Yet More Crime And Punishment

The Daily Post Online today is running one of it’s regular shock horror stories regarding that which the hard pressed staff of the Betsi have to tolerate as they go about their daily heroics: ‘Sexual Abuse, Violent Attacks and Verbal Insults – The Crimes North Wales NHS Staff Suffer’. The article explains that ‘new figures reveal the extent of the appalling offences committed against NHS workers’. We are told that NHS staff in north Wales have been ‘attacked’ more than 7000 times since 2012, according to ‘shocking figures’ released as a result of an FoI request. In 2013 there were 1929 incidents and over the next three years there were more than 1700 incidents each year.

It sounds terrible doesn’t it. But these thousands of incidents do not represent the numbers of convictions – they are figures supplied by the Betsi, not the police. Neither have they been confirmed by any other body. I happen to know that the Betsi employs a very elastic definition when it uses the phrase ‘attack on a member of staff’. The statistics for such ‘attacks’ include instances of psychotic or learning disabled patients swearing – not even necessarily swearing AT staff, but merely swearing in their presence. It is entirely at the discretion of Betsi staff whether they report ‘attacks’ on them and some of those staff are known to be reporting the most trivial of incidences – particularly if the patient involved has made a complaint. I know of staff employed in the Hergest Unit who were routinely complaining of being ‘attacked’ by patients as a means of getting themselves out of trouble when the staff themselves were the subject of complaint. I know of a number of patients – including me – who were accused of ‘assaulting’ or ‘attacking’ staff after they had complained about being assaulted by staff themselves. Most of these complaints involved the same staff. Furthermore I have compared my own medical records with the records of some of the patients who contacted me after they too had been wrongly accused – the same phrases had been used about all of us by the same staff. Those staff were working to a script. In no case that I know of were the staff involved disciplined – yet there was complaint after complaint about them.

The problems with certain members of staff in the Hergest Unit reached a peak in the years before the North West Wales NHS Trust was abolished, when Keith Thomson and then Martin Jones were CEOs there. (Details of the violence and aggression that I encountered and that I witnessed other patients being subjected to can be read in my posts ‘Who Is In Need Of Restraining?’ and ‘The Real Story Behind These Figures…’.) Both Thomson and Jones were constantly briefing local newspapers about the problems of staff being attacked by mad psychiatric patients – they were undoubtedly doing this because a number of patients were consulting lawyers and writing to politicians after having been violently assaulted by staff in the Hergest Unit. A now retired member of staff from Hergest told me that they were convinced that evidence against some patients who had dared complain had been fabricated and that some patients had been wrongly convicted as a result.

There is one former member of staff from Hergest who was a willing accomplice in all of this – a nurse called Gareth Phillips. Gareth retired from nursing as a result of ill health, but was offered the post of RCN rep. It was Gareth who was happy to provide comments to local papers about the shocking number of attacks on Ysbyty Gwynedd staff. I knew Gareth for years whilst he still worked as a nurse – I never witnessed Gareth abuse anyone himself, but he certainly knew that some of his colleagues were behaving appallingly. And he knew that some patients were being arrested and fitted up for offences that they had not committed, after hospital staff had lied to the police. Furthermore Gareth knew that this had happened to me. Someone else knew about this as well – Gareth’s wife Penny, who also worked as a nurse at the Hergest Unit. I have mentioned in previous posts how under the regimes of Keith Thomson and Martin Jones, there was an exodus of the better staff from Hergest. I met one of those people after they had escaped to work in another part of the Trust and they told me that both they and their spouse (who was also a nurse) had been stuffed over and forced out of their jobs – interestingly enough after one of them warned the authorities at Ysbyty Gwynedd that the conduct of staff towards the patients was making the Hergest Unit unsafe. This person remarked that the Trust however had ‘looked after’ Gareth Phillips when he became too ill to work, by giving him a job as RCN rep. This person also mentioned that the Trust ‘looked after’ Bob Ingham when Ingham became too ill to work. Ingham was a notoriously aggressive CPN with the Arfon Community Mental Health Team – on my first meeting with him he dragged me down a corridor after telling me that he was someone else and I know of another patient who was threatened with assault in his own home by Ingham when Ingham was making a ‘home visit’. So Keith and Martin were ‘looking after’ staff who agreed to keep silent about abuse and produce propaganda for the media and even staff who were abusive themselves. The people who did not get looked after were staff raising concerns about the level of aggression to which patients were subjected. Martin Jones is at present the Director of Workforce for the Betsi. Are we surprised that florid figures about attacks on Angels are still being bandied about?

If the figures being produced were accurate, anyone spending any length of time in any of the hospitals run by the Betsi would have witnessed at least one of these ‘attacks’. I have spent much time in their hospitals – the only thing that I ever witnessed that came anywhere near to an ‘attack’ was an acutely psychotic patient throwing a book at a psychiatrist which hit him in the face. Even that incident could probably have been avoided if the psychiatrist concerned, the dreadful Raj Sambhi, had built up any sort of rapport with his patients. He didn’t – he walked onto the ward for twenty minutes once a week and spoke arrogantly to distressed patients who barely knew who he was. With the exception of that incident I have never witnessed any patient physically attack any member of staff. I have witnessed an awful lot of rudeness towards members of staff, I have witnessed patients shout and swear at members of staff – but as with Sambhi and the book, many of those incidents were obviously a result of patients being treated very disrespectfully themselves. I have asked other people who have spent a long time in hospitals in north Wales if they have ever seen ‘attacks’ on staff and they haven’t either. One of them, like me, had witnessed an assault on a patient in the Hergest Unit by staff, but had only ever witnessed disorientated or distressed patients shouting or swearing at staff.

The Post article includes a comment from Gwenfair Jones, a Wrexham County Councillor who worked as a community nurse for twenty years before she retired two years ago. Gwenfair states that ‘it’s terrifying to think of the risks that NHS staff face every day at work’. She then relates an account of how a colleague was responding to a patient when someone tried to get in her car and having failed to do that, jumped on the bonnet. Gwenfair doesn’t state that it was the patient who did this, so presumably it was someone else – who actually might have been confused or distressed rather than out to attack the car driver… There is simply not enough info from that anecdote to suggest that it is an example of the terror that NHS staff face every day as a result of their work.

Gwenfair also mentions that when the NHS followed it’s lone working policy, staff were issued with alarms. Well I know of a situation in which the issuing of a piece of equipment to be used as an ‘alarm’ was ruthlessly used by the managers of the Gwynedd Hospitals NHS Trust and their partners in crime in the Arfon Community Mental Health Team in an attempt to frame a patient. In the mid-1990s I was prosecuted at the insistence of Gwynedd Hospitals NHS Trust for allegedly making an obscene and threatening telephone call to Bridget Lloyd, a CPN with the Arfon Team. I did not make this call. Florid statements were made about me to the police by Bridget Lloyd about her being terrified of me, indeed so frightened that the Trust had issued her with a mobile phone to carry with her when she went out in order to enable her to ring for help should she meet me and I attack her. There was also a statement made in Court by the Trust that I represented such a risk to Bridget and her ‘two young children’ that the Trust had organised a safe house for them should I be found not guilty. I did not even know that Bridget Lloyd had young children. I was found not guilty. Whether dear old Bridget and the kids then took up residence in the safe house I do not know, but when I requested an apology for being denied access to NHS hospitals during the course of this malicious case I was told very firmly that I would not be receiving an apology. A few months ago my lawyer forwarded me the documentation relating to this case. Among all the documents was a memo that Bridget Lloyd had written herself to her managers saying that she had only met me once or twice, that it was many years ago and that she was sure that if I saw her I would not recognise her. That memo was written before the case against me went ahead – it was also written at about the same time as her statement about the risk that I presented to her and her children and how she was ‘absolutely terrified’ of me.

Bridget didn’t mention on the memo the circumstances in which she had met me years previously. I met Bridget Lloyd when I had been illegally detained in Seiriol Ward in Ysbyty Gwynedd after I refused to drop my requests for a copy of my medical records. Bridget was the nurse in charge of the ward. I challenged Bridget over my illegal detention, as well as over the threats that I had received from Alun Davies, the manager of the mental health services – and over the mistreatment of other patients that I was witnessing. Bridget told me that ‘someone’ had decided that I ‘should be here’ and that no-one was being abused or illegally detained. Yes they were Bridget and you knew it. Now, off down to the police station with you to provide a statement giving the details of who it was who ordered you to perjure yourself in court in an attempt to secure a conviction against me.

The article in the Post makes a reference to the case of a man called Christopher Bambrough, who was jailed some months ago after ‘threatening to knock out a nurse’ at Wrexham Maelor. Sounds nasty doesn’t it. The facts of the case are that Bambrough had gone to Wrexham Maelor seeking help for mental health problems but had been refused such help and had been told to go and make an appointment with his GP. He became distressed and shouted a few rash comments that people were going to get hurt. OK, so a man whom it is admitted had mental health problems went for help – and was effectively told to piss off. Knowing just how damn near impossible it is to now access mental health care in north Wales I can imagine how desperate and frustrated that man probably was. Furthermore, I wouldn’t be surprised if he had made umpteen visits to his GP and the local hospitals trying to get help – I have witnessed people doing this and it is quite clear that there is no way that they will get treatment. Because the mental health services are no longer permitted to refuse to assess or treat people, the technique used in north Wales is now to send them from pillar to post, around and around in circles, with everybody refusing to treat them and telling them to see someone else.

So who was it who imprisoned a mentally ill desperate man for shouting a few rash things in the direction of the Angels? It was Judge Niclas Parry, who when he was merely solicitor advocate Niclas Parry, represented one of the most vicious of the paedophiles at the Waterhouse Inquiry (see post ‘This Is What Happened To Nicola, Niclas, Merfyn, Joan and Kathryn’ for details of Parry’s glorious career, his shameful role in the Waterhouse Inquiry and his kid-glove handling of two other people involved in organised crime). Parry told Brambrough that ‘hospital staff will be protected by the Courts’. Yes, along with paedophiles and drug dealers thanks to Old Nick being on the bench.

Daily Post Online makes reference to the police ‘having to be’ called out to ‘attacks on staff’ 591 times in the last five years. I wonder what the opinion of the police is regarding those call outs – because when I still lived in north Wales I was told quite frankly by a police officer that they were sick to death of the Hergest calling them out to deal with trivial situations that the staff should be dealing with themselves. But this has been happening for decades. When Dafydd Alun Jones et al first began having me arrested in the 80s there was an officer called Sgt Tim Evans who was known to be telling people that the whole situation was farcical – a bunch of pompous braying consultants were on the one hand telling Sgt Evans and his colleagues that they were ‘experts’ and Had To Be Listened To, but on the other hand were ringing the police on an almost daily basis because I was refusing to drop my complaints about the mental health services and continued requesting copies of my own records. I was told that Sgt Evans noted just how much more than the police that bunch of fuckwits were being paid yet were demanding that the police clear up their mess. As an example of the sort of thing that the Top Doctors were doing, I have in my possession a document which is a copy of a letter written by Top Doctor Sadie Francis, backed up by her mate from the Arfon Team the appalling social worker Sheila Jenkins, complaining about me walking into a room at Ysbyty Gwynedd ‘carrying a rolled up newspaper’. Francis and Jenkins demanded that the police be called in case I was ‘concealing a knife’ in the newspaper.  I could have been storing weapons grade plutonium in the rolled up newspaper but I wasn’t – these crazy allegations with absolutely no grounds were being bandied around about me (and a number of other patients) constantly.

The Betsi told the Daily Post that their staff receive ‘violence and aggression training’ and ‘de-escalation’ training. That ‘training’ leaves a lot to be desired. It is delivered by staff who have learnt their own aggression at the knee of the north Wales mental health services – for many years, the man who ‘trained’ the local Angels in ‘control and restraint’ was a nurse from the North Wales Hospital, the institution in which victims of the North Wales Paedophile Ring were illegally imprisoned. More latterly the ‘training’ was delivered by the dreadful Alison Parry, the highly abusive nurse responsible for running the highly abusive Taliesin Ward. I have watched the Angels from the Hergest Unit use their ‘training’ – it involves jumping on patients from a height for no good reason and pinning them to the floor for twenty minutes. As for ‘de-escalation’ – well after Alun Davies, the former manager of the Hergest Unit, refused to answer questions from either me or my lawyer regarding Parry and co carrying out assaults on me, I asked Davies in person when he was going to reply to my lawyer’s letters. He stood in a corridor at Hergest and bellowed ‘shut up’ at me repeatedly. My lawyer suggested to him that this was rather unacceptable and she received a letter from Davies saying that he was using ‘de-escalation techniques’ and that they were so good that a psychiatrist had complimented him on them. I can only presume that the Top Doctor in question was actually taking the piss out of him, but Davies was far too thick to realise.

In addition to boasting about the ‘training’ that their staff receive, the Betsi told the Post that all three of their District General Hospitals have police and security on site. I have known some of the ‘police on site’ at Ysbyty Gwynedd. One of them was really good, a very nice man with an excellent relationship with the patients. This however was ruined because the Hergest staff kept telling him to threaten to arrest the patients, instead of allowing him to talk to them. On one occasion this resulted in him having to threaten to arrest a young female psychiatric patient in the locked ward at Hergest because she kept dialling 999. Yes, the Hergest staff wanted a psychotic teenager taken out of a locked ward where she was sectioned anyway, arrested and charged for dialling 999 for bizarre reasons. That policeman ended up leaving that post – and I can see why. After he left he was replaced by a Scouse Thug who threatened me over the phone when I rang the hospital to inform them that I would be attending the hospital in person to deliver a statement from a third party who had witnessed hospital staff lie about me in order to have me arrested. I’m sure that the authorities at YG thought that the Scouse Thug did a great job.

As well as on site police and security, a Betsi spokesperson also explained to the Daily Post that they employ a ‘violence and aggression case manager’. Yes, I’ve heard about this person – they’re the one whom I was told actively encourages staff to demand that patients are prosecuted even if staff don’t want to press charges. Interestingly enough, the Betsi spokesperson does admit to the Daily Post that it is ‘important to recognise’ that the figures provided ‘may not reflect the actions of some patients who may not intend to be deliberately aggressive and may act in this way by extent of their conditions’. So that’s them fessing up then. But nonetheless they were still happy to release these ludicrous misleading figures – which even they admit aren’t a true reflection of the situation.

Intriguingly, the Betsi states that there is a National Memorandum of Understanding across Wales between the police, the CPS and the NHS on how to ‘support staff’ following incidents of violence. Readers who have followed my posts about the North Wales Child Abuse Scandal and the associated cover-up will remember that it involved the police, the CPS and the NHS…Those bodies understand each other very well in north Wales – and if Old Nick is on the bench, there’s even more understanding…

People who have been following this blog for a while will also remember my posts describing the scores of errors, fallacious allegations and downright lies that I discovered entered upon my medical records. Highlights include entries that I ‘had held a nurse hostage’, ‘was in prison after attacking someone with a knife’ and had ‘sexually assaulted a psychiatrist’. What’s the betting that these lurid allegations have added to the statistics that the Betsi have made up? Despite protracted correspondence with Gary Doherty, the CEO of the Betsi, I have been unable to persuade them to remove the dozens of lies from my records. Gary did agree to remove the references to me sexually assaulting a psychiatrist because he admitted that never happened – I note that Gary did not carry out any investigation into how these gross slur ever found it’s way onto my records and that no-one was disciplined for writing it. Gary has refused to amend anything else – although I can prove that the comments are not true – on the grounds that his staff told him that these things had happened and thus they must have happened. Furthermore Gary is now stating that twenty years worth of my records don’t exist because he can’t find them. I have copies here with me which my lawyer obtained previously, but no, according to Gary those records don’t exist.

How can anyone believe any statistics at all collected by this bunch of lying dipsticks?

Another former star of this blog featured in the Post article – Tina Donnelly, the Director of the RCN in Wales. Tina warns that these attacks on NHS staff affect recruitment. No Tina, what is affecting recruitment in the Betsi is the dreadful standard of care that is known to exist up there – good nurses do not want to work with negligent abusive people – and the brutal treatment of whistleblowers. The nurse who blew the whistle on the Tawel Fan scandal was sacked, wrongfully arrested after being subjected to malicious allegations and has received death threats. The staff who abused the patients in Tawel Fan were subjected to no disciplinary action at all. Donnelly has sat in the RCN throughout scandal after scandal in north Wales – including Tawel Fan – and has done nothing to take action against her members who are abusing their positions. I have read plenty of her semi-literate articles in the Welsh media demanding higher salaries for her members, or indeed banging on about the way in which they spend every waking hour at work being viciously attacked by unhinged patients, but I have not yet read any condemnation from her concerning poor standards of care on the part of some Angels. Indeed Donnelly seems to be quite close to two particularly unpleasant Angels employed at Ysbyty Gwynedd A&E – Stephen Gallagher and Andrew Parry. Please read post ‘Two Dangerous Very Dishonest Nurses’ for details of Gallagher and Parry’s lies, threats and dishonesty. Donnelly ‘serves’ in the Territorial Army along with Gallagher and Parry. For further details of Donnelly’s contacts and questionable background, see post ‘Oh To Be In Receipt Of Academic Honours’.

At the end of the article, the Daily Post chips in with their ‘opinion’. The Post maintains that ‘people join the NHS because they care…good decent human beings who want to make a difference…the vast majority of them aren’t in it for the money…these same decent people are routinely subjected to violence and verbal abuse – sometimes racist or sexual… [the offenders] should forfeit their right to free NHS treatment in the future…’

Now most people do indeed join the NHS for the right reasons – but there is a very big problem in north Wales. Until very recently a vicious paedophile ring operated throughout the region and it was concealed and facilitated by the mental health services. A lot of the people involved are still working in the mental health services – indeed one of them is the Chairman of the Betsi – and this has left a toxic legacy. These were not ‘caring’ ‘decent’ people and furthermore they were not subjected to violence and verbal abuse, they lied on oath in order to discredit people who were complaining about their own malpractice and abuse. They are using the same techniques now in a desperate attempt to detract from the train wreck that is the NHS in north Wales. I will remind the Daily Post of what happened at Tawel Fan – elderly patients were found to be crawling around naked on floors covered in faeces and urine; one patient had an untreated broken arm; staff swore at patients, trapped them in their beds by placing furniture on top of them and discussed their sex lives. Some of those patients died as a result of the neglect and abuse that they endured. The ward was shut down and the Board was placed in special measures after the Welsh Gov’t admitted institutional abuse of patients. It was the worst mental health scandal in recent years in the UK. And which newspaper carried ‘interviews’ with those staff, interviews in which staff insulted the patients and their relatives? The Daily Post.

Until the 1990s, people working in and managing children’s homes in north Wales were believed to be kindly avuncular folk working for modest salaries looking after ‘tearaways’, ‘naughty boys’, ‘disturbed teenagers’, ‘young thugs’, ‘streetwise kids’ or ‘criminals’. We now know that they were actually starving, beating and raping those kids before forcing them into prostitution and delivering them to the Westminster Paedophile Ring. When those kids told people what was happening to them they were discussed in exactly the same terms that the Post is using to discuss people whom they believe are ‘attacking’ noble selfless NHS staff.

As for people forfeiting their right to free NHS treatment – there are at present people in north Wales, particularly people with mental health problems, who CANNOT access the care that they need and to which they are legally entitled. Sometimes this is because the ‘service’ has collapsed and doesn’t exist to provide treatment, but a number of people have been subjected to a co-ordinated campaign to ensure that they will not be treated under any circumstances – because they complained about a fucking paedophile gang.

As for staff not being in it for the money – no many of them are not. But some undoubtedly are. This blog has exposed a number of scams being runs by NHS staff and those scams have been designed to line their own pockets. It is difficult to find highly paid work in north Wales and no-one but the Betsi is going to pay Martin Jones and his ilk £130,000 pa and Martin knows it. Which is why he is still sitting on that Board after years of disaster wearing cufflinks that cost as much as some people earn in a week. Martin with his rather poor degree (you weren’t up to much when you were at Bangor University were you Martin), Martin who is rumoured to have failed accountancy exams, Martin with his Mickey Mouse qualification in ‘Innovation and Change’, Martin who when he was CEO of the North West Wales NHS Trust flew first class to America on NHS expenses and lived it up with his mates for no good reason. Martin is most definitely in it for the money.

Although the Post article is about the NHS in north Wales, there is a link to an interview with someone employed by Cardiff and Vale UHB. That’s the Cardiff and Vale UHB that employs a consultant gynaecologist who many years ago was frozen out of the London circle because he was a relentless sexual harasser (see post ‘Every Sperm Is Sacred – Particularly In Scotland’).

Newsflash: Just appeared on the Daily Post website – a female paramedic with the Welsh Ambulance Service in north Wales has been convicted of assaulting another young woman. The ‘caring’ ‘decent’ NHS worker had ‘trained’ in the Army Medical Corps. Probably alongside Donnelly, Gallagher and Parry. She’s been travelling around in the back of an ambulance in a green jumpsuit for the last two years whilst the likes of the Daily Post told us that she was some sort of superior being.

As for all this talk of ‘decent’ people, in the early 1990s I attempted to enter Menai Bridge police station to make a complaint about a Top Doctor – one of those who was facilitating the paedophile ring – threatening me. What can only be described as a Ginger Pig in a sergeants uniform confronted me and told me that if I entered the police station he would arrest me. I told him that I had been threatened and I wished to make a statement. The Ginger Pig told me that he was here to protect ‘decent’ people like the Top Doctor and if I didn’t get out of Menai Bridge immediately he’d arrest me. He then pursued me as far as the Menai Suspension Bridge insulting me and told me to do everyone a favour and throw myself off the bridge. When I got home I rang Menai Bridge police station in an attempt to discover the identity of the Ginger Pig. Another policeman answered – whom I knew, because I had met him previously in Bangor Police Station after the Top Doctors had of course had me arrested. He was called Kelvin, he was nothing like the Ginger Pig himself, but he would not tell me the name of the Ginger Pig and he wouldn’t take down a complaint about him. On another occasion I tried to make representation about the Top Doctors and their harassment to an inspector in Bangor Police Station, an Inspector Beedham. As with Kelvin, Inspector Beedham didn’t conduct himself in the manner of the Ginger Pig, but no, he wouldn’t take a complaint about the Top Doctors either.

Sgt Tim Evans, Kelvin and Inspector Beedham all witnessed what was happening to me at the hands of the Top Doctors and Gwynedd Social Services. I now have possession of the documents that demonstrate that the Top Doctors et al perjured themselves repeatedly and ordered their minions to perjure themselves repeatedly, in order to conceal a paedophile ring. Come on Tim, Kelvin and Inspector Beedham, get your statements prepared and can you tell us who the Ginger Pig was as well….

 

I have mentioned in this post and in previous posts just how serious the wrongdoing of staff in the Hergest Unit and Ysbyty Gwynedd A&E was – unlawfully refusing people treatment, threatening patients, assaulting patients, lying to the police about patients, lying on oath, encouraging others to lie on oath etc. I have detailed how Alun Davies, Keith Thomson and later on Martin Jones simply did not investigate complaints (not just mine either – I knew of others who had terrible experiences whose complaints were never ever investigated). After Thomson wasted months of my and my lawyer’s time in a deliberate attempt not to investigate a series of assaults on me by his staff and their malicious allegations about me to the police, I tried the Public Services Ombudsman for Wales. At that time the Ombudsman for Wales was Adam Peat. Getting a response out of Peat to my complaint was like pulling teeth, so in the end I rang his office. I didn’t speak to Peat himself, I spoke to his sidekick – who was either a Gethin or a Geraint, I can’t remember which. And guess what – he insulted and then threatened me. Just like the NMC did when I tried to make representation to them about Sian Ruth Lloyd’s misconduct. Now I was getting pretty used to this sort of behaviour from the Top Doctors and Angels, but this was the Ombudsman’s office…

Shortly after my brush with Adam Peat’s sidekick, I received a reply from Adam himself. He had decided that he wasn’t going to investigate my complaint against the North West Wales NHS Trust. Not in the public interest. (This was at a time when the North West Wales NHS Trust had the second highest suicide rate among women in England and Wales.) I mentioned this later to a Welsh politician who was honest enough to tell me that there was a major problem with the Ombudsman’s office, in that Peat was choosing not to investigate an awful lot of very serious complaints. I now have the documentation relating to that period of time – evidence of perjury and perverting the course of justice, the altering of medical records, a forged document allegedly written by me found in the possession of the GMC, evidence of dishonesty on the part of the Mental Health Act Commission, the illegal interference with my record on the Police National Computer and the forging of a certificate of indictment on the part of the Courts among much other wrongdoing.

Looks like Adam had knowingly ignored some very, very serious stuff.

Adam Peat retired as the Public Services Ombudsman for Wales in April 2008. His final report before he retired covered the period 2007/08. This report showed that despite a 10% increase in complaints that year, the number upheld by the Ombudsman remained roughly the same. Out of 1420 complaints, Peat only upheld – either whole or in part – 139. He did not investigate 975 complaints. Of the complaints that Peat did uphold, 19 became public interest reports. So Peat was ignoring an awful lot of problems – and nearly all the 1420 complaints will have been a result of very serious problems because one cannot approach the Ombudsman until one has exhausted all other avenues of complaint and even then there are so many hurdles to overcome that no-one would ever get as far as the Ombudsman unless they had a real grievance.

So who was Peat, the man who decided that it was best to ignore thousands of complaints, even ones involving serious corruption in the NHS, social services, police, court service and probation service – for which he was paid £135k pa? Well between 1998 and 2003, Adam Peat was a senior civil servant in the National Assembly of Wales. For the previous nine years he had been Chief Exec of Tai Cymru, the body funding and regulating the housing association movement in Wales. Now my worries about Peat were always that he had prevented an investigation into such serious wrongdoing in the NHS – but his activities re housing are just as worrying. He had spent all those years involved with Tai Cymru, yet as Ombudsman he was responsible for investigating housing problems. Indeed, housing problems were something that he took a very big interest in – during his time as Ombudsman, one of his reports was devoted to housing allocation and homeless provision. So not only was Peat suppressing complaint into criminal activities in the NHS, but he had massive conflicts of interest as well.

So where is Adam Peat now? He’s back in the housing business! Adam Peat OBE is now Chairman of Magna Housing. Magna Housing is a community based housing association located primarily in Dorset and Somerset and provides over 8500 homes to let and 350 shared ownership homes. It’s annual turnover is in excess of £36 million. There is a notice on Magna’s website explaining that Magna has a confidential reporting process for employees to report serious concerns relating to trafficking and modern slavery. This organisation has a Chairman who suppressed a complaint about people involved in organised crime, namely a paedophile ring that was trafficking young people into prostitution. I wonder what’s going to happen if a Magna employee does report modern slavery or trafficking?

One of the blogs that I follow is Jac O The North. I don’t share the political views of Jac and most of his correspondents, but Jac does an excellent job of exposing corruption in Wales. There has been much on Jac’s blog concerning housing associations in Wales and the very odd things that seem to be happening in them. For example, the very great difficulty that some people even those who have lived in Wales for years have obtaining housing association properties. Many of Jac’s correspondents have written in with anecdotes of serious offenders from England somehow succeeding in obtaining housing association properties in rural Wales after they have been released from prison. A lot of those offenders have been sex offenders – and there was even a case in which yes, a whole paedophile ring were rehoused in Wales from England. When I first started reading these accounts, I presumed that these were the sort of myths one hears which don’t bear much relation to reality – along the lines of Theresa May’s anecdote to the Tory Party Conference about the terrorist who couldn’t be deported because his pet cat allowed him to use the Human Rights Act to remain in the UK. ‘I am not making this up’ said Theresa. It turned out that she was. However, it seems that Jac and his correspondents really are not making things up – sex offenders and people known to be involved with organised sexual abuse are being housed in rural Wales despite having no previous connections with the region at all. And it is happening too frequently for it to be a consequence of the general movement of people who choose to relocate. What if, as well as the network of corrupt people in the NHS, police, social services and legal services facilitating organised child sexual abuse and associated people trafficking, there were a few of them working in the housing association sector?

What do you reckon Adam?

 

 

 

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?

The Silence Of The Welsh Lambs

It was reported a few days ago that the Director of the film ‘The Silence of the Lambs’ has died. I’ve never seen the whole film, only short clips from it, but I think that the story features a gruesome psychiatrist who is also a cannibal. When this film was the subject of much commentary after it’s release, I was a patient at the Hergest Unit, seeing Dr X. Dr X was the psychiatrist who unbeknown to me was doing some terrible things behind the scenes, both to me and other patients – interestingly enough Dr X really loved ‘The Silence of the Lambs’ and used to wax lyrical about the mad psychiatrist character. However at least Hannibal Lecter or whatever he was called was fictional – Dr X, his colleagues and their victims were all very real.

I have detailed in previous posts how Dr X advised psychiatrists from London to consult one Lucille Hughes for evidence of my ‘dangerousness’, Lucille Hughes being the Director of Gwynedd Social Services who was named in the Waterhouse Report as knowing that a paedophile ring was operating in the social services but failing to act (I have never met Lucille Hughes, which makes Dr X’s advice to Nigel Eastman and Robin Jacobson even more sinister.) My posts ‘More On Those Prisons For Folk Who Dared Complain’ and ‘Further Information On Garth Angharad Hospital’ describes how a facility in Dolgellau for ‘mentally abnormal offenders’, Garth Angharad – which was owned and managed by a man who also owned residential schools and children’s homes where sexual abuse and cruelty were alleged to have been happening – was used to house some of the people who had complained about being sexually abused in children’s homes in north Wales and how an attempt to close this place down in 1992 was met with an Early Day Motion signed by Elfyn Llwyd and nine other MPs, demanding that this valuable facility remain open. I mentioned that this Early Day Motion was tabled in May 1992, just one month after a dreadful fire in a building in Brighton took place, which killed a number of former residents of north Wales children’s homes and their associates. Now for a bit more on that fire.

In April 1992 a small party was being held in a flat in a building in Brighton. Two men at the party had both been residents of Bryn Alyn, a notorious children’s home in north Wales, one of a complex of children’s homes owned by the notorious John Allen, who was later imprisoned for sexually abusing children in care in north Wales. Some reports allege that John Allen had arranged to meet the party goers at the flat but didn’t turn up. The party goers were well-known among Brighton’s gay community and there were allegations that they were involved in under-age sex/porn/drugs and had knowledge of liaisons with politicians. There seems to have been a great deal of confusion regarding who owned the building in which the fire took place. The flat had no fire escape, despite the local council wanting to contact the owner to recommend that one was installed. It transpired that the freehold of the building was owned by a company registered in the British Virgin Islands and because of it’s offshore status no-one was able to find out the names of the company directors. There were rumours that the notorious property developer Nicholas Hoogstraten leased the building but at the inquest into the five deaths, the East Sussex coroner, Dr Donald Gooding, refused to call Hoogstraten as a witness. (The families of some of the dead walked out of the inquest as a result and later applied for a judicial review of the inquest. At that hearing, Justice Latham ruled that there was a case for a judicial review on the basis that Gooding had acted ‘unreasonably and unlawfully’ in refusing to call Hoogstraten.) Although the inquest returned a verdict of unlawful killing, there was much confusion about many things. A man called Trevor Carrington had allegedly confessed to starting the fire as a ‘prank’. It was alleged that in his confession he stated that he had set fire to a settee in the entrance hall. Yet fire investigators maintained that the fire had not started in the entrance hall – they stated that the fire had started in three different places at once and that more than one person would have been involved. They also suspected that an accelerant such as petrol was used. Just to add to the confusion, although the Home Office acknowledged the fire investigators findings, they refused to review the case. No-one could return to ask Trevor Carrington for more details because two days after his alleged confession he was found dead, after falling into the path of a lorry on a quiet rural road. The dear old police announced that his death was not suspicious and that he had killed himself by throwing himself under the lorry. Trevor Carrington was unemployed yet had taken receipt of 20 thousand pounds into his bank account shortly before he died. He had told a third party that he banked on the Isle of Man and needed to go there to withdraw some cash. Trevor Carrington’s alleged confession was only made to one other person whose reliability was called into question and there is no other record of it. A few days before the fire, a couple who lived in the top floor flat of the building were stopped by a stranger in the street and advised to get out of the flat. In 2002, Hoogstraten was convicted of manslaughter and imprisoned after he paid two thugs to kill a business rival. Once this was made public, some of the relatives of those who died in the fire called for a fresh probe into the fire. That does not seem to have happened. Hoogstraten did not spend that long in prison either – he was released and then left the UK to live in Zimbabwe. He was alleged to be a good mate of the delightful Robert Mugabe. Before Hoogstraten left the UK he was investigated for tax evasion – the planned trial was dropped when information was received that the judge was going to be assassinated if it went ahead.

Some of the relatives of the deceased and some who hadn’t actually died in the fire still insisted on making a nuisance of themselves and continued to cry ‘foul play’. One young man was particularly vocal and maintained that some of the former kids who had been resident in north Wales children’s homes had been murdered. This young man gave evidence against John Allen at Allen’s trial in 1995. Shortly after he gave evidence and days before he was due to receive a substantial sum from the Criminal Injuries Compensation Board he was found dead. Another suicide – of course, what else…

It was reported that the ‘gay community’ of Brighton refused to come forward and give information to the police about the fire because of their ‘gay lifestyle’. In a town famous for it’s hospitality towards gay people. Obviously nothing to do with their fear of being found dead after having committed suicide. There were attempts to prod the High Court into reinvestigating the fire but the High Court refused. Probably because of it was ashamed of it’s lifestyle.

This blog has commented previously on the propensity of buildings with connections to the mental health services and children’s services in north Wales to go up in flames – indeed it nearly happened to my own house (please see previous blog posts). Some years after the fire in Brighton, there was another interesting fire, this time in a warehouse in north Wales. The warehouse in question housed the records of the children who had passed through the hands of Bryn Estyn, one of the children’s homes in north Wales where serious sexual and physical abuse of residents had occurred. The fire occurred during the Waterhouse Tribunal – the records were completely destroyed and as a result the Waterhouse Tribunal was unable to trace many of the former residents of Bryn Estyn and request them to give evidence. That fire was declared by the police to be not in the least bit suspicious either.

Fires don’t always destroy buildings and records however. When I lived near Bethesda in the 90s I vaguely knew a young family who lived nearby – they were distinctive because they were two young parents with a very big family, much bigger than is the norm, there were about six or seven children, all quite close together in age. My friend knew the mother of the family and I was told that she took her Catholicism seriously and refused to use contraception. This was eliciting a lot of grief from the local welfare professionals – the mother was alleged to have had a good education but later suffered with mental health problems, as did the father. There was constant disapproval regarding the number of children that these two young people had. The family were certainly short of money and lived in a small very chaotic house but I never witnessed the parents being anything other than very caring towards their children. Years after I left Bethesda, I met the father of this family in my friends café in Llanberis. He had developed a psychotic illness and was living rough in barns and outbuildings around Gwynedd. He remembered me and began a conversation – he had just been kicked out of the Hergest Unit (on what grounds I didn’t know), was clearly quite unwell but chatted away enthusiastically about his children who were now all teenagers and to whom he had remained very close. I last saw him in about 2007 – he had turned up at Bangor University very disorientated and was trying to gatecrash the graduation ceremony, but not in an aggressive way, he just wanted to join in the party. Some time later a former neighbour from Bethesda told me that this man had died. He had gone on a trip to Ireland where for some inexplicable reason someone had set him on fire. He died from his burns. I am not aware that anyone was ever prosecuted for this.

Someone else from the Bangor area was found dead in Ireland as well, some years before the father of the big family in Bethesda, although I’m not sure that this man could fairly be categorised as a lamb. This was Geoffrey Leigh, a rather unscrupulous businessman who ran a property management company called Access Accommodation in Bangor, back in the early 90s. Leigh became notorious for swindling both landlords and tenants and had more than a few enemies. Leigh was then found murdered in Ireland. It was reported on the news that he had emigrated to Ireland days before to ‘start a new life’. Everyone presumed that someone whom he had conned had exacted revenge – but it then became known that Leigh had been murdered by his gay lover, a much younger man whom at one point had been his employee. Things got even more cloudy when it transpired that the gay lover who had murdered Leigh did not go to prison, he was instead put on probation. There was no explanation given in the media for this very light sentence but a few years ago I was told by someone who had worked in the probation service in north Wales that it was considered to be a case of domestic abuse in a same sex relationship – I was told that Leigh had been extremely abusive to his partner and this was taken to be a mitigating circumstance. None of this ever appeared in the local press in north Wales. What did appear was an enormous feature on Geoff Leigh, paying tribute to his work as a DJ for Radio Ysbyty Gwynedd – he used to present their Sunday morning Christian show no less.

Geoff Leigh was not the only man in north Wales who wore his Christianity on his sleeve who came to grief amid allegations of same sex activity. There was the case of the ‘brutal slaying’ of the ‘friendly’ Llanberis vicar, Canon Alun Jones in 1982. Two teenage boys were put on trial for his murder in 1983, at Chester Crown Court (where else – please see previous posts for interesting happenings at Chester Crown Court). The boys maintained that they had not intended to kill Alun Jones, although they had gone to his house to rob him and steal his car in order to run away. One of the boys was sent to borstal, but the other boy, 15 year old Richard Dennick, was given a life sentence and is now residing at Ty Llewellyn, the medium secure psychiatric unit run by the north Wales mental health services. Interestingly enough the boy who ended up receiving a life sentence and then was transferred into the mental health system maintained that he attacked the vicar because the vicar had tried to sexually assault him. There was a panic in 2015 because Richard Dennick managed to escape from Ty Llewellyn – within minutes the police put out warnings about an escaped murderer and the local schools were all closed lest any of the children encountered the escaped madman. It was stated that Richard Dennick was ‘unpredictable’ ‘without his medication’. I can find no record of Richard Dennick attempting to attack children. Richard Dennick’s story has always been that he did not mean to kill Canon Jones and that he only ever attacked Jones because he panicked when he thought that Alun Jones was going to sexually assault him. But whoever could know the truth in this case – after all, Chester Crown Court, the north Wales mental health services and allegations of sexual assault are involved. The press at the time described Alun Jones as allowing local boys to visit the vicarage to ‘play snooker’. Somebody else who grew up near Llanberis and remembers the case described Canon Jones to me as a ‘paedophile’. The judge at Chester who sentenced the 15 year old boy to life imprisonment described the boy as ‘evil’ – he was a Judge William Mars-Jones, later Sir William Mars-Jones. Mars-Jones grew up in Denbighshire, attended Denbigh High School and was of the same vintage as the lobotomist who presided over the North Wales Hospital Denbigh for so many years, Dr T. Gwynne Williams. In his obituaries, Mars-Jones was described as the ‘leader’ of the Chester and North Wales Circuit. Like so many people who have starred on this blog, as well as sitting on the Chester and Wales Circuit, Mars-Jones read law at Aberystwyth University.

It was when Richard Dennick escaped from Ty Llewellyn in 2015 that I became well-acquainted with the case of the murder of the Llanberis vicar and read the old press reports. I realised then that I had confused the case with another case from Gwynedd, the case of the Rev Emyr Owen from Tywyn in 1985, who was sentenced to four years in prison at Chester Crown Court for mutilating corpses. The case caused the most enormous fuss and it was reported that the Rev Owen had severed penises from three corpses, feeding one penis to the seagulls, burning another one and throwing another into the sea. The Rev Owen was said to have explained his actions by claiming that two Emyrs existed and it was ‘Emyr ddwrg’ (bad Emyr) who had defiled the corpses. Much was made in newspaper reports of Emyr Owen’s penchant for Cuban heels, his ‘bachelor lifestyle’ and the fact that he drove a car displaying pictures of fire-breathing serpents. But like so many criminal trials at Chester involving defendants from north Wales, there are indications that all might not have been as it was reported. The policeman who proudly boasted of catching Emyr Owen, DC Gwyn Roberts, has recently written his memoirs (as policemen from the North Wales Force are prone to doing – a number of them have published books along the lines of ‘murderers and perverts that I have known’). It transpires that Emyr Owen’s habits with corpses only came to light when DC Roberts caught Emyr writing hate mail. Emyr denied writing the hate mail – the hate mail had been sent to the police at Tywyn and to the Chief Constable David Owen – and no-one had any idea who was writing it, until DC Roberts ‘proved’ that it was Emyr after examining ‘6000 samples of handwriting’. That is an awful lot of samples to examine with the naked eye, remember, contrast and compare and later identify as being the handwriting of Emyr. It was alleged that the handwriting was ‘old fashioned’ and that there was a ‘distinctive’ letter T involved. Now someone of Emyr’s generation would have been taught handwriting at school, in a very prescriptive way, which may well have persisted with him into later adulthood. It may have been the case that every child taught handwriting by the teacher who taught Emyr was taught to write a distinctive T. DC Gwyn Roberts did not entertain this idea – because he knew that Emyr Did It. Furthermore once he proved that Emyr had written the hate mail, he then discovered that Emyr had removed the penises from three corpses. No penises were ever found – so how DC Roberts knew that one had been fed to sea gulls, one burnt and another thrown into the sea I do not know. There is also no mention of any corpses without penises being discovered. And guess what – DC Roberts explained that relatives of the defiled corpses were never informed, there was no need to cause upset. So it sounds to me as though there wasn’t any evidence at all produced. Emyr denied defiling corpses until after he was sentenced. Before this however, DC Gwyn Roberts had discovered a whole treasure trove at Emyr’s house – sticky tape, pliers, pornography, negatives of penises arranged on a plate and God knows what else. It was speculated that Emyr could have held Black Masses with all this gear. No-one had ever witnessed him actually doing this, but he could have… Emyr has gone down in the local history of north Wales as ‘Emyr ddwrg’ – but I notice that Emyr only ‘confessed’ to being two people, one of which was Emyr ddwrg, after he was sentenced. Interestingly enough, before being stitched up, or should I say ‘caught defiling corpses’, Emyr Owen had been the High Sheriff’s chaplain, sitting alongside the judge at Caernarfon Crown Court. So if all the allegations of rampant corruption in the North Wales Police and in the Chester and North Wales Circuit at that time were true – including allegations of the police planting incriminating material and compiling false confessions – Emyr may well have known a few things that could have landed a few people in a lot of trouble. And what if the ‘bachelor’ Minister took his religion seriously – which he might have, driving around in a car decorated with fire-breathing serpents, he may have been very zealous – there’s a danger that he might not have been easily persuaded to keep quiet about perjury and corruption. The thing that leaves me most uneasy about this whole case though is the identity of one of the prime movers and shakers, the prosecuting counsel – it was one Huw Daniel. For details of the dreadful Huw Daniel’s activities when he was elevated to Judge Huw Daniel and the account of the forging of a certificate of indictment relating to a case over which he presided, please see my posts ‘Interesting Happenings In The Legal System’, ‘Discussions On The Minibus – And A Revealing Letter’ and ‘Behind The Scenes Regarding Those Legal Happenings’. Ooh, one further thing about Emyr Owen’s trial – it was held so close to Christmas that the court officials didn’t think that there’d be any press coverage. DC Roberts remembers that they all had quite a shock when they realised that the world’s press had got hold of the story. I bet they did – no doubt the plan was for Emyr to be banged up without a word being printed about any of it. The only surprise is that Emyr wasn’t declared a ‘schizophrenic’ and handed over to the lobotomist and Dr Dafydd Alun Jones (although there might have been an attempt at that, remember the clichéd allegations about the two Emyr’s, one good, one bad?) – but a psychiatrist, a Dr William Lawson, testified that Emyr was not psychiatrically ill. If any readers know what prevented Emyr Owen from disappearing into the North Wales Hospital to be drugged into oblivion or sent ‘downstairs’, or indeed being found dead after ‘committing suicide’, please do let me know…

So presumably we can add the names of Richard Dennick and the Rev Emyr Owen as well as the names of Howard Hughes (please see post ‘More On Those Prisons For Folk Who Dared Complain’) and Matthew Hardman (see post ‘Family Annihilation’) to the long list of Welsh lambs that have been well and truly silenced via possible miscarriages of justice.

As Emyr Owen discovered, being a professional person of some standing in the community does not protect one from becoming a Welsh lamb. I have always been interested in what might have precipitated the fall from grace of another two people who were employed in the domain of law and order in north Wales. I have mentioned Sergeant Morgan of Bangor Police Station in my early post ‘Hippocratic Oath Or Hypocritic Oaf?’. On the night on which I was transported to the North Wales Hospital Denbigh and illegally imprisoned there, I heard Sgt Morgan, the custody Sgt on duty at Bangor Police Station, reaching a state of utter panic as he explained to the disgusting Dr K. Shah that I was being detained illegally. Sgt Morgan was ignored. I encountered Sgt Morgan a few months later when the north Wales mental health services were mass producing untruthful statements about me in a vain attempt to have me detained in Risley Remand Centre. I witnessed Sgt Morgan refuse to take a statement from one Janice Davies, a nurse at the North Wales Hospital, because he knew that it was a pack of lies – he was honest enough to tell me that ‘they’re all conspiring against you’. He also refused to allow Dr D.G.E. Wood into the cells to ‘visit’ me and prevented Dr X from sending ‘someone’ down to the police station to section me. In retrospect I suspect that it was only thanks to Sgt Morgan that I did not end up in Risley facing very serious charges. After I finally got home, I did of course make further complaints about the mental health services (they were never investigated). But I fear that I may have caused Sgt Morgan a great deal of difficulty. I had a row with Alun Davies, the manager of the mental health services at Ysbyty Gwynedd, on the phone – and I mentioned that even a policeman in Bangor Police Station had noted that the mental health services were conspiring against me. Davies bellowed down the phone that he’d ‘be making a complaint about that policeman’. Not long after, Sgt Morgan appeared in Court charged with indecently assaulting a teenage girl who had been in custody. The girl had been charged with theft and Sgt Morgan had put his hand in the back pocket of her jeans to ‘search’ her. It was enough to have him prosecuted, convicted and sacked. Now he may well have done what the teenager alleged. But that was nothing compared to what the rest of them were doing…. Now I know just how corrupt Davies et al were, I cannot help suspecting that Sgt Morgan was sacrificed. Time to hear Sgt Morgan’s story I think. Another person who was hung out to dry some ten years ago was John Grant Jones. John Grant Jones was the clerk to the Magistrates at Bangor. I remember him very well because he was there every time that the north Wales mental health services mounted prosecutions against me for ludicrous reasons. John Grant Jones was unfailingly friendly, polite, respectful and always explained procedures to me. So imagine my surprise when, many years later, John Grant Jones hit the headlines of the local press in a very big way. By that time he had reached a senior position in the Association of Justices Chief Executives, but he had been sacked amidst allegations of financial corruption. He stood accused of having fiddled extra money for his pension as well as an honorarium. In what must be a first for north Wales he was stripped of his OBE. John Grant Jones put up a fight and launched a case for unfair dismissal and I think disability discrimination. It was reported in the press that he had become very ill with the stress of what had happened to him and that his illness had then been used as a reason to put the boot in further. John Grant Jones eventually dropped his legal case and no longer works for the Court service in north Wales. I have no idea whether John Grant Jones was fiddling, but as with Sgt Morgan, even if John Grant Jones had been guilty of what he was accused, that was cat’s piss compared to what else was going on. As for taking away his OBE – just look at who in north Wales are hanging onto gongs: Keith Thomson, David Prichard, Peter Higson, D.G.E. Wood, Huw Daniel, Elfed Roberts – it’s a roll call of corrupt professional people who have been involved in the most serious wrongdoing. Time for John Grant Jones to tell us all why he was stuffed over by this bunch of crooks…

Like Sgt Morgan, there is yet another person whom I suspect may have been driven out of their job because they dared express the opinion that some of what was happening in the mental health services was shocking. For a while in the 90s I used to have a very nice GP in Bangor – she was very popular in the area and very well-respected. When I discussed Dr Dafydd Alun Jones with her she was honest enough to describe him as a ‘crook’ and a ‘wicked sick man’ – which is Dafydd in a nutshell really. She disappeared from Bangor some months later and no-one seemed to know why. Whilst browsing through the documents that were returned from my lawyers a few weeks ago I came across a copy of a letter that I’d written to Alun Davies after he had assured me that there were no problems with Dafydd at all. I had quoted this GP – I didn’t mention her by name, but what’s the betting that Davies et al did a bit of research to find out which GP could have made these comments? No wonder doctors won’t come and work in north Wales.

Before I finish this post, I’ll remember just three more lambs who were silenced. One was a man called Philip who had bipolar disorder, whom I first met in the North Wales Hospital Denbigh. I have mentioned previously on the blog that just about everybody who I knew from those days is now dead – as far as I know, Philip was the last to die. I met up with Philip again when I was a patient at the Hergest Unit in about 2002, shortly before the dreadful Dr Tony Roberts did his best to ensure that I died. Like so many patients, Philip did not like either Tony Roberts or Dr David Healy. Whilst I was with him in the Hergest Unit Philip was quite manic and busied himself ruthlessly mocking Healy and Roberts, at one point writing a message up on a blackboard to remind the hospital of one of Healy’s less reputable activities. Some months after being discharged Philip died. ‘A problem with his medication’ I understand… I was told by a third party that it had been a case of sheer gross negligence. Another person whom I knew at the Hergest Unit with bipolar disorder has also fared very badly, although I don’t know if she is actually dead now. This was someone whose illness was very unstable at the best of times, but worsened if she was exposed to distress. At one point her behaviour became really intolerable and she was constantly unpleasant and offensive to everyone. I was told by one of the better nurses that this patient was particularly distressed because her sister had just begun nurse training at the Hergest Unit – the patient herself had been a student nurse before she became so ill that she had to withdraw. So no-one at the Hergest Unit knows the meaning of the expression ‘rubbing salt into the wound’ then. Never mind issues of confidentiality. I last saw this person in Bangor about five years ago. She was living rough and had been destitute for many months. She had spent the last few weeks hitch-hiking around the country and had earlier that morning hitched a lift from Manchester to Bangor with an unknown lorry driver. A lone, vulnerable woman with a severe mental illness who had spent the last twenty years in the embrace of the north Wales mental health services – duty of care anyone? The last lamb to be mentioned here was someone who was in the bed next to me in Seiriol Ward in Ysbyty Gwynedd in 1991. I thought of her as being an old lady, although she was probably about the same age that I am now, mid 50s. The reason that I thought of her as being an old lady was that she acted like one – she spent all day in bed and repeatedly stated her desire to be moved into an old people’s home so that she could die. She was a patient of Dr X and there was no privacy afforded to her at all, ward rounds were conducted by Dr X who would arrive at her bedside, in a dorm shared by loads of other patients, and ask her why she was ‘like this’. She would repeat that she wanted a place in an old folk’s home so that she could die. She had a husband who was clearly going out of his mind with worry who would diligently visit her every evening and a daughter who was probably in her early twenties who was very withdrawn and shy. A series of extraordinary decisions were made. Dr X announced that this lady was behaving like this because life in Seiriol Ward was ‘too comfortable’, so they were going to discharge her. The nurses were then told to prepare this lady’s shy daughter for her mother’s death – literally. And they did. They began to have conversations with her explaining that her mother ‘would not be here for ever’ and how they were going to help her live independently. The lady whose only desire to die was discharged. I understand that she died. What the bloody hell was Seiriol Ward, north Wales’s answer to Dignitas???

 

 

 

 

 

 

Radio 4 Mentions A Name From The Past

I’ve just been listening to the PM programme on Radio 4 only to find to my surprise that they were running a nostalgic feature, ‘from our archives twenty years ago’, on a man whose name I remember – a Dr John Marks, an addiction specialist from Liverpool. Dr Marks was considered a radical voice in the treatment of people with heroin addiction and his work was widely praised, including by the local police force who registered a huge drop in crime committed by addicts whilst John Marks led the treatment programme in the region – the police maintained that Dr Marks had stabilised so many of the addicts that they had given up crime and were leading productive lives.

I heard about John Marks during the mid 1990s – he had wanted to work in north Wales but Gwynedd Health Authority blocked his appointment. I knew a lot of people who were greatly disappointed by this decision. The decision was particularly unfathomable because the substance abuse remit was being held by one Dr Dafydd Alun Jones who was due to retire and a lot of the saner people in the north west Wales mental health services (most of whom have now given up and left the region in despair) were very much looking forward to seeing the back of him. Jones did eventually retire but not without a lot of kicking and screaming – but as part of his ‘package’ it was agreed that none of the outstanding complaints against him would be followed up and that he would retain the remit for ‘substance abuse’ via CAIS. So Gwynedd Health Authority actively blocked the appointment of a capable man with an outstanding track record – in order to favour Jones. It’s incredible isn’t it.

But a lot of very odd things were happening in the mental health services in north Wales during the mid 90s as the North Wales Hospital Denbigh breathed it’s last. I have previously blogged about the numerous attempts to have me labelled as ‘dangerous’ and incarcerated in the wake of my complaints about Jones. These attempts gained a new lease of life in the mid 1990s, but I have only recently found out the details from documents recently released from my lawyers.

Dafydd Alun Jones himself continued to make an enormous fuss every time he even saw me. I now have in my possession some wonderful letters that he wrote after he saw me in a corridor at the Hergest Unit ‘talking to a nurse’. I hadn’t done anything to him, I hadn’t said anything to him – he had just seen me. And this had precipitated a flurry of letters from him to all and sundry regarding the ‘extreme danger’ that I posed to him. I remember at the time that I was referred to a forensic psychiatrist – why I was not quite sure – for an ‘assessment’. It transpired that this was solely because of crazed allegations from Jones that I was planning to murder him. The forensic psychiatrist involved, a Dr Chris Jones, wasn’t quite as dreadful as some others that I met and I note that he gave a very firm opinion that I was not a danger to anyone – he also informally stated that if I was going to kill Jones I’d have done it by now, after all by that time I’d been trying for ten years to have a serious complaint against him investigated. Nonetheless Chris Jones’s opinion was ignored and there was a further attempt to prosecute me for allegedly threatening a woman called Bridget Lloyd, a CPN with the Arfon Community Mental Health Team – who had previously prosecuted me for ‘staring at a social worker in Safeway’s’ no less, namely a woman called Jackie Brandt, who has featured previously on the blog. The case against me regarding Bridget Lloyd collapsed and I was found not guilty. However I now have some documents relating to this that I hadn’t previously seen. What was going on behind the scenes was, as ever, bizarre. Bridget Lloyd had made statements to the police claiming that I was a danger to her children (I didn’t know that she had children) and that the threat from me was so great that Gwynedd Health Authority had issued her with a mobile phone for her to carry when she went into Bangor in order that she could ring for help lest I attacked her. Yet at the same time Bridget Lloyd had stated in a memo that she was sure that I wouldn’t recognise her if I saw her. Furthermore, the psychiatrist from the Hergest Unit whom I call Dr X on this blog, who was my psychiatrist at the time, had not only been fully behind this nonsensical prosecution, but had prepared a psychiatric report – for WHEN I was found guilty. The not guilty verdict seems to have thrown them all and another flurry of letters was exchanged concerning what they would now do – it was noted that there would be no apology made to me. As ever, a number of meetings were held in secret to which people whom I had never heard of were invited to ‘discuss’ and ‘share’ information about me. Another very odd thing happened at this time as well. Dafydd Alun Jones made a statement to the police claiming that a brick had been thrown through the window of his house and he ‘knew’ that I’d done it. (I hadn’t.) No evidence at all – but he knew that it was me. Then there was another Dafydd Alun Jones experience at this time. I remember being called into a meeting with Alun Davies, the manager of the Hergest Unit and was told that Ysbyty Gwynedd had received some ‘anonymous letters’ making ‘serious allegations’ against Dafydd Alun Jones and that it was believed that I knew who wrote them. I asked Davies if these letters were about me – and he simply replied ‘they don’t mention you by name’. So presumably they referred to me by context. Davies then showed me the envelopes and asked me if I recognised the writing. I didn’t. But I remember discussing it with a friend who was well aware of the scores of allegations of serious misconduct on the part of Jones, particularly the anecdotes circulating regarding his conduct towards female patients and she observed that the writer of those letters was probably a nurse – it was someone who knew to whom to address the letters, someone who didn’t dare identify themselves and someone who was very concerned at what Jones was doing. I heard no more about the letters. My own complaint against Jones went uninvestigated and in the end Alun Davies bellowed at me in a corridor that I had to ‘put up and shut up’.

But there was someone else who was busy as well – Lucille Hughes, the then Director of Gwynedd Social Services and one time partner of Dafydd Alun Jones. Previous blog posts have described in detail the lengths that Lucille – who had never met me and had never managed any ‘service’ that I had ever been in receipt of – had gone to in writing to and co-ordinating letters between numerous people who ‘knew’ how dangerous I was and the solicitors at Gwynedd County Council whom Lucille seemed to have a hot-line to. After Jackie Brandt, a social worker employed by the Arfon Community Mental Health Team and an employee of Lucilles, had taken me to court for ‘staring at her’, Brandt made a number of further complaints about me which were duly documented and sent to Lucille, who in turn had written yet more letters to Jackie Brandt and the lawyers at Gwynedd County Council, explaining that they would certainly be pursuing further opportunities to take me to Court and if possible have me imprisoned for breaching the Injunction that they’d obtained against me on the basis of previous unfounded allegations and lies (please see previous blog posts). What were these incidents that Brandt had complained about that were so serious that Lucille was gearing up for Court action and my possible imprisonment? Well one incident occurred when Brandt visited Ysbyty Gwynedd when I was a patient there and reported that she’d seen me ‘prowling around the ward’. Nothing else, I was just ‘prowling around’ a ward where I had every right to be. The next incident involved her walking past me in the corridor in the Hergest Unit. She claimed that I had asked her how many people that she’d locked up that day (I may well have done this, after all they were detaining people illegally both at Ysbyty Gwynedd and at Denbigh and I now have the documents to prove it). This very nearly started the Third World War – Brandt wrote letters to all and sundry describing how she had been with a ‘paranoid and reluctant client’ (God don’t you just love the way these people talk about those whom they are paid to care for) and had to explain to the paranoid and reluctant client that I was a ‘disturbed patient’ no less (I bet that really did the ‘paranoid and reluctant client’ a world of good). Brandt, her line manager the abusive Keith Fearns (please see previous blog posts) and Lucille, had vigorously lobbied the clinical managers at the Hergest Unit regarding my outrage, demanding that I should be banned from the Unit because of the danger that poor old Brandt was clearly in. For once, a clinical psychologist (whom I always remembered as being very pleasant) with a managerial role basically told them not to be bloody stupid and that surely, as someone claiming expertise in dealing with distressed people, Jackie Brandt could hardly claim to have been put in danger simply by me making this comment. All hell came down on that psychologist’s head, aggressive and furious letters from Lucille Hughes were written to him and his own managers, spitting blood that he had dared suggest that Brandt was being less than honest. Brandt then announced that she would no longer attend the Hergest Unit if I was allowed in there. The clinical psychologist disappeared from the Hergest Unit soon after this. Years later I got to know someone who knew the clinical psychologist concerned and they told me that he had escaped the Hergest Unit for a research job and in the end wanted to ‘get out of the NHS’ altogether and went to live on a canal boat in England. So that’s what happened to the one sane person who tried to stand up to Lucille Hughes…

As well as these very direct attacks on me, I noticed other things happening at the Hergest Unit around this time. It was conspicuously going downhill, although it was newly built. Relationships between the consultants were very obviously dreadful and patient care started declining. The best staff began to leave and the remaining staff were very obviously being treated badly. One thing that all the patients noticed was that the member of staff who was the one person raising concerns about standards of care was being treated very disrespectfully by the authorities – this man was a team leader but he and all of his team had to cram into one small office and they did not have a phone. Indeed they were the only staff in the Hergest Unit who did not have a phone and this caused serious problems for patients wanting to get in touch with them. So one patient, for a laugh, told the other patients that he would see if he could get this team a phone. He rang up BT, simply said that he was John Mullen, the Chief Executive of the Health Trust, and that he wanted to order an extra phone and phone line. The response was immediate – a voice asked ‘will that be on the special arrangement Mr Mullen?’ So the patient said ‘oh yes of course’. I was listening in on this phone call. The patient was not asked to demonstrate who he was, there was no mention of an invoice, no such details were discussed at all. Just the mention of a ‘special arrangement’. Two days later a phone was installed in the room that the patient specified. Everyone thought this was very entertaining, but as Brown commented when I told him, that patient had almost certainly stumbled upon a massive fraud. What was this ‘special arrangement’ that was referred to? Why was there no talk of any invoice or paperwork? It was all completely irregular. Brown suspected that managers of that Trust were probably charging their private phones to the NHS under the ‘special arrangement’ – and quipped that the patient could probably have ordered a car as well with no questions asked.

It was also during this period of time that Dr David Thomas the cardiologist from Ysbyty Gwynedd tried to kill himself and was hung out to dry by Ysbyty Gwynedd, along with the psychiatrist who had treated him, as well as her husband – and then huge budget cuts were imposed upon the Hergest… Please see blog post ‘A Mystery From Twenty Years Ago’ for the full details of this shabby sequence of events.

I have discussed these events with a number of other people, former staff and patients who can also remember them, and everyone agrees that a collective madness took over the NHS in north Wales but no-one can grasp the full picture. Why build the Hergest Unit and start shutting great swathes of it down within three or four years? Why turn down the services of someone like Dr John Marks in favour of the dreadful Dafydd Alun Jones and CAIS? Why was it virtually career suicide for a clinical manager in the NHS to stand up to Lucille Hughes? Why was there such an exodus of the better staff from the Hergest Unit over a period of three years or so? And who was behind the fraud that the patient having a laugh over a telephone being installed unwittingly discovered? Brown has always maintained that for this sort of chaos to break out and for a newly built unit to start to be dismantled, something at regional level must have been going on, as such decisions won’t have been within the power of the CEO of the Trust. Further evidence of this is that there was a reorganisation which resulted in the mental health services in north west Wales being constructed as a Trust in their own right – I have been told by a former member of staff of the Hergest Unit that was the end for them as it was seen to be a way of strangling the day care service at the Hergest Unit and shifting the ‘service’ into the community, which in reality meant giving all the resources to the abusive Arfon Community Mental Health Team, over which Lucille Hughes seemed to have control.

Of course something else that was happening at this time was the ‘yes to devolution’ vote and the associated decline of the Welsh Office, which was, as detailed in previous posts, concealing criminal activity in the mental health services in north Wales. But something else was happening as well. More and more people were coming forward maintaining that they had been sexually molested as teenagers in care of the Social Services in north Wales and the Waterhouse Inquiry was well on it’s way. That was the Waterhouse Inquiry that eventually named one Lucille Hughes, Director of Gwynedd Social Services, as knowing about a paedophile ring operating in the Social Services but failing to respond. A paedophile ring that it has constantly been alleged had links to people at the very highest levels of Government. Which would of course have been the Welsh Office. Might there have been some very worried people in the health and welfare sector in north Wales at this time?

I have one other abiding memory of the Hergest Unit during those days. That is of Dr X completely imploding. He could be heard shouting and yelling in corridors, demanding the immediate presence of John Mullen and was telling patients that there were such serious budget cuts planned for the Hergest Unit that patients could die. (He was right about that, some of them did.) At the same time, other doctors were undermining him and sneering at him and nurses were telling patients that Dr X was ‘mentally ill’. In the last week two people have suggested to me that a lot of people might have thought that Dr X was about to reveal the extent of the wrongdoing in the mental health services. I responded that Dr X was in it up to his eyeballs himself and they both observed that Dr X didn’t care – he was feared to be a loose cannon. Dr X killed himself four years ago. Just as the Macur Review that was set up to investigate whether the Waterhouse Report had been a cover-up was established and at the time that Operation Pallial announced that it would be taking further evidence from anyone who had been a victim of the north Wales paedophile ring.

Would any of those consultants who fled from the Hergest Unit whilst all this was going on care to take a trip down memory lane and let the rest of us know what exactly was happening up there? I’d be particularly interested to hear from one Dr Gwen Jones-Edwards, whom I discovered three years ago was clinical director of Southern General Hospital in Glasgow. Southern General is a flagship hospital, one of the western world’s leading neurology hospitals. How does a mediocre jobbing psychiatrist in a dangerous troubled psychiatric unit employing a psychiatrist whose former bedfellow is concealing a paedophile ring end up as clinical director of Southern General, particularly when she’s not even a neurologist? Maybe Dr David Healy could let us all know via his blog – after all, he is about the only psychiatrist still at the Hergest Unit who was there during the mid 90s and my medical records demonstrate that Gwen was very happy to please David Healy. She recorded on my medical records that Dr David Healy had said that I was not to be treated, instead if I asked for help from the Hergest Unit I was to be arrested. Neither Jones-Edwards or Healy had ever been my consultant.

A Mystery From Twenty Years Ago

After I wrote yesterdays post regarding the death of the Hergest Unit patient that the Betsi attributed to the ‘serious flooding’ that prevented staff from getting to work, I received an e mail from a reader. This reader pointed out the many other inconsistencies in this story, such as an alleged extensive search for the patient after he went missing but his body being later found on the perimeter of Ysbyty Gwynedd. The Hergest patient who died was sent to Aran Ward from the Hergest Unit – the reader who e mailed me told me that he had been a patient on Aran Ward years ago and conditions and care were so bad that he called it ‘the death ward’. One thing this reader remembered was being told that a ‘highly qualified and specialised consultant’ was coming to see him because he was alleged to be the only man in the north Wales area who could work the necessary piece of kit. Nonetheless Aran Ward never managed to get to the bottom of my correspondent’s medical problem. However my correspondent remembers that after he left Aran Ward, the ‘highly qualified and specialised consultant’ became the centre of a major scandal at Ysbyty Gwynedd because it transpired that he did not have the qualifications that he claimed. My correspondent told me that he could not remember the name of this doctor – however I think that I know who he might have been talking about.

About twenty years ago it was revealed that a cardiologist at Ysbyty Gwynedd who I think was called David Thomas had lied about his qualifications. He was a doctor, but he didn’t have one of the postgraduate qualifications that was usually required for a consultant post. Ysbyty Gwynedd absolutely hung this man out to dry and a panel of senior figures from the hospital and the Health Authority held a press conference and made some utterly damning comments about Dr Thomas, stating that they’d never employ him again under any circumstances. These was done in the wake of a protest from Dr Thomas’s former patients, who all said that although they accepted that he should never have lied about his qualifications, because he was a very good doctor they wanted him back. But there was another reason why there was sympathy for Dr Thomas and indeed why the story came to the attention of the media in the first place – Dr Thomas had tried to kill himself by driving his car over the edge of the Sychnant Pass. That was the first that anyone heard about the whole business. Dr Thomas survived but was taken as a patient to the Hergest Unit and one of my friends there was a patient on the ward along with him.

There are a number of things that leap out at me here. Firstly, Ysbyty Gwynedd was choc full of doctors doing a lot worse than lying about their postgraduate qualifications. This blog has described again and again how doctors are only disciplined or dismissed when they fall foul of their colleagues – so Dr Thomas’s senior colleagues did not like him for some reason. Secondly, Dr Thomas had not simply left Ysbyty Gwynedd quietly and found another job – he had made a serious attempt at killing himself after falling foul of his colleagues at Ysbyty Gwynedd. Documents in my possession now demonstrate the appalling corruption that pervaded the NHS in north Wales at that time – and indeed still pervades the region – as well as what the authorities were prepared to do to people who tried to challenge their wrongdoing (like me). I suspect that Dr Thomas was a very frightened man. Thirdly, Dr Thomas ended up in the Hergest Unit after his suicide attempt. Not only was this a complete breach of his confidentiality – all the patients knew that ‘the heart doctor’ was in the Unit with them – but it was unheard of for a doctor from Ysbyty Gwynedd to be treated there. Indeed, there was a special service in north Wales for ‘sick doctors’ (and you couldn’t find more sicker doctors than some of that lot) and this service was run by a Dr Devakumar, one of the psychiatrists from the Hergest Unit itself. So why was Dr Thomas not given the service that the other doctors received when their mental health hit the buffers? I remember another thing about this case as well. There was a consultant in the Hergest Unit who did agree to treat Dr Thomas and who was very sympathetic to his plight. I was told by a member of her family that she was then subjected to a witch-hunt by the hospital authorities because of her support for Dr Thomas.

So Ysbyty Gwynedd had a doctor who was enormously popular among his patients, who was the only man in the whole region who knew how to operate some of the hospital equipment – but on the basis of what was a misdemeanour in comparison with what regularly went on in that hospital, he had been driven to attempt to kill himself and was then effectively refused appropriate care for his extreme distress. Followers of the this blog might remember my recent post ‘He’s Not The Messiah, He’s A Very Naughty Boy’. In this post I describe how a member of staff at Bangor University, Professor Catherine Robinson, witnessed what was happening to me at the hands of the North West Wales NHS Trust and commented upon the repeated attempts to imprison me that ‘you wouldn’t have survived a prison sentence and you weren’t meant to’.  In previous posts I have mentioned a friend of mine who fell foul of the Hergest Unit after complaining about their gross incompetence and wrongdoing and who continued to attempt suicide only to be refused all treatment and care no matter how depressed he became. When his partner made an appointment to see Dr David Healy, she was staggered to be told by Healy that her partner ‘will carry on doing this until he kills himself’. No more care or treatment was forthcoming.

Ysbyty Gwynedd drives its opponents to suicide. And if they happen to survive a suicide attempt they will find themselves denied treatment – so presumably they’ll carry on attempting suicide until they kill themselves…

I suspect that like me, like my friend who was the subject of Healy’s dire prognosis and like a few other people whom I know to have been shafted – some of whom died – by the north Wales NHS, Dr Thomas knew something about those we know and love that they didn’t want him to publicise. I note that Dr Thomas was a cardiologist. Yesterday my post ‘Maxwell’s Silver Hammer’ discussed the conduct of the former Medical Director at Ysbyty Gwynedd, the deeply unpleasant Dr Terry Maxwell. Maxwell was the man who inflicted so much damage upon the Hergest Unit that it never recovered. Maxwell was probably Medical Director of Ysbyty Gwynedd when Dr Thomas was fired and tried to kill himself. Maxwell was a ‘heart doctor’ as well – he would have been Dr Thomas’s boss.

So what did Dr Thomas know about Terry Maxwell? As ever, readers with information are welcome to contact me…

Regarding Dr Thomas being the only man who knew how to operate a crucial bit of equipment on Aran Ward. I came across another case of a machine that went ping on a medical ward at Ysbyty Gwynedd that couldn’t be used, in the late 1980s when I had been admitted there after concerns about my heart. I was being treated by a very nice but obviously stressed junior doctor who had just qualified from Cardiff. She explained that she wanted to put me on a heart monitor and wheeled a machine over and connected me up to it. She did all the appropriate things but couldn’t see any trace of the machine actually working, but she wasn’t sure whether that was because she wasn’t au fait with the machine or whether the machine was broken. She went over to ask for help from the nurses on duty. I witnessed her repeatedly tell those nurses that she had a patient whose heart needed monitoring but that the machine didn’t seem to be working. She was ignored. As she persisted, the nurses turned their backs on her and walked away. At no point did anyone arrive to assist her. So I spent the next two hours wired up to a machine that wasn’t working and everyone on that ward knew it. I eventually took the wires off my chest and went off for a wander around the hospital. A few hours later a junior doctor turned up to ‘assess’ me, told me that he noticed that I’d made a lot of complaints about the mental health services and that perhaps I was quite an ‘extreme person’. I was then discharged with no further follow up. Being an extreme person I didn’t tell this man that I knew that he knew that I’d been knowingly wired up to a machine that didn’t work when there was a concern that my heart might not be doing what it should. But being an extreme person I am now blogging about all these things that could actually have killed me and will have killed other extreme people who had complained. Neither did I tell him that I had a friend who had just graduated from Cardiff Medical School who told me that no one wanted to work at Bangor because terrible things were alleged to be going on up there.

A Tale of Two Pre-Inquests At Caernarfon

The Daily Post is reporting on two pre-inquests at Caernarfon. One is on Michael Bryn Jones from Llandudno who was found dead in woods at Bangor in June 2016, 80 days after he went missing from Ysbyty Gwynedd. It is reported that Mr Jones was taken to Ysbyty Gwynedd on March 21 after taking tablets. He was assessed on March 23 by psychiatric nurses at the hospital and again on March 24 by a doctor. On April 1 he walked into the sea at Llandudno and was driven to Ysbyty Gwynedd by the police. It is believed that he may have then walked back home to Llandudno. On April 2 he caught the last bus to Bangor and then took a taxi to Ysbyty Gwynedd, before leaving the hospital. His body was later found in a wood nearby. Assistant coroner Nicola Jones has said that she will get as many people together as possible to piece together what happened in Mr Jones’s last hours. The full inquest will take place in May. There certainly should be questions asked – once more, someone in distress is found to have made repeated visits to Ysbyty Gwynedd, on one occasion having been taken there by the police and at one point having undergone a mental health assessment, only to be subsequently found dead. When one considers how many first-hand accounts there are from people who have gone to Ysbyty Gwynedd asking for help only to be unceremoniously thrown out – or threatened with police action if they dare try to press for some support and do not leave – the circumstances of Mr Jones’s death are indeed worrying.

Another pre-inquest also is reported by the Daily Post, this one highly unusual. It was on Siaron Lowis Bonds, who died in 1994 at Ysbyty Gwynedd. There is clearly very great concern over what happened to Ms Bonds. She was a cancer patient who died two days after being admitted to Alaw Ward. The coroner, Nicola Jones, stated that the inquest, which will take place in September, will investigate whether the level of care caused or contributed to Ms Bonds death. It was also revealed that Miss Bonds had taken part in a clinical trial and that there were ‘issues of consent’ regarding this. Ms Jones wants to find out who conducted the clinical trial and stated that it is crucial to find the nursing staff who prescribed potassium for Ms Bonds, at different dosages to that prescribed by a doctor. A review of Ms Bonds case by Health Inspectorate Wales in 2006 found that her care on Alaw Ward was ‘inadequate’. Furthermore it concluded that ‘a series of errors and omissions from Trust staff contributed directly to her death’. At the time of Ms Bonds death, the body managing Ysbyty Gwynedd was Gwynedd Hospitals NHS Trust.

This blog has concentrated on mental health failures and related matters, but regular readers will know that sometimes I branch out into other matters that may be of interest. I have a number of observations regarding Ms Bonds case. Firstly, there is mention of a nurse prescribing – readers are welcome to correct me because I may have got this wrong but it is my understanding that back in 1994 nurses did not prescribe, I think that they were only allowed that responsibility more recently. There is obviously a lot of concern regarding this clinical trial that Ms Bonds was participating in. Now there seem to have been some rather odd things going on at Ysbyty Gwynedd in the name of ‘clinical trials’. Ysbyty Gwynedd is not part of a medical school, yet there seems to have been some very questionable clinical trials run up there. I can remember an incident when the North West Wales NHS Trust was still in existence and running Ysbyty Gwynedd and someone died whilst participating in a ‘clinical trial’. If this had happened at one of the UKs leading universities there would have been an outcry – people are not supposed to die in clinical trials. So how did Ysbyty Gywnedd not only manage to kill someone in these circumstances but get clean away with a only a few reports in the Welsh media? Furthermore, in 1994, when Ms Bonds died as part of a ‘clinical trial’, Ysbyty Gwynedd was a fairly primitive establishment in terms of medical education. Reluctant medical students from Cardiff would undertake placements and subsequently return to south Wales with horror stories – and nursing wasn’t even a degree subject then. So who was running these ‘clinical trials’ and where was the research governance – I would not imagine that Ysbyty Gwynedd would have had the infrastructure to conduct clinical trials appropriately (I have mentioned this previously in other blog posts eg. ‘The Biggest Expert of the Lot’). Another thought struck me on reading the Post’s article. Followers of my blog will know that as well as commenting on current events, I am also gradually telling the story of my trajectory through the mental health system in north Wales. I haven’t quite got to the events of 1994 yet, but I’ll be there shortly and I have been reading the relevant documents. In 1994 that hospital and the grandly titled ‘Gwynedd Hospitals NHS Trust’ were in chaos. The law was being regularly broken, patients who had complained were being vindictively prosecuted, staff were at each others throats and yes, there were claims of ‘research’ being undertaken in the Hergest Unit that no patients ever seemed to have participated in. Documents in my possession demonstrate that this misconduct was condoned at the highest levels of the Trust. What if there was this sort of environment in cancer care as well?

I’m wondering whether any of our local politicians will break their silence regarding the dreadful conduct of certain NHS staff in north Wales in the wake of these two pre-inquests, or whether Darren Millar is still the only north Wales politician who is brave enough to stick his head above the parapet and comment in the face of avoidable patient deaths. Plaid are busy enjoying their conference in Newport and earlier today Rhun ap Iorwerth tweeted that the NHS in Wales has ‘excellent staff’. Rhun grew up on Ynys Mon and is now the AM for that area – before he became a politician Rhun was a BBC journalist. I suspect that Rhun is well-aware of the series of deaths and disasters emanating from the north Wales NHS. Another Plaid AM for north Wales also grew up in the area and worked as a journalist – Sian Gwenllian, AM for Arfon. Sian is also on record as describing the staff at Ysbyty Gwynedd as ‘excellent’ and is currently campaigning for a medical school in Bangor. They’ve already managed to kill two people in clinical trials Sian (and that’s just the ones that are known about, Ysbyty Gwynedd has never excelled in transparency, for all we know there might be more), that is not a good foundation for a medical school… Rhun and Sian both like to blame the sorry state of the NHS in north Wales on the Welsh Labour Gov’t in Cardiff. There wasn’t a Welsh Labour Gov’t in 1994 when mental health patients were being prosecuted after they’d complained and cancer patients were dying in ‘clinical trials’ at Ysbyty Gwynedd, it was pre-devolution – Thatcher was PM and the Welsh Office was still in existence… Rhun was probably still at school so may not have taken much of an interest in such things, but Sian wasn’t.