A Vampire At Glyndwr University!

The Daily Post is tremendously excited after discovering that a senior lecturer at Glyndwr University is an ‘expert’ on vampires, has published on the subject and even appeared on daytime TV. The Post has got it’s teeth into this story because a PhD student of the lecturer concerned is claiming compensation for ‘work related stress’ and is maintaining that there is a ‘health and safety issue’ at stake. Allegations have been made that after a lecture on vampires, a student cut themselves and licked the cut to taste the blood.

I’ll declare an interest in this story now. The lecturer concerned is Dr Emyr Williams and I know Emyr very well. I became friends with him when were both doing our PhDs at Bangor University and I remained close friends with him for years although I haven’t seen him recently because I was forced to leave north Wales after extreme harassment from the paedophiles’ friends. Dr Emyr Williams is not and never has been a ‘vampire’, as the lurid story in the Post speculates. Emyr is a psychologist of religion and his first degree was in theology. His PhD was actually on the beliefs and attitudes of people attending Bangor Cathedral, but Emyr is very bright, very inquiring and he also became interested in the beliefs of people who follow alternative spritualities -and yes, there are people in the UK who claim to be vampires. Emyr is now one of the leading authorities on this. That has nothing to do with being a vampire. Glyndwr University were very keen to employ Emyr – the institution is seriously short on high achieving academics and they bit his arm off when he showed an interest in working there. Emyr is also a whizz at stats, which very few academics are unless they are actually statisticians. This means that Emyr can spot bad research when he sees it or research that is trying to mislead and there is a lot of that about. As for ‘work related stress’ – if there is work related stress at Glyndwr and from what I used to hear there was always plenty of that, it will not be emanating from Emyr. He shows a concern for the well-being of his students and colleagues way beyond that usually found in universities. Indeed that is how I became such good friends with Emyr. Whilst the paedophiles’ friends harassed and threatened me, spread vicious rumours about me, rang up my PhD supervisor and dripped poison into his ear, drove cars in my direction very fast very carelessly and then had me arrested because the Chair of the North West Wales NHS Trust Elfed Roberts was ‘fed up’ of my complaints about the mental health services and was cross because I had pink hair and had called his ludicrous car a penismobile, Emyr was the best friend that one could have had. He could see exactly what was going on and like the Hergest Whistleblower and a few others who stood by me, reassured me that the appalling behaviour of these people said nothing about me.

It speaks volumes about Glyndwr that it is Emyr who has found himself at the centre of a storm there. Glyndwr University is a troubled institution and it has been for years. There are a number of other academics there who like Emyr are high performing both in terms of their research and their teaching, but Glyndwr has found itself at the bottom of the league tables ever since it was created but they don’t have enough staff like Emyr. Glyndwr has tried to construct itself as an institution which is vocationally based, but there are massive problems with that claim as well. I don’t know anything about the engineering side of Glyndwr, but I do know about the ‘health and social care’ side – we’re back to the paedophiles’ friends again. The institution is teaming with ‘experts’ in health and social care who have previously worked in or been very well aware of the practices of the dreadful ‘services’ in north Wales and their penchant for neglecting and abusing patients. But none of them will say a word. My post ‘Last Man Standing’ details the background of Dr Wulf Livingstone, a senior lecturer in social work there – Livingstone knows so much about the misconduct of the ‘services’ that he probably should make his way to the police station and give a statement. A few years ago Glyndwr was running a ‘substance abuse’ course for people who wanted to work with drug users. Except that it seemed that people with the backgrounds and skills necessary for that work were being turned down for places – whilst places were offered to people who were drug users themselves. Why are we not surprised? The ‘substance abuse’ business in north Wales is dominated by CAIS, the ‘charity’ run by the paedophiles’ friends Dafydd and Lucille and some of their ‘peer support workers’ are dealing to their ‘clients’. As Brown observed, no-one in north Wales would want a drugs worker who could actually do the job properly, because they’d see straight through CAIS and get more than a few of them arrested.

Glyndwr University has a history from which it has not escaped. It was previously known as NEWI, the North East Wales Institute and before that, Cartrefle College. Read the biographies of the paedophiles and their friends as described in the Waterhouse Report – again and again they had ‘trained’ at Cartrefle College. The thugs on the ground battering and sexually assaulting the kids in care in north Wales had qualifications from Cartrefle College but their managers frequently had qualifications from Bangor University, Liverpool University or Salford College of Technology. The lawyers and judges who protected them all were often graduates of Aberystwyth and the Top Doctors sitting on the heap of shit were frequently graduates of Liverpool Medical School. There was a very obvious pattern. Somebody was employed at Cartrefle College giving qualifications to that bunch of monsters – and that somebody will have been subsumed into NEWI when it was formed and then into Glyndwr University. Even if they are now retired, it will be the usual phenomenon – they’ll still be in touch with former students and associates who will not yet have retired, they’ll be pulling the strings and back-scratching and everyone will be quietly reminded of exactly how many reputations and careers will go tits-up or indeed how many now elderly people could die in prison if the vow of silence is broken. What happened in children’s homes in north Wales is now receding into history, a lot of the politicians and judges involved are dead and those we know and love are fully aware that if they can keep the lid on it for another ten years or so they’ll be home and dry. Pensions and reputations intact. Of course nearly all the kids who were in the homes and the patients of the paedophiles’ prisons – the North Wales Hospital and Garth Angharad – are now dead, having met unfortunate premature deaths.

People living and working in north Wales have long since been fascinated by the tales of madness and serious mismanagement that leaked out of Glyndwr University. The centre of the most florid stories was Professor Mike Scott, the former Vice-Chancellor. People looked on in wonder and asked each other how much longer the chaos could be allowed to continue – staff told stories of Mike Scott giving crazed lectures to the staff en masse, of Scott telling barefaced lies and of rumours that the University was known to be virtually bankrupt but Scott nonetheless was spending like a drunken sailor on bizarre plans. One of the most notorious was Mike Scott’s plan to establish a ‘corridor of knowledge’ – he purchased some sheds along the side of a road in Wrexham in pursuit of this plan, but somehow it never really got off the ground. One of the Biggest Mysteries in north Wales also involves Mike Scott – whilst it was widely alleged that Glyndwr was flat on it’s back breathing it’s last financially, Mike Scott purchased the Racecourse which was next to the University for nearly two million quid – no-one could work out HOW. Allegations of financial corruption flew…He paid a lot of money for the sheds as well. Even people who only fleetingly met Mike Scott never forgot him – someone who shook hands with him described it as like shaking hands ‘with a wet fish’. But then I discovered that Scott had previous. Before being given his own university to destroy, he had been a PVC at De Montfort University – and had really screwed up there. Whilst Scott was at De Montfort he announced plans to establish an ‘axis of knowledge’ passing through three countries (I think the countries involved were England, Wales and Ireland), a bit like Hitler’s expansionist plans a few decades ago. People marvelled at how, after the DMU years, Scott was ever actually given any sort of job at NEWI, let alone given responsibility for running the place. It was alleged that NEWI was such a train wreck that the Welsh Gov’t were desperate for it to ‘merge’ with another institution, but no other college would touch them with a barge pole. Whilst he was wreaking havoc in Wrexham, there was another truly fascinating anecdote circulating about Mike Scott. Some of the older staff at Bangor University claimed to know the man who failed Mike Scott’s PhD in times past. I was told that Scott had done a PhD in English years ago, but he failed his viva and had to resubmit, which is why so many at Bangor looked on in horror at what he was allowed to do in Wrexham.

I know that readers will be fully aware that much of this can be interpreted as academics sneering at other institutions and their alleged follies and of course an awful lot of that goes on. Brown always used to say ‘when you work in a university you hear the most appalling things about people and you must never believe a word of it. But you must never be naïve enough not to listen’. But the reason that there was so much interest in what was going on in Wrexham was that someone somewhere was allowing this to happen – and public money was being squandered on a very large scale. Where was the accountability?

So what about the governance of Glyndwr University? Let’s take a look.

The current Chancellor of Glyndwr University is Trefor Jones CBE; he took up the post in Jan 2016. Trevor is described as having a ‘long and distinguished relationship with NEWI’ – he was their Chair. Trefor Jones was the Lord Lieutenant of Clwyd 2001-2012. He took his duties seriously – when HM the Queen and went to visit Flint, Trefor met her at Flint station! (Flint station is a dreadfully grotty place, I’m gobsmacked that Her Maj ever agreed to alight there.) Readers will understand why my interest was piqued when I saw that Trefor had been appointed to this post – this blog is full of the names of the paedophiles’ friends who ended up as Lord Lieutenants or Deputy Lieutenants. So who is Trefor?

Trefor Jones grew up in Rhyl and started his working life as an apprentice at what is now called Airbus at Broughton. He eventually became Chair and CEO of Pilkington Optronics. In 2000 Pilkington won a contract worth millions to supply the Royal Netherlands Army. I note that the new Vice-Chancellor of Glyndwr, Professor Maria Hinfelaar, is described as a ‘Dutch national’. Now that could well be of no significance – but continue reading this post.

Trefor has many varied interests. He was or is Chairman of the North Wales Area Committee; was or is the Chair of Celtec; was or is a member of the Welsh Industrial Development Advisory Board; was or is the Chair of the North Wales Economic Forum; was the Deputy Chair of the WDA (see post ‘Corruption Bay Special’ for background on the infamous WDA); he was or is the Chair of Clwyd Justices Advisory Committee; he has just stepped down from his role as Chair of St Kentigerns Hospice. Now perhaps he is, as the local media reassures us, simply a man who has dedicated his life to public service in north Wales. But guess what else Trefor was? He was a member of Clwyd Health Authority. So Trevor knew that Dafydd and Gwynne the lobotomist of the North Wales Hospital were unlawfully banging people up who crossed the paths of the paedophile gang. Trefor will have been one of the people who ignored the numerous complaints about patients being assaulted, sexually abused and fleeced of their money. He was part of the Health Authority that did not investigate complaints about those matters. As a member of that Health Authority he will have known the other people named on this blog who as members of both the Health Authority and Clwyd Social Services were directly involved in concealing the abuse in children’s homes in Clwyd. After the abolition of Clwyd Health Authority, Trefor continued with an NHS role – he was Vice-Chairman of Conwy and Denbighshire NHS Trust. So he will have had domain over those notoriously dreadful wards for the elderly in Ysbyty Glan Clwyd then.

Trefor had fingers in many pies and was at the top of one of the biggest businesses in north Wales. He is someone who could have spoken up about the wrongdoing. But he didn’t.

More about those pies. When Trefor was appointed Lord Lieutenant, the Clerk to the Lord Lieutenant Colin Everett – who doubled up as CEO of Flintshire County Council – announced in Jan 2009 that Tefor had appointed numerous Deputy Lieutenants. Among them were Judge Roger Dutton, Lady Susan Langford, Michael Peters and Professor Mike Scott. Lady Susan Langford is President of St Kentigerns, the hospice of which Trefor has just stopped being Chairman! Lady Susan’s husband, Lord Geoffrey Langford, is a Patron of St Kentigerns. Michael Peters I believe is better known as Mike Peters, the rock star from the band The Alarm. Mike Peters and his wife Jules are probably the most effective PR people that Ysbyty Glan Clwyd has. Mike Peters famously developed testicular cancer and has spent the years since raising money and extolling the wonders of the hospital which saved his life. Presumably the Top Doctors didn’t tell Mike that testicular cancer has a very low mortality rate and that nearly all patients survive, even if they are treated in a hospital with a reputation as bad as Ysbyty Glan Clwyd. A recent press release informed us that Jules has now been diagnosed with breast cancer. I think that someone ought to tell her just how big the problems are in YGC and give her the chance to be treated elsewhere, because breast cancer has a much higher mortality rate than testicular cancer. As for Professor Michael Scott – well we know all about him…

So who sits on the governing body of Glyndwr University? I had a look at the University website and the Governor’s Register of Interests 2016/17 and this is what I discovered. The governors include:

Celia Jenkins. In 2013 Celia was the High Sheriff of Clwyd. She was originally from Cheshire – the stomping ground of Sir Peter Morrison MP and all those who kept quiet about him molesting children (see post ‘    ‘). Celia is the Deputy Chair of the North East Wales Magistrates Bench, the Chair of the North East Wales Magistrates Panel, a member of the Wrexham Youth Justice Management Board, a member of the Lord Chancellor’s Committee for Clwyd and a member of the Executive Committee of the League of Friends Robert Jones and Agnes Hunt Foundation Hospital. Celia’s spouse is a member of the Council of Chester University and a Board Member of the Llangollen International Eisteddfod. Previous posts have mentioned people involved in the abuse of children in north Wales who trained at Chester College – which became Chester University – and the paedophiles’ friends who were or are involved with the Llangollen International Eisteddfod, including the daddy of the biggest cover-up, Sir Ronald Waterhouse.

Barrie Jones. Barrie is the Editorial Director of NWW media – he joined the ‘family owned Board of Directors’ in 2010. This is the North Wales Weekly News Group, which published illustrious local titles including the North Wales Weekly News and Wrexham Leader. Barrie worked for those newpapers back in the 80s. When those papers had a penchant for printing flattering articles about Dr Dafydd Alun Jones rather than what was really happening inside of the North Wales Hospital. I very much doubt that the victims of the paedophiles’ were given much of a voice in those titles either. Barrie is involved with the journalism course at Glyndwr!

Gill Kreft. Gill is married to the well-known Mario Kreft and they own the Pendine Park empire, a substantial business involving care homes for the elderly and those with dementia. Gill is listed as a Director and shareholder of a number of the businesses that she and Mario run. She is also a Director of DBS Disclosures Services Ltd, a Director of Gwarchod Properties Ltd and a Trustee of the Social Care Institute of Excellence. The Social Care Institute of Excellence is now a standing joke in the wake of recent revelations as to the reality of much ‘social care’ in the UK. Gill also has a role with the Academy of Care Practitioners Ltd and Care Forum Wales.

Gill’s husband is very high profile in Wales and appears in the media regularly raising concerns regarding the lack of funding for social care. He certainly sounds much more compus mentis than many other people involved in that area of business in north Wales, although I don’t know anyone who’s ever worked for him so I don’t know what the reality is. His business is certainly very substantial and seems to be expanding rapidly, in spite of his pleas of living on the breadline and being unable to afford to pay his staff anything higher than the legal minimum. I note that Gill lists her interests as opera and exotic travel, such a viewing mountain gorillas. Opera and luxury holidays to the Virunga National Park don’t come cheap. I doubt that the care assistants at Pendine Park can afford such pastimes.

Rebecca Maxwell. Corporate Director of the Economy and Public Realm at Denbighshire County Council. In 2003 was Head of Children’s Services for Stirling Council. Prior to this, Rebecca had a ‘thirteen year career in the NHS in a variety of strategic and operational roles in England and Scotland’. Advisor to the North Wales Economic Ambition Board.

Paul McGrady. Has lived in Wrexham since 1977 – he was there when the paedophile gang in the Wrexham children’s homes was doing it’s worst than. Paul works at Wrexham County Borough Council as an accountant. That’s the Wrexham County Borough Council who were involved in the fiddle that I have previously blogged about which ensured that Dafydd and Lucille’s charity CAIS landed the contract for ‘service user involvement’ across the whole of north Wales then. Paul has previous – in 2005 he was Head of Finance and Assests for Denbighshire County Council. Denbighshire County Council has featured on the blog previously regarding irregularities in the funds – on some occasions the funds weren’t there. In 2015 Paul was appointed a Director of CCG, the ‘social landlord’ that was formed when the housing stock of Gwynedd County Council was transferred. The CCG who continues to employ the same staff who fiddled and embezzled when they were employed by the housing dept in Gwynedd County Council (see post ‘News Round-Up, March 24 2017’), the CCG that is the subject of constant serious complaints and media exposes.

Judy Owen. Judy is a Trustee/Director of St Kentigerns Hospice – that’s right, the hospice from which Trefor has just stepped down as Chairman! Judy joined Pilkington P.E. Ltd in 1973 and progressed to the role of site accountant. So she was an employee of Trefor’s then – and was responsible for the dosh. In 1999 she left Pilkington to work for Euro DPC at Llanberis, where she became finance director. I used to live near Euro DPC and they became a legend. When they first opened their doors in 1991 or 1992, they placed big adverts in the local papers telling local people how many ‘opportunities’ would be available. The employment situation in the area was dire, so everyone – including me – beat a path to their door. What a shock we had. The ‘international biotech company’ who had told the world that there would be well-paid managerial and scientific jobs in Llanberis was indeed seeking managers and scientists, but they had no intention of paying managers and scientists professional salaries, at least if those managers and scientists were local. I was offered the grand sum of £6000 pa after replying to an advert for scientists with postgrad qualifications and experience and the son of someone else I know was offered a similar pittance when he applied for a managerial position. When I asked why they were offering their scientists and technicians such poor pay they cheerily told me that the ‘market rate’ in Gwynedd dictated the salaries on offer. Euro DPC also had a plant in Oxford – where people doing exactly the same jobs as in Llanberis were paid very much more. I knew of one person who moved from Gwynedd to Oxford to do exactly the same job for much higher pay. Because Euro DPC paid sheepshaggers less. I that bet Euro DPC received ‘funding’ from the WDA to set that plant up in Llanberis as well. Do you want to tell us what was going on in that company Judy? Euro DPC played fast and loose with Health and Safety as well. One of the students that I did teacher training with in 2000/01 was partially blind. She’d been a chemist at Euro DPC in Llanberis, there’d been an accident and chemicals had got into her eye – there was no first aider on the premises and a manager refused to take her to Ysbyty Gwynedd for a check up. She suffered damage to her sight.

Phil Storrow. Phil is Head of a Dept at Glyndwr. He used to work at British Aerospace, just like Trefor. Phil is also a Director of Optic Glyndwr Ltd and of Glyndwr Innovations Ltd. So he is a Head of Dept at Glyndwr, a Director of two businesses owned by the University and a member of the University’s governing body – having previously worked for a company that the University’s Chancellor is associated with. Phil is also a Trustee of the Chester Childbirth Appeal. I don’t know what that is all about – although no doubt Trefor Jones will be involved somewhere – but the Countess of Chester Hospital has received an awful lot of bad publicity recently after it was revealed that the care was shite and a number of babies died unnecessarily. But then the maternity care at that hospital was not what it should have been for many years, but no-one piped up.

David Subbachi. Yet another Magistrate – David has sat on the Wrexham and Denbigh Benches for twenty years and was Chair of the Denbigh Bench. He is a former member of the Lord Chancellor’s Advisory Committee for North Wales on the selection and recruitment of Magistrates and a member of the Welsh Bench Chair’s Forum as well as the National Council for Magistrates’ Association. David’s career was spent as a civil servant in the Valuation Office Agency. He is a governor of Ysgol Morgan Llwyd Wrexham and a former governor of St Mary’s RC School, Wrexham. David’s wife is Chair of Offa Community Council.

Vincent Ryan. He was born and educated in Wrexham, but he won’t have been one of the kids who grew up in a children’s home there. He has a law degree from Cardiff University and in 1981 joined Allington Hughes Solicitors, becoming a partner with the firm in 1988. He stayed until 2009. So he was a local lawyer both whilst the paedophile ring raged and throughout the Waterhouse cover-up then. Which explains why he’s the Chair of Trustees of the Wrexham Diocesan Protection Management Committee. Vincent is an employment judge at employment tribunals.

Brian Everett. Brian has spent his career in UCU (Universities and Colleges Union). He is an employment judge in employment tribunals as well. Brian is a Director of Bevere H Consulting and the Chair of Wrexham RC Diocesan Safeguarding Commission. He is also a Trustee of the CAB. As is Lucille Hughes, the woman who was named in the Waterhouse Report as knowing that a paedophile ring was operating in the social services but failed to act, whilst she was Director of Gwynedd Social Services. Brian is Trustee and Chair of the Charles Lloyd Foundation.

Neil Ashbridge.  Neil is a non-executive Director of Cartrefi Conwy and Vice-Chair of Disability Wales. He is a member of the Liverpool Cathedral Finance Committee; a member of Liverpool Hope University’s Executive Advisory Board; a member of Oxford University’s Business Economy Project Advisory Board; a member of the Welsh Industrial Development Advisory Board; a Director of the Board of West Cheshire and North Wales Chamber of Commerce; the Chair of Liverpool Chamber of Commerce.

Professor Sandra Jowett. Sandra is Vice-Chair of the National Open College Network; a non-executive Director of Pennine Care NHS Foundation Trust; an Emeritus Professor at the University of Cumbria. Her son works for KPMG, London.

Tim Mitchell. Tim is a Director of McLintocks, Wrexham; a Director of the recently formed North Wales Crusaders Rugby League team, based at Glyndwr University Racecourse Stadium; the Hon Sec of the Chester and North Wales Society of Chartered Accountants.

Askar Sheibani. A Director of Deeside Business Forum Ltd; Group CEO Comtek Network Systems Ltd; a member of the Alyn and Deeside Constituency Labour Party.

Dr Colin Stuhlfelder. Colin is a Senior Lecturer in the Built Environment at Glyndwr University. He is also a Board member of Riverside Mersey North Housing Provider.

Emma Perrin. Emma’s spouse works at Airbus Operations at Broughton. Trefor’s former employers.

 

Well, there we have it. Perhaps I ought to open a competition for readers to see who can spot the highest number of conflicts of interest among that lot – before anyone does yet more research on the organisations that I’ve mentioned. The over-riding impression is of a group of people many of whom have worked for or with Trefor Jones or are involved in charitable causes or local authorities with which he has connections and who are in a position to do favours for or benefit from Glyndwr University. Many of whom are involved in the criminal justice system, which must be a dream for the paedophiles’ friends who are still cluttering up the region.

One further point about the organs of government at Glyndwr University. They have a senior member of staff, James Dawson – who has a famous brother-in-law. Dawson’s brother-in-law is John McTernan, the Rottweiler and former Director of Political Operations for Tony Blair! I have blogged about how Dawson left his previous job at Bangor University under a cloud after trying to steal a number of computers. One of which was mine, with lots and lots of info on it concerning the wrongdoing of the north Wales mental health services and how Blair’s Gov’t was keeping that as well as many other mental health scandals quiet (see post ‘When Showbiz Meets Politics’).

 

Having had a taste of what Trefor Jones got up to in his roles as Lord Lieutenant and Chancellor of Glyndwr University, I thought that I’d check out what might have been going on at St Kentigerns Hospice, where he was Chairman until literally a few days ago. I prioritised identifying who are Trustees and Patrons.

Trustees include:

Lady Susan Langford, the President. I have provided details re Susan earlier.

Judy Owen, Treasurer. That’s the Judy described earlier – who used to work as the accountant for Trefor’s company and then worked as the finance director for the dodgy Euro DPC.

Professor Mari Lloyd Williams. Mari is a Top Doctor specialising in palliative care who works at the University of Liverpool North West Cancer Centre. She has served on the fitness to practice and professional conduct committees of the GMC; on the HEFCW (Higher Education Funding Council for Wales) and UKHEAC committees 2006-12; was appointed by the Welsh Assembly Gov’t to the Review of Governance in HE in Wales; was a member of the Advisory Group under Chair Sir Adrian Webb into the Future of Higher Education in North East Wales; Chairs the Tenovus Cancer Charity Psychosocial Grants Committee. With all those connections to healthcare research and HE, presumably Mari could help Glyndwr University out if she wanted to. She’s also been in a position to decide what fate should befall the dreadful Top Doctors of north Wales should the GMC ever decide to place any of them in front of a Tribunal.

David Gozzard. David is a retired Consultant Haematologist from Ysbyty Glan Clwyd, a position that he achieved in 1988. He was Clinical Director of Pathology and was Medical Director of the Conwy and Denbighshire NHS Trust – Trefor was Vice-Chairman! After the Conwy and Denbighshire NHS Trust evolved into the North Wales NHS Trust – yet another reorganisation in a desperate attempt to stop the regional NHS killing people and it’s staff/managers siphoning off NHS funds – David became Medical Director of the new organisation. David was also Chair of the North Wales Medical Committee 2001-04.

Having been Clinical Director of Pathology in Ysbyty Glan Clwyd, David might be able to clear up a long-standing puzzle. In the summer of 1991 I had one of my many Bizarre Experiences. I had moved back to north Wales to live and I applied for a job in the path labs of Ysbyty Glan Clwyd. I was called for interview and faced a panel of three people. One man was someone from IT who was obviously the brightest on the panel but was the most junior in the hierarchy in terms of jobs, the other was a senior person from the lab staff – could it have been David Gozzard? – and the other was a most extraordinary man, even by the standards of north Wales, a Top Doctor called Binns-Smith. I should have realised that I was in for a fun time, because before I was called in for the interview I was sat in a waiting area near to some workmen who were working on the ceiling. An enormous man with a huge belly, no jacket, open-necked shirt and no tie emerged from an office nearby and started bellowing at the men working on the ceiling, hurling insults about the ‘average British workman’ no less. I presumed that he must have been their foreman, particularly as he was in possession of the stereotypical builder’s bum as his trousers started to descend whilst he yelled at the workmen. Then I noticed that not only were his trousers descending, but his flies were undone so in total quite an expanse of ancient white Y fronts were on display. He turned to me and asked if I was waiting for interview – this man it transpired was Dr Binns-Smith, head of pathology ay Ysbyty Glan Clwyd.

I followed Binns-Smith into the interview room with him still bellowing about British workmen. As I sat down, one of the others on the ‘panel’ gave me a very strained smile and simply said ‘portent’. Binns-Smith didn’t respond, but then introduced me to the IT man, making a joke about him being so lowly in the workforce but of course ‘everybody calls him the boss’. Binns-Smith commented that he had noted from my CV that I had a postgrad degree from and had worked in the London medical schools. He then launched into a rant about how his son had applied for a place in the London medical schools but had been rejected by all of them and the trouble was that medical schools were full of ‘cabbage patch socialism’ (whatever that is) and that his son’s teachers had advised him to apply for other courses after clearing but he wasn’t having his son doing an ‘arty farty’ course. This man was clearly both mad and offensive and was obviously embarrassing the other ‘interviewers’ who sat there without saying a word. I did wonder what his son was like – could he perhaps actually keep his trousers up, unlike his father? Was he as obnoxious as dad, or was he truly oppressed, having been told by his father to apply for medicine when he wasn’t able to gain the high grades needed? After about ten minutes of this, I decided that I really didn’t want to work for this lunatic, so I told Binns-Smith that I was leaving. As I walked out, I heard him bellowing at the other two men ‘gentlemen, this interview is over’. I expected the mother of all insulting letters afterwards, but I never heard another thing. I asked around, but no-one I knew was acquainted with Binns-Smith. Unlike Dafydd who regularly hit the media, I never saw any references to Binns-Smith in the local papers either. I have tried googling him since then, but nothing. Some years after my encounter with him, I did of course start hearing stories that Ysbyty Glan Clwyd was every bit as dangerous, corrupt and mismanaged as Ysbyty Gwynedd and that people were being misdiagnosed and dying when they shouldn’t have been. In the light of who was running their pathology dept I cannot say that I was surprised. Binns-Smith wasn’t the average British workman but he was only marginally worse than the average north Wales Top Doctor. If David Gozzard gets to read this blog and fancies meeting up, I’d dearly love to hear the many anecdotes that I know will have circulated around Ysbyty Glan Clwyd about that man.

St Kentigerns Hospice has a number of Patrons, one of whom is Colonel Lord Geoffrey Langford, Susan’s husband!  Lord Langford was identified as being 100 years old in an article about him a few years ago, so I’d be surprised if he was still alive. He spent his career in the British Army and inherited the family seat at Rhuddlan from a member of his extended family who had died without children. He married a number of times, the last time in 1975 to Susan. Who was then Susan Denham from Wrexham. I presume that Susan is quite a bit younger than Colonel Lord. Colonel Lord’s heir was listed as being his son, Owain Grenville Rowley-Conwy, who married a Joanna Featherstone. I presume that Owain is now Lord Langley. I note that after Trefor Jones finished his stint as Lord Lieutenant of Clwyd, the next Lord Lieutenant was someone Featherstone. It just has to be one of Joanna’s relatives doesn’t it.

One recent media article reporting that Trefor Jones was standing down as Chair of St Kentigerns after seven years mentioned that St Kentigerns was ‘saved’ solely by Trefor a few years ago when it faced bankruptcy. There were no details of how Trefor raised the money needed to save it – which will have been considerable. Trefor won’t have had it in his piggy bank. Perhaps Judy Owens – the Treasurer of St Kentigens, the former accountant of Trefor’s company and the former finance director of Euro DPC – might like to tell us.

 

I’m going to terrify readers a bit more now. Whilst I was searching for info on Trefor – I’ve only carried out a very brief search, God knows how much else I’d find if I spent a few days on it – I cam across Trefor’s name in Hansard no less. Trefor’s name appears in a document that was prepared in March 2008 and submitted to the Welsh Affairs Committee when the Committee were considering the provision of cross-border health services for Wales. The document is entitled ‘Memorandum Submitted By Huw Thomas And Colleagues’ beneath which are the words ‘submission from a group of retired people who have played a prominent role in the NHS and public life in North Wales’. The document is a lengthy, furious response to the proposals by Edwina Hart, the then Minister for Health, to redirect elective neurosurgery patients away from The Walton Centre in Liverpool to the Morriston Hospital in Swansea. I hadn’t seen this document before, but I remember that row very well. It happened as the Top Doctors and their associates in north Wales were doing their utmost to bring Edwina down. They really loathed her. The charge from the GPs was led by Dr Eamonn Jessup, who at the time was displaying a Facebook group on his Facebook page entitled ‘higher pay for doctors’. Dr Richard Tranter, lately of the Hergest Unit, was telling his patients that Edwina wanted patients referred to the Morriston because it was near her constituency. Tranter was also telling his patients to write to their AMs and MPs to complain about the NHS. Did Tranter ever tell patients to do this some years previously when the Hergest Unit were framing patients who had complained and presided over one of the highest suicide rates in the UK? No, he only did it when the Top Doctors began their co-ordinated campaign against Edwina.

The ‘memorandum’ bangs on at great length, presenting what it believes is a clinical case for continuing to refer patients to The Walton Centre. I note that the memorandum isn’t only fighting on behalf of The Walton Centre – it is also angrily maintaining that patients should not be referred to Cardiff and that referrals from north Wales should continue to Alder Hey Children’s Hospital, Broadgreen Cardio-Thoracic Centre, Manchester Royal Infirmary Cardiac Centre and Robert Jones and Agnes Hunt Gobowen (spinal injuries and specialist orthopaedics).

Now there are a great many arguments for and against sending patients from north Wales to either the north west of England or to Cardiff or Swansea for complex specialist treatment. But what I’m interested in is who signed that ‘memorandum’ along with Trefor. Because I recognised a lot of those names. Many of them are names that can be found on the early medical records of mine that my lawyer had to go to the High Court to extract. They are the names of people whom I had never met and in many cases whom I did not know existed – but they were all part of the effort to have me either banged up in a secure hospital on the grounds of my ‘dangerousness’ which was predicated entirely on statements made by Dr Dafydd Alun Jones and Dr Tony Francis (Dr X) which they knew were untrue, or prosecuted for offences which they knew that I had not committed. Many of the names were also advising on how not to investigate my complaints concerning the criminal activities of Dr Dafydd Alun Jones, Dr Tony Francis and the staff of Gwynedd Social Services. Francis, Jones and Gwynedd Social Services were at the time facilitating and concealing the paedophile ring. I also recognised some of the names from archive material dating from the late 80s – they were the names of the people who were running Gwynedd Health Authority so badly that the Health Authority was bankrupt, the Welsh Office had sent a hit squad in and David Hunt, the Secretary of State for Wales, was writing letters to them himself.

The following names were the names that I recognised:

Dr Cedric Davies, former Director of Public Health Medicine, Gwynedd Health Authority. Cedric was on very chummy terms with Tony Francis and was part of a plot to incarcerate me in the Caswell Clinic in south Wales – although I was living and working in London.

Noreen Edwards, former Chairman of Gwynedd Health Authority. Noreen was cc’d into most letters about me. David Hunt wrote to Noreen Edwards regarding the ‘crisis’ in Gwynedd Health Authority – which had been caused by her and her mates.

Professor Robert Owen, former Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon at Robert Jones and Agnes Hunt Hospital Gobowen and Professor of Orthopaedics at Liverpool University. Robert Owen was the Medical Ombudsman for the Welsh Office who organised the cover-up led by Professor Robert Bluglass after I complained about the criminal conduct of Dafydd et al (see post ‘Enter Professor Robert Bluglass CBE’). I now have documents demonstrating that doctors who were not part of my complaint and whom I was no longer being ‘treated’ by were communicating with Robert Owen without my knowledge, outside the parameters of the ‘investigation’ and were communicating with him about this at his home in Colwyn Bay. (By the way on an earlier post I stated that Robert Owen was a surgeon and prof at Cardiff – I had always presumed that, because I met him in Cardiff and of course the letters from him had a Cardiff address on them, although it was obviously the Welsh Office’s address. The info in this post concerning Owen’s affiliations to Liverpool University and the Robert Jones and Agnes Hunt Hospital was supplied by Owen himself in the ‘memorandum’.)

Dr David Roberts, former Consultant in Public Health Medicine, Gwynedd Health Authority. David Roberts was cc’d into letters about me.

Hilary Stevens, former Chairman, Conwy and Denbighshire NHS Trust. I used to see Hilary in action when she was a member of the Betsi Board when the Betsi was first formed. She certainly wasn’t as mad or as obnoxious as many of those we know and love, but Hilary obviously didn’t have a grip on the Conwy and Denbighshire NHS Trust. Was this because Hilary was a normal human being who was unable to control a load of criminals, some of whom had concealed a paedophile ring? Or was Hilary a smiling devil with better social skills than the rest of them?

Professor Eric Sunderland, former Vice-Chancellor of Bangor University and Lord Lieutenant of Gwynedd. Professor Sunderland always struck me as being very establishment but not barking mad or corrupt. But he did run a University full of the paedophiles’ friends with Gwynne the lobotomist working in the Student Health Centre. Perhaps Eric was someone else who was surrounded by monsters whom he couldn’t control. Either way, he can’t have been completely Of Them because he never received a knighthood. Which everybody expected him to. I was told that Eric and his wife were deeply hurt by this lack of recognition and that Professor Sunderland Not Being Given A K was another north Wales conundrum. He should have taken it as a compliment – he obviously wasn’t friendly enough with the paedophiles’ friends. And if he’d been a child molester himself, he’d have been given a peerage and admitted into the highest echelons, along with Greville Janner.

Huw Thomas, former Chief Executive of Gwynedd Health Authority. Huw wrote me inane – and in the end rude – letters and failed to investigate the most serious of complaints. He was also writing the paedophiles’ friends letters about me – he was much friendlier to them than he was to me. Huw was Chief Exec of Gwynedd Health Authority at the time of the ‘crisis’ when David Hunt had words with Noreen.

The signatures of people unknown to me are:

Dr Pat Barry, former Consultant Anaesthetist, Ysbyty Gwynedd.

Mr Michael Crumplin, former Consultant Surgeon, Ysbyty Maelor.

Mr Chris Davies, former Consultant Surgeon, Ysbyty Glan Clwyd.

Dr Harry Edwards, former Consultant Anaesthetist, Ysbyty Gwynedd, Chair of Welsh Medical Committee.

Dr Ellen Emslie, former Consultant Dermatologist, Ysbyty Glan Clwyd.

Annwen Carey Evans, former High Sheriff, Gwynedd.

D.B. Carey Evans (no position given – presumably a nobody who was simply related to the High Sheriff, which was obviously quite enough to turn them into a somebody.)

Elizabeth Colwyn Foulkes.

Sir William Gladstone, former Lord Lieutenant of Clwyd.

Dr Jeffrey Green, former Consultant Cardiologist, Ysbyty Gwynedd.

Michael Griffiths, former Chairman, Clwyd Health Authority and Chairman, Conwy and Denbighshire NHS Trust.

Dr Idris Humphries, former GP and Chairman of Welsh General Medical Service’s Committee.

Mr O.M. Jonathon, former Consultant Surgeon, Ysbyty Glan Clwyd.

Professor David Jones, former Chief Nursing Officer, Gwynedd Health Authority and Professor of Nursing, Sheffield University.

Mr David Jones, former Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon, Ysbyty Gwynedd and Great Ormond Street Children’s Hospital, London.

Dorothy Keddie, former Assistant Director of Nursing, North Wales Health Authority.

Mr Hywel Oliver, former Consultant Surgeon, Ysbyty Gwynedd.

Bill Owen, former Director of Finance, Gwynedd Health Authority.

Dr J. Gwyn Thomas, former GP and Chairman of Welsh Branch of Royal College of General Practitioners and Provost of Merseyside and North Wales Faculty of the Royal College of General Practitioners.

Dr Mari Thomas, former GP and Chairman of MENCAP Wales.

I do not know the above named, but I know from the positions that they were so proud to have held that they, variously, bankrupted a Health Authority, worked as leading Top Doctors in hospitals with appalling track records where serious mistakes were made which led to patients being maimed or killed, worked in a region where learning disabled people lived in dreadful conditions and were referred to as ‘cabbages’ by the managers of the ‘services’ supposedly caring for them, obstructed any attempts to improve services and declared all out war on patients who dared complain.

All of this lot who signed the ‘memorandum’ knew that terrible things were happening in the surgical depts of the local hospitals. They probably knew that the paediatrics dept of Ysbyty Gwynedd had such a dreadful reputation that there was an arrangement among local doctors that their own children would not be admitted there. Many of this lot also knew that there was a madman running the region’s psychiatric hospital, that he was sexually exploiting patients, that he was unlawfully incarcerating anyone who crossed the path of him or his criminal associates – of which there were many – and that some of those illegally incarcerated were literally never seen again. Oh and a lot of them will have known that a paedophile gang was operating in the children’s homes and that when the kids weren’t being beaten, starved or forced to work as free labour, they were being raped and buggered. This motley crew destroyed the fabric of north Wales – how did they believe that they had the right to send this foolish rubbish to Parliament and demand that they be listened to?

So why were this bunch of moribund old gits so desperate to get rid of Edwina and continue to send patients to hospitals where they had connections? Was it that they feared losing control of the vice-like grip that they had over the region and  – as with the employment of new staff from elsewhere  – they dreaded anyone uncovering evidence pointing to what they had done? Myself, I keep pondering on a truly nightmare scenario. I witnessed patients who were undoubtedly left to die after complaining about this shower – it was very obviously supposed to have happened to me as well. A number of us who refused to keep quiet have existed for years whilst being completely unable to access ANY medical treatment for any medical problem, no matter how painful or life threatening. We have found vicious rumours spread around the region about us and we found ourselves turfed out of jobs in bizarre circumstances. When we investigated, a member of the Cylch was always involved. People with businesses found themselves going out of business, even if they had previously been highly successful.

Some years ago, just before this almighty row erupted between Edwina and the paedophiles’ friends which hinged upon The Walton Centre, I knew of two people in north Wales who both developed brain tumours at about the same time. One was married to someone who was known to have had a bellyful of the paedophiles’ friends and would dearly have liked to see them brought down. The paedophiles’ friends themselves were doing everything that they could to shaft this person. The other person was a former social worker who had worked in this role when the paedophile gang were on the loose and undoubtedly knew what was happening. Both of these people were referred to Walton. The former social worker was operated on, made a slow but good recovery and still socialises with the paedophiles’ friends in retirement. The spouse of the person who was being targeted by the paedophiles’ friends was told that their tumour was inoperable and they subsequently died. Maybe that tumour was inoperable – but how would anyone ever know? I was told many things for many years – but once my lawyer obtained my medical records I discovered criminal conduct that shocked even me, I discovered that Top Doctors whom I always rated as being better than their colleagues and whom I liked and thought that I got on with well were ruthlessly using the fact that I trusted them to extract information about me and even people close to me in order to do as much damage to us as they could. I also found that the only two people who had actually dared stick their necks out to protect me had lost their jobs within months – after one was prosecuted and convicted of an indecent assault.

These people were involved in serious organised crime for years. And Edwina Hart knew all about – because I told her what was happening to me, as did a few other people. No wonder she wanted to put these fuckers out of action and stop them referring patients to their mates.

So to all the relatives of the people that they killed – have this blog as a free gift. I’ll name every single person whom I know was involved. Even those who spent time supping with HM the Queen. In fact, particularly those who spent time supping with HM the Queen.

The story dominating the news reports on the radio today has been the announcement that Alison Saunders (the DPP) is ordering the CPS to  prosecute trolls who send hate mail to others on social media. Female MPs in particular are waxing lyrical about this and Luciana Berger has been wheeled out on every news bulletin to tell us all how many nasty messages she gets and how they affected her mental health. I know that public figures -especially women – can be targeted by some deeply unpleasant people. Jess Phillips went public months ago on some of the online messages that she was receiving and read a few of them out – graphic descriptions of the various sexual tortures to which these sad bastards wanted to subject her. It is deeply, deeply unpleasant and it is not acceptable. But just look at what those we know and love have got away with and Alison Saunders and previous DPPs did nothing. In spite of the fact that back in the 90s, thousands and thousands of witness statements were taken and hundreds of people were identified as having abused children in care in north Wales. As for Luciana and her mental health – at one point Luciana was Jeremy Corbyn’s spokesperson on mental health. I was seriously underwhelmed by her complete failure to speak out about what actually happens to people in the mental health system. They die Luciana. Particularly if they have grown up in care and start talking about what happened to them.

 

There would seem to be many vampires in north Wales, particularly at Glyndwr University. But Dr Emyr Williams is not one of them. Emyr is a high achieving academic, someone who does not put himself first constantly and is a man of integrity. What on earth would north Wales want with one of them, it is hardly surprising that the writs are flying and the Daily Post is in overdrive.

 

 

 

Last Man Standing

I have plagiarized the title of this post from Jack Straw’s autobiography which I am about to start reading. Because I haven’t read his book yet I don’t know why a privileged former Cabinet Minister has framed himself as the last man standing, but the subject of this blog post really is worthy of that title, as his chances of reaching mid-life yet alone pensionable age were so much lower than Straw’s. I decided to write this post to illustrate the ways in which mental health patients’ experiences are grossly caricatured by mental health staff, how abuses and horrors are intentionally air-brushed out of medical histories and how if anyone really wanted to uncover the institutional wrongdoing that was prevalent in north Wales during the latter decades of the twentieth century they could, quite easily.

The man starring in this post is F, a man who has spent most of his adult life living among the hippy community in Bethesda. F acquired diagnoses of, variously, ‘paranoid schizophrenia’, ‘drug induced psychosis’ and ‘chronic psychotic illness, resistant to medication’. F did suffer from a psychotic illness and at stages during his life had been in a very bad way indeed, but the way in which he had arrived at that state does not appear in any of his medical records. F is – unbelievably for those of us who know something of his adventures – still alive, although I understand is no longer under the ‘care’ of the mental health services, after a lifetime of their ‘help’. He told them to piss off some three years ago as he had decided that they play no useful role.

As did many of the Bethesda hippies, F came from a middle class background in England but actively made the decision to ‘drop out’ sometime in the seventies. He moved to Bethesda in either the late 70s or early 80s when his first wife took up a place at Bangor to do teacher training. By the time that F had moved to Bethesda he had already acquired a degree in Fine Art – at one point he was described as the most talented artist in north Wales, but unlike his contemporaries Ed Povey and Peter Prendergast, F was seriously hampered by illness. He could still do the artistic bit and churned out excellent work but tended to say and do bizarre and unacceptable things at exhibitions or when trying to negotiate sales, which unsurprisingly resulted in him not ever selling very much.

By the time that they arrived in Bethesda, F and his wife were enthusiastic dope blowers as well as keen consumers of magic mushrooms. They were completely uninterested in narcotics, had pretty much given up amphetamines but occasionally took hallucinogens. Although F’s wife qualified as a teacher she didn’t like teaching and she established a gardening and house renovating business. F spent most of his time painting although he did spend a few summers working as a gardener at Penrhyn Castle – he inherited money as a young man which enabled him to lead quite a leisurely lifestyle. Previous posts have discussed the police corruption that was rampant in north Wales. This has received UK-wide media coverage because of the part that it played in the North Wales Child Abuse Scandal, but students and hippies invariably experienced it in the form of the completely bent drug squad that operated in north Wales, in particular two notorious plain clothes drug squad officers who used to frequent the Bangor area and stitch up anyone whom had crossed their path. The effect of the actions of these two was to constantly harass and prosecute people for possessing small amounts of cannabis whilst allowing a thriving trade in hard drugs to develop in the area, to a large degree facilitated by Dafydd Alun Jones’s ‘peer support workers’ at CAIS who were frequently dealing to their ‘clients’.

F came to the attention of the corrupt drug squad because he was basically a hippy who was newly arrived in the area. In the early 80s they raided his house. During the raid, they planted cocaine in his wife’s handbag and seized the small amount of cannabis that was in the house. The drug squad then ordered F’s wife to make a statement against him, framing him for possessing much greater quantities of drugs than he actually had, in return for a plea bargain concerning the cocaine that they had planted on her. F and his wife had a volatile relationship and led a fairly chaotic existence – although they were both bright and well-educated – and thus F’s wife allowed herself to be threatened by the drug squad in this way. So F was arrested and taken off to the police station. He was not given access to a solicitor whilst he was there. At the police station – I think it was Bangor – he was ordered to strip naked. After he did so, a senior officer – F described him as an ‘inspector’ – walked into the room and in F’s words ‘ogled me’ and commented on his genitals. F responded by saying ‘Christ can’t I even undress in peace’ and ‘why do you want to look at another naked man’. The Inspector punched him in the face. F responded by saying ‘that took a real man with the whole police force behind you’ and stated to the constable who had witnessed this assault that he would complain about this. The Inspector walked out and F didn’t see him again. F  was charged with possession of drugs – far more than he had actually been in possession of – and after a long while, with no medical attention following the punch in the face, was released. He went back to Bethesda, distressed after what had happened at the police station.

He was alone at home, his wife had gone back to England to visit family, not knowing what had happened at the station. That night, F descended into a full blown psychosis. He had not consumed any drugs since leaving the station – his interpretation is that the arrest, framing and assault at the station had been so traumatising that it all precipitated the psychotic episode. (F had experienced his first psychotic episode in England a couple of years previously.) F’s account of that night is that he hallucinated giant spiders crawling out of the walls, a demon sitting in the corner of the room and then heard God’s voice telling him to ‘raze this house’. F set fire to the house – it was a terrace and fortunately the neighbours saw smoke and called the fire brigade. By this time F had left the house believing that it was possessed. He spent the night outside, seriously ill and he was only picked up when the police arrested him for arson and endangering life.

He was taken to the magistrates court – I think in Bangor – and was detained in the notorious Risley Remand Centre for ‘psychiatric assessment’. F’s account is that after two weeks or so in Risley, the psychotic episode had passed – not that he received any ‘medication’ whilst he was there. He graphically described to me how every night he heard the screams of the other prisoners as they were beaten up by the prison officers, how prison officers taunted all the prisoners with threats of ‘we’ll make sure you come back here and it will be even worse when you do’ and how when he asked an officer if he would change the light bulb in his cell because it kept flickering on and off and was stopping him from sleeping, the officer removed the light bulb leaving him in darkness saying ‘you’ll sleep alright now won’t you’. He was left in darkness for several days. But something else happened to F whilst he was in Risley. A detective from London came to visit him and tried to interview him. This detective got frustrated with F and gave up, threw him back in his cell saying ‘There’s no point talking to you, you’re mad’. F told me this story many times but he never managed to work out what it was that the detective from London wanted to know. F remembers the detective constantly saying ‘I want to talk to you about your brother’. F  had a brother who lived in Surrey whom he did not get on with and had little contact with. F’s brother ran the family business, he was not involved with drugs or hippydom and he was very condemning of F’s lifestyle. So it is unlikely that the detective would have been hoping to grill F about any potential criminal activities involving his brother.

I had always presumed that the detective would have been after info about the drugs trade in north Wales. But researching the details of the North Wales Child Abuse Ring and it’s network into Westminster has thrown up another possibility that F himself never mentioned. F had been violently assaulted after challenging an Inspector who had walked into his cell after F had been framed and ordered to take off his clothes. F was a young man when this happened, he was attractive as a young man and he was also very slightly built. We now know that police officers such as Gordon Anglesea – who was, guess what, an Inspector – were sexually abusing boys and young men after they had been arrested, detained and criminalised for trivial offences. Those young men described being violently assaulted if they resisted – and many of them ended up in Risley Remand Centre or in the mental health system. F had announced his intention to complain about the officer who hit him. The assault had been witnessed by a constable. F was not an illiterate teenager who had grown up in care, he was from a middle class affluent family and his wife’s father was a society dentist with mates in Harley Street. F’s wife’s brother was a journalist. I’m wondering if there might have been some very worried police officers after F ended up going psychotic – F had of course made the headlines of the local papers after setting fire to the house. I suspect that this might have been why F received a visit from a detective from London when he was in Risley. F’s father was dead and his mother had returned to South Africa to live (she grew up there and only moved to England after she married) – so F’s brother was his only blood relative. F’s next of kin was of course his wife – who had been framed by the police herself and forced to make a statement against him. I really don’t think that the North Wales Police would have wanted to answer any difficult questions about what had happened to F in the police station.

So what happened to F after this detective visited him in Risley? Whilst he was there, F’s psychotic episode quietened down. By this time he did have a solicitor, who visited him in Risley and told him that although everyone accepted that he was no longer psychotic, he was going to be transferred to the North Wales Hospital Denbigh ‘to keep the courts happy’. F was told that he would only be expected to stay at Denbigh for three weeks or so. The charges of ‘endangering life’ were dropped – interestingly enough, after F’s solicitor mentioned that he had been assaulted by an unidentified police officer. F was charged and convicted of arson. He was then transferred to the North Wales Hospital – to the care of one Dr Dafydd Alun Jones!

So F arrived at Denbigh, no longer psychotic. Once there he was told again that he would just be there for a month or so as a formality. He had an interview with Dafydd and like all interviews with Dafydd it was bizarre. F described Dafydd as ‘a bit of a twat’, but F is quite open and friendly even to twats, so cheerfully engaged in a conversation with Dafydd about his cannabis smoking habits. F’s account of his interview with Dafydd is worth hearing – he does a good impersonation of Dafydd and explains how he mentioned to Dafydd that he was walking in the mountains and ate some grass. To which Dafydd responded ‘do you mean mar-i-jew-a-na?’. F replied ‘no, grass’. Dafydd asked ‘why were you eating grass?’ F explained ‘because I was thirsty’. At which point Dafydd began furiously scribbling away. F later caught sight of his notes – Dafydd had described him as ‘a man with pleasant manners and casual attire’ who of course was suffering from ‘cannabis psychosis’. No mention of F and his wife being framed by the drug squad, no mention of F being punched in the face by a senior police officer who had inexplicably appeared as F was naked, no mention of conditions at Risley Remand Centre, no mention of the detective from London visiting F at Risley, no mention of F no longer being psychotic and only being admitted to Denbigh ‘to keep the courts happy’. No mention of any of it – but a diagnosis of cannabis psychosis!

So did F only stay at Denbigh for a month to keep the courts happy? No, of course not. F was in Denbigh for a year. When F was first admitted to Denbigh, F commented to the nurses on their quasi-military uniforms. He playfully flicked the epaulettes on the shirt of one nurse and asked him if he was a sergeant major. He was dragged off down a corridor and sedated. After about four weeks in Denbigh F was offered amphetamines by another patient. Yes, Dafydd’s proud establishment, his much boasted about ‘therapeutic community’ where people who’d grown up in care and hippies had to remain for months and months to keep them away from the perils of cannabis, was host to a healthy trade in drugs much more problematic than cannabis. At the time that F was offered the amphetamines, he was severely depressed so he accepted the offer. Whatever he was given was incredibly strong – and it precipitated another psychotic episode. So F was deemed to be suffering from such a serious form of cannabis psychosis that he was detained by Dafydd for a year.

Imprisoning F for a year lest anyone began to investigate those corrupt police officers wasn’t enough for Dafydd though. F only narrowly escaped ending up in Holyrood House, the appalling ‘care home’ in Llandudno run by Margaret Richards that was choc full of Dafydd’s patients. Holyrood House was the centre of a media expose in the 1980s and even got a mention on ‘That’s Life’. Patients were being beaten up by a heavy who was employed as a ‘security guard’ there and a former drug addict from Liverpool was responsible for the drugs cabinet. When Dafydd finally decided that the coast was clear and that it was safe to let F out, he told F that he would make a better recovery in lovely Llandudno. F told me that he ‘wanted to get back to dogs, Bethesda and mess, not live in bloody Llandudno’. Dafydd then refused to let F out ‘because you do not have an offer of accommodation’. Apart from Holyrood House that was. After a few weeks of Dafydd trying to force F into Holyrood House or be forever incarcerated in Denbigh, F sneaked out of the grounds, rang a hippy friend in Bethesda, explained what was happening and the hippy friend agreed to write to Dafydd offering F accommodation. And that is the only way that F actually got out of Denbigh.

F had many other adventures in Denbigh. I’m not going to detail them all here, I’m going to let those we know and love guess how much F told me. They’ll all know who F is and because F is chatty a lot of them actually know what happened to him before he set fire to his house because he used to talk about it quite openly. But those bastards don’t know what else he told me….

Whilst F was in Denbigh, he did try and engage the help of the charity ‘Release’, which had a reputation for being able to get people out of prison or police custody if they had been arrested on drugs charges. A man from ‘Release’ did go all the way up to Denbigh from England, but he was unable to get F out. I wonder what he thought was happening – he had travelled to the wilds of Wales and found a sane but eccentric man being held prisoner in a hell-hole…

I knew F well for the best part of ten years and I knew how he and his problems were conceptualised by the Hergest Unit throughout the 1990s. It was all a matter of drug induced psychosis – or occasionally there would be speculation that he was someone who would have been vulnerable to psychosis anyway, but his consumption of drugs triggered it. I heard him tell Hergest staff what had happened before the fire. I was even in his company when he met the policeman who had witnessed the Inspector punch him in the face and he reminded that policeman of what had happened that day – the policeman still worked locally. The policeman looked sheepish and had a sudden lapse of memory. More recently that particular policeman was stationed at Ysbyty Gwynedd.

North Wales is heaving with people who knew that these sorts of things were happening. They are all colluding in a sort of en masse delusion as many of them now move into their comfortable retirements on public service pensions. Every time the North Wales Child Abuse ring is mentioned – ooh, no, I never knew anything about that. Every time police corruption is mentioned – ooh but we never knew. As for Denbigh – ooh it wasn’t good, but no, we didn’t know patients were being abused….

F’s adventures at Risley and at the hands of Dafydd are some thirty years ago now. But F was stung more recently all over again by those we know and love. My post ‘It’s All About Protecting Children’ details how F was denied access to his own baby because he dared report a child molester who was being protected by Jo Bott, the monstrous ‘safeguarding officer’. Bott had previously been a police officer. That post also describes the untimely death of yet someone else who had witnessed wrongdoing on the part of Gwynedd Social Service’s child protection team – this young man was killed just at the time that no-one could deny any longer that child abuse on an enormous scale had taken place in north Wales and talk of police cover-ups and possible public inquiries were in the media.

I mentioned at the beginning of this post how F has suffered from a psychotic illness throughout his life. This is true – he is bright and sociable, but he certainly had difficulties throughout the whole time that I knew him. But the thing that I noticed more and more during the 90s were that a lot of F’s difficulties were being caused by the mental health services. Not just in the obvious ways – they stood by whilst he was fleeced financially by an unscrupulous family after he finally split up from his first wife and they stood by whilst lies were perpetuated about him which led to him losing access to his own child – but the ‘medication regime’ that he was on had to be witnessed to be believed. This was someone who when he was young did take drugs – but he gave up illegal drugs after the house fire and the year in Denbigh. Instead he moved onto prescribed drugs – which were given to him in huge quantities by the mental health services. Obviously they didn’t have to work too hard to persuade him to take them, he was delighted to have some drugs to take – but they did bugger all to try to stop him. As far as I knew there were only two people – two of the rather better GPs that worked in the area – who warned him frankly about the dangers of excessive drugs and told him that they would in no way collude with him if he abused prescription drugs. The psychiatrists at the Hergest Unit – namely Dr Tony Francis (Dr X) and Dr Bob Tresman – loaded him up with more and more drugs as the years went by. The drugs were never reviewed, although they were very obviously affecting F’s functioning – he used to sleep for about 18 hours a day because he was so heavily sedated – and whenever he expressed any anxiety or stress (which he did very regularly) the prescription pad would be wielded and another anti-psychotic or benzodiazepine would be added. But no drug was EVER removed as another one was added. Suggestions from other people that he might be massively over-medicated would be brushed aside with ‘but he’s got a psychotic illness’. Yet bizarrely his Hergest notes described him as ‘chronically psychotic, resistant to medication’. If his illness was resistant to medication why did they continue to dispense so much of it and continue adding to it?

As F hit his 40s, his teeth very obviously began to disintegrate. He maintained that there was nothing wrong with his teeth because he wasn’t experiencing toothache. In the end, he was persuaded by his friends to visit a dentist. By the time that he made that visit his teeth were so far gone that the dentist maintained that the only option was to remove the remains that were there. F was staggered and asked the dentist why he hadn’t been getting toothache. The dentist explained that he was on such high levels of benzodiazepines and anti-psychotics that his pain receptors weren’t responding. Even the dentist was shocked as to the drugs that were being prescribed. There was one person in F’s life who took prescription drugs along with him though – that was a social worker who lived in the village who had been a friend of his from his hippy days. She used to pop around for a coffee and down a few benzodiazepines with him, just as the rest of his friends were desperately trying to impress upon him that the shite being foisted upon him by the wielders of prescription pads in the Hergest was not really doing him any good. That social worker now works as a social work trainer for Conwy!

F is no longer living in Bethesda and I haven’t seen him for years, but one of my friends is in contact with him. He is now in his 60s and I am told that his psychotic symptoms have decreased drastically, that he still paints and that his moods are much more stable. A few years ago for a while, for the first time in his life, he was allocated a CPN whom I was told was head and shoulders above the others. This CPN actually managed to get a review of F’s medication to reduce the amount being prescribed. His psychotic symptoms gradually started to recede….

So that’s the story of F, who is indeed the last man standing from Denbigh. As far as I know, I and two other women are the last women standing. Like nearly all the former kids in care who witnessed the North Wales Paedophile Ring in action, everyone else from Denbigh (and pretty much the early days of the Hergest Unit as well) is dead. But before they died, they will have told scores of people what had happened to them. Which was almost certainly why no-one worked too hard to ensure that they stayed alive.

F spent more than thirty years being used by the mental health services in north Wales as a cautionary tale of the perils of Too Much Cannabis. He was actually the consequence of a corrupt drug squad, a perverted and violent police inspector, a corrupt magistrates court and Dr Dafydd Alun Jones and the associated thoroughly rotten mental health and children’s services. Compared to the damage that lot did to F, the cannabis was neither here nor there.

Although the main trashing of F seems to have been precipitated by the fear of what would happen if anyone started investigating the circumstances in which he was arrested and what subsequently went on in the police station, a lot of people had a vested interest years later in ensuring that no-one would believe anything that F said and not just because of his knowledge of the misconduct on the part of the children’s services in Gwynedd. F had a sense of humour and although he was always dismissed by Hergest staff as being completely mad, he chatted to people, listened to their stories, remembered those stories and often knew some of the ‘professionals’ whose misconduct he was hearing about. He had heard nearly as many first hand accounts of Dr Dafydd Alun Jones’s inappropriate conduct with female patients and staff as I had heard; he noticed that everyone appointed as a ‘service user representative’ in Gwynedd and Anglesey was a total fuckwit who were simply doing what they were told by the managers of the mental health services and he confronted Alun Davies, the manager of the Hergest Unit, about the naked corruption that was occurring between the managers and clinical director of Ysbyty Gwynedd, Dr Terry Maxwell; he personally knew people who had been threatened with violence by staff of the Arfon Community Mental Health Team; he knew scores of dispossessed people in the area whose lives had been ruined by those we know and love, including people who had been sexually molested by people paid to care for them; he knew about the corruption in MIND and had confronted the staff in the Bangor branch about it and was then banned from the ‘drop in centre’ by the Voice Of The Patients Helen Milne (who after ignoring the criminal abuse of patients at MIND was given the Rape Crisis Centre to play with would you believe) and sometimes, as a result of entertaining himself, F would uncover serious wrongdoing. One such occasion involved F’s efforts to secure a telephone for the Hergest whistleblower.

The Hergest whistleblower led a team of three or four and was the most valuable, helpful member of staff at the Hergest Unit. He was of course also the only person who kept blowing the whistle on the malpractice up there. F noticed that the Hergest whistleblower was treated very disrespectfully by Alun Davies and that although he was a team leader and had a bigger client load than anyone else, the Hergest whistleblower was the only member of staff who didn’t have a phone in his office. So F announced that he would get him a phone. He didn’t tell the whistleblower that he was going to do this, but he did tell me. F then rang BT and told them that he was John Mullen – who was either Chair or Chief Exec of the Trust at the time – and that he wanted to order an extra phone for an office in the Hergest Unit. And BT actually said ‘will this be on the special arrangement Mr Mullen?’ F was not asked to prove who he was, he was not asked anything about an invoice or an account, he was just asked if it was to be on the special arrangement. So F said ‘yes please’ and gave BT the number of the office in the Hergest Unit in which the whistleblower worked. There were literally no questions asked at all, BT cheerily stated that they would be installing the phone asap. F then rang the receptionist of the Hergest Unit, claiming to be BT and told her that a telephone would soon be arriving for the Hergest whistleblower’s office and when BT arrived please could she show them to the correct office. She was happy to oblige. I didn’t think that this plan would ever work, but it was really incredible because about a week later, there was a newly installed phone in the whistleblower’s office. F asked him about it and the whistleblower said ‘it’s all rather odd, I didn’t ask for a phone, Alun Davies told me that I wouldn’t be getting one, but it just arrived’.

So as Brown pointed out, there was obviously an irregular corrupt arrangement between that Trust and BT. Where had the bill for the installation of the phone been sent? Where was the bill for the use of the phone being sent? What on earth was the ‘special arrangement’? How the bloody hell could a patient make one phone call to BT’s marketing dept, claiming to be John Mullen and order a phone? Brown speculated that people in that Trust were installing home phones for themselves and charging them to the NHS and suggested that F could probably have ordered a car for the Hergest whistleblower as well and had that on a special arrangement.

Would John Mullen and Alun Davies care to enlighten us all regarding the ‘special arrangement’? This was happening during the John Major NHS efficiency years, circa 1995. About the time of the Jillings Report and all those assurances from the Welsh Office that there was nothing at all untoward happening in the public services in north Wales. Ooh and about the time that Dafydd was allowed to retire without all the very serious complaints about him being followed up and with the contract for providing ‘substance abuse services’ in his greedy clutches (see post ‘The Evolution Of a Drugs Baron?’).

F’s problems with the North Wales Police were a regular occurrence as well. At one point for a short while, he moved to Holyhead. His house was burgled and he called the police. An officer arrived who then threatened F. F told the officer that he would complain to a senior officer about this – so the police were forewarned. F arrived at the police station shortly afterwards and explained to the desk sergeant that he wished to make a complaint. The desk sergeant tried to obstruct him, so F asked to see the Inspector. The desk sergeant disappeared into the depths and F heard him swearing away at the Inspector waxing lyrical about what a pain F was. F heard the Inspector ask ‘but is he intelligent?’. The sergeant replied ‘yes’. F was entertained to find that the Inspector then appeared wearing a pair of half moons, presumably with the intention of impressing upon F that he was a scholarly intellectual man, rather than a corrupt old bastard whose officers threatened burglary victims. F’s complaint went uninvestigated. The half moons became a joke, because of course Dafydd and many of the other clapped out old fools with whom we all had to deal sported half moons. I have been told that in criminology, this sort of thing is known as a ‘signifier’ – conmen use such techniques, for example brass plaques outside the buildings of people masquerading as professionals when they are not. But in north Wales it was half moons.

Readers might think that although mental health professionals and others in north Wales were told hair-raising stories by F, this was a man who did suffer from a psychotic illness and perhaps those professionals genuinely didn’t believe the stories that F recounted. After all, Dafydd et al were writing down that F had ‘cannabis psychosis’, they certainly weren’t recording what had actually happened to him at their hands or anyone else’s, although he was telling everyone very clearly. It would be understandable to conclude that in the face of wrongdoing this dreadful, it could be difficult to believe a patient with serious mental health problems. But as I keep mentioning, there are some old lags in north Wales who’ve cluttered up the place for decades and they witnessed much of this, although every time there’s an investigation it’s a case of ‘I Know Nuzzing’. That is why I’ve started naming people on this blog.

Now there is one social worker in north Wales who has spent the last twenty years working in community work/probation work/alcohol and substance abuse services/social work training who most definitely knows the names of many of the sinners and knows about the sins that they committed – and many, many years ago he knew F. Step forward Wulf Livingstone, Senior Lecturer in Social Work at Glyndwr University.

Wulf Livingstone certainly knows me from my time working in the School of Social Sciences at Bangor University, but I doubt that he remembers the first time that he met me. It was in about 1993 and I was in a café in Bangor with F. Livingstone breezed through and F cheerily greeted him, only to be patronised by Wulf and spoken to like a loony. That was because Wulf was moving away from being a ‘service user’ himself into one who provides the services. After Wulf had gone, F explained that he knew Wulf from his drug taking days and that Wulf had ‘worked as a cook for that bastard Tindall and sued him’. Tindall was a notorious Bangor ‘businessman’ who owned and ran a number of absolutely dreadful ‘care homes’ for mental health patients – they were bad even by north Wales standards and were eventually forcibly shut down, amid rumours of Tindall being investigated by the police and being forced to surrender his passport. One of Tindall’s ‘homes’ seemed to almost solely house patients of Dr Dafydd Alun Jones. The sorts of things that went on in Tindall’s ‘homes’ were gross – elderly patients thrown back onto beds if they fell out at night, homes for EMI patients had no incontinence pads or gloves available, all health and safety considerations were ignored, chipped and cracked crockery was standard practice, furniture was purchased from junk shops, patients were fed inadequate quantities of the cheapest food available, staff were employed who had been dismissed from everywhere else, it was truly dire. Because there was a shortage of jobs in north Wales, a lot of people took jobs with Tindall’s establishments and left again within a couple of weeks – there were numerous allegations of Tindall not paying people. Wulf’s name was being bandied around Bangor as someone who had been swindled by Tindall and who had challenged him in court. That was how I first heard of and met Wulf.

Years later, when I started in the School of Social Sciences, I was gobsmacked to find Wulf working there – he was introduced to me as a social work lecturer ‘with an interest in mental health’. He didn’t seem too overjoyed to see me – I very much doubt that he ever remembered meeting me that day in the café with F, so I wondered if he was part of the contingent that had begun squirming with embarrassment because I’d turned up at the University with decades of knowledge of how patients were actually being treated in the ‘services’ that these folk were associated with. By then, Brown and I had also started appearing in the laypress making very critical noises about the mental health services in north Wales. A couple of days later I saw Wulf again at lunchtime, so I thought that I’d try to be sociable and I went over to say hello. I told him that he probably wouldn’t remember me but years ago I remembered him making a name for himself by taking on Tindall in court. I told him that it was good to know that someone had challenged Tindall. But Wulf’s reaction was quite interesting – he very obviously didn’t want to talk about that and he just said ‘yeh, right, yeh, nasty man’. So I made a few comments about the vile abuse of patients that had been going on and that I was very glad to see Tindall put out of business. I then mentioned that another chain of care homes equally as abusive as Tindall’s had started up, Prestwood Homes and I wondered if Prestwood was actually anything to do with Tindall. Wulf then announced ‘yeh, yeh, I know all about Prestwwod too. Still, we don’t want to go back to Denbigh do we’ and got up and walked off. Which apart from being bizarre and rude was unfathomable, because the likes of Tindall and Prestwood were abusing patients being released from psychiatric hospitals in exactly the same way that Holyrood House abused patients released from Denbigh.

Over the next few months I began to suspect that I knew why Wulf might have a problem with me. I discovered that since that day in the café, he had actually worked for many of the utterly shite organisations jammed full of abusive or corrupt people – but unlike Brown and me he wasn’t going public about any of it. And he knew that I knew what was going on and that I had intentions of publishing. Furthermore Wulf liked to portray himself as a radical service users champion – so I don’t think he really would have wanted anyone to know what he was keeping quiet about. Wulf had of course worked for CAIS – Dafydd’s set up. Unlike the stooges employed by Hergest as ‘service user representatives’, Wulf is not gullible and naïve, he is a very competent social scientist and he knows abuse and malpractice when he sees it. And from what I know of his CV, he has seen much of it. He was involved with CAIS for years and he also worked for the probation service in north Wales – the probation service that employed some of the people who had been accused of child abuse, the probation service that was warehousing the scores of people who had been fitted up in the way that so many people like F and indeed myself were.

Wulf definitely knows all about another man as well, who like so many of us experienced the worst of the ‘services’. This man was a friend of F years ago and experienced alcohol and drug problems himself for many years. He tried AA and walked out because he found an associate of Dafydd Alun Jones there – a man who masqueraded as a Minister and used to appear wearing his dog collar on TV and calling himself ‘Rev’ along with Dafydd, discussing how people could be weaned off drugs and drink. This friend of F’s brought a lot of grief upon himself by exposing this fake Minister. This man has also done much to challenge another bunch of quacks in north Wales claiming to offer ‘services’ to people with substance abuse and alcohol problems, a group based on Anglesey called AGRO. I do not know one person who has benefitted from AGRO, everybody has described it as a con. There is no confidentiality at all, another friend who was ‘referred’ to AGRO by the Arfon Community Mental Health Team received e mails openly cc’d to dozens of other ‘service users’ with their names and e mail addresses visible to all. On one occasion this friend received an e mail from AGRO asking him to send money urgently because the organiser of AGRO had been robbed whilst on holiday in the Philippines and needed money to get back home – whether this was the organiser of AGRO trying a rather transparent scam or whether his e mail had been hacked I do not know, but AGRO is very obviously not an organisation which is going to assist people with drink or drug problems. AGRO is of course in receipt of funding from numerous sources. How do I know that Wulf knows all about F’s friend’s experiences with AA, Dafydd, the fake Minister and AGRO? Because a couple of years ago I bumped into him and he told me that he was having another go at detoxing – and that his mentor was a man called Wulf Livingstone.

So Wulf has been a ‘service user’ himself, he knows other ‘service users’ very well and he knows exactly how bad and abusive the ‘services’ are – the services that he now works for! Just before I left north Wales I was given the name of a CAIS worker who it was alleged was a major drug dealer in Gwynedd. I was told that she and Wulf were in discussion regarding plans to set up a business together offering probation ‘services’ – the probation service is undergoing a sort of privatisation process and from what I understand many probation officers are now forming businesses in order to contract out their services to the probation service. I also notice that the online blurb available about Wulf describes him as providing ‘social work supervision’ for several teams and that he is also involved with the British Association for Social Work Cymru. It also states that Wulf is part of the ‘growing north Wales recovery movement’. There is no ‘recovery movement’ in north Wales, it is another illusion like ‘service user involvement’, organised by the same abusive colluding people who have spent years colluding with all the other malpractice. Wulf will of course know all about the appalling practices of the likes of the Arfon Community Mental Health Team. He has a particular interest in alcohol and substance abuse – so he will know that the Hergest Unit refuses to assist anyone at all with alcohol or substance abuse problems and that there has been a number of deaths of such patients hours after they have been turned away from the Hergest Unit.

So what’s keeping you so quiet about the rampant wrongdoing, misconduct and abuse of vulnerable people in north Wales then Wulf?

Local Accessories

There was a lot of publicity yesterday regarding the future of the Welsh language and the Welsh Gov’ts desire to vastly increase the number of people who speak Welsh over the next few decades. There’s been a problem with previous efforts to do this by teaching children through the medium of Welsh at school, because some kids then came to associate speaking Welsh with the sort of boring, stuffy chores one has to do whilst at school, so of course they made a point of speaking English when they were not at school. There is much interesting research on the best ways of keeping Welsh alive, but the Welsh Gov’ts plans in this area are hampered by the incompetence and unpopularity of the Welsh Language Commissioner, one Meri Huws, who really is not a good advert for anything that she has ever endorsed. So of course, who turned up on the ‘Today’ programme yesterday morning? Meri! She made no more sense than she usually does. My post ‘Let Me Enlighten Lord Gnome…’ described how Meri has been appointed to a series of jobs that she was not qualified for and just could not do and explained why she has zero credibility with language campaigners and scholars. Her Marjorie Wallace-like conduct in terms of being ‘close to’ a number of well-connected men politically which seems to have been the one consistent factor in her appointments to various positions is openly – and crudely – discussed in Wales and there was much entertainment some years ago when it became known that Meri was allegedly referred to as ‘the crack of doom’ in the Welsh Assembly. A PhD student with knowledge of the way in which Meri conducts business observed at the time ‘that name actually took some intelligence to think up’.

At about the same time I was told by someone else who had been chatting to a civil servant working at Westminster that Wales was making an idiot of itself by giving public positions and funds to, in the words of the civil servant, ‘a really weird woman who doesn’t know what she’s doing’ – it was Meri to whom he was referring. I was told years ago that Meri was holding a lot of people over a barrel because of the ‘unspoken blackmail’ that she was alleged to be directing towards her former bedfellows. That is the most common interpretation of Meri’s influence in political circles in Wales – ie that she’s shagged loads of them, they’re now embarrassed by her and they know that she won’t keep quiet if she doesn’t get what she wants. But long ago, before she got anywhere near the dizzy heights of a job as Welsh Language Commissioner, Meri worked in a rather more mundane capacity, yet one in which if she used her brains (not sure that there are many of those in Meri’s skull though) would provide her with a lot more potential where silent blackmail is concerned. Meri was a social worker in Caernarfon.

I don’t know many details of Meri’s career in social work, but I think that she was categorised as a ‘community social worker’ and from what I know of Meri’s age and subsequent career, I presume that it will have been in the late 70s or 80s. Meri was a social worker in Caernarfon, for Gwynedd County Council, at the time when the paedophile gang that operated within the social services was going strong. Even if Meri didn’t have the lowdown on the paedophile gang, she will definitely have known that something was very wrong in Gwynedd Social Services and that the ‘service’ was full of serious misconduct and the abuse of clients, because everyone who had anything to do with Gwynedd Social Services knew that, it wasn’t even hidden. I do suspect though that dear old Meri may have been party to a great deal of info. I’ve been able to find out loads – mainly of course because I was under attack by Gwynedd Social Services, I remember very clearly what they did and I now have the documents that demonstrate that what was going on without my knowledge was even worse, but also because I knew other people under attack as well and watched what happened to them. But Meri is very much more sociable than me. Meri is a party animal and has spent decades getting pissed with the very people that were covering up for that paedophile ring. Furthermore Meri, professing to be a champion of the Welsh language, has moved among the very people who were, on a local level, up to their eyeballs in colluding with the wrongdoing. Previous posts have explained how a number of people have flown the flag for nation and language as a distraction for some of their rather less reputable activities. Meri has spent decades at the heart of that lot. Meri, I am going to carry on naming people on this blog, at all levels and across the UK, so perhaps you’d like to make your way down to the police now and tell them of the many sordid activities that you found out about and who was involved.

The paedophile ring operated throughout Gwynedd and Clwyd Social Services and was assisted and concealed by all other health and welfare agencies. So pretty much everyone who worked in social work in north Wales during the 60s, 70s, 80s and 90s would have known something. I am not for one minute suggesting that they were all paedophiles themselves, but what they all knew was that their senior managers were appalling and that the staff were very frightened of them. Exactly as in the mental health services – even the staff who were doing their best knew damn well that complaints were never investigated, that patient care was unbelievably poor and often led to unnecessary deaths and that there were scores of people even at very senior levels who very obviously should not have been in their posts. Virtually everyone employed in those services has valuable information about the very serious criminal activity that was happening.

So I’ll mention here the names of a few other people – who are probably known to Meri actually – who definitely would have information of value to the police.

One of those people has for many years worked at Bangor University as a lecturer in social work – Malcolm John. Malcolm John has caused very serious grief to a number of his former colleagues and no-one could ever understand why. Two people in particular were very nearly made ill by his conduct and both left the social work teaching team after they could bear no more of him. To onlookers it was inexplicable – both of these people were collegiate, bright, pleasant, committed to students and had solid academic reputations. But Malcolm John very obviously didn’t want colleagues like that. I heard allegations from a number of people that Malcolm John was failing to fulfil his work commitments and fiddling his expenses. He lives in Dolgellau which is so far from Bangor that people openly commented that he clearly didn’t even expect to commute into work every day – people were speculating that he might actually have another job somewhere else. But even that didn’t explain the way in which Malcolm seemed determined to drive high calibre colleagues out of their positions. His manipulative bullying – which was so bad that one former colleague described him as ‘evil’ – had been honed to a fine art.

Some five years ago when I was following up some local history concerning the Methodist Church in north Wales, I responded to an advert inviting interested people to drop into a building at Bontnewydd near Caernarfon, which was well-known locally as having been a former orphanage established and run by Methodists in 1907. The building was being sold, so it was an end of the era invitation for people to look around. I was interested because some time before this I’d met a man who’d been in that orphanage in the 1950s and 60s and had described a very idyllic existence there. This man knew about the abuse in the children’s homes run by the social services and unfavourably compared those homes to the one that he had grown up in. But he mentioned something else. That in recent years, that home had been given by the Methodist Trust to Gwynedd County Council to run and once that happened there were ‘problems’. He didn’t expand on the nature of the problems. So I went into the former orphanage, Cartref Bontnewydd, to look around. One lady there was ever so welcoming and chatty and I explained that I was a sociologist from Bangor University researching for future publications. She started giving me a guided tour, explaining the history of the home and whilst I was looking around a few older people came in and started chatting to me, telling me that they had lived in the home as children. There was another person there as well – a woman who had been working at the home recently, who was getting frostier and frostier towards me as the tour continued. We went into yet another room and there on the walls were a series of framed photos of people involved in running the home  – and Malcolm John was in every one of them. The friendly lady cheerily said ‘oh that’s Malcolm John, he’s worked with us for years, he’s our senior advisor and organises foster placements for us’. I realised that I had discovered Malcolm’s other job.

At this point the woman who was currently employed at the home interrupted us and asked me to leave, on the grounds that former residents might become ’emotional’ whilst looking around and it would be ‘inappropriate’ for me to be there. I presumed that I was in the company of a social worker, almost certainly one who was on good terms with Malcolm John.

The Waterhouse Report has a chapter on Cartref Bontnewydd. It explains that it was run by the Methodist Trust as a children’s home until 1983. It shut then as a result of the belief that children were better off in foster placements than in children’s homes, so Cartref Bontnewydd then became a Family Placement Centre, again run by the Methodist Trust. But they did this as an agency in partnership with Gwynedd County Council, providing fostering services. This continued until Gwynedd County Council was abolished in March 1996. However in 1988, much of the building was re-opened as a children’s home, managed and controlled by Gwynedd County Council which occupied it under licence from the Methodist Trust. It was still operating as a children’s home at the time that Waterhouse wrote his report and remained so for a few more years.

I have mentioned before that Waterhouse admitted that children in Gwynedd and Clwyd were seriously abused in foster placements. I have also mentioned that in 1983 I shared a house with someone whose mum fostered children for Gwynedd and who remarked on the degree of callousness of the social workers involved and their complete uninterest in the children’s welfare. My friend’s mum always noted that she could have done anything to those kids and no-one would have intervened. Some of the revelations about the foster placements where some of children were sent to north Wales were horrific. Children were sent to the homes of people with past records of sexual abuse and physical violence, they were used as unpaid labour and there was one case in which a teenaged boy was not only made to do the work of an adult farm worker but was hung up by ropes from the barn roof and flogged. So Malcolm John was the man who arranged the foster placements for Gwynedd Social Services.

Did Malcolm do any better in his capacity as ‘senior advisor’ to the children’s home when it was managed by Gwynedd County Council? Let’s refer to Waterhouse – who did of course bend over backwards to play down the degree of abuse that had happened. Ronnie Waterhouse observes that during the years that the children’s home was run by the Methodist Trust there were no complaints. But then Gwynedd took over – and ooh dear, things went downhill…

The staff of Cartref Bontnewydd mentioned in Ronnie’s whitewash were David Bayley Hughes, Mari Thomas, Anna Ashton and Peter Gadd. They had all previously worked for Gwynedd Social Services.

David Bayley Hughes was the family placement officer at Cartref Bontnewydd from Feb 1986. Hughes crops up elsewhere in the Waterhouse Report. He had worked at Ty’r Felin in Bangor, the children’s home that was run by the notorious Nefyn and June Dodd who were repeatedly accused of brutality and the sexual abuse of children by witnesses at the Waterhouse Inquiry. In 1977 a ‘highly disturbed girl’ who had been at Ty’r Felin and was then transferred to Silverbrook Treatment Centre in Pontypridd, Mid Glamorgan, ‘alleged’ that she’d had sexual intercourse with Hughes two or three times whilst she was at Ty’r Felin and had become pregnant as a result. She had made ‘similar allegations’ against a different person at an earlier date. Her claims were investigated by the Deputy Director of Gwynedd Social Services, D. Alun Parry, who was ‘completely satisfied’ that the relationship between Hughes and the girl was ‘completely innocent’ and that the allegations were ‘completely unfounded’. Mid-Glamorgan was informed and no further action was deemed necessary. Ronnie states that he had seen the ‘background documentation’ and was not going to criticise the decision.

I have detailed previously how a number of people who alleged abuse and misconduct on the part of health and social care staff in north Wales were described as ‘highly disturbed’ – including me. I do now of course have documentation demonstrating that my allegations were true, which is something that some of the other ‘highly disturbed’ people haven’t got, because they ended up in prison or dead. ‘Highly disturbed’ simply translates as ‘making very serious allegations that we have just got to squash’. As for the man who investigated the allegations – Waterhouse himself documents elsewhere that D. Alun Parry was identified by his own colleagues as incompetent and unable to carry out his job – he was eventually removed from his position. Ronnie mentions that he had seen the ‘background documentation’, but he gives no indication of what that documentation said or who compiled it. There is such an enormous elephant in the room here that I’m surprised that even Ronnie didn’t try and deal with it somehow. A pregnancy involves a foetus. If Hughes had made the ‘highly disturbed’ girl pregnant, she would either have had an abortion or a miscarriage or a baby. It wouldn’t be difficult to demonstrate that none of these outcomes had occurred – and that would clear Hughes’s name. But a non-pregnancy is not mentioned. Neither is a result of a pregnancy. Instead she was transferred to Pontypridd and they were informed of the result of the ‘investigation’. Was she pregnant or not on arrival at Pontypridd? Did they deal with the arrival or non-arrival of the baby? Or was that problem dealt with in north Wales perhaps – in the way that a few other embarrassing pregnancies that were the result of people abusing their positions were dealt with (see posts ‘Another Case of Not Knowing’ and ‘The BMA And It’s Ethics’). After all Dr Dafydd Alun Jones was the psychiatrist responsible for assessing women who requested terminations on mental health grounds… I note that this young woman was so disturbed that she had made similar allegations previously. Well as she was living in a region where the children’s homes had been infiltrated by a paedophile gang and were rife with abuse, that comes as no surprise.

Would someone like to trace that girl – if indeed she is still alive – and find out whether she did become pregnant and if so what happened subsequently?

The home at which the girl allegedly become pregnant was the home where practices were such that social worker Alison Taylor blew the whistle on the abuse. It was at this point that poison was thrown at Alison and attempts were made to discredit her in every way possible. In one damning letter dated 1 Feb 1978 – drafted by D. Alun Parry but signed by the Director of Gwynedd Social Services, T.E. Jones – about her alleged shortcomings, one sentence reads ‘I do not wish to comment at all on the work that you have done with the children as this gives the appearance of being satisfactory’. So Alison was not the one abusing the kids or facing allegations from ‘highly disturbed’ young people, but she was the one who ended up being sacked.

After the highly disturbed girl was transported to south Wales, David Bayley Hughes completed his CQSW at Cartrefle College (which later became NEWI and then Glyndwr University). I’d be interested to know what was going on at Cartrefle College because the Waterhouse Report names umpteen child abusers who obtained social care or social work qualifications from there. After this, Hughes was employed at an establishment near Bangor called Ty Newydd. Ty Newydd was also the centre of abuse allegations. Someone I know used to help out at Ty Newydd because his wife had a job there. They both ended up leaving after alleging that the young people were being mistreated and forced to work illegally – my friend and his wife told the boys to refuse to do this work but the boys expressed fear of violence from social workers if they did this.

David Hughes’s name comes up in another place in the Waterhouse Report as well. Among a catalogue of sexual abuse allegations by former residents of Ty’r Felin – Ronnie concludes that although a number of former residents alleged sexual abuse, they all named different members of staff and no-one else but that notoriously highly disturbed girl named David Hughes. Ronnie therefore concludes that there was no ‘pattern’ and no evidence that there was a problem of sexual abuse at Ty’r Felin. There were only twelve allegation of sexual abuse after all. One complainant that Ronnie was made aware of was the mother of a child but Ronnie ignored her as well because the sexual abuse alleged had not been documented by staff at Ty’r Felin. Well fancy that.

Mari Thomas was also transferred from Ty’r Felin to work at Cartref Bontnewydd. Mari did a solid bit of career building at Cartref Bontnewydd and stayed there a number of years, ending up as manager of the place by the time that Ronnie wrote his Report. There were four complainants who alleged that Mari was physically abusive. Former residents accused her of slapping them round the face, of forcing them to strip and then removing their clothes and of deliberately knocking one 14 year old girl against a windowsill causing her to bang her head, after having grabbed her by the hair. This girl subsequently told the police that she didn’t want an investigation into any aspect of her ‘care’ at Cartref Bontnewydd. Probably because she was still living there at the mercy of Mari Thomas. A number of residents alleged that Thomas’s violence had followed after they had been returned to the home by the police after running away.

Ronnie was very cross with one witness at the Tribunal who alleged that she had been abused at Cartref Bontnewydd. She was ‘a very unsatisfactory witness. She was anxious to give live evidence…very nervous about doing so but her recollection of events was confused and at times demonstrably false…her allegation in relation to her period at Cartrefle Bontnewydd was directed against a member of staff called Mark, whom no-one has been able to identify and she had not been interviewed by the police in the course of the major investigation between 1991 and 1993’.

So this very unsatisfactory witness was keen to give evidence – as were a lot of people, because everyone was led to believe that Waterhouse would get to the bottom of what had happened in north Wales and wanted to hear from people who had suffered. She was very nervous – I bet she was, the paedophiles had scores of lawyers cross-examining their victims in an aggressive manner at that Inquiry and all this was happening in public. Ronnie’s assertion that some of this witness’s evidence was ‘demonstrably false’ was based on the fact that records produced by Gwynedd County Council didn’t reflect her account of which homes she was in and when. Well records of mine from the North Wales Hospital were not an accurate record of when I was actually there – those records state that I left the hospital in February of 1987 when I didn’t. But unlike this poor young woman I have plenty of other evidence to prove that the records compiled by the North Wales Hospital were fallacious. Dafydd Alun Jones was responsible for that institution and his mistress Lucille Hughes was responsible for Gwynedd Social Services. It won’t have been the former resident’s evidence that will have been demonstrably untrue, it will have been the evidence from Gwynedd. As for no-one remembering ‘Mark’, when I tried to trace a clinical psychologist from the North Wales Hospital called Nigel whom had spent hours with me I was told repeatedly that no such person worked there and there was no trace of any clinical psychologist visiting me. I now have possession of a document compiled by an administrator at that hospital called Kay Hemsley stating that I was trying to contact Nigel Stennet-Cox and could someone please ‘persuade’ him not to speak to me. It is also significant that the young woman making allegations against Mark wasn’t interviewed in the police investigation. So someone was working very hard to ensure that she wasn’t heard.

These people were harbouring a paedophile gang, they were making up the documentation as they went along, altering it if necessary and frequently disposing of it altogether. Just as the Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board still are. I received yet another letter from the CEO Gary Doherty a couple of days ago telling me that there are no more medical records of mine to be found. Not only has Gary lost more than 20 years worth of them, but I actually have copies of the ones that he says don’t exist – my lawyer sent them to me.

As for Mari Thomas who denied ever slapping, pushing, stripping children or knocking anyone’s head against a windowsill, her name is mentioned in another part of the Waterhouse Report as well, in the chapter concerning Ty’r Felin, where of course she worked prior to Cartref Bontnewydd. Guess what – a number of former residents describe her slapping them across the face, dragging them out of bed by the hair or shoving them, particularly after they had been brought back by the police after running away! One person remembered that Mari Thomas used to approach him in the day room and for no reason put her hands over his nose and mouth to stop him breathing. One witness described Mari as Nefyn Dodd’s ‘henchwoman’. Nefyn Dodd was the manager of Ty’r Felin, as well as line manager of two other children’s homes and was repeatedly accused of punching, kicking, caning, head-butting and thrashing children, of making virtually all the residents lick his boots and some of them lick his bare feet and of sexually abusing at least five children. He forced children to eat carbolic soap which left their mouths ulcered and blistered and then failed to access medical care for them. But Ronnie just can’t believe what those former residents say about Dodd. He notes that one man had experienced a mental breakdown which must have affected his memory. Another witness was ‘mistaken’ because he claimed to have been assaulted by Dodd yet his description of the person who attacked him didn’t match that of Dodd. I suggest then that he was assaulted by someone else who claimed to be Dodd, in the way in which I was assaulted by a CPN called Bob Ingham, who told me that he was Arfon Community Mental Health Team ‘leader’ Keith Fearns. I didn’t know what Fearns looked like – he had of course perjured himself in an affidavit by then, when he gave evidence about my extreme dangerousness, but I’d never met him and I didn’t know what he looked like. This lot didn’t hand over their passports for the purposes of identification when they assaulted and molested people and furthermore they lied about everything at all times, including who they were. The same went on at the Hergest Unit – violent care assistants called themselves ‘nurses’, refused to reveal their surnames and refused to wear their ID badges. When new uniforms were introduced that differed in colour according to their roles, they refused to wear the uniforms.

One former member of staff told Waterhouse that Dodd was ‘a martinet who ruled with a rod of iron’, another former staff member said that staff and children were petrified of him and someone I know who worked at Ty’r Felin described Dodd as a ‘total fascist’. Mari claimed that he was firm but fair, but autocratic and that when she first worked at Cartref Bontnewydd she was ‘a bit strict’ after having worked for Dodd. Her attempts at suffocating children was just her ‘being playful’. Ronnie suggested that a lot of people saw Dodd as a gentle giant.

Someone else who worked with Mari and was schooled in the ways of Nefyn Dodd was also transferred from Ty’r Felin to Cartref Bontnewydd and that was Anna Ashton. A Peter Gadd also worked with Mari at Cartref Bontnewydd but he left to join the probation service!

So a bunch of thugs who learnt at the knee of Nefyn Dodd – who had previously worked at Bryn Estyn where even Waterhouse admitted that boys were beaten and buggered by a paedophile ring, the Bryn Estyn where a number of staff went to prison – were redeployed to Cartref Bontnewydd and behaved in exactly the same way as they had at Ty’r Felin.

Not that Ronnie found much amiss. He found no evidence at all that Mari Thomas or anyone else had ever been responsible for any physical or sexual abuse at Cartref Bontnewydd, although ‘it may well be’  ‘on one or two occasions’ ‘in the early days’ that Mari Thomas did ‘use very limited force’. In fact Ronnie was really impressed with Mari and took further evidence from her in her capacity as Manager of Cartref Bontnewydd. He detailed all the improvements that she claimed to have made at Bontnewydd – including a whistleblowing system enabling members of staff to report untoward incidents to her! So she could then slap a few people around the face and drag them about by the hair. Or order them to strip and take their clothes away. By the time that Waterhouse was lapping up Mari’s lies, Mari had gone a step further than the other ‘care workers’. It wasn’t Cartrefle College for Mari, no, she’d acquired a Diploma in Social Work from Bangor University! That will have been the course that Malcolm John taught on then… He probably encouraged her to enrol, in his capacity as ‘senior advisor’ for Cartref Bontnewydd.

Waterhouse noted that he thought that Mari’s evidence was particularly important because she had worked in child care in Gwynedd for the old Gwynedd County Council and the newly formed Gwynedd Council after the local government reorganisation. In other words, the sadistic Mari had survived the cull after all the scandal, the police investigation and indeed the establishment of Ronnie’s Inquiry. Cartref Bontnewydd has closed down now – what’s the betting that Mari is at present a senior manager somewhere in Gwynedd Social Services or elsewhere in north Wales. Or indeed with the Third Sector.

As for Ronnie’s certainty that Nefyn Dodd, Mari’s mentor, was a gentle giant and that no sexual abuse went on at Ty’r Felin, this morning I received an e mail from a man who had been a resident there in Mari’s day. He described Ty’r Felin as ‘hell’ and when he was fifteen he was regularly visited by a much older man who it turned out was using a false name. This man had a sexual relationship with him and when the man who wrote to me left ‘care’ he set up home with the Ty’r Felin visitor. The older man became very physically abusive and the younger man is now in the care of the mental health services. His abuser used to carry out voluntary work at Ysbyty Gwnedd.

A number of my former colleagues at Bangor University used to observe that Malcolm John ought to be sacked. I think that he ought to be arrested and questioned under caution. Along with Mari.

There is another former social work tutor latterly of Bangor University who perhaps ought to be asked a few questions and that is a man called John Borland. I didn’t know Borland, but I do know something rather worrying about him. Social work degrees have panels of ‘service users’ who give lectures to students about their ‘lived experience’ and who sit on admissions panels. It’s a manifestation of ‘service user involvement’ and like most ‘service user involvement’ it’s a tokenistic joke. Social work courses are so troubled and students see so much bad practice and abuse on placement and are simply failed or removed from the course as ‘unsuitable’ if they blow the whistle, that no-one is going to let an activist near a social work course. So the service users always have the official stamp of approval and are usually very tame. But Borland had the production of tame service users down to a fine art. Borland established a company of ‘service user consultants’ and when Borland was still working at Bangor it was only from Borland’s approved list that the service users could be selected. I presume that Borland also charged the University a fee for this service. When a new member of staff took over the management of the social work degree this practice was ended, but I presume that it had been going on for years. No doubt John Borland is still doing ‘consultancy work’ somewhere, which will involve giving a truly dire ‘service’ the stamp of approval. So why wouldn’t Borland let service users other than those who worked for him near the social work students then???

Two other people associated with Bangor University and north Wales social work who might like to make statements are Sian and Richard Barker. Both have worked as social workers and social work tutors, both have been around for years and Richard Barker is yet another social worker who set himself up as a ‘consultant’. So he’ll provide the ‘independent opinion’ to get his former colleagues in the statutory sector out of trouble. I am told that the Barkers also have close personal connections to the bunch of crooks that run Anglesey County Council. The social services on Anglesey are famously a catastrophe…

 

Now for another two people who need to make their way to their nearest police station, but this pair’s knowledge of wrongdoing has been acquired as a result of their careers in the NHS – Dr Ruth Hussey and her brother Dr Peter Higson. Ruth is the former Chief Medical Officer for Wales and after screwing up in that role for years is now Chairing a panel of nine ‘experts’ in order to thrash out some ideas as to how to make health and social care in Wales ‘sustainable’. Vaughan Gething the Health Minister has asked her to do this. The one organisation in NHS Wales that is so obviously not sustainable is the one Chaired by Ruth’s brother Higson, ie. the Betsi Cadwalar University Health Board. Higson’s track record is as bad as Ruth’s – he managed the North Wales Hospital Denbigh and then the wider mental health services in north Wales throughout those long and glorious years when the region’s mental health professionals concealed and colluded with a paedophile ring. After Waterhouse carried on the cover-up, Higson was then appointed Chief Exec of Health Inspectorate Wales. Once in that position he failed to investigate complaints against his former colleagues, no matter how serious. The biggest single improvement to the NHS in Wales that Vaughan Gething could make would be to sack Higson and remove his equally appalling sister from all positions of influence. They have inflicted quite enough damage on the nation.

 

 

 

More Post-Waterhouse Glittering Careers

Recent posts have described how many of the people involved with the Waterhouse Inquiry found their careers heading for the stars soon after the whole shameful travesty. There were so many lawyers at the Inquiry – nearly all of them acting for the people accused of seriously abusing children or concealing the abuse – that until now I’ve only blogged about the most high profile or the names that I recognised. However I have been sufficiently intrigued by the way in which defending a bunch of vicious criminals acted as a booster to so many otherwise mundane legal careers that I’ve taken the opportunity to research a few more of the names involved. I have not been disappointed. So here we go.

Anna Pauffley QC. Anna represented over 100 people who had received ‘Salmon letters’. These were letters sent out to people who were alleged to be guilty of physical or sexual abuse of children or who were likely to be the subject of criticism. The Salmon letter recipients included people who had been named by the former children in care as having abused them – some of these people had already been convicted and even imprisoned by the time that the Waterhouse Report was completed. Other Salmon letter recipients were people who had witnessed or been told about abuse but who did nothing. So the Salmon letter recipients included some Grade A scumbags. Anna represented people who had punched and kicked children, who had raped or buggered them or forced them to participate in oral sex. If the former children in care were to be believed – and of course Anna’s job was to suggest that they weren’t – some of their abusers took them to other locations where they were molested by unknown people as well. One of the many people whom Anna represented was Lucille Hughes, former Director of Gwynedd Social Services, whom it was acknowledged even by Waterhouse had known that a paedophile ring was operating in the social services but who had not acted.

Sir Ronald Waterhouse devotes part of his report to thanking all the noble lawyers who worked so hard to defend the indefensible and noted that some of the witnesses ‘were subjected to necessarily severe cross-examination by Counsel for those against whom they made specific allegations’. Ronnie admitted that a number of witnesses found giving evidence so distressing that they were admitted as psychiatric emergencies, others became so distressed that dear old Ronnie just refused to accept their evidence, scores of others needed counselling to support them through the Inquiry and yet others were referred for long term mental health care. Others left the Inquiry ‘holding each other’, which Ronnie interpreted as meaning that they had ‘left something negative behind’, rather than that they had been just about destroyed. It’s OK though! Ronnie notes that ‘we believe however, that the satisfaction in their minds of knowing that they have been listened to will substantially outweigh the disadvantages of providing that evidence’. (Of course they were not at all satisfied when they read Ronnie’s report which dissed nearly all of them and whitewashed the biggest child abuse scandal that the UK had seen.) Ronnie was however very mindful indeed of the traumas that those accused of abusing the youngsters might experience. He observed that for the Salmon letter recipients the Tribunal was ‘a particularly anxious time’, but that ‘anxiety has been mitigated…by the Tribunal’s anonymity ruling…in respect of any person against whom an allegation of physical or sexual abuse had been or was likely to be made’. Ronnie also ‘exercised restraint in naming names’. I note that none of the paedophile gang or their friends needed emergency psychiatric treatment or left ‘holding each other’. They probably left uncorking the champagne.

So what became of Anna who defended Lucille et al by severely cross-examining anyone who dared allege that they’d been abused? Like Nicola Davies QC, Anna is now a Dame of course! She was appointed a High Court judge in 2003, although she did end up in hot water in 2015 when she publicly stated that it was ‘Okay for migrant families to hit their children’ (it’s their culture you see). Gov’t spokespeople were wheeled out to explain that child abuse was unacceptable from anyone. But what did the Gov’t expect from a woman who was made a Dame after psychologically assassinating people who relived details of the most horrific abuse – sensitivity???

Dame Anna was assisted in her defence of people who had done some pretty dreadful things by Rachel Langdale. Rachel was appointed a QC in 2009 and she now advertises herself as a specialist in Children’s Law. Last month she featured in ‘Counsel’ magazine maintaining that ‘The Only Way Is Ethics’, discussing the importance of in house ethics training, underlining the importance of Ethics Committees and discussing ‘the integrity which lies at the heart of the Bar’. So has Rachel finally seen the light? Or is she a hypocritical unscrupulous cow who’ll do anything to advance herself?

Alistair Webster QC. Alistair acted for the senior managers of Clwyd County Council. A previous post (‘Ain’t Nothing Clean – Not Even The Welsh Calvinistic Methodists’) detailed just how culpable and either dishonest or incompetent these people were. Alistair is still going strong and is a Crown Court recorder. He is a member of the Liberal Democrat Lawyers Association and describes his fields as ‘commercial crime, crime and regulation’. He boasts that he has acted for the defence in ‘large drug conspiracies’ and many ‘gangland murders’. (Many people who grew up in care in Clwyd were found dead, sometimes shortly after giving evidence against their abusers.) In 2015/16 Alistair defended Indranee and Meghadeven Pumbien, who owned Briarwood Rest Home in Preston, when they were accused of the serious abuse of elderly people in their care, as well as perverting the course of justice. Among the allegations were that a 99 year old woman was burnt after being dropped into a bath of scalding water. Another elderly person had two inexplicable black eyes and bruising on their arms. Alistair also represents Top Doctors in trouble with the GMC, both at Tribunals and in the High Court. Alistair was assisted in his defence of the Clwyd senior managers by Suzanne Goddard. In 2015 she became a circuit judge on the Northern Circuit.

Andrew Caldecott QC. Caldecott appeared at the Waterhouse Inquiry to act for Gordon Anglesea. Anglesea had of course recently won a libel case after ‘Private Eye’ and others accused him of molesting boys in care. Anglesea was awarded almost £400,000 in damages. One of the men who gave evidence at the trial was found dead some weeks later. In 2016 Anglesea was convicted of sexually abusing boys in care and was imprisoned. Caldecott describes himself as a leader in the field of defamation and he also has an interest in human rights law no less. Caldecott acted for Constance Briscoe, the former barrister and judge, when Briscoe’s mother sued her for libel after Briscoe published a book maintaining that her mother had inflicted dreadful cruelty upon her when she was a child. Briscoe won the case. In 2014 Briscoe was imprisoned after being found guilty of perverting the course of justice in an unrelated case. She is now an ex-judge.

David Knifton. Knifton defended, among other people, Nefyn and June Dodd, who were accused again and again of serious physical violence against children resident at a children’s home in Bangor. One of Dodd’s specialities was to make children lick his boots or sometimes his bare feet. At one point a forged letter purporting to be from one of Dodd’s accusers was sent to Lucille Hughes in support of Dodd and his wife. Not only did Ronnie brush this piece of very incriminating evidence to one side but he decided not to believe numerous former residents who claimed to have been assaulted by Dodd and his wife. A number of former staff accused Dodd of brutality as well. One of my former neighbours used to work in the children’s home that Dodd managed and she described him as being a ‘total fascist’. Knifton was appointed a Crown and County Court Recorder in 2002. He advertises himself as a specialist in clinical negligence and personal injury.

Steven Crossley. Crossley represented Roger Saint, the foster carer who sexually assaulted children repeatedly but who was nonetheless allowed to adopt and foster again and again (see post ‘Tower Hamlets, Paul Boateng And Tessa Jowell’). Crossley represents Top Doctors and Angels in trouble at GMC and NMC hearings and also specialises in helping police officers who’ve ended up in hot water. He has defended a number of doctors and police officers accused of sexual assault.

Barrie Searle. Represented a number of ‘care workers’ accused of abuse at Waterhouse. These days Barrie represents Top Doctors and Angels in trouble with their regulatory bodies. Barrie is based in Manchester and is a recorder.

Theresa Pepper QC and Charles Gratwicke QC acted for ‘care workers’ accused of physical and sexual abuse. Theresa is now a recorder on the Northern Circuit. Charles Gratwicke QC is the resident judge at Chelmsford in Essex and led the tributes when a ‘controversial’ colleague retired. This colleague seems to have made some positively dangerous decisions with regard to people convicted of serious offences, including sexual ones. Not that Charles minded – he really liked this bloke because he was ‘his own man’ and Chelmsford was fortunate to have been graced with his presence.

Jodie Swallow represented the dreadful Stephen Norris, a truly hideous specimen who was described as coarse, obsessed with sex and unsuitable to work with children by his fellow paedophiles, so one can only marvel at the depths to which Norris must have sunk. He was one of the ‘care staff’ who had already been imprisoned by the time that the Inquiry was held, so I’m not sure why he actually needed Jodie to represent him. So where is Jodie now? She hasn’t gone far geographically. She is an honorary lecturer with the Criminal Justice Team at Glyndwr University in Wrexham and a part-time postgraduate student at Chester University. When she was working as a lawyer her ‘area of expertise’ was ‘dealing with cases of sexual abuse especially involving children’ – well yes, she represented the people who molested them. Jodie gave up practising law in 2001 because she wanted to spend more time with her young children. Presumably she wanted to give them a bit of high quality parenting lest they ended up in care in the hands of someone like Norris. Jodie managed to get on the Radio 4 sociology programme ‘Thinking Allowed’ last year, talking about women’s experience of domestic abuse. No doubt she kept very quiet about acting for Stephen Norris when she was chatting to Laurie Taylor.

Now we come onto a real star – the late Anthony Jennings. Jennings acted for Peter Howarth, one of the most notorious paedophiles who worked at Bryn Estyn. Before he molested boys at Bryn Estyn, Howarth molested boys at an approved school in Gateshead. Like Norris, Howarth was already in prison by the time the Waterhouse Inquiry was underway. One might have thought that representing Peter Howarth would not be the best career move, but it certainly didn’t hold Anthony Jennings back. Jennings died in 2008, but his obituaries have nothing but praise for him – he was clever, skilled, full of fun, ‘larger than life’. He became a QC in 2001 and in 2002 was given permission to try rape trials. In 2003 he was appointed a Crown Court recorder. So how did the man who defended Peter Howarth describe his area of expertise? Civil rights of course! Howarth’s civil rights presumably, not those of all the kids whom he molested. Jennings was well-known in legal circles, but he wasn’t half as well-known as one of his colleagues. Jennings was a co-founder of Matrix – the chambers where Cherie Booth aka Mrs Tony Blair practised…. They’ll have known each other well.

I’ve kept the most stunning example of career progression until the end of this post. The lucky winner of this award has got to be Fiona Walkingshaw. Fiona was de facto solicitor to the Tribunal and remained so until Ronnie handed over the final documented whitewash. Fiona worked for the Welsh Office, had been on secondment to Europe and then returned to help Ronnie out. So Fiona loyally assisted Ronnie as witnesses collapsed in distress, as they were hauled off as psychiatric emergencies, whilst Ronnie discredited nearly all of them yet described the paedophiles who wrecked their lives as ‘kind’ and ‘generous’ or ‘strict but fair’. So what is Fiona doing these days? She’s a counsellor, what else would she be? Not just any old counsellor though – Fiona is a tutor with the Psychosynthesis Trust. She specialises in ‘bereavement, issues of love and loss, working with children and young people’. She enjoys her work because it gives her the ‘opportunity to witness and support the journey of other souls who open themselves up to transformative compassion’. She’s not in Wales anymore, she’s based in the south east of England and is listed as holding sessions with the Croydon Young Persons Service for girls between 11 and 18 who are refuges and asylum seekers. I think that Fiona ought to get her arse back up to north Wales and quickly, because there’s a few souls up there who are on a journey after spending years being raped and buggered in the children’s homes. They didn’t experience much love, but there was an awful lot of loss and quite a bit of bereavement as well, particularly after five of them died all at once in an arson attack (see post ‘The Silence Of The Welsh Lambs’). Come on Fiona, Wales needs you and your therapeutic skills – and of course the empathy and compassion that you’re advertising in your biography…

 

 

News Round Up – And Another Top Doctor Goes To Prison

This morning the Daily Post online is telling us all that the Betsi has overspent it’s budget by £80 million in the last three years, according to a report from the Welsh Auditor General. Janet Finch-Saunders, the Conservative AM for Aberconwy, is quoted as someone ‘who has previously spoken out about the underfunding of the NHS by the Welsh Gov’t’. Today Janet is maintaining that she ‘welcomes’ the Welsh Gov’t covering the extra spend, but ‘given that they are monitoring the Betsi’s finances, they should have taken action to ensure it didn’t get into this position’. Janet gives some suggestions as to how this could be achieved – for example by the Welsh Gov’t allocating a more generous initial budget or by the Betsi ‘weaning themselves’ off wasteful practices such as the use of ‘highly expensive agency workers’. The Post mentions that for two years of the overspend, the Betsi was in special measures after being placed in there by former Health Minister Mark Drakeford and that the financial problems have been managed through the NHS escalation framework, which brings the Welsh Gov’t, the Auditor General and Health Inspectorate Wales together to manage the solution. The present Health Minister, Vaughan Gething, has stated that ‘cash support’ will continue to be provided when required to all Health Boards to enable them to meet normal cash commitments including payroll expenditure and that cash assistance is repayable in future financial years when appropriate. A Betsi spokeswoman has been quoted as saying that the Board need to improve their quality and performance whilst safely reducing operating costs and that their Action Plan for 2017/18 starts to address this.

There is much to comment upon here. First, one wonders why Janet Finch-Saunders, as a fully paid up member of the fiscal responsibility party, is urging the Welsh Gov’t to throw even more money in the direction of this Board of fools and fuckwits. It is a Board dominated by the likes of Dr Peter Higson, Martin Jones, Grace Lewis-Parry, Lyn Meadows et al who have for years stuffed up big time in every role to which they have been appointed. None of them should have been allowed near this Health Board and things are not going to improve until they are removed, it is as simple as that. The reason that the Betsi is spending so much on agency staff is principally because no-one will work for them so dire is their reputation, but also because the Top Doctors and Angels who staff the nation’s NHS are fully aware that they can earn more by working for an agency than by conventional employment and that is why a lot of them choose to do so. It is a well-established scam that has been growing and growing for years and no-one has sought to address it – indeed before it was quite such a popular scam elsewhere, it was known to be a substantial problem in the North West Wales NHS Trust when one Martin Jones was the CEO. Can anyone spot a theme here? Of course the reason why honest capable staff won’t work for the Betsi is that they don’t want to work for a dysfunctional organisation rife with bad or frankly dangerous practices. Had politicians like Janet been honest about these practices which have been in place for many years now, bad practice could have been stopped and the Betsi would not now be comatose on the floor. But Janet and nearly everybody else said nothing at all – indeed Janet herself was even telling mental health charities not to send dissatisfied patients to her because she didn’t want to deal with their cases. So as usual too many people stood with the Top Doctors and Angels and ignored the terrifying mortality rates. But Janet is not the only one mentioned above who has added to the problems of the NHS in north Wales by colluding with abusive, lethal practitioners. Mark Drakeford knew damn well how dreadful things were, both throughout the years when he was special advisor to Rhodri Morgan and until he was finally forced to put the Betsi in special measures when Tawel Fan blew up in his face. But then this former social worker had received a long training in turning a blind eye to abuse and malpractice and instead sat around a table talking to the unions who were protecting their own members rather than the people who some of those members were harming (see post ‘News Round Up, June 11 2017’). As for the NHS escalation framework that is ‘managing the situation’, the troika of the Welsh Gov’t, Auditor General and Health Inspectorate Wales – the Welsh Gov’t no longer knows what to do in the face of this disaster (my co-researcher has suggested that someone just appoints the Chuckle Brothers in the place of the Betsi Board) and HIW ignored the slaughter and mayhem in the north Wales NHS for years (of course it did, it’s CEO was Peter Higson, who’d previously overseen the horror story that was the North Wales Hospital – Higson is now of course Chair of the Betsi). What about the Auditor General, Huw Vaughan Thomas? Well he featured in my post ‘I Know Nuzzing…’. He was Chief Exec of Gwynedd County Council whilst their social services had been infiltrated by a paedophile gang and prior to that he had been Chief Exec of Denbighshire – whose social services had also been infiltrated by the paedophile gang! I’m sure that he’ll do a brilliant job of sorting it all out.

Vaughan mentioned that Health Boards will continue to receive extra cash, although he did make mention of the cash being repayable in certain circumstances. In other words, whoever finally takes over at the Betsi once Higson et al just HAVE to be removed will then be left to clear up the mess on a shoestring after Higson, Grace and Martin have broken the bank. Does Vaughan think that he’ll receive many applications for future ‘leadership roles’ at the Betsi? As for his generous offer to carry on bailing out Health Boards across Wales, let us look at how some of that tax-payers cash was spent by Cardiff and Vale University Health Board.

In 2009 Cardiff and Vale employed a gynaecologist called Dr Anthony Madu and paid him nearly £100k pa (the Betsi pay Martin Jones and Grace even more). Anthony Madu has just been sent to prison for two years, after failing to repay the NHS over £70k as ordered by a previous court – £70k that he defrauded them out of, by continuing to work as a locum whilst he was initially suspended and then on extended sick leave for ‘stress’. Whilst receiving sick pay from Cardiff and Vale, Madu worked at Middlesborough’s James Cook University Hospital, Sandwell General Hospital Birmingham, Scarborough General Hospital and the Royal Oldham General Hospital, Greater Manchester. I have a friend who lives in Scarborough who tells me that Scarborough Hospital has a similar reputation to the hospitals in north Wales and thus good doctors won’t work there. I suspect that the other hospitals that Madu moonlighted at will also have had similar problems. Madu had actually been found guilty of fraud in 2014 but had been spared jail on condition that he repaid the £70k. He appealed against the decision, lost but failed to repay the money anyway, hence the prison sentence. Although he was only ordered to repay £70k, the cost to the hospitals was calculated to have been £240k and he transferred £95k to a Nigerian bank account in an attempt to cover his tracks. So Madu was being treated pretty leniently. Yet there had been problems before he started fiddling – in 2009 he was suspended by Cardiff and Vale as a result of allegations relating to his conduct towards other staff and allegations that he’d falsified his post-graduate training record. And it seems that the GMC knew all about him! They had investigated him and placed restrictions on his practice – which he ignored. He also failed to co-operate with investigations. But no, they didn’t strike him off, so he just turned up at other hospitals in England. But Madu had been in trouble before he ever arrived at Cardiff and Vale. He had previously worked at the Royal Bolton Hospital and had mismanaged a labour so badly that the baby died. Weeks later Madu was employed by Cardiff and Vale. The inquest on the baby wasn’t held until 2012, but when it was held the coroner denounced Madu as an ‘unimpressive witness…largely unreliable’. No charges were brought against Madu, although the Royal Bolton did apologise to the baby’s parents.

At the conclusion of Madu’s previous trial, Judge David Wynn Morgan praised Cardiff and Vale for taking action against Madu when they caught him fiddling and stated that ‘it may be that tragedy was avoided by the timely actions of Cardiff and Vale University Health Board’. Tragedy wasn’t avoided – a baby had already died, but not at Cardiff and Vale. No doubt had Madu caused any tragedies at Cardiff and Vale no-one would have been told anyway. Had Cardiff and Vale been told about the dead baby at Bolton when they employed Madu? If so, why did they employ him? Did they know about his run-ins with the GMC? If they didn’t know about any of this, why didn’t they? Who supplied Madu with references, either for Cardiff and Vale or any of his other jobs? Is there going to be an investigation into any of this or indeed into the GMC failing to stop him? I very much doubt it. Madu was known to be a problem at the Royal Bolton and they did what is always done with problematic doctors – they passed him onto someone else.

I can only compare the case of Madu, who had killed a baby and then swindled again and again yet was given chance after chance, with that of Dr Sian Caiach. Sian was a surgeon working in Wales who in about 2000 discovered two of her colleagues perpetuating a fraud by using NHS facilities to treat private patients without declaring it. Sian reported them to the Wales Audit Office. The WAO investigated and found that the fraud reported by Sian had indeed been committed. Those doctors were not dismissed. Nonetheless, Sian was suspended, sacked and eventually prevented from practicing by the GMC. At one point the rationale for stopping her working was that she would damage the ‘mental health’ of her colleagues. Presumably they might feel a bit anxious lest she discover what they were up to. Years later Sian was permitted to practice again after being subjected to the most offensive comments from the GMC – but only under very restricted circumstances. Honest whistleblowing surgeon with a commitment to the NHS? Christ we hadn’t better let her loose. It seems that Sian is too honest for party politics as well – her name was on the Plaid candidate list but was removed. Yet numerous members, councillors and politicians of that party were involved in colluding with the abuses in the mental health services and children’s homes in north Wales.

I mentioned earlier that a Betsi spokeswoman had stated that they needed to improve their quality and their performance. So how are they doing? Well, according to the BBC News Wales site, it’s business as usual. A 75 year old lady was admitted to Ysbyty Glan Clwyd and died shortly after, having experienced the sort of dreadful care of the elderly that Ysbyty Glan Clwyd is well-known for. The old lady suffered from COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease) and was admitted to Ysbyty Glan Clywd in Nov 2015 after a fall at home causing her to break her femur. She was given surgery and transferred to the HDU (High Dependency Unit). The trouble occurred when she was then transferred to an orthopaedic ward. Her family raised concerns when they discovered her sitting in her own faeces and after they had to visit her out of hours to give her food and drink because this wasn’t being done by the staff. The old lady’s son was told by a nurse that she had been ‘spoiled’ on the HDU (where presumably the staff actually did what they were paid to do). The old lady then developed pneumonia and died. At the inquest the conclusion was recorded as accidental death with the fall as a contributing factor. Which would seem to be a complete lie. The old lady’s family took their complaint to the Public Services Ombudsman for Wales who upheld their complaint, stating that there had been inappropriate communication, inadequate nursing care and that the elderly lady had been admitted to an inappropriate ward. To show how seriously that the Ombudsman took the matter of an old lady being left sitting in her own crap whilst being given no food or drink, subjected to non-existent ‘nursing care’ – whilst her family were insulted by the staff – and then dying, he awarded the old lady’s family the grand total of £250. Martin Jones spends about that on a pair of his infamous cufflinks. As always though, the learning has been embedded and the service users empowered. The Betsi has stated that it has tackled the problem by appointing doctors from a range of backgrounds to support geriatric patients on orthopaedic wards, with a consultant to lead the service. Which seems to be missing the point – in this case it was the Angels who had disgraced themselves rather than the Top Doctors. Furthermore, ‘staff have received training in dignity and respect for patients’. Should this have been needed? If I were looking after a bed-ridden friend or relative even I would not leave them sitting in turds. But then I’m not an Angel.

As with Huw Vaughan Thomas, Mark Drakeford, HIW et al, there is a legacy involved with the problem that this old lady encountered. Elderly care at Ysbyty Glan Clwyd has been absolutely dreadful for many, many years as detailed in my post ‘How Much Do Staff Surveys Really Tell Us?’. Staff ensured that their own families did not end up there and some ten years ago a retired Professor from Bangor University, Clare Wenger, was so appalled by what she witnessed as a patient there that she compiled a dossier and sent it to over 100 people. Clare Wenger’s specialism was in old age care and she had led a major 20 year study into this which was funded by the Department of Health. Notwithstanding all this, Clare Wenger was denounced as a stuck up old cow who expected special treatment. The elderly continued to be neglected and abused and throughout it all the former CEO of the Trust that ran Ysbyty Glan Clwyd before the Betsi was created, Gren Kershaw, was awarded the accolade of Best Chief Executive in the UK by ‘Nursing Times’. Kershaw has now retired and works as a ‘management consultant’. And the elderly are still neglected and abused by the staff who voted for him to be given an award by ‘Nursing Times’.

Now another story from the Daily Post online, combining two common themes of this blog, politics and the Betsi. It has been announced that Plaid and the Tories have gone into coalition to run Conwy Council. So the Counci leader is now Gareth Jones and his Deputy is Cheryl Carlisle. Gareth is a Plaid Councillor and is the former AM for Aberconwy. Many years before that Gareth was a member of a panel that conducted one of the numerous investigations that was held into the sexual abuse of children in care in Clwyd. So Gareth knew that there was a serious problem – but like so many people he’s remained silent for years. However he has announced that the new Cabinet is an ‘open administration based on inclusiveness and transparency’. If Gareth is now going all inclusive and transparent it’ll be a first for him. As for Cheryl – well she’s a Conservative and is a member of the Betsi Board! Cheryl now holds the Cabinet portfolio for ‘children, family and safeguarding’. We should just be thankful that it’s not Gareth overseeing those particular matters. The Plaid group in Conwy seem to have done something odd. There had been a previous agreement for Plaid, Labour and the Independent Group to work together, but this backfired when much of the Plaid Group voted for Gareth Jones in the leadership election. What can be going on? But then something else peculiar happened this week involving Plaid. Dr Eurfyl ap Gwilym, a policy advisor for Plaid, publicly announced that they would be willing to support the Tories on ‘some matters’. Now some people are saying that they have no problem with that if it benefits Wales, but Leanne Wood – Plaid’s leader – and many of her colleagues, loathe everything about the Tories and have made ‘no deals with Tories under any conditions ever’ a central theme within Plaid. How does Leanne feel about her colleagues snuggling up to the Tories? Plaid are really proud of Eurfyl ap Gwilym because he famously floored Paxman on ‘Newsnight’ a few years ago. However, he does sometimes take surprising stances. I was at a conference where he spoke some years ago and he provided a devastating critique of Blair’s H.E. policy. I much appreciated this, because Blair imposed an ill thought out policy on UK universities which was never going to work with the staffing and funding available and it did very great damage, resulting in, among other things, a vicious snobbery between different universities. But Eurfyl seemed to be firing his ammo at the wrong people. After stating that he was an ‘unashamed elitist’, he went on to put the boot into graduates from less prestigious universities who had found themselves working at Tesco, saying that they didn’t deserve anything other than a job in Tesco. Those graduates were very much the victim of the problem not the cause. Most of them did not know that a degree from Glyndwr University doesn’t have the same currency as a degree from a Russell Group institution – New Labour led them to think that once one had a degree, one would waltz into a well paid professional job immediately after graduation. They were conned and it was not their fault. Furthermore, going to university on large amounts of borrowed money was sold to them on the promise of high salaries after graduation – no-one mentioned widening their horizons or gaining a liberal education or critical thinking skills, it was the mythical ‘graduate premium’ that was used as the carrot. Meanwhile the kids of Cabinet Ministers carried on applying for places at Oxbridge because their parents knew that there was a difference in status between institutions. As for deserving to work in Tescos – I’m not sure that anyone deserves the fate of that particular regime, where it’s minimum wage on the tills and insults from harried customers as well as a supervisor of questionable quality breathing down your neck. Perhaps Eurfyl would like to give it a go himself. I did try to speak to Eurfyl after his presentation when everyone started on the wine and nibbles, but he blanked me and proceeded to work his way around the room only speaking to the most important people there. People nearly as important as him.

Plaid’s cosy relationship with the Tories has echoes of the historical arrangement that this blog has revealed with regard to the child abuse in the north Wales children’s homes in the 70s, 80s and 90s. That abuse – as well as the linked abuse in the mental health services – was facilitated by many members of Plaid and their representatives, whilst certain Tory Ministers sat at the top of the tree concealing the whole mess. Meanwhile the likes of Sir Peter Morrison, Thatcher’s aide and Conservative MP for Chester, and Thomas Tyrell-Kenyon, son of Lord Lloyd Tyrell-Kenyon, actually abused the children in care themselves. The state bureaucrats who grossly mismanaged the local authorities, as well as the health and care professionals, occupied various positions in the pecking order below them. Thus a whole structure was kept in place. The only people who didn’t benefit were the kids/patients – they were coerced into providing sexual services and either died, or spent a lifetime travelling in and out of places like Risley Remand Centre or the North Wales Hospital if they dared complain about what was happening to them.

Now I have arrived at one of my running themes on the blog – highly paid people who are pissing all over the rest of us whilst caring – I can report that my mates the BMA have been in the news again. Specifically the BMA GPs representatives. A Dr Sophie Quinney, representing a group called ‘Wales For GP Survival’, has been making claims that GPs are retiring early or cutting down their hours ‘to stay sane’. Which is odd, because I thought that they retired in their mid 50s because their pension pots were so big that they didn’t have to go on until they dropped. Furthermore, despite any stress that their job does involve – and if you’re a GOOD GP it is stressful – the GPs that I know who chose to work part-time were all honest enough to admit that they were so well-paid that they could just work three days a week and still live very comfortably. But members of the BMA representing GPs have been crawling out of the woodwork everywhere with their tales of woe and they all seem to be giving out the same message – that is, if the Gov’t doesn’t do what we say, we will all stop working and then what will you do? I presume that there has been a BMA conference somewhere and they all voted to take a leaf out of the book of Violet Elizabeth Bott i.e. that they would thcweam and thcweam until they were thick.

Indeed, one of those participating in the thcweaming is someone known to me, Dr Graham Thomas, who works in the Corwen Health Centre. Graham has appeared in the Daily Post online urging ‘politicians and patients to put pressure on the Betsi Board to help the practice out’. Graham is rattled because his surgery is in danger of losing it’s Rural Support Payment of £52k which it has received – presumably from the Betsi – for the last 15 years. The Post reports that this is a ‘cry from the heart’ and that Graham, as a GP, ‘speaks from experience’. Graham states that if the Betsi takes over the management of the practice – Graham is suggesting that if the Rural Support Payment is not forthcoming that is what will have to happen – patients will have longer waiting times. He makes reference to the time a few years ago when he assisted at the practice when it was managed by the Betsi and says that ‘I just knew that I was unable to give the time and attention that some of those patients required’. Now I happen to know that although he is a very capable doctor, Graham Thomas is also capable of very great deceit and like Councillor Gareth Jones mentioned earlier, Graham often keeps schtum about terrible things when he shouldn’t. I know this because I used to live in the same village as him, I was in the same hill walking club as him and I used to know him very, very well. He made quite big efforts to cultivate my company, just at the time when I had started making it known that I intended to publish my truly dreadful experiences with the mental health services. Graham knew exactly how bad those services were because he used to work at the Hergest Unit and he saw the neglect, the abuse and indeed the deaths himself. He did not raise any concerns with anyone. He still did not raise any concerns when he left the Hergest Unit and worked in the area as a GP. He still said not a word when he became a more senior GP. He knew that the Hergest was dreadful and he didn’t even bother to send his own patients there, but he did not raise a concern. Neither did he raise concerns when members of the staff at the Hergest Unit were perjuring themselves in an attempt to ensure that I ended up in prison. He knew about it, because I lived just down the lane from him at the time and he used to regularly ask me what I was going to do about the threats and harassment that I was receiving from his colleagues. Although Graham knew how bad many of the staff working in the mental health services were, he was still happy to ensure that they acquired yet another dodgy doctor. On one occasion I got into conversation with a psychiatrist in the hill walking group who had just taken a job at the medium secure unit in Llanfairfechan. I asked him why he had come to Wales and he told me that he hadn’t been able to gain employment after some unspecified hoo ha in his last job. But Dr Graham Thomas had very kindly helped him out and got him a job in north Wales! At one point some charming character threw dog turds at my house. Graham admitted that he knew who did it. I told him that I wanted to report this matter to the police – so Graham refused to reveal the identity of the culprit. He also knew that his colleagues were slandering me. I only discovered the extent of this when he asked me for advice. He had fallen out with a charity that he had been involved with – although I wasn’t ever sure of the details – but it seemed that he believed that they were accusing him of unlawful practices. He was worried that his reputation would be damaged and didn’t know what to do to challenge it. So he asked me for advice, as someone whom he knew to have been subjected to a smear campaign – by his own colleagues. The last time that Graham and his wife spoke to me was after I told them that I had finally had a bellyful of the mental health services and that I had instructed my lawyers to begin action and that I had every intention of one day publishing everything that I had witnessed. Graham and his wife Casi never spoke to me again.

I suspect that as in the case of Professor Catherine Robinson, someone else who was colluding with a great deal of wrongdoing, Graham only ever befriended me to find out what I knew about his colleagues and where or when I was going to publish and was very probably relaying everything that I told him straight back to those we know and love. Two other very odd things happened to me during the time when I was socialising with Graham and Casi. I was looking for a house to rent and I viewed one near where they lived. I told them that I had viewed it and they were very encouraging about it. So I handed over the deposit, rent etc and moved in. After a few weeks it was clear that not only did the landlady have quite serious problems herself but that there were a lot of structural problems with the house that were so bad that they constituted a health and safety risk. I mentioned them to Graham one day who, it transpired, knew all about them. He also knew that previous tenants had moved out of the house after discovering what I had discovered and had also had problems with the landlady. I didn’t remember him telling me about any of that when he encouraged me to move in. The other experience was even more weird. One day after my car broke down, Graham made a very generous offer. He had a car that he could sell me, at an incredibly low price. He said that he was more than happy to do a favour for a friend and I greatly appreciated being able to acquire the car. About a month later, I was driving the car when I was rammed from behind by a man who then became phenomenally aggressive when I asked him for his details. I persevered and eventually I extracted his name, insurance details etc from him. I discovered later that he was a retired officer from the North Wales Police – who I had begun to have quite a lot of problems with by then. In fact during the time that I lived a few doors down from Graham an awful lot of bizarre things happened to me, usually at the hands of people who I then discovered were friendly with Graham and Casi. After I left the village, I found out that Graham and Casi had over the past few years been asked to leave numerous chapels, community organisations and charities. Like me, a lot of people had some very odd experiences with them. I’m glad to hear that it’s onward and upward for them though – Casi is now aiming for ordination in the Church In Wales! And Graham obviously is going to thcweam and thweam until he’s sick. At the time that he was so keen to discover what action I was planning to take against his negligent, abusive, criminal colleagues, Graham was the BMA’s representative for the GPs group in north Wales.

Graham has already recruited one politician to his cause. Llyr Huws Grufydd has publicised Graham’s demand for £50k as a ‘cry for help from a busy rural GP practice’. But then Llyr described Dr Dafydd Alun Jones’s ‘nursing home’ Ty Gwyn as a ‘beacon of excellence’, as it imploded after the population gradually realised what a scam it was. Llyr is a Plaid AM for north Wales. Unless he’s joined the Tories by now.

The Chinese military strategist and philosopher Sun Tzu was alleged to have said that ‘if you wait by the river long enough, the bodies of your enemies will float by’. As far as I can see if you watch the north Wales media for long enough the names of the people involved in the most dreadful abuses of their positions will float by.

 

 

 

News Round Up, May 17 2017

First, I need to pay tribute here to Kathy Mohan, someone with learning disabilities and mental health problems who has had her disability benefits butchered but who has nonetheless been rather more effective at challenging Theresa May than our well-paid opposition politicians backed by their well-funded campaigns. Kathy encountered May campaigning in Abingdon and floored her over the Tories welfare reforms. It was as good as when Thatcher was carpeted by what was then called a ‘housewife’ over the sinking of the Belgrano on a TV programme. (Thatcher famously refused to ever take part in a live ‘questions from the public’ show again.) The only disappointment was Kathy stating when interviewed that one of her friends had suggested that she should throw a few eggs at May, but Kathy felt that would be going too far. Should you ever get the opportunity again Kathy I’d urge you to go for it – until Prescott violently assaulted an egg thrower and got away with it without being charged, throwing eggs, ink, flour etc at politicians was a Great British Tradition. May is pushing disabled people into destitution, an egg upon her much boasted about £1000 leather trousers would not be out of place.

The ‘Today’ programme has reported that after the case of Ian Paterson – the Top Doctor who performed numerous unnecessary operations upon people in order it would seem to boost his earnings – there are calls from the Royal College of Surgeons for ‘greater regulation’ of the private medical sector. Er, so what’s happened to the role of the document-forging GMC then? Are they not responsible for the registration of all doctors, whether they are employed in the private sector or in the NHS? Where were they when Paterson was busy mutilating and maiming patients? Furthermore Paterson also butchered NHS patients, so not only were they left unprotected as well but it would seem that they have been completely forgotten. Oh and the Royal College of Surgeons are well aware that in many cases, the doctors working in the private sector are exactly the same people who are employed in the NHS. There’s bugger all real accountability anywhere and this is as a result of bodies like the Royal College of Surgeons failing to admit that very real problems exist with rogue doctors. Regular readers will remember that the man who co-ordinated the whitewash when I complained about Dr Dafydd Alun Jones et al and their law-breaking and abuse was the Medical Ombudsman at the Welsh Office, Professor Robert Owen. Robert Owen was a surgeon, indeed he was a very big name in surgery – and very much part of the Royal College of Surgeons. Robert Owen is probably still alive as well – when the Top Doctors were organising their en masse assault on Edwina Hart, one leading light in the campaign to oppose her plans for neurosurgery arrangements for patients in north Wales was one Professor Robert Owen, a retired surgeon.

BBC New Wales has reported that in mid-Wales, a non-clinical member of staff repeatedly unlawfully accessed patients confidential records with no good reason. The person concerned has been fined (no mention of her being sacked though!) and the Information Commissioner’s Office had a few harsh words to say. I’m still waiting to hear from them regarding the Betsi sending me the confidential records of other patients and leaking confidential information about me to a GPs surgery, a social services and a police force in England. I made formal representation months ago, as documented on this blog – it hasn’t been sorted out yet, indeed they seem to have forgotten all about it.

There has been much media coverage regarding a Lavinia Woodward. Woodward is a medical student at Oxford who has ambitions to become a heart surgeon. She has been on trial at Oxford Crown Court after she got pissed, stabbed a man whom she met on Tindr in the leg, punched him in the face and then threw a laptop, a glass and a jam jar at him. She seems to be surrounded by some very understanding people. Judge Ian Pringle has deferred sentencing and has indicated that although such offences would normally result in custody, he does not want to damage the career of this ‘extraordinary’ young woman, who is so spectacular that she’s even managed to have a few journal articles published. Christ Church College are refusing to comment on a student’s ‘personal circumstances’. Oh, Woodward is also a drug addict who has helpfully supplied a photo of herself to the Daily Mail that could best be described as constituting her entry for a wet T shirt contest on an 18-30 holiday. It is mentioned that she lives in Milan. This is a wonderful story for those of us interested in social stratification. If Woodward had been male and on benefits and had stabbed and punched a woman whom he met on Tindr, then hurled a variety of household objects at her whilst pissed and enjoying the status of an addict, I really don’t think that anyone would be thinking of protecting his future career. But there we are, Lavinia lives in one of the most expensive cities in the world, flies in and out of one of the world’s elite universities, enjoys herself with recreational chemicals and vast quantities of booze, violently attacks and injures people that she meets online – and she’ll be operating on you in the very near future! She probably sent the judge a copy of the photo that appeared in the Mail, prompting his ‘most extraordinary young woman’ comment. Higher salaries for the Top Doctors anyone? And what’s happened to the NHS ‘zero tolerance’ policy? On the ‘Today’ programme John Humphrys questioned Francis Fitzsimmons, the Chair of the Criminal Bar Association, about the judge’s reasoning – Humphrys kept questioning Fitzsimmons along the lines of ‘why should this young woman be treated differently because of her intellect’. It’s not the intellect that’s the factor John, social class is the key to this conundrum – if Lavinia had been even the highest peforming student at Glyndwr University and was living on Caia Park in Wrexham rather than Milan, she would be heading off to prison. During the interview, Fitzsimmons stated that he’d never seen a judge who wasn’t in control – what a pity he wasn’t in Caernarfon Crown Court to witness dear old Huw Daniel when he heard that the trumped up case against me of ‘threatening to kill’ Alun Davies, the NHS manager who had broken the law to conceal the wrongdoing in the mental health services, had been dropped. He roared, he bellowed, he really lost it… Now I wonder what that was all about…Should anyone really have been rash enough to subsequently appoint Huw as HM the Queen’s representative in Gwynedd? But when Huw accepted that appointment no-one thought that I was ever going to get my hands on the letter that the GMC had forged or indeed the forged certificate of indictment claiming that I’d been convicted of ‘violent disorder’ at the Court case presided over by Huw!

‘Today’ also held an intriguing interview with Dr Mene Pangalos, the ‘executive vice-president of AstraZeneca’s innovative medicines and early biotechnology unit’, explaining that the life sciences contribute billions to the UK economy and could be ‘a major driver of prosperity’ for the UK post-Brexit. So why was he on the ‘Today’ programme? To explain that to do this the Gov’t must invest many more billions in the NHS. Sorry Dr Mene, I really don’t quite follow your logic – you are either contributing billions or you are demanding billions, you can’t really be doing both. I sense an air of desperation on the part of the Top Doctors – some of whom will of course be sitting on the Board and advisory committees of AstraZeneca – they are really desperate for Dosh and they are faced with a Tory Gov’t who is determined not to give in. Furthermore they remember that when the junior doctors went on strike a few months ago public goodwill expired the minute people realised that lives were about to be put at risk, so they can’t hold another strike and embarrassments a la Ian Paterson and the surgeon who was recently prosecuted for rape are popping up regularly. So I’m wondering if the Top Doctors are now wheeling out their mates in the ‘life sciences’ industries to try to bend Theresa’s arm. I think I’ll ask my co-researcher if he can find out the identities of some of those advising AstraZeneca.

I’ve just picked up the latest edition of ‘Private Eye’ and I see Dr Phil Hammond’s column is discussing the sorry state of NHS mental health care. He raises the plight of the seriously mentally ill which is good to see – they are being utterly abandoned among the current tidal wave of people with ‘mild to moderate’ problems pressing for their needs to be met among the bandying about of not very accurate statistics of ‘1 in 4’ people experiencing mental health problems and claims that all we need is to ‘raise awareness’, ‘fight the stigma’ and a bit of ‘access to psychological therapies’. Not forgetting Mindfulness which just proved so successful when Mark Williams pioneered it in Bangor (please see blog post ‘The Biggest Expert Of The Lot’). Sadly however Dr Hammond maintains that what is needed is more money. Yes I’m sure that it would help, but what is really needed are competent practitioners who are not breaking the law and abusing the people that they are paid to care for. Phil Hammond may not know that some of the biggest names in UK psychiatry concealed serious criminal activity in the north Wales mental health services and were prepared to lie through their teeth whilst doing this (please see blog post ‘Some Very Eminent Psychiatrists From London…’), but he has been a doctor long enough to know that the mental health services have been very bad for a very long time and that a major problem for decades has been attracting high calibre graduates into psychiatry, although their salaries will be just as high as the salaries of their colleagues in other specialities. They really do not want to do it – even those who as medical students think that they might like to specialise in it witness such bad practice and such bad attitudes in psychiatry that many of them give up and walk away. Furthermore I’m fairly sure that Hammond worked in Taunton at one point – I remember reading a jolly little quip that I’m fairly sure was penned by him regarding the acronym ‘NFB’ on medical notes. It translated as ‘normal for Bridgwater’! What wags the Top Doctors are – I went to school in Bridgwater Phil and the dads of everyone at our school would have loved your salary, the salary for which you were being paid to deliver treatment to the bumpkins of Bridgwater. Furthermore, when Phil worked at Taunton, he will have known about the notorious Tone Vale, the local mental hospital – it killed the boyfriend of one of my former school friends and completely fucked her life up as well, but what the hell, they were only from Bridgwater. At Tone Vale, patients died avoidably, on one occasion a patient known to have a contagious disease was not isolated because they were all just nutters anyway so who cared if the whole lot of them were put at risk and serious cock-ups were concealed on a regular basis. And Phil will have known about the shambles that was the Somerset mental health services after the closure of Tone Vale…I also suspect that Phil will know about the notorious Taunton orthopaedic surgeon who intimidated his way around the hospitals, insulting patients whom he considered to be a bit NFB himself whilst he amassed a fortune, one Mr Rainey… Would he have treated patients with more respect if he’d been given more money? He was reputed to have been a millionaire, how much money did he need not to reduce the patients to tears in the ‘consultations’?

After the death of Ian Brady in Ashworth, the media has been awash with people stating the obvious ie. that he wasn’t a particularly nice man. A retired policeman from Pwhelli who once sat next to him appeared in the news to describe him as ‘devilish’. A stream of Top Doctors and other police officers have taken to the airwaves talking about his ‘narcissism’ and ‘need to control’. Gothic horror stories have been related of Brady revelling in his media coverage, of sitting at an angle in a room at Ashworth when being interviewed and of not looking the Top Doctors in the eye, of going on hunger strike but secretly enjoying snacks and of trying to get himself transferred to prison. Well, it was the tabloids who carried on publishing photos and stories about Brady and Hindley – for donkey’s years Brady was secreted in Ashworth and no-one had sight nor sound of him – and it’s hardly surprising that Brady tried to secure a transfer to prison, conditions at Ashworth and abuse of patients were so bad (murders had happened) that at one point it was almost closed down and certainly should have been. Ashworth was formed from the merger of two other institutions, Moss Side and Park Lane. That’s the Park Lane that employed Stephen Rose, the SEN who assaulted me when he worked at the North Wales Hospital. The Park Lane where children were being taken in to the wards by corrupt staff for the use of paedophiles…

But then there are some very confused emotions on the part of some people who worked in the mental health services and who remember Brady and Hindley. One of the periodic flare-ups of public interest in their crimes happened whilst I was imprisoned in the North Wales Hospital by Dafydd. We all sat there watching TV whilst the parents of the children that Brady and Hindley had killed were filmed crying on camera, one father equipped himself with a knife and made a rather half-hearted murder threat towards Hindley whilst he was being filmed – I think that Hindley had been taken to the scene of the crimes by the police in an attempt to pin-point the possible burial sites of some of their victims – and everyone on TV were providing their insights, those insights being that Brady and Hindley were ‘evil’. I was having a conversation with another patient regarding the inadequacy of this analysis and a most extraordinary scene broke out on Bryn Golau Ward. One of the nurses, a lady called Ingrid, became very upset with me indeed and started crying. She told me that she had been in the public gallery at Chester when Brady and Hindley were tried, had sat through the whole of the trial, that the evidence had been dreadful and that the jury and the people in the public gallery had all ended up in tears. I don’t doubt any of this, that trial was notorious because recordings of one of the children that Brady and Hindley had murdered was played to the Court and she could be heard crying and asking for her mother. After Ingrid revealed this, the other staff all joined her in offering their diagnoses of ‘evil’ as well. Now these were staff employed on a ward where at least three people had been unlawfully imprisoned by Dafydd Alun Jones. They were staff employed on a ward where at least one male member of staff was physically assaulting female patients. And they were staff employed on a ward where a young woman had been unlawfully detained after being abducted and sexually assaulted by a group of men that included a doctor – a young woman who then disappeared from that ward without explanation or trace when a nurse, Iola Edwards, heard her telling me what had happened to her (please see blog post ‘The Distressed Young Woman Who Vanished’). This ward was part of an institution in which it’s very own Top Doctor, Dafydd Alun Jones, was sexually exploiting female patients and imprisoning people who had complained about being molested by the north Wales paedophile ring whilst they were in children’s homes in north Wales. Oh and Dafydd’s mistress was later named in the Waterhouse Report as knowing that a paedophile ring was operating in the social services that she was the Director of, but failing to act. And of course the North Wales Hospital was unlawfully keeping patients in some sort of underground chamber, euphemistically known as ‘downstairs’. No wonder those nurses couldn’t cope with their own emotions when patients – illegally detained patients – discussed violent sexually motivated crimes. Regular readers will have noticed a further irony. Sir Ronnie Waterhouse the retired judge who led the Waterhouse Inquiry – which was widely alleged to have covered up the true extent of the North Wales Child Abuse Scandal and the names of high profile people who were involved – was junior prosecuting counsel at the trial of Brady and Hindley. Senior prosecuting counsel was Lord Elwyn-Jones – who was Lord Chancellor at the time of Mary Wynch’s unlawful arrest and imprisonment and who at that time observed that a judge called John Donaldson deserved promotion to the Court of Appeal but that it would be ‘more trouble than it was worth’. Years later John Donaldson did achieve the promotion and eventually became Master of the Rolls. Indeed, it was Lord Donaldson in his capacity as Master of the Rolls who later gave Mary leave to sue Dafydd et al. An honest judge – no wonder he was considered ‘trouble’. The presence of scoundrels on the prosecution team does not of course mean that Hindley and Brady were stitched up in the way that other people seem to have been stitched up by those we know and love, just as the presence of distressed nurses in the public gallery doesn’t mean that their crimes weren’t dreadful. But it might explain the hypocrisy and confusion of some of these people, not to mention their sheer desperation and extreme reactions every time someone tries to get to the bottom of child abuse in north Wales or expose the wrongdoing of the mental health services. They just can’t get rid of the bloodstains, no matter how much they wash their hands…

Readers who follow the ‘comments’ section on my blog will have read the recent comment from Kate, who is having difficulty accepting some of what I have discovered Dr Tony Francis (‘Dr X’) to have been involved in. As I explain in my reply to Kate in the comments section, I think that it is highly probable that Tony Francis and his colleagues have all been under investigation in the wake of Operation Pallial, although not many of them seem to have realised it. I am aware that many in north Wales are still in a deep slumber up there, merrily tweeting and retweeting nonsense about campaigns for medical schools and bleeding heart messages from Louis Appleby about how the Mental Health Act isn’t the problem but discrimination is no less and how the NHS just needs MORE MONEY. Once again it is only David Healy who has envisaged what is coming, although he hasn’t worked out the timeline yet. By the way David, shagging one’s patients, breaking the law, concealing a paedophile ring, driving your wife’s lover to suicide and giving medical evidence against your own wife in Court to gain access to the kids that you have neither the time nor the inclination to look after and then cohabiting with female patients so that you can claim that they are employed as your ‘nannies’ or ‘housekeepers’, does not constitute an ‘expert’s private life’. Dafydd was no expert and all this was very, very public. And if you are daft enough to make ‘jokes’ in your publications about dodgy research and putting your patients in danger, then don’t be surprised if people think that it might be a good idea to publish this. In the wake of me being given that long list of names of people who have now been imprisoned for their part in the paedophile gang but knowing that not a word has appeared in the media, thus suggesting that an investigation is still underway but there are reporting restrictions in place to protect witnesses, I’ve been pondering on another mystery. That of the North Wales Hospital not having been demolished or redeveloped yet. There is alleged to be a compulsory purchase order on the building, yet there has been delay after inexplicable delay. It is still allegedly owned by an off-shore company who seem to be doing nothing with it – and last year it allegedly went up for auction for 2 million but ‘there were no bids’. ‘No bids’, come off it – old asylums in other parts of the country have all been converted into hotels or luxury apartments, people love those old buildings (they don’t know what happened in them), they have a niche value. And Denbigh was, architecturally, one of the finest examples of an asylum in the country. Yet it is being allowed to fall down – and this is being used as the rationale to maintain security out there, including the occasional police patrol and to impose a blanket ban on all explorers of old buildings (there’s another warning today in the Post online). It’s not credible. But of course some of us for a long time have been urging an investigation into Denbigh, into the patients that died out there but whose deaths went undeclared (as dear old David Crossley published when he worked there, ‘only ever one death’ – bollocks Crossley, Gwynne Williams carried out lobotomies there and none of the people involved or the facilities themselves were safe enough to perform such ‘operations’) and of course into ‘downstairs’. And what about the patients who disappeared without trace, or the patients whom Tony Francis admitted had been ‘hidden away’ out there by Dafydd, whom no-one knew what to do with as closure loomed? Anyone for forensic examination of the building and the grounds? If that has been happening no-one is going to want ‘urban explorers’ or ghost hunters traipsing around. And if the building has been deemed dangerous, police and security patrols can stop all access… However, I can still hear the sound of loud snoring from the direction of north Wales, except of course from the North Wales Dept of Psychological Medicine aka the Good Ship Healy.

 

 

 

 

 

News Round-Up, March 20 2017

I have a few updates regarding recent blog posts, as well as a few new items to report.

THIS BLOG WAS EDITED ON APRIL 24th 2017 ON THE ORDERS OF A JUDGE – I HAVE HAD TO REMOVE CERTAIN PARAGRAPHS

….who was alleged to be sexually exploiting patients who also tripped over himself to fill the role as the psychiatrist specialising in ‘substance abuse’ in north Wales – one of the main stars of this blog, Dr Dafydd Alun Jones. When the Hergest Unit was first built, Jones would attend there regularly to hold ‘clinics’ for ‘his’ drug users. Angry patients who had previous experience of Jones’s misconduct would constantly challenge the staff of the Hergest Unit regarding Jones’s presence there. The staff would always respond in the same way – they would tell the protesting patients that although they might not like Jones, other patients attending his clinic ‘want to see him and like him’. There was one patient at the Hergest Unit who was a former drug user himself who one day could bear these lame excuses no longer and responded with ‘they like him because he gives them drugs and I should know because I used to be like that myself’. Many years later I met a former patient of Jones’s who sung his praises and told me that he was great because ‘he’d give you anything you wanted, anything at all’. I have previously mentioned on the blog that Dafydd was a regular on TV shows in the 90s – he appeared on ‘The Kane Debates’, on ‘Kilroy’ and when he was resisting retirement and trying to prevent the North Wales Hospital from being closed he managed to con S4C into doing a few programmes entirely about him and his heroic work with drug users. It was during one of these TV appearances that Dafydd explained to the world that he didn’t hold with methadone reduction programmes, he ‘helped’ addicts by prescribing them sizeable doses of diazepam instead. I always wondered why Dafydd was so enthusiastic regarding the magical powers of diazepam. Interestingly enough, Dafydd is little and in public usually indulges in a bit of ham-acting in an attempt to dupe people into believing that he’s a God-fearing little old man who wouldn’t hurt a fly – however when Dafydd thought no-one was watching and he lost his rag with me, on one occasion he gave me a quick thump in the arm as he passed by me and another time he clenched his fist and I think was about to clobber me but I pointed out that there was a secretary standing behind him who was watching…

….It is about the state giving you enormous power over the lives of vulnerable people and corrupt institutions like the BMA and GMC working very hard indeed to ensure that you are never held to account, no matter how serious the complaints against you. It also helps if you are surrounded by colleagues who know what you are doing but make as many lame excuses for you as they can, some of whom do this because they fear being dismissed if they blow the whistle on you, others because they are also indulging in wrongdoing and there’s so much to hide that they fear the whole ship sinking if anyone breaks ranks….

Whilst on the subject of questionable prescribing, there is another item of interest in the news. Mail Online is reporting that Kate Matthew, a health visitor employed by Aneurin Bevan University Health Board in south Wales, has been struck off the nursing register indefinitely by the NMC after forging prescriptions for use in her ‘beauty’ business which she ran as a sideline, offering ‘treatments’ such as Botox, lip fillers etc. The fraud involving acquiring a number of blank prescriptions that a doctor colleague had signed and photocopying them to use the doctor’s signature. Matthew was given a suspended prison sentence and unpaid community work as a result of the criminal proceedings against her. However, it won’t hold her back, because she has stated that she will continue to run her business in a managerial capacity and will employ a registered nurse to actually carry out the ‘procedures’. Which seems to be the basis on which a lot of ‘medical aesthetics’ businesses are run – an unqualified or even disqualified person owns and runs the business and employs a qualified person who is effectively treated as a minion to remain within the law. There is one other huge unanswered question in this case – it is reported that the doctor who signed the prescriptions was unaware of the fraud and had ‘signed the blank prescriptions in good faith’. How does one sign a blank prescription in good faith? The whole point of a signature on a prescription is for that signature to be added AFTER the prescription has been completed, in order that fraud like this doesn’t happen. I note that the doctor churning out signed blank prescriptions in good faith has not been named, disciplined and did not face trial himself. Which is interesting because he is probably guilty of the greater wrongdoing. But then three years ago when I had the misfortune to be detained at Parkhead Hospital in Glasgow, I was keeping an eye on the drug charts as the ‘medication’ was handed out because I could see how bad the practices were in that place and nearly every day I witnessed prescription fraud including the same technique described in this south Wales case.

A recent blog post described the serious shortcomings of the Bangor branch of the Samaritans (please see post ‘Updates From NHS England, March 18 2017’). I was therefore interested to read in the Daily Post that Bangor Samaritans have somehow accumulated so much dosh that they have acquired a brand new building – presumably people handing over the donations have no idea how the Samaritans in Bangor are actually conducting themselves. However I am wondering if, like so many other Third Sector organisations in north Wales claiming to be providing ‘support’ for the vulnerable and distressed, the Bangor Samaritans are in receipt of large quantities of dosh from the Welsh Gov’t. The purpose of the Post article is to urge potential volunteers for the Bangor Samaritans to come forward – now I wonder why the Samaritans in Bangor are having difficulty finding volunteers…

Another north Wales Third Sector organisation receiving Govt dosh to provide ‘services’ to people with mental health problems that has previously featured on the blog is ‘Parabl’, memorably described by a reader as the love-child of CAIS and MIND (please see blog post ‘Newly Discovered – ‘Parabl’!’). Since I blogged about Parabl, I have received correspondence from a number of readers all maintaining that they have attempted to obtain a service from Parabl but were turned down on the grounds that their ‘problems’ were ‘too serious’ to be dealt with by Parabl. These people were being refused care by the mental health services because their problems weren’t serious enough and were referred to Parabl, only to be turned down by Parabl as well. So to whom is Parabl providing a service? Although I have yet to find someone to whom Parabl have agreed to give a service, I note that like CAIS, MIND and indeed the Bangor Samaritans, Parabl is obviously another Third Sector organisation failing to deliver what it claims to be delivering but expanding nonetheless – whilst in the Co-Op Store in Machynlleth a few days ago, I noticed an advert for Parabl. So presumably they have now expanded into mid-Wales. Machynlleth could constitute a good target for Parabl – there are no statutory mental health services in the Machynlleth area (although I doubt that this means that the residents of Machynlleth will be missing out on much), the nearest statutory mental health services are in Newtown or one can use the ‘services’ provided by dear old MIND in Aberystwyth. So presumably Parabl have capitalised on this and persuaded someone to fund their ‘service’ in mid-Wales.

BBC News is reporting that a former consultant paediatrician at the North Devon District Hospital, Dr Jonathan Walsh, has been imprisoned for three years after using ‘military-grade’ software to cover his tracks whilst possessing and sharing child sex images. Police confirmed that none of the images related to patients at the hospital. Such statements tend to be made in the wake of cases like this – why do the police think that Walsh chose to specialise in paediatrics? Many years ago Professor Oliver Brook, a paediatrician at St George’s Hospital Medical School, was found to be in possession of a huge quantity of child pornography and was subsequently imprisoned. However he was released very shortly after by a sympathetic judge who believed that he was simply a man with a weakness. That was of course true, but there is now information available online regarding the Brook case alleging that Brook was actually a key figure in a pan-European paedophile network. At the time of Brook’s conviction, St George’s put out a statement reassuring everyone that of course Brook had never behaved improperly with any patients. After what I witnessed when I worked at St Georges not long after Brook was imprisoned, I wouldn’t rely on their assurances regarding any matter at all. But back to Walsh – he was put on the sex offenders register for life and served with a sexual harm prevention order. There is no mention of whether the GMC will be taking any action against Walsh…

However, someone else has been facing a GMC hearing and that is Dr Hannah Ryan, who has admitted misleading other medics by concealing nurse Pauline Cafferkey’s raised temperature before she became seriously ill with Ebola when Cafferkey returned to the UK after volunteering in Sierra Leone in 2014. Ryan allegedly wrote down a temperature 1C lower than it actually was during a ‘chaotic’ screening process at Heathrow airport in December 2014. Ryan admitted misleading others and ‘acquiesced’ in the wrong temperature being given but denies misconduct. It was obvious from the report in the Guardian that Hannah Ryan was not alone in misleading the authorities regarding Cafferkey’s temperature, so one wonders why there are no reports of the others involved facing disciplinary action. Furthermore, the misconduct of scores of practitioners in concealing the abuses in the mental health services in north Wales has been every bit as serious and dangerous as Hannah Ryan’s actions yet not one of them has faced disciplinary action from the GMC…

Another regular on this blog, Arfon Jones the North Wales Police and Crime Commissioner, has featured in the local media today, launching a domestic abuse strategy. One of Arfon’s ideas is that healthcare professionals should be ‘trained’ to spot signs of domestic abuse. I’m not sure that Arfon needs to train them to do any such thing – from what I know health practitioners in north Wales are more than able to spot signs of domestic abuse. Indeed I know of three men who have been employed as doctors at Ysbyty Gwynedd who have all been perpetrators of domestic abuse themselves. I also used to be very friendly with a lady who lived in Gwynedd who was married to an incredibly abusive man whose conduct was well-known and indeed witnessed by the neighbours. Two of these neighbours were a married couple who were both employed as nurses in the Hergest Unit. On one occasion one of these nurses told me that my friend’s husband’s violence towards her was ‘partly her fault because she’s so pitiful’. I’m not surprised she was pitiful, she was married to a maniac. Furthermore, this man’s repeated assaults on my friend eventually led to her developing mental health problems – she was sectioned by the local GP, also a neighbour, who knew about the violence that she was enduring and he admitted her to the Hergest Unit. To the very same ward on which her neighbour was employed as a charge nurse, whilst her neighbour was on duty. The violence and my friend’s distress continued and she then became very conscious that her neighbours had witnessed her at her most vulnerable, sectioned in a mental health unit. She became so distressed about this that she decided to leave the area as she believed that she was being openly gossiped about – she was, I was directly asked by a ‘carer’, ‘ooh what’s gone on there then she’s lost loads of weight’. (My friend had developed body image and eating disorder problems.) By this time my friend’s violent husband had very publicly left her for a teenaged girl so that became a rich source of gossip for the local healthcare staff as well. At this point my friend put her house up for sale at a knock-down price because she was so desperate to move away. She had an immediate offer – from the two Hergest Unit nurses who had gossiped about her and blamed her for her husband’s violent attacks. These two nurses only lived a few doors away, but my friend’s house was more desirable than theirs so they capitalised on my friend’s difficult situation and her embarrassment – to which they had contributed themselves – to get their paws on a house that they had always wanted but had not been able to afford when they first moved into the area…

I noticed another news item this evening when I was catching up on the Welsh news regarding Theresa May signing the Swansea Bay City Deal when she visited Wales today. There has been a critic of the Swansea Bay City Deal, who has appeared on BBC News Wales online offering his pearls of wisdom, stating that the Deal is based on a ‘discredited model’- that is one Professor Dylan Jones-Evans, of Bristol Business School. Dylan has not always been of Bristol Business School, he has formerly been of the University of Wales, Glyndwr University – and Bangor University. I don’t know how long it will be before Bristol Business School decides to dispense with his services, but that’s his current location. Dylan likes to think of himself as a right-wing ‘thinker’, but in reality he spends his time ingratiating himself to anyone whom he thinks can advance his prospects. He previously used to boast of being an ‘economic advisor’ to the Welsh Tories, but that all went a bit pear shaped a few years ago as a consequence of some ill-advised comments that Dylan made on his blog which were picked up by Peter Hain. When Dylan blighted Bangor University, he was part of Bangor Business School. I heard many first-hand accounts of atrocious bullying in Bangor Business School and one of the worst accounts involved Dylan. A young woman who was a junior member of staff working with Dylan’s team was subjected to some very unpleasant experiences. At one point she became pregnant as the result of a relationship with a rather predatory man and decided to end the pregnancy. She found this an incredibly distressing experience and took time off work because of it – Dylan, who I think was her line manager, knew about this. When she returned to work, one of her first tasks was to attend a conference as Dylan’s side-kick – at the conference dinner Dylan thought it was a good idea to make a ‘joke’ about her recent termination. This Charming Man’s activities did not end there. Eventually Bangor University decided that Dylan was a bit of a liability and they parted company and Dylan left for the green pastures of Glyndwr University. No-one actually seemed to know how Dylan had been persuaded to leave Bangor, but it was clear that he didn’t want to and after his departure he repeatedly swore that he’d wreak revenge on Bangor University. A few years later I heard that Dylan was standing as the Tory candidate for the Aberconwy area in the forthcoming Assembly election. I was then told by someone whom had met up with Dylan on the day that he had been selected as the candidate that he had treated this person to a slap-up dinner with him to celebrate his selection. I was told that during this dinner, whilst polishing off a lot of champagne, Dylan revealed that he only wanted to become a Tory AM to become Minister for Education and when he achieved this he intended to use his position to shaft Bangor University. Furthermore, Dylan let on that once he’d done this, he intended to become First Minister. Sadly Dylan’s Cunning Plan went badly wrong – he was never elected, which seemed to be a hurdle that he had forgotten about.

One way in which Dylan promotes himself is by his ‘mentoring’ of business start-ups. He boasts of his achievement in establishing the ‘Fast Growth 50’ scheme, which is heavily advertised by the Western Mail, probably because Dylan works for them as a columnist. I know of a number of people who have been ‘mentored’ by Dylan who have come to regret it – they allege that he simply fleeced them. In common with a lot of people over the past fifteen years, Dylan has been very keen to claim to be helping women, in Dylan’s case helping women start up in business. (People subjected to this PR of course know nothing of how Dylan has actually treated women who have had the misfortune to find themselves working with him.) Dylan had a pal in this endeavour – someone else who used to be associated with Bangor University, one Rebecca Jones. I was never sure what Rebecca Jones actually did or who employed her, but she used to hang around the Management Centre a great deal. The Management Centre was a University-owned company – I think Dylan himself played a role in establishing it and I was also told that the notorious Elfed Roberts, former Chair of the disasterous North West Wales NHS Trust was associated with the Management Centre – and was the source of much entertainment and contempt from the rest of the University, because no-one at the Management Centre seemed to be able to manage anything at all. Although the building was wonderful, every one of their various ventures such as their Business Club, their Bar, their café, was a total disaster. For a long time the Management Centre was run by the dreadful Colyn Gardner, who eventually parted company with the University much to everyone’s relief. As with Bangor Business School, there were terrifying anecdotes circulating regarding the alleged swindles that some of the senior staff were said to be involved in. At one point I was told by someone who worked with the Management Centre that Rebecca Jones had discovered some of this wrongdoing and was alleged to be blackmailing one of the people involved. Rebecca then disappeared from Bangor completely and I later discovered that she had resurfaced in south Wales, where she and her husband were running a B&B business of all things. (I was told at the time that Rebecca’s husband had departed from Anglesey County Council under a big cloud.) At the same time as running a B&B, Rebecca took a leaf out of Dylan’s book and reconstructed herself as a ‘business mentor’ – specialising in ‘advising’ women who wanted to establish businesses. Rebecca took to social media, calling herself Red Shoe Biz Woman, promoting her services as an ‘inspiring woman’ who wanted to ’empower’ other women. To be empowered however, women were required to hand over a lot of cash to Rebecca. I presume that Rebecca was targeting quite naïve women who had very little knowledge of business because her marketing material had the ring of something straight out of a woman’s magazine – ‘Rebecca knows what your life is like, as a mum and as a woman, she cares about you and knows the struggles that you face’ sort of thing. Rebecca advertised her numerous services online – as a mentor, as an inspirational speaker, as a facilitator of networks etc etc. Dylan and Rebecca went through a phase of vigorously promoting each other on social media. I notice that information about Red Shoe Biz Woman and her many talents is still available on the internet, although the information seems to be quite old. However Rebecca has posted up a copy of her ‘CV’ online, which isn’t a CV at all but a shameless boast sheet with very little evidence of the many achievements claimed. However, Rebecca’s CV did illuminate one thing for me – about the only recognisable qualification on that CV is an NNEB in nursery nursing. So that’s what is needed to be an inspirational business mentor for whose advice other women must pay handsomely…

I heard many worrying stories about Bangor Business School and the Management Centre, but there was one incident at the Management Centre that I received full details of, because it involved a good friend of mine. He obtained a part-time summer job as a receptionist at the Management Centre immediately after he graduated. Within days he noticed a lot of things that he felt should not be happening and believed that Colyn Gardner was encouraging an unpleasant bullying atmosphere. Most staff were terrified of Gardner and no-one dared raise the issue of the bullying culture with him. My friend suffered from epilepsy and was quite upfront about this lest he ever had a seizure and people who worked with him needed to help. However, after he had made this known, he noticed that some unpleasant comments were being made by certain members of staff at the Management Centre. He ignored them until one day when he went into work, he was asked to go into a room because someone had ‘something they wanted to show him’. He walked in and found that they were screening a video of someone having a grand mal seizure, as the assembled staff rolled around laughing. My friend walked out and began a disability discrimination case against the Management Centre. On the evening of the day that he began his case, he received a phone call at home, unsolicited, from Lyn Meadows, the HR Director at the University. Meadows tried to intimidate and silence him. Meadows is now an member of the Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board. My friend then had another encounter. He was approached by one Aled Griffiths, a senior lecturer in law at Bangor – my friend had just graduated in law. Griffiths asked him if he would be interested in doing a PhD. My friend was quite flattered and presumed that he’d been invited because he was considered to be a good student. A few days later he was told by Griffiths that unless he dropped his legal case against the Management Centre, ‘there would be a problem’ with him registering for a PhD. But then I imagine that Griffiths felt that this was a perfectly acceptable way of conducting business – his sister is Gwenan Carrington, former Director of Gwynedd Social Services and his wife is Joanna Griffiths, a retired senior manager from Conwy Social Services. My friend decided that he really didn’t want to do a PhD under these circumstances and instead took up a job in London. The Management Centre later settled out of court with him.

 

 

How Did These Two Events Ever Happen?

Surfing the internet just now I came across accounts of two events that just should never have happened.

One event that is now featuring on all the UK news programmes concerns three police officers from Exeter who have been cleared of gross negligence manslaughter after a man with schizophrenia whom they arrested and detained in custody subsequently died http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-devon-39202799

Thomas Orchard, 32, was arrested on suspicion of a Public Order offence and was ‘fully restrained’ ie. handcuffed and his legs were put in straps. At the police station, an ’emergency response belt’ was wrapped around his head, although the ’emergency response belt’ was not designed to be used in this way. Thomas was unconscious within 45 minutes of being arrested and died in hospital a week later. Whilst he was in custody, three officers ‘restrained’ him whilst four others were nearby. It is reported that CCTV evidence showed Thomas attempting to bite an officer as he entered the custody area. Of the three officers who have just been cleared of manslaughter, one was a sergeant and two were detention officers, all of them in middle-age. So presumably they were experienced officers who would have received training in dealing with people with mental health problems as well as in restraint. The point of such training is to ensure that people do not die whilst being ‘restrained’. The photographs of the three officers involved show them all to be well-built men – the photograph of Thomas Orchard appears to show a rather frail young man with specs. So Thomas was arrested on suspicion of a minor offence and ended up dead after being detained in a police station where there were an awful lot of ‘trained’ officers on duty – and not one of them noticed that at some point during the ‘restraint’ this young man stopped breathing. Presumably the reason given for wrapping the ’emergency response belt’ around Thomas’s head was his alleged attempt at biting an officer. I wonder how much danger this attempted bite actually presented to anyone – humans do not have the canines of an Alsation, capable of inflicting deep and nasty puncture wounds, and they do not have jaws that lock and cannot be prised apart, in the manner of a Pit Bull Terrier. As Thomas was handcuffed and bound at the legs I suspect that he was probably desperately writhing around in confusion and distress trying to utilise any part of him that wasn’t chained or tied up. I just can’t see how one trussed up man was presenting such a danger to a police station full of officers that he had to be effectively hooded and gagged as well as bound at the limbs. Anyway, he’s now dead after being taken to a place of safety by professionals who’ve received training. Which seems to be quite a common occurrence. One other aspect of this story leapt out at me. The police station where all this took place was Heavitree Road Police Station. That police station is right opposite the University of Exeter campus, housing the Peninsula Medical School, an establishment boasting expertise and ‘research interests’ in ‘mental health service user led research’. Please see blog post ‘NHS Chief Executive Collapses In Court After Being Spared Jail’ for the low down on the University of Exeter and the Peninsula Medical School…

Another event reported online today was almost as gobsmacking as three police officers walking away after killing someone. The Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board is boasting on its website that the Denbighshire mental health team has become the first in Wales to be recognised for ‘exemplary practice’ http://www.wales.nhs.uk/sitesplus/861/news/44275

That’s right, the Health Board that is currently in special measures because of ‘institutional abuse’ in its mental health services, the Health Board that spends a fortune on sending patients to in-patient units in England and I understand even on occasion to France because its own in-patient units are so unsafe, the Health Board serving a region where on an almost weekly basis mental health patients are found dead, has won an award for ‘exemplary practice’. So who has been rash enough to make themselves a laughing stock by dispensing this award? Step forward the Royal College of Psychiatrists! Now I could wax lyrical for a very long time regarding the dirt that I have on various members of the Royal College of Psychiatrists, but instead I will simply mention one name – Professor Rob Poole of Bangor University, previously of Glyndwr University. Professor Rob Poole is also a rather mediocre psychiatrist who works for the Betsi who’s treatment of one patient was so bad that she approached her local AM who subsequently gave a speech in the Senedd mentioning her case. This case was notorious because after this patient complained about Rob Poole, he ordered that none of her complaints should be investigated because they were part of her illness. Imagine that, a mental illness whose symptoms include ‘complaining about Rob Poole’. I wonder if it’s listed in the DSM yet? However, since this speech was made by the AM, Professor Rob Poole has picked up a few more appointments – including ‘Chair, Executive Committee, Royal College of Psychiatrists, Wales 2012-16’; ‘Vice-President, Royal College of Psychiatrists, November 2015-July 2016’. Readers can access more details concerning Rob Poole from my blog post ‘It’s Those Experts From The Betsi Again!’ Poole’s clinical ‘patch’ is somewhere in north east Wales. It may even be Denbighshire.

Time To Change Wales

BBC News Wales online is reporting the suicide of yet another farmer, this time in Pembrokeshire, which has resulted in Preseli Pembrokeshire AM Paul Davies (Con) leading to call for more mental health support in Welsh rural areas http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-wales-38858020

This blog has previously documented the case of a farmer on Anglesey known to me who killed himself with a shotgun after a prolonged period of severe depression, as his family begged for more support for him to no avail. After numerous suicide threats from the farmer, the esteemed mental health team on Anglesey eventually paid him a visit and removed one of his two shotguns. Shortly after they left he shot himself dead with the other one. After his death his widow observed that there was ‘no help at all’. Farmers and vets are two cohorts known to have high suicide rates. Wales is a predominantly rural area, with hopeless mental health services. Paul Davies AM is rightly calling for more mental health support for people in rural areas, but his comments seem to suggest that he thinks more ‘investment’ will solve the problem.

But then demanding more ‘investment’ in NHS Wales – even in the north where, as this blog has described, millions are being wasted by gross mismanagement by the Betsi or being diverted into the pockets of people with connections to the Betsi under the guise of ‘charity’, ‘research’ or ‘therapeutic initiatives’ – is all the rage at present. A quick read of Sian Gwenllian’s tweets reveal that she recently retweeted information regarding ‘enterprising Welsh MPs’ who tabled an amendment demanding £17.5 million a week for NHS Wales. Who were these ‘enterprising Welsh MPs’? None other than Hywel Williams, Liz Saville-Roberts, Jonathan Edwards and Albert Owen. Three of these – Hywel, Liz and Albert – are MPs in north Wales and know all about the disaster (and drain down which money disappears) that is the Betsi. And not one of them ever speaks publicly about the neglect and abuse that is occurring in services run by that Health Board, even though I know for a fact that Hywel and Liz have received correspondence from constituents about this – and I bet Albert has as well. But then Hywel is a former psychiatric social worker who is personally friends with a number of people who work in the mental health services and who has a track record of being very rude to constituents who have tried to raise questions relating to neglect and abuse in these services. When Hywel was employed as a psychiatric social worker the ‘services’ were centred around the North Wales Hospital Denbigh so presumably Hywel will be used to ignoring the screams of patients. And all these years later he’s using his position in Parliament to try to extract a few more million for the ‘services’ rather than to expose their scams and abuses. Furthermore yesterday Sian tweeted that ‘conversations about mental health change lives’. Not if those conversations refuse to ever acknowledge that there is rampant neglect, abuse and institutional corruption in the mental health services they don’t Sian. Immediately after this tweet, Sian tweeted again – posing for a photo opp with a consultant from Ysbyty Gwynedd, pledging support for the campaign to build a medical school in Bangor. So we’re back on familiar ground – many more million please, to be squandered and misused by a Health Board already in special measures. By the way Sian, a google search reveals that the man that you are photographed with runs a private practice, in parallel with his highly paid work in the NHS. How is this consistent with Leanne Wood’s ‘progressive politics’, ‘social justice’ and battle against neoliberalism which she is no doubt promoting on her current tour of north Wales? A few hours later, Sian retweeted another Plaid supporter suggesting that a medical school in Bangor is the answer to the ‘brain drain’. No Sian, Catrin and Liz it is not – there is a brain drain in the medical services in north Wales because these services are so bad that good doctors won’t touch them with a barge pole.

If any readers of this blog are tempted to fall into Plaid’s trap of believing that a medical school in Bangor will attract the brightest and the best and will constitute a world-leading research institution, they are invited to read some of my previous posts regarding the ‘research’ in health and social care that has been/is being carried out at Bangor University and Glyndwr University and some of the people doing that research (eg. ‘Experts In Suicide Prevention??’, ‘More Experts and Their Expertise’, ‘Compassion, Intelligent-Kindness and Shame’, ‘An Expert On The Betsi Board!’, It’s Those Experts From The Betsi Again!’, ‘Conflicts Of Interest – and Some Very Big Salaries’, ‘Time To Talk’ and ‘The Biggest Expert Of The Lot’.) Who would ever trust this lot with a medical school?

Sian’s tweet regarding the value of talking about mental health whilst ignoring the fact that people are being neglected or abused – or indeed are dying – at the hands of the mental health services was sent out as part of the ‘Time To Change Wales’ campaign. It certainly is time to change Wales. Perhaps we could start with our politicians.

 

Just Ask For Help…

BBC News Wales is reporting a fascinating piece regarding the nearly 8,000 people in Wales who have died of alcohol-related causes between 2005-2014 ‘without accessing alcohol treatment services despite repeated hospital admission’ http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-wales-38801976 A third of these people were under 50. An alcohol treatment assessment was recorded for less than a quarter of those deaths. Public Health Wales said that this was down to ‘cultural and service barriers’. Public Health Wales is now calling for people who have identified that their drinking is a problem to ‘act by getting help earlier’. Josie Smith, ‘programme and national lead for substance misuse at Public Health Wales’ commented that ‘not enough’ drinkers are seeking help and – as ever – the ‘stigma’ needs to be broken down.

People dying from alcohol related problems is nothing to do with them failing to ‘ask for help’ or ‘stigma’. In north Wales I know that – as with people with mental health problems – people with alcohol problems can beg for help and none will be forthcoming. They have been for many years refused help from the Hergest Unit – and some such cases have featured in inquests in north Wales, one such case being detailed on this blog (please see post ‘Two Very Dishonest and Dangerous Nurses’) – and are regularly thrown out of A&E if they arrive there to ask for help. Neither will there be meaningful support offered from community mental health teams. They are only left with two options – Alcoholics Anonymous or dear old CAIS. If these options don’t work for them then they are stuffed. It is a lie that, along with people with mental health problems, all they need to do is ‘ask for help’ and it will be forthcoming.

Public Health Wales know this – indeed there’s a very big clue in their reference to ‘service barriers’. Public Health Wales itself has employed two people known to me who are very well aware of how bad the mental health and substance abuse services are in north Wales. One of these people – like so many – watched what happened to me at the hands of the mental health services, said nothing to anyone in authority, continued to carry out ‘research’ with the North West Wales NHS Trust, then worked for Public Health Wales, later set up an ‘executive coaching’ business and was recently commissioned by the Betsi for her ‘expertise’ in ‘training and development’. The other person worked on a research project investigating alcohol-related problems with some of those notorious ‘experts’ from the Betsi/Bangor University/Glyndwr University. Public Health Wales know exactly why people are dying without ‘accessing services’ and it has nothing to do with that lame old concept of ‘stigma’.