelsea.
Mummy von B
Nikolai’s mother, Countess Debonnaire von Bismarck, has “the best name in the history of toffdom”, squeals Tatler. The 56-year-old prefers to go by Debbie, though her appointment-only Knightsbridge shop bears the full complement of syllables. The boutique sells handcrafted accessories sourced abroad: slippers made in Lebanon, jewellery from Jaipur, kaftans from Ibiza. Prices are on application, obvs. Moss calls Mummy von B “a one-off” and has loyally supported her at fashion events since forever.
An editor who sat next to the aristocrat at a dinner to celebrate the launch of a Kate Moss collection for Topshop says she was charming, and spent the whole evening talking about “her boys”.
She moonlights as a stylist and choreographed Nikolai’s fashion debut, casting her son in a shoot for Tatler in 2006, entitled Like a Virgin. Nikolai, then 18, co-starred with three models wearing pure white, frothy confections — so he won’t be intimidated by sharing living quarters with a supermodel.
A source suggests that it is to Debbie that Kate goes when she’s in need of mentorship and direction. Moss, who is a contributor at Vogue, convinced her friend to open her £7 million Chelsea house for a shoot in the magazine’s December 2014 issue (Kate’s World). Moss called it London’s most glamorous party house. The model apparently has a portrait of Debbie in her own home and when Moss was commissioned to design the interior of luxury getaway The Barnhouse in the Cotswolds this year (prices starting at £2.5 million) she turned to Debbie for advice.
Von Bismarck is at the centre of the Venn that connects Moss’s Primrose Hill set with the international art and aristocratic groups that party in London.
Testino taught Debs to pose, which came in handy when she modelled for milliner Philip Treacy’s eponymous coffee table book, nearly naked with
a feathered headdress and a plump diamond ring
on her wedding finger. Treacy wrote: “Countess Debonnaire von Bismarck commissioned this hat for her rainforest-themed birthday party at home in London. Debbie has a celebratory approach to dressing. She thinks it’s rude not to make an effort.”
A friend describes Nik as “sweet”. His circle is a mix of family friends and the art crowd. He celebrated his last birthday in Mustique with his brothers, Jamie Hince, and Mary and Robbie Furze. They wore feathered headdresses, danced on the beach and saw the sunrise. But he also likes catching up with culture, which EastEnders fan Moss will appreciate.
Kate and Nik have plenty of other mutual friends, such as model Annabelle Neilson and Sadie Frost, and then there is the royal connection. As well as long- term best friend Beatrice, art dealer Blaise Patrick is his wingman. He used to date Prince Harry’s ex, Chelsy Davy, but they are all friends now.
This gentleman prefers blondes. His last big romance was with golden-haired Theodora Richards, now 30, the daughter of Rolling Stone Keith. Back in the early Noughties they were regulars on the London social scene but now she lives in New York. He has since been linked to Moss’s colleague Cara Delevingne.
The von B family tree
While Moss is from Croydon, Nikolai’s roots are in Bavaria. His great-great grandfather was Otto von Bismarck, the statesman and chancellor credited with the (first) unification of Germany in the late 19th century.
More recently, the family has endured grief and scandal. In 2007 the partially decomposed body of Gottfried von Bismarck, Nikolai’s cousin, was found at his £5 million Chelsea home three days after his death; a pathologist told a hearing that the body contained the highest level of cocaine he had seen.
Gottfried read PPE at Christ Church College, Oxford. There he was a member of the Piers Gaveston dining society and the Bullingdon Club.
In 1986 his friend Olivia Channon — an heiress and the daughter of late former Tory minister Paul Channon — died of a heroin overdose in his rooms. He was fined and left Oxford immediately; he reportedly “wept like a child” at her funeral. A year before Gottfried died, a man called Anthony Casey fell from a balcony of his Chelsea home at a party. Casey reportedly had a “substantial” amount of cocaine in his body.
Coroner Dr Paul Knapman stated that there was a room in the flat containing items including sex toys, a butane gas canister and a box of syringes. He added, “in common parlance, in the early hours of the morning, there was a gay orgy going on,” and recorded a verdict of misadventure.
Today, the von Bismarcks are based in London. Nikolai’s father, Count Leopold von Bismarck-Schönhausen, 64, married Debbie in 1984; the two live in Belgravia. Don’t worry about remembering his full name, everyone calls him Bolly; Tatler explains that he looks “fetching in a fez”.
Nikolai is their eldest child, followed by Tassilo, 26, a client relations manager at investment firm North American Western Asia Holdings. He once interned for former Republican presidential nominee John McCain.
Next, there’s Caspar, a 23-year-old New York University student. After-dinner entertainment at his 17th birthday party — held at his parents’ house — involved a semi-naked pole dancer and a mound of Krispy Kremes. Guest Princess Eugenie snapped the pictures on her phone. Other attendees included Rufus Taylor, son of Queen drummer Roger, along with Princess Beatrice’s boyfriend Dave Clark and Made in Chelsea’s Hugo Taylor.
Baby Bismarck is Alexander, 20, nicknamed Sascha, who has followed his big brother to NYU. He’s a Liverpool supporter and likes Family Guy.
Tragic party host von Bismarck found dead in London flat
· Eccentric German count was plagued by two deaths · Signs of heroin overdose after body discovered
He was the eccentric German aristocrat with a penchant for fishnet stockings and lederhosen whose debauched parties had twice ended in death.
The first time was at Oxford University in 1986, when the daughter of a Conservative minister overdosed in his bed. The second was last year, when a man plunged 60ft to the ground from the roof terrace of the 44-year-old count’s luxury apartment in Chelsea, west London.
This week, a third and final tragedy struck Gottfried Alexander von Bismarck – his body was discovered by paramedics at his flat.
The great-great-grandson of the Iron Chancellor, who united 19th century Germany, had apparently died of a heroin overdose.
The paramedics had been called in by an estate agent who had the keys to sell the property; it is understood he had been asked by a member of the count’s family to look round because of their concern that they had been unable to raise him for several days.
Reports suggested drugs paraphernalia were found near the body. A Met spokeswoman last night would not say whether the police were treating the death as suspicious. Results of a postmortem are expected today.
The life of the flamboyant count – full name Gottfried Alexander Leopold Graf von Bismarck-Schonhausen – was marked by the highest highs and the lowest lows, often one directly following the other. At Oxford he was notorious for wild parties at which severed pigs’ heads were served and guests toasted each other in blood, while he played host dressed in fishnet stockings or lederhosen.
In 1986, at a party in the student count’s rooms at Christ Church College to celebrate the end of exams, Olivia Channon, daughter of the millionaire trade minister Paul Channon, was found dead in his bed.
She had died due to respiratory failure caused by an overdose of heroin and drink. Although von Bismarck always claimed he had not seen Ms Channon “chasing the dragon”, heating heroin on silver foil and inhaling the fumes – and was never implicated in her death other than to be charged separately for possessing drugs – the incident haunted him for the remainder of his life.
In 1991 he said: “There are still people who will not speak to my parents because of it, who said to my mother, ‘What a rotten son you have, he has disgraced the name of Bismarck’.”
After time in rehab, then a spell back in Germany working as an actor, and in a job helping firms in the former GDR on the road to privatisation after the fall of the Berlin Wall, he resettled in London some years ago.
He kept out of the headlines until last August, when a man fell from the roof terrace of his London home during a wild party. Anthony Casey, 38, had a “substantial” amount of cocaine in his body when he plunged 60ft, an inquest heard in October. Mr Casey had been feeling unwell when he asked the count for the key to the roof terrace.
The coroner, Paul Knapman, said that a room in the flat contained what most people would consider “unusual” and “bizarre” items, including buckets of sex toys, a butane gas canister and a box of dozens of syringes.
He added: “In common parlance, in the early hours of the morning, there was a gay orgy going on.” Dr Knapman recorded a verdict of misadventure.
Hedonism ran in the von Bismarck family. His great-great-grandfather was made prime minister of Prussia in 1862, and is credited with engineering modern Germany by defeating France in 1870-71 and uniting the various German states into an empire. He also loved food and drink and was a famed raconteur at parties.
· This article was amended on Monday July 9 2007. Olivia Channon died in 1986, not 1989. This has been corrected.
How Did Trump and Clinton Pal Jeffrey Epstein Escape #MeToo?
Call him Weinstein 1.0: The billionaire with famous friends (Kevin Spacey, Woody Allen) was a secret pervert who used his power and influence to groom teens for abuse.
President Trump was among the deviant philanthropist’s admirers. “I’ve known Jeff for fifteen years. Terrific guy,” Trump told New York in 2002. “He’s a lot of fun to be with. It is even said that he likes beautiful women as much as I do, and many of them are on the younger side. No doubt about it—Jeffrey enjoys his social life.”
Jeffery’s “social life,” according to police and a score of lawsuits, involved a pedophile ring of dozens of underage girls, whom he groomed and then loaned out to powerful friends.
Steve Bannon shared a secret meeting with reviled billionaire pedophile Jeffrey Epstein at the financier’s notorious Upper East Side mansion.
Former White House chief strategist Bannon was spotted stepping out of his SUV and entering the registered sex offender’s sprawling 21,000-square-foot mansion at 9 E. 71st St. shortly before 7 a.m. Wednesday.
Sources speculate that the disgraced Epstein wants to use his millions to work his way close to political power again.
One told us, “Bannon needs money to bankroll his political agenda. Epstein has plenty of money, and craves power and access.”
Bannon made an early-morning beeline to Epstein, even though Bannon may have burned bridges when he savaged Ivanka Trump over her criticism of Roy Moore, whom Bannon backed despite claims the candidate had sexually harassed teens. Citing an allegation in legal papers from a woman (who later dropped her lawsuit) that Donald Trump and Epstein had raped her when she was 13, Bannon said in response to Ivanka, “What about the allegations about her dad and that 13-year-old?”
Epstein has previously used his millions to cultivate the world’s most powerful — but has mostly given money to Democrats.
From 2001 to 2003, Bill Clinton flew on Epstein’s private plane, dubbed “The Lolita Express,” 26 times. Epstein is close to Prince Andrew and was a regular at Trump’s Mar-a-Lago.
Trump told New York magazine of Epstein in 2002, “Terrific guy. He’s a lot of fun to be with. It is even said that he likes beautiful women as much as I do, and many of them are on the younger side.”
Epstein, 65, pleaded guilty in 2008 to soliciting prostitution from a teen and served 13 months in jail.
Last year, he reportedly paid millions to settle three lawsuits filed against him by teens. Bannon’s rep didn’t comment. A lawyer for Epstein said, “Let me ask him,” but didn’t respond by deadline.
In the papers lodged in Florida, she says: “The second time I had sex with Prince Andrew was in Epstein’s New York mansion in spring 2001.
“I was 17 at time. Epstein was there, along with Maxwell and Andy. Epstein and Maxwell were making lewd jokes about ‘Randy Andy’.
“I had the impression Andy had come there to have sex with me. There was no other apparent purpose for him to be there.
“I was told to go upstairs with Andy and to go to the room I thought of as the dungeon. I had sex with Andy there. I was only paid $400 from Epstein for servicing Andy.
The third time I had sex with Andy was in an orgy on Epstein’s private island.
“Epstein, Andy, approximately eight other young girls, and I had sex together.”
The mum-of-three, who said she was “recruited” by Ghislaine Maxwell, daughter of disgraced tycoon Robert Maxwell, aged 15, said she wanted to bring all the “powerful people” who had abused her to justice.
She added: “I have directed my attorneys to pursue all reasonable and legitimate means to have criminal charges brought against these powerful people for crimes they have committed against me and other girls.
“I am telling the truth and will not let these attacks prevent me from exposing the truth that I was trafficked for sex to many powerful people.”
Lawyers for Miss Roberts claim they sent a letter to Andrew demanding he gives a statement under oath.
But they say it was sent back as having been refused by the recipient.
The Duke, 54, emphatically denies “any sexual contact or relationship” with Miss Roberts, 31, while Royal aides have insisted he knew nothing of Epstein’s offending.
Scotland Yard are also understood to be looking into whether to start a criminal probe.
The records, said to match court circulars outlining Andrew’s whereabouts in 2001, are believed to show he was on Epstein’s Caribbean island at the time Miss Roberts claims the underage orgy took place – as well as in London and New York on the two other occasions.
The logs, posted online, recording Miss Roberts’ travels, put more pressure on Prince Andrew over her allegations.
She has claimed she was forced to have sex with him in the London home of Ghislaine Maxwell, daughter of disgraced tycoon Robert Maxwell. The pair were pictured together there on that night.
She says she was paid £10,000 in total by Epstein for her time with the Duke.
Flights logs and official documents appear to show Andrew and Roberts were in London on March 2001, in New York in early April, and in the Caribbean on the US Virgin Islands later the same week. Roberts did not turn 18 until August of that year. Lawyers acting for billionaire Epstein had tried to silence Roberts on Tuesday, claiming she has no right to bring a case.
The billionaire’s legal team say she repeatedly refused to bring a complaint before the six-year statute of limitations expired.
Andrew would be spared further claims and court revelations if a judge agrees to throw out her suit against US prosecutors for agreeing a plea deal with Epstein, 62.
He had faced up to 20 years in jail after the FBI found more than 40 alleged victims – but instead pleaded guilty to a single charge of soliciting a minor. He got 18 months but served less than 13 months.
Also in the court papers were details of a sick offer by Epstein to give Miss Roberts a mansion and monthly allowance in return for letting him father a child with her.
She also claimed Epstein was sent three 12-year-old French girls to abuse for his birthday.
Miss Roberts also alleges in papers filed yesterday to have had sex with US lawyer Alan Dershowitz, who used to represent convicted Epstein – claims which he strongly denies.
The Harvard law professor has described her claims as “totally false and made up. I’ve never seen her, never met her. I don’t know who she is”.
Roberts also revealed how she had spoken to the FBI while living in Australia. She said: “In 2011, two FBI agents, called me in Australia and then came to meet me.
“They met me at the U.S. Consulate in Sydney. They seemed to be very professional and hard working. I thought, ‘Wow, these people will do the right thing against the bad guys and protect me’.
“I was aware that a false statement to these law enforcement officers was a crime and I told the truth – giving them information I could recall about individuals they inquired about.
“Epstein also trafficked me for sexual purposes to many other powerful men, including politicians and powerful business executives. Epstein required me to describe the sexual events that I had with these men presumably so that he could potentially blackmail them.
“I am still very fearful of these men today.”
Elsewhere in the document, Roberts spoke about being on board Epstein’s private jet with former President Bill Clinton but said she never had any sexual contact with him.
Lawyers for Roberts and three other victims also gave details about requests in December 2011 to determine whether or not Prince Andrew had lobbied on behalf on Epstein during his plea deal.
Yesterday’s papers state at the time “the Government denied that it had documents reflecting contacts by Prince Andrew”. In the original lawsuit filed by Roberts on December 28 her lawyers state she was under the age of consent when she claims she had sex with Andrew while on Epstein’s 78-acre Caribbean bolthole in the US Virgin Islands, where the legal age of consent is 18.
Buckingham Palace has emphatically denied Prince Andrew had sexual contact with Miss Roberts, saying claims were without foundation.
A spokesman for Ghislaine Maxwell said earlier this month: “The allegations made against Ghislaine Maxwell are untrue.
“The original allegations are not new and have been fully responded to and shown to be untrue.
“The claims are obvious lies and should be treated as such.”
Excerpts of Key Jeffrey Epstein News Articles in Media
Below are highly revealing excerpts of important Jeffrey Epstein news articles from the major media suggesting a cover-up. Links are provided to the full news articles for verification. If any link fails to function, read this webpage. These Jeffrey Epstein news articles are listed by order of importance. You can also explore the articles listed by order of the date of the news article or by the date posted. By choosing to educate ourselves and to spread the word, we can and will build a brighter future.
George Mitchell was a key figure in the Northern Ireland peace process in Ulster
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Son of Greggs bakery founder, 76, who was convicted of indecently assaulting boys over three decades has five years slashed from jail sentence
Colin Gregg from Newcastle had been jailed for 13-and-a-half years in March
He had been found guilty of nine counts of indecent assault against four boys
Gregg, 76, appealed his conviction and sentence over the historic sex abuse
Appeals court judges in London reduced his jail term to eight-and-a-half years
19 December 2017
The son of the founder of the Greggs bakery empire has had his jail sentence for indecently assaulting young boys cut by five years.
Colin Gregg, 76, of Home Steadings, Gosforth, Newcastle, was found guilty of nine counts of indecent assault committed against four boys over three decades and was sentenced to 13-and-a-half years in March.
Gregg, who helped build up the family business and also worked as a social worker, teacher and headmaster, lost a bid to have his convictions overturned at London‘s Court of Appeal on Tuesday.
But senior judges said his jail term, imposed at Newcastle Crown Court, was ‘too long’ and reduced it to eight-and-a-half years.
Gregg, who watched the proceedings over a video link from prison, was said to have played a ‘significant part’ in the expansion and success of his family’s business.
He was also a well-respected member of the community and had raised thousands of pounds for charitable causes before his convictions.
Allegations were first made against Gregg by a young boy in the 1990s and he stood trial, but was cleared at that time.
During his trial earlier this year he denied all the charges, claiming he was the victim of a ‘witch-hunt’ and the complainants wanted compensation.
Sasha Wass QC, representing him at the Appeal Court, argued his sentence was excessive in light of the fact his offending was not in the most serious category.
Lord Justice Davis, sitting with Mrs Justice Nicola Davies and Judge Nicholas Dean QC, said the appeal against sentence must be allowed.
He added: ‘Having reflected upon the matter, the view of this court is that a total sentence of eight-and-a-half years is appropriate for this offending and for this offender.’
DS Chris Wilson, who led the investigation, said: “The victims in this case showed immense bravery to come forward and stand up in court to give the evidence that ultimately put their abuser through court.
“It was a terrifying ordeal for them but their actions have helped convict a predatory paedophile and I am sure that convictions such as this will help encourage other victims of sexual abuse to come forward.
Yellow Brick Road charity name changed to the Children’s Foundation
His reputation as a pillar of the community brought him many benefits – he even rubbed shoulders with royalty when the Duke of York, Prince Andrew, came to the North East in January 1993
20 January 1993
The Duke of York, Patron, visits Newcastle, North Tyneside; visits the Yellow Brick Road Appeal at the Royal Victoria Infirmary; as Patron of Children-North East, visits the Battle Hill Family Centre; tours the electronic Bi-Media News Room and the Television Studio; meets families involved in the ‘Rural Action with Families in Tynedale’ project and, as Patron, meets members and staff of the Newcastle Weston Spirit Centre, at the BBC Broadcasting Centre; and visits Parsons (Rolls-Royce Industrial Power Group), Heaton.
Professor of child health Alan Craft (left) at the Yellow Brick Road building which is officially opened tomorrow, pictured with Yellow Brick Road administrator Colin Gregg (right). 17th May 1995 (Photo: NCJ Archive)
Colin Gregg, administrator to the Yellow Brick Road Charity.
22nd June 1995.
Gregg said” From the very beginning the Yellow Brick Road has been a real partnership – between Newcastle University’s Department of Child Health…”
Gregg was at the forefront of the Yellow Brick Road charity and was instrumental in raising £12m for a world class children’s Medical Research Centre in Newcastle.
Prince Andrew sits on a yacht in Thailand back in 2001, during a holiday at a £2,300-a-week resort which is thought to have come courtesy of Jeffrey Epstein
Prince Andrew and Jeffrey Epstein pictured strolling through Central Park together during a four-day break in New York at the start of December 2010 within days of the billionaire giving Fergie the £15,000 payment
Fergie:’I personally, on behalf of myself, deeply regret that Jeffrey Epstein became involved in any way with me,’ she said.
‘I abhor paedophilia and any sexual abuse of children and know that this was a gigantic error of judgment on my behalf.
‘I am just so contrite I cannot say. Whenever I can I will repay the money and will have nothing ever to do with Jeffrey Epstein ever again…
Prince Andrew was expected to hold crisis talks with the Queen today as he returned to Britain from a holiday in the upmarket Swiss ski resort of Verbier with his ex-wife Fergie, Sarah Ferguson
The Duke of York, Prince Andrew, Patron, visits Newcastle, North Tyneside; visits the Yellow Brick Road Appeal at the Royal Victoria Infirmary.
21 January: The Duke of York, Patron, this morning visited the Yellow Brick Road Appeal, Newcastle University Medical School, Newcastle, and was received by Her Majesty’s Lord-Lieutenant for Tyne and Wear (Colonel Sr Ralph Carr-Ellison).
Jimmy Savile meets seven year old Lee Claffey of Eastwood Gardens Kenton Newcastle who was visiting the Royal Victoria Infirmary to have his broken arm checked.7th June 1986
‘Jimmy Savile visited the children’s wards of the Royal Victoria Infirmary in 1986/1987 and 1991.
He (Savile) also visited Newcastle General Hospital in the early 1990s but witnesses were unsure of exact dates
Nurse Phil Brown remembers encountering the disgraced radio and TV presenter in May 1987 at ward 16 south where youngsters were receiving treatment for leukaemia. Today he is calling on hospital chiefs at the Newcastle Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust to let the public know the exact dates of his visits.
He also claimed Savile was formally invited into the building.
A spokesperson for the trust said senior staff were taking the disgraced star’s alleged visits to the Royal Victoria Infirmary very seriously.
However, on Saturday a statement from Sir Leonard Fenwick, trust chief executive, said no concerns had so far been expressed by staff working at the time.
Mr Brown, a nurse for 37 years, said: “Jimmy Savile visited ward 16 south where children had leukaemia.
“It was in June 1987 and a pivotal weekend because it was the Great North Run.I have rung the NSPCC and police involved in Operation Yewtree as speaking as a nurse, I am dismayed. I’m not the only one who remembers him visiting.
“The moment it came out that he had been in Newcastle I informed the RVI. So far I think they’ve got their dates wrong. People need to be aware he visited in 1987.
“He appeared to be in Newcastle for the Great North Run but for whatever reason he was able to visit the RVI.”
Jimmy Savile visited ward 16 south where children had leukaemia.
Have police questioned who was in charge of that ward when Savile was invited to RVI?
Professor of child health Alan Craft (left) at the Yellow Brick Road building which is officially opened tomorrow, pictured with Yellow Brick Road administrator Colin Gregg (right). 17th May 1995 (Photo: NCJ Archive)
Dr Alan Craft specialised in paediatric oncology / childhood leukemia
Professor of child health Alan Craft (left) at the Yellow Brick Road building which is officially opened tomorrow, pictured with Yellow Brick Road administrator Colin Gregg
Alan enjoys filling his spare time with running (31 marathons and 106 half marathons so far), orienteering and doing crosswords. He is happily married with one son and a delightful granddaughter aged 18 months.
Sir Alan Craft – ambassador for the North East Children’s Cancer Research Fund:
Seahouses Middle School was last week given an award for its outstanding contribution to the North East Children’s Cancer Run by Sir Alan Craft.
Headteacher Julie Harris said: “As an ambassador for the North East Children’s Cancer Research Fund, Sir Alan came to present us with an award for our outstanding contribution to the North East Children’s Cancer Run.
Professor Sir Alan Craft with some of the fund-raising pupils at Seahouses Middle School.
Prof Sir Alan Craft launches scathing attack on new North East hospital
26 Jun 2013
ONE of the country’s leading experts on childhood medicine has launched a scathing attack on plans to build a specialist emergency hospital in the North East.
But in an unprecedented attack Prof Sir Alan Craft, former president of Royal College of Paediatrics, said the proposals for the restructuring of children’s services in the region was concerning.
Prof Craft, a consultant paediatrician based at the RVI, and his wife, Anne, children’s nurse and director of nursing and former health visitor for North Tyneside, sent a letter to The Journal outlining their views.
Professor Sir Alan Craft Consultant Paediatrician North Tyneside 1978-86 Professor of Child Health Newcastle 1993-2007 President of Royal College of Paediatrics 2003-2006
Lady (Anne) Craft Former health visitor North Tyneside Children’s nurse and Director of Nursing (Matron)
Lazaro began work as a forensic paediatrician at the Lindisfarne Centre in the Royal Victoria Infirmary in Newcastle in 1989 following the Cleveland sex abuse inquiry. This was the first post of its kind in the country.
Lord Justice Kennedy told the court that in the 2002 libel trial, the doctor had been “completely discredited” in relation to her handling of a number of allegations of sexual abuse prior to February, 1995.
Calls were today made for a review after a North East man had his conviction for raping a boy overturned because of the evidence of Dr Camille San Lazaro.
Dawn Reed and Christopher Lillie
Dr Lazaro, senior lecturer and consultant paediatrician at Newcastle Royal Victoria Infirmary and Newcastle University was criticised for her role in the investigation into” false” claims of abuse at a Newcastle nursery by Dawn Reed and Christopher Lillie.
The pair were accused in a Newcastle City Council report of systematic sex abuse of dozens of children at a Newcastle nursery. But Mr Justice Eady declared them innocent of all charges and condemned the report as a legal `shambles.’
...supplying children to a paedophile ring whose members had raped and abused their young victims, and used them in the making of child pornography.
Her evidence has been blamed for Kevin Brown’s conviction. He has served his seven-year sentence for raping the five-year-old boy.
Brown’s first appeal was dismissed in 1997 but his case was referred back to the Appeal Court by the Criminal Cases Review Commission which investigates claims of miscarriages of justice. The CCRC obtained three medical reports, including one from a doctor at the forefront of the 1987 Cleveland Child Sex Abuse Inquiry, that suggested injuries to the boy may not have been caused by a sexual act. Ruling the conviction unsafe, Lord Justice Kennedy said medical evidence at the trial had been oversimplified to the detriment of the defence. He added that a large part of the prosecution case at trial had been reliant on evidence from Dr San Lazaro.
Colin Gregg was employed in the children’s department of Newcastle Council as a social worker where csa was rampant.
Gregg taught at Durham School, a school in Newcastle’s west end before moving to Newcastle City Council’s children’s department as a social worker. He then became the headmaster at Tynemouth King’s School.
i was passed the foto of the rear of this Lp by a friend in the UK who was disturbed to find “Sir Jimmy Savile” on the rear with the vicar of All HallowS Church, London at the time “Tubby” and also at least one disturbing foto of “Tubby” putting his finger into the mouth of some poor little boy.
Regarding the criminal pedophilic past of SJS having been partially exposed these fotos are more than disturbing.
Savile had a relative living at Marsden so was often there- he used to park his car in the carpark of The Marsden Inn.
The Great North Run route in the final stages takes you down Marsden bank
Marsden and Jarrow he visited a lot due to relatives or friends of his mother living there, and Minchellas ice cream parlour in South Shields he was seen in a lot in the 60’s…and then Consett of course, as his mother originated from there He certainly knew the entire area well.
Professor of child health Alan Craft (left) at the Yellow Brick Road building which is officially opened tomorrow, pictured with Yellow Brick Road administrator Colin Gregg (right). 17th May 1995 (Photo: NCJ Archive)
Brian Roycroft, Newcastle City Council’s Director of Social Services, stood by the worker and refused to dismiss him. He said there would be disciplinary action “but not of a serious nature”. A slap on the wrist for standing by and allowing 55 children to be abused.
Brian Roycroft was also the Secretary of the Association of Directors of Social Services (ADSS), and took part in the decision not to create a ‘blacklist’ of social workers who had committed similar offences.
Royal Charity – The Children’s Foundation – paedophile-linked
The Children’s Foundation Directors/Patron Prince Andrew – friend of convicted billionaire paedophile Jeffrey Epstein
Convicted paedophile Colin Gregg and Brian Roycroft – Directors
Brian Roycroft, Newcastle City Council’s Director of Social Services, stood by the worker and refused to dismiss him. He said there would be disciplinary action “but not of a serious nature”. A slap on the wrist for standing by and allowing 55 children to be abused.
Brian Roycroft was also the Secretary of the Association of Directors of Social Services (ADSS), and took part in the decision not to create a ‘blacklist’ of social workers who had committed similar offences.
Gregg molested a young boy while he worked as a running coach, a court has heard
In 1989, Gregg became the director of children’s charity the Yellow Brick Road Fund.
During this time he operated a running club from his home at Homefarm Steading, Gosforth.
The runs would start and finish at Gregg’s house at the time, on Linden Road in Gosforth.
Gregg started the now famous run Greggs Children’s Cancer in 1982 Run –
Colin Gregg launched the Greggs Children’s Cancer Run, after pupil Chris Peacock was diagnosed with kidney cancer
Chris Peacock’s cancer was treated by Professor Alan Craft and this year (2013), as in the 20 previous years, he will be taking part in the Children’s Cancer Run.
Chris bounced back from his brush with death and went to The King’s School in Tynemouth, where, at the age of eight, he discovered a passion for running. The then headmaster, Colin Gregg, a member of the famous bakery family, found out about his cancer and decided to set up a fundraising run in Gosforth Park in which his school and others could take part.
RVI Children’s Cancer Research Unit/Run Dr Alan Craft sponsored by Greggs
As well as the five-mile run there will be a Mini one-mile run for the under sevens who must be accompanied by an adult.
The Children’s Cancer Research Unit at the Royal Victoria Infirmary has just taken on two new recruits, pathologist Dr David Ellison, and cancer expert Dr Steve Clifford, to find ways of improving survival rates.
But the pair will only be able to carry out the research if this year’s Children’s Cancer Run is a success and raises at least #150,000. (extortion)
“The staff on Ward 12 are second to none and we owe them – especially Prof Alan Craft – everything.”
The run is on May 13, at Gypsies Green, the Leas, South Shields.
The event is being sponsored by Greggs the Bakers which will provide a picnic for all runners.
“I was once at a Vaux dinner/awards function at the Gosforth park hotel about 20 years ago and was sat at the same table as the hotel manager, we got talking about celebs that stay there, and i asked who was the worst, he said Savile but would not go in to further detail why but the disgusted look and way he said it was easy to read.”
Sacred Heart Church in Gosforth to celebrate centenary
8 May 2012
The church was given a major refurbishment after the arrival, in 1984, of Irishman, Father Tom Cass and while the works were carried out, services were held in a prefabricated building, which became known as Uncle Toms Cabin.
On one occasion, Father Cass persuaded Jimmy Savile, still wearing running gear after completing the Great North Run, to appear at the summer fair. He also once recognised the Irish singer Dana in the congregation and brought her to the altar to sing the final hymn.
The church has a link with Newcastles St Cuthberts boys school, now called now St Cuthberts High School, which itself celebrated its 130th anniversary last year. The present Parish Priest, Father Jim Dunne, was the last of several members of the clergy to teach at the school.
Sir Jimmy was initiated into the Great North Run Hall of fame in 2009
The Jim’ll Fix It host was inducted into the Great North Run Hall of Fame in 2009 and is described on the Nova website as a “universally popular” figure who “was recognised for the vast contribution he has made, particularly with the highly-popular junior runs”.
Savile was a regular visitor to the Great North Run
Jimmy Savile at the Great North Run in 2000
26 Jun 2014
JIMMY Savile visited hospitals on Tyneside on three occasions, visits which coincided with the celebrity’s regular appearances at the Great North Run.
But a report found no evidence of any inappropriate behaviour during Savile’s time in Newcastle’s hospitals.
An investigation by the Newcastle Upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust was triggered by a former member of staff, who contacted Operation Yewtree detectives after recalling seeing Savile at the Royal Victoria Infirmary in 1991.
The investigation found that Savile had visited the RVI’s children’s wards twice between 1986 and 1991 and had also visited Newcastle General Hospital during the early 1990s.
Trust chief executive Sir Leonard Fenwick said: “Jimmy Savile visited the children’s wards of the Royal Victoria Infirmary in 1986/1987 and 1991.
“He also visited Newcastle General Hospital in the early 1990s, but witnesses were unsure of exact dates.
“…these presentations appeared to coincide with the Great North Run. ”.
Savile, famous for his charity fundraising, took part in the Great North Run at least 18 times and was inducted to the Hall of Fame in 2009.
Asked by The Northern Echo in 2000 if he had a message for the people of the North-East ahead of the run, Savile said: “Lock up your daughters, girlfriends and wives. I don’t want to misbehave b 2007 with ut I can’t help it once I arrive on Tyneside.”
Jimmy Savile at the 2007 GNR with Alastair Campbell (Tony Blair’s former spin doctor)……and former sports minister Richard Caborn.
Sir Jimmy Savile has become a virtual mascot for the race
Alastair Campbell – a runner too…
His main hobbies are running, cycling, bagpipes and following Burnley FC.
He took up running nine years ago has since run the London Marathon, the Great North Run, and the Great Ethiopian Run, and completed several full triathlons, all for Leukaemia Research Fund. He is the charity’s chairman of fundraising.
“Both George Bush and Tony Blair sponsored me in the London Marathon.”
^ Tony Blair, Alistair Campbell and Bill Clinton- both Blair and Campbell were in billionaire convicted paedophile Jeffrey Epstein’s black book (Clinton took many trips on Epstein’s “Lolita Express”)
Epstein had assembled a powerful network of contacts encompassing the worlds of politics, business, royalty and celebrity and even Bill Clinton.
The inclusion of Lord Mandelson and an office address for Tony Blair has raised questions about the extent of his relationship with the Labour government.
But last night – some 48 hours after the link between Epstein and Lord Mandelson emerged – the former Labour spin doctor was still refusing to comment about his dealings with the disgraced billionaire.
I bet Alastair Campbell knows a thing or two about Vaz!
‘He (Alan Clarke) said he had hired George Carman QC,’ writes Campbell in his diaries. ‘I said these people are really just posh Max Cliffords.
Brilliant, he said, posh Max Cliffords! I said be careful, because your interest is in getting this thing buried and forgotten. A lawyer might see the benefit of getting the whole thing to court. Good advice, he said, toodle-pip, and off he went. https://www.theguardian.com/books/2009/sep/27/alan-clark–
Clark scandal descends into tales of blackmail and lechery
THE SEX SCANDAL involving Alan Clark, the wife of a former judge and her two daughters degenerated further last night with allegations of blackmail and indecent exposure.
Jane Clark, wife of the former defence minister, accused Valerie Harkess, 57, and her daughter Josephine, 34, of demanding pounds 100,000 to keep allegations that Mr Clark seduced them and Josephine’s sister, Alison, out of the newspapers.
Mrs Harkess and her 64- year-old husband, James, a former deputy circuit judge, denounced the blackmail allegation as ‘an absolute lie’. Her daughter accused Mr Clark of betraying her family’s trust by indecently exposing himself to her and Alison when they were 13 and 15.
Rosa Monckton – Rosa Monckton is a friend of convicted, establishment, paedophile ( friend of Prince Andrew) Jeffrey Epstein
“He’s very enigmatic,” Rosa Monckton told Vanity Fair in 2003. Monckton was the former British CEO of Tiffany & Co. and confidante to the late Princess Diana. She was also a close friend of Epstein’s since the 1980s. “He never reveals his hand . . . He’s a classic iceberg. What you see is not what you get.”
Sally Clark died unintentionally on 16 March 2007 from acute alcohol intoxication.She never recovered from the serious psychological trauma resulting from the experience of the deaths of two children, then being unjustly convicted of their murder with subsequent imprisonment leading to her being separated from her third baby.
This Fellowship in Coimbatore, India was established in memory of Mr Bruce Bailey, Plastic Surgeon at Stoke Mandeville Hospital, Aylesbury, in recognition of the training that Mr Bailey provided for many Indian plastic surgeons, including Dr S Raja Sabapathy at the Ganga Hospital in Coimbatore.
The fellowship is for a period of two months, probably best taken at the end of the year in November and December. The Fellowship is designed for surgeons in the middle or late part of their training and is undertaken in a private hospital with orthopaedic, plastic surgical and hand teams, with a large volume of work related to trauma. The unit also does a lot of work on soft tissue cover for lower limb injuries.Included in the fellowship is a one-week laboratory microsurgery course at the hospital and a trip to the Indian Society for Surgery of the Hand meeting or to attend the annual meeting of the Association of Plastic Surgeons of India. The salary for the duration of the fellowship is £750.00 to include food and accommodation…
GUILTY: Colin Gregg trial jury returns guilty verdicts to nine counts of historic sex abuse
Former head teacher Colin Gregg has been found guilty of nine counts of indecently assaulting four boys.
A jury at Leeds Crown Court deliberated for 11 hours and 43 minutes before reaching eight majority verdicts and one unanimous verdict.
Gregg, of Homefarm Steading, in Gosforth, Newcastle, remained emotionless in the dock as the verdicts were read out by the jury foreman.
Judge Robin Mairs told the married grandfather that he would be sentenced at a later date.
Prosecutors said on the surface Gregg lived a life of decency but in reality he “concealed his true nature beneath a veneer of respectability” and he “exploited his position in society to perpetrate abuse”.
Gregg was granted bail and will be sentenced at Newcastle Crown Court on March 30 at 2pm.
The jury found Gregg guilty by a majority on eight of the counts and unanimously on the ninth.
Judge Robin Mairs told him that the fact he was granting bail was no indication of sentence.
He said: “These are serious matters and a custodial sentence is inevitable.”
The trial at Leeds was a retrial.
A jury failed to reach a verdict when Gregg was tried last year in Newcastle.
The son of Greggs bakery founder John Gregg, he took up teaching at the prestigious Durham School, his former school, in 1964.
Three years later (1967) he joined his brother to build up the family business
He later became a social worker for Newcastle City Council, before returning to teaching and eventually becoming a headteacher at the former Kings School in Tynemouth in 1978.
Formerhead teacher, employed in the children’s department of Newcastle Council as a social worker, charity boss Colin Gregg, denies 26 indecent assault charges dating from the 1960s to the 1990s, relating to nine complainants aged between 11 and 15.
Assault said to have taken place between January 1963 and December 1991
on the premises of schools where he worked, in a dormitory and in a school swimming pool.
Newcastle Crown Court was told the married father-of-three, who became wealthy after helping the family business to grow, has a ‘strong determination to sexually abuse little boys’ and there was a pattern to his offending.
Gregg, of Gosforth, Newcastle, denies all the charges, and his position is that ‘each and every one of the complainants is telling calculated and deliberate lies’, Paul Greaney QC, prosecuting, told the jury.
Gregg trained as a teacher and taught at prestigious Durham School, which he had attended as a boy, the court heard.
A FORMER pupil at a school where Colin Gregg taught told a court he was sexually assaulted by him in a swimming pool.
The man, now in his 60s, says Gregg put his hand inside his swimming trunks while helping him to improve his breast stroke at prestigious Durham School.
Jurors were told the alleged offence in the swimming pool on the grounds of the school is said to have happened in the 1960s, when Gregg was a biology teacher.
In 1967 he joined the family business which was started by his father John Robson Gregg (freemason) in 1939, when it was still a ‘modest outfit’
Gregg worked with his brother Ian Gregg for three years and the pair ‘created a very successful and large business which, in due course, became the public limited company Greggs plc‘, Mr Greaney said.
‘As a result of the growth in his family business, the defendant became a wealthy man.’
1969: Gregg returned to teaching, taking a job at St Aloysius, after realising “business wasn’t really for me”
St Aloysius a Roman Catholic -boys-only state school in the London Borough of Islington, North London.
The prosecution said Gregg will claim the allegations against him were motivated by people trying to win compensation.
In 1970 he returned to working with children but continued to work for the bakery during the holidays and remained a board member.
The following year he became a social worker (1971), then became head of Talbot House, (formerly Feversham), a school for what he termed ‘delinquent children’, the court heard.
Feversham Special School- name changed to Talbot
Talbot House Trust
TALBOT HOUSE TRUST NORTH EAST (03069213)
Hexham Road, Walbottle, Newcastle Upon Tyne, NE15 8HW
Appointed on 15 November 1996 Resigned on 31 March 2000
John Leslie Duncan, 61, from Gateshead, and Kevin Brown, 58, who was already in jail, were convicted of the abuse they committed against young boys in their care.
The charges related to incidents that took place throughout the 1970s, 1980s and 1990s
Duncan was convicted of 15 charges, which included 10 counts of indecent assault on a male and three counts of indecency with a child, and sentenced to 15 years in prison.
His crimes were committed as he worked at Shotley Park Childrens’ Home in Durham and at the Feversham residential school in Walbottle, Newcastle, both of which have since closed.
Brown was sentenced to six years on top of his current eight-year sentence after being convicted of seven charges, all relating to incidents at Feversham school too.
The report, by Annie Bishop, then inspector for children’s services, was the last time an outsider had observed the controversial school in the Walbottle area before its closure in March 1997.
The charity Mind acted as the residential school’s custodian trustee, looking after assets but not running the facility.
A board of governors managed the school, but Mind says it kept no record of their names.
Mind’s chief executive Paul Farmer said: “We are deeply shocked and saddened by the abuse that took place at Feversham.
Hon Lowell Goddard, chairman of the long-running Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA), announced what would be included in the first phase of investigations into the extent to which institutions have failed to protect children from sexual abuse.
He later became head of the junior school at King’s School, Tynemouth, and in 1989 became director and administrator of a children’s charity (THE CHILDRENS’ FOUNDATION LIMITED (02528291)) which raised substantial sums.
‘On the surface, he has lived a life of decency, indeed one of distinction,’ Mr Greaney said opening the case.
He said the prosecution case was that Gregg was a child abuser, regularly molesting boys, in a breach of trust.
The complainants, now aged from their 30s to their 60s, were aged 10 to 15 at the time, the jury was told.
As well as the nine complainantswhich the charges relate to, the court will hearevidence from three others who claim they were abused.
Greggs linked to various members of royal family -Prince Andrew, Prince Charles, and Princess Anne
Children’s Foundation – patron Prince Andrew
Colin Stuart GREGG
GREGGS PLC (00502851)
Appointed before 18 May 1991 Resigned on 9 May 2001
THE CHILDRENS’ FOUNDATION LIMITED (02528291)
Appointed before 6 August 1991 Resigned on 25 July 1996
THE CHILDRENS’ FOUNDATION TRADING LIMITED (02591794)
Appointed before 14 March 1993 Resigned on 12 March 1999
TALBOT HOUSE TRUST NORTH EAST (03069213)
Hexham Road, Walbottle, Newcastle Upon Tyne, NE15 8HW
Appointed on 15 November 1996 Resigned on 31 March 2000
PEACOCKS MEDICAL GROUP LIMITED (00560972)
Appointed on 10 July 1998 Resigned on 18 February 2002
PEACOCKS (SURGICAL AND MEDICAL EQUIPMENT) LIMITED (00560985)
Appointed on 12 April 2000 Resigned on 23 December 2003
PEACOCKS POSTURECARE LIMITED (03590754)
Appointed on 3 May 2001 Resigned on 23 December 2003
SKILLSBRIDGE LIMITED (03942255)
Appointed on 10 January 2001 Resigned on 23 October 2008
UK HAPTICS LIMITED (05094437)
Appointed on 20 July 2007 Resigned on 3 September 2012
TRINITY CENTRE LIMITED (06510855)
Appointed on 20 February 2008 Resigned on 1 September 2011
BEADNELL HALL FLATS MANAGEMENT COMPANY LIMITED (01769905)
Appointed on 21 April 2011 Resigned on 11 February 2012
Greggs’ CEOs involved with Prince Charles…via BITC and through the Prince’s trust (Sir Michael Darrington)
Prince Praises Greggs’ Work in Community
May 22, 2003
The head of North-East bakery Greggs has won Prince Charles’s praise for his work in taking business into the community.
Mike Darrington was presented with the prince’s Ambassador Award yesterday at a Business in the Community event for his personal contribution to responsible business practice, through the work of the Greggs Trust, fund-raising and other activities such as the Greggs Breakfast Club.
Mike Darrington takes a long term view of developing a business. He is a keen supporter of ethics in business – by putting Values at the heart of the organisation he believed that Greggs people would make a positive difference for themselves, their customers and the wider community – he is also an enthusiastic advocate of the ‘ enjoy ‘ word.
Mike believes that although companies are owned by shareholders, they should also be for the benefit of staff, customers and the wider society.
After previous significant involvements with the CBI Confederation of British Industry and BITC Business in the Community, he is now engaged in a number of charitable activities, including the Prince’s Trust, and also with community projects and campaigning for a fairer society.
Founded 1982 -BITC Business in the Community is a British business-community outreach charity promoting responsible business, CSR, corporate responsibility, and is one of the Prince’s Charities of Charles, Prince of Wales link
BITC The Prince’s Seeing is believing 2006 Review – Sir Michael Darrington – delegate, Leader – Prince Charles
Greggs Breakfast Clubs featured at the Business in the Community Annual Leadership summit in 2010. The event was hosted by HRH The Prince of Wales and was attended by Prime Minister David Cameron.
Greggs CEO Kennedy McMeikan was appointed as HRH The Prince of Wales Ambassador for the North East.
Greggs – In 2008, we made pledges to the Prince of Wales MayDay Network (a BITC Business in the Community Programme):
Among the initiatives already under way, BITC has started a series of The Prince
of Wales’s “Seeing Is Believing” visits to Burnley, and as one result alone, Greggs,
Marks & Spencer and Sainsbury’s are backing breakfast clubs in 15 of the
most needy primary schools in Burnley for a minimum of three years.
Greggs and Asdaare also supporting the Burnley SPACE youth Bus, working in
partnership with the police, which is deployed to different parts of the town
to provide advice, support and leisure facilities for young people.
19 November 2015
An innovative youth project in Burnley which provides support for disadvantaged youngsters has been awarded £115,000 by Children in Need.
INCLUDED in Greggs‘ latest financial results was the news that the baker had created a full time job for one of the homeless people it has been working with.
The Newcastle-based company is signed up to a Business Action on Homelessness project that was launched almost a year ago under the Business in the Community (BITC) banner, and run by Newcastle charity the Cyrenians with pounds 250,000 in funding from the Northern Rock Foundation.
As one of the lead businesses involved, Greggs supplies mentors and work placements for people on the Ready For Work scheme, which aims to get people back into the world of employment after they have been homeless.
Since the scheme started last September, 38 people have been placed with companies in the region, which along with Greggs also includes the likes of M&S, KPMG, NRG, Sage, Carillion and Barclays Bank. Of the placements, 31 completed their work experience and 22 have secured employment.
Greggs chief executive Ken McMeikan said: “This was reviewed at Business in the Community and the North East scheme is the national leader for the number of work placements who then go on to secure employment.
McMeikan’s interest in working with homeless people originally arose after he attended the Prince of Wales Seeing is Believing programme in London.
Organised by BITC, the project takes business leaders out to see homelessness first hand on the streets of the capital.
Greggs, the UK’s leading bakery food-on-the-go retailer, is backing “Britain’s Best Breakfast” Campaign as part of a new partnership with Carers Trust.
Carers Trust is a major charity working to improve support, services and recognition for anyone living with the challenges of caring, unpaid, for a family member or friend who is ill, frail, disabled or has mental health or addiction problems.
Greggs CEO, Roger Whiteside, will also be taking a group of carers from its shops to Buckingham Palace this week to meet with Her Royal Highness The Princess Royal, who is the President of Carers Trust. Greggs is proud to support this initiative with a substantial donation; and also during the launch week we dedicated donation buckets in each of our shops nationwide to Carers Trust.
Carers Trust Britain’s Best Breakfast Launch at Buckingham Palace
In celebration of our partnership with Carers Trust, 15 of our shop team members, who also have carer responsibilities, were invited to the launch of Britain’s Best Breakfast at Buckingham Palace in September. The event was hosted by Her Royal Highness The Princess Royal, who is the President of Carers Trust. www.carers.org/press-release/greggs-backs-britains-best-breakfast-campaign
About Carers Trust – Carers Trust works to improve support, services and recognition for anyone living with the challenges of caring,
unpaid , for a family member or friend who is ill, frail, disabled or has mental health or addiction problems.
…given considerable support to carers of all ages including young carers like 12-year-old Amy who’s told us what life is like caring for her mum, sister and brother…
One Church 1st nat’l conference : Colin Gregg at conference attended by Peter Wanless
One Church, 100 Uses
25 March 2011
Gorton Monastery, Manchester
This one-day conference is sponsored by the Methodist Church and the United Reformed Church and supported by English Heritage, the Heritage Lottery Fund and the Big Lottery Fund. It will look at ‘The sticky ball principle and the power of connection’, ‘The Church’s role in the Big Society’, ‘The experience of Salford – reinventing communities’ and ‘Unlimited potential – backing people with passion’ as well as a number of other topics and successful case studies.
which explored how to realise the potential of churches.
The day was comprised of keynote speeches, hands-on workshops, and a competition where churches pitched their project in front of a “dragons’ den-style panel for a prize of £5,000 from UnLtd.
The speeches were from some of the leading thinkers on social enterprise and heritage, including:
Lord Wei, founder of Teach First and Government Adviser on the Big Society
Hazel Blears, MP for Salford and Eccles
Baroness Andrews, Chair of English Heritage
Lord Mawson, social entrepreneur and director of One church,100 uses
Colin Gregg, entrepreneur and lead member of Trinity Gosforth
Anthony Roland, film director and owner of The Roland Collection, the world’s largest collection of films on art
Guy Hollaway, principal partner of Guy Hollaway Architects LLP
Jo Hibbard, Heritage Officer of the Methodist Church
Dr. Jenny Freeman, director of the Historic Chapels Trust
Malcolm McClean, social entrepreneur and director of Bearhunt
Cliff Prior, chief executive of UnLtd
Rowena Francis, moderator of URC Northern Synod
Dr Michael Toman – principal of Feversham in 1996 – Feversham closed in Mar 1997
1996 -2000 – Director Gregg at Feversham/Talbot House Trust
Appointed on 15 November 1996
Resigned on 31 March 2000
July 1996 – the last inspection of Feversham, by Newcastle City Council’s social services department
1997: Gregg stood trial in 1997 and was acquitted of abusing one of those three, the court heard. The other two complainants came forward after publicity about that case but it was decided those allegations should not proceed to trial.
Dec 1996 – Feversham principal is Dr Michael Toman (so Gregg was director at Feversham when Dr Michael Toman was there)
6 December, 1996 (Last Updated: 11 May, 2008)
Feversham is the only residential school in Newcastle upon Tyne for children with emotional and behavioural difficulties. It mops up the violent and disruptive pupils other schools cannot cope with and provides care for those whose families are also in crisis or unable to contain them.
Wonder then, at a time when society is crying out for Something To Be Done about disaffected pupils, that Feversham is closing down at Christmas.
It is closing because the region’s local education authorities will no longer give a long-term commitment to the school. Northumberland in particular, which is creating 90 special education places through pupil referral units, has said the 22 children it currently places in the school could fall to as few as six next year.
“Overnight we became uneconomical. Northumberland put the nail in the coffin,” says Dr Michael Toman, Feversham’s principal.There are 37 children aged between six and 13 attending Feversham, an independent establishment set up by MIND, the mental health charity, in the late 1960s to cater for almost twice that number.
Situated on the western edge of Newcastle, it is a low, spacious, modern building, comfortable and well-equipped, set in ample grounds with all the living and school accommodation ranged around the central dining hall. It is run on tolerant, therapeutic principles and aims to re-integrate children back into mainstream education and with their families.
“Our record is good,” says Dr Toman. “One-third of our children return to mainstream school, one-third go on to day special school and only one-third require further senior boarding provision.” A girl with learning difficulties who had suffered sexual abuse was excluded from her special school because she injured a teacher. Another with cerebral palsy was excluded from her special school for the same reason. Children come with bad dreams and chronic bed-wetting, the classic sign of inner turmoil. But these often clear up after time at Feversham.
Michael Toman argues that no matter how many pupil referral units local authorities provide, there will always be children needing residential education. The weekly boarding offered by Feversham provides stability and security, and often helps keep families “who hang by a thread” together. The school employs a social worker to work with families directly.
Staff constantly praise the positives in pupils and challenge the negatives. “When kids come to us they hate school. They hate teachers and so do their parents. We turn that on its head,” says Michael Toman. Children are on first-name terms with teachers and the ethos is one of tolerance and encouragement. “If we stopped every time we got a kick, a punch or a ‘Fuck-off’, we wouldn’t get beyond breakfast. We don’t approve or condone it, but that is the reality. It might sound woolly and liberal but we do challenge them. We just choose our battlegrounds.
“Violence comes from frustration and an inability to communicate, so we give our kids a language that enables them to express their feelings. They learn to listen to other people’s point of view.”
Every week Feversham holds whole-school and group meetings where staff and children review the week’s events and praise or criticise each other. Children have to learn to be the focus of attention.
“These are children who have previously wrecked classrooms and attacked teachers,” says Michael Toman. “They have to learn to sit down and hear other pupils say how horrible they’ve been. This is what group living is all about. Our greatest strength is that we offer consistency of approach over a 24-hour period. A day school cannot provide this.”
Classrooms are colourful and intimate, with a teacher and assistant for every eight pupils. Staff are trained to anticipate and deflect aggression, and how to hold a child who is being violent so nobody is seriously hurt.
Teachers grow used to verbal abuse one minute and requests for hugs the next. They put in a lot of their own time, taking out pupils who have achieved or been “especially sensible” on a one-to-one basis for trips to McDonald’s or Newcastle’s Metroland. Lorraine Brewis, who teaches the youngest group, says: “They love that special attention. You are more than just a teacher to them. When they have had a bad day they might call you everything from a pig to a dog but when they have calmed down they apologise. They feel so much better if they can do that, it’s a socialising process.
“The children are anxious and disturbed by the closure. It’s a bad time for them. We will all end up with other jobs, but what will happen to them?” Eileen Chapman, a single mother whose only child, David, has been at Feversham for the past two years, says her son “sat and broke his heart” when he learned of the closure. “‘What’s going to happen to me now?’ that’s what he asked.” David, who is 12, was disruptive at middle school and his mother could not cope with him. He spent a short time in foster care. “He would storm out and not come back for hours. There has been a 110 per cent improvement in the past year. I didn’t want him to board but it has been right for him and given me a break,” she says.
Richard and Jacqueline Leightley are concerned for their son Paul, who may have to go to residential school in the Lake District, far from their north-east home. Paul was expelled from his first school at five but has made progress at Feversham. The couple, who are on income support with three other children, are unhappy at the prospect of him being so far away.
Michael Toman is convinced that authorities such as Northumberland will be unable to reduce substantially their need for residential placements. Although Feversham costs Pounds 24,000 per pupil for weekly boarding for 40 weeks of the year, he argues that this is cheap compared to the cost of the family breakdown, police involvement, care and secure units that can follow if children are inadequately catered for at a young age.
Independent residential schools such as Feversham have been out of favour because of some notorious cases of mismanagement and abuse, and because of an emphasis on integration into the community. But Michael Toman believes the pendulum must now swing back. “We are the safety valve. No matter how many PRUs the LEAs open – and the Ridings episode is just the tip of the iceberg – they will fill them and still end up wondering what to do with our sort of kids. They’ll have to send them further afield. Northumberland is looking at schools in the Lake District. Authorities are now panicking about our closure.”
DRAWING THE NATIONAL PICTURE
Despite all the publicity now surrounding disaffected pupils there has been no national survey in the past 20 years on the provision for pupils with emotional and behavioural difficulties.
However, the trustees of Shotton Hall, a pioneer EBD school which closed two years ago, have funded research by the University of Birming-ham’s school of education.
Researchers found that from 1987 to March this year, the number of approved independent schools fell by half, from 76 to 35, while the number of local authority EBD schools fell by about 15 per cent. In the first three months of the research alone, seven such schools closed. Head of research John Visser says although some “dross” has gone, “we have lost some very good schools in the past five years”.
The school of education runs the only EBD training course in the country and says it is turning teachers away who want to qualify – at a time when need is greater than ever.
The average annual cost per pupil of an EBD residential school is Pounds 25,000 to Pounds 30,000. Although many of those inspected by OFSTED are classed as failing or needing special measures, John Visser believes the inspectors apply the criteria too rigidly. “If you have had children who have been chucked out of other EBD schools, some of whom have already served custodial sentences and you are keeping them on site, in class and getting them interested in life, death and the universe, you might not be following key stage 3 of the national curriculum to the letter, but you will be achieving a great deal.
“I support the need for residential EBD provision but there has been no research into what is good or effective. That is what I am engaged in.”
These figures are taken from an article by John Visser and Ted Cole for the next issue of the Emotional and Behavioural Difficulties journal entitled : “An Overview of English Special School Provision for Children with Emotional and Behaviour Difficulties.” Contact Alan Rimmer on 01622 843104
POLICE and social services officers have confirmed that they are investigating child protection concerns at a North Wales school for children with autism.
Officers were called in to investigate emails from a concerned member of staff at Ysgol Plas Brondyffryn in Denbigh late last week.
The move comes after a series of controversies concerning the school, widely regarded as a regional centre of excellence for children with autism spectrum disorders.
Six weeks ago the school’s headteacher Michael Toman was suspended from duties amid a local educational authority (LEA) inquiry into a complaint made by a pupil’s parents.
Two weeks later other parents of children at the school staged a protest at county hall in Ruthin.
Two days later the LEA temporarily replaced Dr Toman with acting headteacher Richard Williams.
Then it was revealed that a 34-page inspection report by the Care Standards Social Inspectorate for Wales (CSSIW) had identified 21 shortfalls in meeting national minimum standards of care in the residential section of Ysgol Plas Brondyffryn.
Now, a member of staff at the school has emailed the Evening Leader claiming they have been threatened with the sack if they speak out about the school’s management.
“Everyone is too scared to speak out.” said one female worker at the school.
She said morale was “very low” and added: “There are some very good dedicated staff at the school who have received no support in their work with what can be very challenging children.”
Last night a North Wales Police spokesman said: “We can confirm that e-mail correspondence relating to child protection concerns at Ysgol Brondyffryn are currently the subject of joint investigation by Denbighshire Social Services and the Police.”
Gregg stood trial in 1997 and was acquitted of abusing one of those three, the court heard.
The other two complainants came forward following publicity (news reports of that trial have been removed from the internet) about that trial but it was decided those allegations should not proceed to trial.
When Gregg faced fresh allegations in 2012, he told police that similarities betweenthe stories put forward by the nine were due to them reading details about the trial in 1997.
Mr Greaney said: ‘He was asserting that those allegations with which you are concerned were copycat allegations.’
He said there was evidence that Gregg ‘finds young boys attractive’ and had a propensity to commit sexual abuse.
Gregg was said to have abused a boy in a school swimming bath, another while letting him drive his car while the boy had hold of the steering wheel.
Mr Greaney said: ‘The overall picture is now of complainants from different backgrounds, across many years, indeed decades, and across many aspects of the defendant’s life, but all making similar allegations against Colin Gregg, namely he has a strong determination to sexually abuse little boys when he gets the chance.’
1969:Gregg returned to teaching, taking a job at St Aloysius, after realising “business wasn’t really for me”
1969 – Feversham School opens just before NAMH adopted the name MIND
1970 Paedophile Peter Righton – Founding member of PIE, advised Home Office on reforms to children’s care home for a report that detailed how new homes should be controlled by local government.Righton gave “considerable assistance” to the governmental report, which credited him as an academic who helped to carve out plans for the training of care home workers.
As part of his research, he would travel to numerous residential centres across the UK.
1970 – Gregg returned to working with children but continued to work for the bakery during the holidays and remained a board member.
1971 – he became a social worker, then head of Talbot House (year?), a school for what he termed delinquent children, the court heard.
During the early 1970s Gregg was a children’s officer with Newcastle’s social services department, before later becoming a teacher. 1973 Princess Alexandra patron of NAMH
1974 Talbot House established – maintained special school
Talbot House caters for children with mild to severe behaviour problems and a range of other childhood disorders. Attached to the school, but separate from it is an independent children’s home run by the Talbot Trust. Some children from the home do attend Talbot House but others attend local schools. Talbot House is not a residential school.
In October 1975, Righton became chair of a working group for the mental health association MIND, with the assistance of the King’s Fund Centre; this led to the publication of Assessment of Children and Their Families: A Report Produced by a MIND Working Party Under the Chairmanship of P. Righton (London; MIND, 1975).
1976 NAMH became a registered housing association
November 1976 there was a scandal in Newcastle involving a care worker called Hugh Bostock who had abused 55 boys.