The ‘Celtic Iron Lady’ And Yet More Recent History

The press in north Wales is currently publishing tributes to someone who has just died who was described as a farmer from Denbighshire and a ‘leading figure’ in country life in the region. It was mentioned that the man in question purchased a large pig farm he was younger, was keen on racehorses and was a leading light in the NFU as well as in the Conservative Party. Intriguingly the article in the Daily Post Online stated that this farmer was a freemason. Details of his family were supplied and it seems that his family were actually a local wealthy family with multiple business interests. Of course my antennae started twitching when I saw the words ‘Denbighshire’, ‘leading figure’ and ‘freemason’ in close proximity. A mate of Dafydd and Gwynne’s perhaps?  The ‘farmer’ would be about the right age to be a mate of theirs. But then I noticed something even more interesting – at the end of the article, it named the siblings of this farmer who had predeceased him. One was his sister – Beata Brookes, a Conservative politician.

Beata Brookes is a name from the past. When I arrived in Bangor in 1981 most people whom I came across supported Plaid, but every so often Bangor would be covered in blue Vote Conservative posters with the name of Beata Brookes emblazoned across them. I learned that Beata Brookes was the MEP for north Wales. I also soon found out that she was hated by many people, truly loathed, but no-one ever explained why – although to be fair, I never asked. In much the same way that in parts of the UK in the 1980s one would overhear people using the phrase ‘it’s that bloody woman’ and know that they were talking about Margaret Thatcher, in north Wales it was often a phrase used about Beata Brookes. Last night I did a bit of research. As is so often the case these days, I wish that I had done this research years ago – and I also wished that when I was young I had stopped to enquire further when local people had told me how much they hated Beata Brookes.

Beata Brookes was born in 1931, the daughter of a wealthy family in Denbighshire. So she’s about the same age as Dafydd and Lucille, the paedophiles’ friends then. Beata studied at UCNW (now Bangor University) and became a social worker – just like Lucille! Of course, Beata was about the same age as Dafydd and Lucille. Readers familiar with north Wales will already understand that with the region having the networks that it does, Beata will definitely have known Lucille. She therefore probably knew Dafydd as well. For readers in England who  might need more convincing, not knowing how north Wales works – and certainly worked in the mid-twentieth century – here’s the clincher. Beata worked as a social worker for Denbighshire County Council, although it is documented that she also worked as a ‘director for a north Wales company’ and as a ‘farmer’. I can’t find a record of the name of the company, I presume that it was a family business – and presumably, as with her brother, ‘farmer’ meant landowner. So Beata was from an affluent local Tory family (Beata joined the Young Conservatives at fifteen and ended up as the national vice-chairman), the male members of whom were freemasons and she worked as a social worker for the Council which collaborated with and concealed the wrongdoing of Gwynne the lobotomist and Dafydd. Beata will have known what was going on in the North Wales Hospital Denbigh. I bet she’ll have known about something else as well – the physical and sexual abuse of children, which had been going on in the region for decades. Scores of those who were named in the Jillings Report and Waterhouse Report as senior managers of the children’s ‘services’ which by the 1970s were known to be rife with paedophiles had worked for Denbighshire County Council as far back as the 1950s, as detailed in previous blog posts.

Was it possible that Beata was one of those who knew about the beatings, the buggery, the rapes, the lobotomies of awkward customers, the incarceration of anyone who crossed Gwynne or Dafydd’s path, the sexual abuse of psychiatric patients as well as of children, the financial abuse of vulnerable adults, the incarceration of homosexuals, the deaths and disappearances, but felt completely overwhelmed and helpless? Er, no – as Beata progressed in her career, she acquired positions which point to her being one of the key figures who ensured that the lid was kept on all of it. In 1963 the Conservative Government appointed her to the Welsh Hospitals Board, the authority directly responsible for the North Wales Hospital Denbigh. She remained in that post for eleven years. Whereupon she became a member of the new Clwyd Health Authority – which took over the running of the North Wales Hospital! And nothing changed at all – homosexuals were still tortured in the name of ‘aversion therapy’ although homosexuality had been decriminalised, women who had given birth outside of marriage were still incarcerated in there, Gwynne the lobotomist was still employed there (and I bet that he was still carrying out lobotomies as well, they were breaking every other law out there, they won’t have given up on their most effective weapon), young people who had been abused were being banged up in Denbigh in the 70s, Dafydd was shagging his way around the institution – life carried on in that place as it had for the previous decades. Of course by 1974, John Allen had established the Bryn Alyn Community and business was booming – children in care from across the UK were being ‘placed’ there, to be sexually abused and trafficked into prostitution. As were the boys at Bryn Estyn at that time. Jillings and Waterhouse admit that by 1974, children in care right across north Wales were being starved, used as free labour, violently assaulted and sexually abused. Some ended up in London and Brighton being abused by the Westminster Paedophile Ring. Dissenters found themselves in the North Wales Hospital or Risley Remand Centre.

So Beata was up to her eyes in it as a member of Clwyd Health Authority. But Beata was a member of a few other things as well – including Clwyd County Council Social Services Committee! So she definitely knew about the kids who were being abused in the ‘care’ of the social services then. Beata played a blinder though – like Dafydd and Lucille, she ensured that she was involved in so many organisations that she remained in control of all outlets. She sat on the Family Practitioners Committee for Clwyd and she was a member of the Council for Professions Supplementary to Medicine – that will have kept any GPs or others who were unhappy with what was going on silent – and she also held ‘several voluntary sector posts in north Wales relating to the disabled and mentally handicapped’. Beata was even President of the North Wales Association for the Disabled! There was no escape for complaining patients or relatives – or indeed other healthcare professionals – from Beata, Gwynne, Dafydd and Lucille. They had the whole region completely stitched up. Although Beata and Lucille couldn’t join the masons because they were women, Dafydd, Beata’s brother and no doubt Gwynne were able to do that bit to gain dominance there.

Not only was Beata occupying influential positions in the local authority and voluntary sector, but she began her political climb at an early age too. After her stint with the Young Conservatives, she joined the grown-ups clubs. She was elected to the National Union of Conservatives and Unionist Associates. In 1955 she was elected as a Conservative Councillor for Rhyl Urban District Council. In the same year she fought Widnes for the Tories in the General Election. In 1961 Beata was the Tory candidate in the Warrington by-election. In 1964 she stood for the Tories for Manchester Exchange in the General Election. In 1970 she threw her hat in the ring for the West Flintshire nomination for the Tories but was beaten by Sir Anthony Myers. My God Beata was desperate to get into Parliament. I don’t think she wanted to do that to help the poor sods whom Dafydd and Gwynne were abusing and killing or the kids that Lucille – and indeed Beata’s colleagues in Clwyd Social Services – were prostituting either.

In 1979 Beata was elected to the European Parliament as MEP for north Wales! Did she use her power to try and assist those in the clutches of Dafydd, Gwynne and Lucille? Of course not – Beata ended up on a number of committees and is remembered as feistily fighting for agricultural and industrial interests in north Wales, but no, she didn’t give a stuff about the welfare or indeed the lives of those who had fallen into the hands of a bunch of pimps and gangsters. It was of course in 1979 that Mary Wynch was unlawfully arrested and incarcerated in Risley Remand Centre and the North Wales Hospital – for a year (see post ‘The Mary Wynch Case – Details’). That hit the London based media. Of course Beata knew about it.

Beata remained an MEP for ten years. Throughout the Mary Wynch scandal and the aftermath – and during those years in the mid and late 80s when Alison Taylor went public on the paedophile ring that was operating in the social services in north Wales. Beata remained silent throughout. Yet every account of Beata’s political career stresses how effective she was, what a ‘fighter’ she was, how she was ‘formidable’ (which in politics usually translates as ‘vile’) and how she was known as the ‘Celtic Iron Lady’. (Brookes was a hard-right Thatcherite.)

In 1983 Brookes’s desperation to bag a seat in the Commons – although she was a sitting MEP – caused a crisis in the Conservative Party. What is now described as a ‘bitter feud’ broke out which centred around Brookes. Boundary changes resulted in the creation of a new constituency, Clwyd North West, a seat that was centred on Colwyn Bay, the location of the HQ of the North Wales Police which was mired in corruption and concealing the paedophile ring. Gordon Anglesea, an Inspector at Colwyn Bay, was actually a member of the paedophile ring. Colwyn Bay also housed a few other bent professionals, including Professor Robert Owen, the Medical Ombudsman for the Welsh Office, who concealed Dafydd’s criminal activities in the late 1980s. Denbigh was a town virtually entirely populated by staff or the relatives of staff of the North Wales Hospital, but people occupying the more senior positions in Clwyd County Council and it’s services frequently lived in the Colwyn Bay area or in the Conwy Valley. They’re the posh bits of that region.

The natural candidates for the Tory nomination for Clwyd North West were the sitting Conservative MP for West Flintshire, Sir Anthony Meyer and the sitting Conservative MP for Denbigh, Geraint Morgan. Some people were grumbling about Geraint Morgan who was perceived to be rather more committed to his work as a barrister than his duties as an MP and although Anthony Meyer was very popular in some quarters, he was dangerously civilised for Thatcher’s Conservative Party and kept disgracing himself by doing things like making positive noises about the EU, not wanting to hang people and not wanting to kill the Argies. It didn’t go down very well at all with some. A group of local Tory activists urged Brookes to put her name forward for the nomination. Meanwhile, Conservative Central Office produced a list of 65 possible names – Brookes’s was not among them. A huge row followed and complaints were made to the 1922 Committee. The Chairman of that Committee, Edward Du Cann, even discussed postponing the selection meeting with the Conservative Party Chairman Cecil Parkinson, such was the rumpus. In the end the selection meeting went ahead.

Brookes, Meyers and Morgan all attended the meeting, at which Brookes made a speech praising Thatcher. Brookes won the selection vote among the Clwyd North East Conservative Executive. Meyers alleged that the meeting was a fix, that Brookes had set out to oust him by stealth by using EU funds to promote her candidacy and ‘usurp the functions’ of the House and that Conservative Central Office were in on the conspiracy. Morgan observed that speaking at the meeting was like ‘speaking to a nobbled jury’. Meyers maintained that the local members were ‘resigning in droves’ and threatened to run as an Independent. He then discovered that he had not been invited to the adoption meeting. Myers challenged this in the High Court and won – they ruled that he should have been invited. Some 800 members turned up to the meeting where the decision not to invite Myers was reversed. Sir Anthony Myers was subsequently nominated and then won the seat for the Tories by a long way.

Whilst I was reading about all this, I couldn’t help noticing the year in which the Tories in Clwyd tore themselves apart – it was 1983. We know that Beata was ruthlessly ambitious, was a woman who bludgeoned people into submission and was sitting on a paedophile ring supplying under-aged boys to Westminster figures and was keeping a lid on the criminal activities of a mental health service that was concealing the paedophile ring. It has been admitted by member of the Conservative Party that Sir Peter Morrison, the Tory MP for Chester, was abusing boys in care in north Wales. Between 1981 and 1985 the Conservative MP Geoffrey Dickens held his campaign to expose ‘VIPs’ that he maintained were sexually abusing children. Dickens maintained that this abuse was associated with a trade in child pornography worth a great deal of money. This was exactly the business that John Allen ran. Dickens began his campaign in 1981 when he named Sir Peter Hayman in the House using Parliamentary privilege. In 1983 Geoffrey Dickens handed the then Home Secretary Leon Brittan a dossier with the names and details of VIPs, including Westminster figures, that Dickens maintained were paedophiles. Brittan ‘lost’ that dossier. Since then of course, there have been allegations that Brittan was one of those paedophiles himself. Before he died Geoffrey Dickens talked about the serious unpleasantness and threats that he received after he spoke out.

So Beata herself and a group of ‘local activists’ were very keen for Beata to get into Parliament – so keen that some unlawful dirty tricks were employed, which Meyers alleged had involved Conservative Central Office. The constituency involved in the bun-fight was home to numerous police officers, local officials and professionals who were concealing the paedophile ring that Dickens was trying to expose. I wonder if they were among the ‘local activists’ who were doing pretty much anything to get Brookes into that seat? What if they were worried that Dickens’s campaign was going to gain traction and the whole bloody lot of them would be caught? Sir Anthony Myers sounds the sort of person who would not be complicit with such serious criminal activity, but Beata had been already, for years. The ideal candidate!

The cunning plan didn’t work, but Beata continued as an MEP until 1989 when she was ousted by the Labour candidate. Beata continued to mouth off if she felt like it – in 1983 she protested after the BBC held an interview with John Jenkins, a Welsh activist who had been imprisoned for a bombing campaign at the time of the Investiture. Oh the irony – in his younger day, Dafydd made links with Irish Republican activists after declaring his commitment to the nationalist cause (see post ‘A Network Stretching Back Decades…’). He also participated in the Tryweryn campaign. Like Dafydd, Beata had some media connections – she had worked as an ‘occasional television interviewer’ when she was younger.

Even being voted out didn’t stop Brookes. In 1993 she became Chair of the Welsh Conservative Party and supported John Major whilst he was under fire. She was also Chair of the Welsh Consumer Council and was re-appointed in 1994, despite criticism of her potential conflict of interest by the National Consumer Council and by Rhodri Morgan, who told John Major that the appointment ‘undermined an already disreputable system of patronage’.

The evil cow was awarded a CBE in 1996. In her old age there were still indications of the deals that she was doing on a local level. Brookes hit the media in 2003 regarding a dispute over car boot sales that she was holding on her land in Rhuddlan. In 2000 she had managed to gain permission to hold car boot sales on 28 Sundays every year and then in 2003 she gained permission to hold car boot sales on 14 Saturdays every year. She offered the land on which the car boots were held for the use of the National Eisteddfod. Helping out the National Eisteddfod can work wonders, particularly as Dafydd and many of the paedophiles’ friends are involved with it. (A true but horrible story – some years ago there was an awful shock for a lot of people when it was revealed that one of the people who had been appointed to run something for the children at the Eisteddfod, a nursery I think, was someone from the south of England with convictions for paedophilia. Any ideas how he got in there then Dafydd?) Beata won the day, but the dispute cost the local council many thousands of pounds. What Brookes’s passion for car boot sales was all about I don’t know, but it does remind me of a quip from ‘Private Eye’ years ago, when they were still publishing the imaginary letters from Denis Thatcher, ‘Dear Bill’. One of the letters made a reference to a ‘friend of Maurice’s’ who ran car boot sales – Denis commented that ‘I had no idea that he was a member of the Mafia’.

Readers may remember that in my post ‘Doris Karloff – Honest About Her Expenses But Not Much Else’, I described how Anglesey Conservative Association were desperate to snare a then unknown Ann Widdecombe as their candidate despite Doris knowing absolutely nothing about Wales or Anglesey and not showing much interest either. I speculated that back in those days of the St David’s Laundry in Bangor (see post ‘The BMA And It’s Ethics’), it may very well have been Widdecombe’s uncompromising anti-abortion stance that was the attraction. I wonder if Brookes was involved with that selection panel. Welsh Tories are a bit thin on the ground, it is highly likely that they either roped Brookes in or that she insisted on being part of the process.

There is an outstanding conundrum. Brookes’s obituaries mention that she married a fellow Tory activist Anthony Arnold, but that they divorced in 1963 and Brookes then insisted on being addressed by her maiden name and title, Miss Beata Brookes. It was highly unusual to be a divorcee in 1963 – although dispensing with an unwanted husband was very much easier if you were a woman with money as was Brookes – and divorced women routinely still referred to themselves as Mrs whatever their married name was. The only divorced women who persisted in calling themselves Miss were ageing starlets like Miss Diana Dors or Miss Zsa Zsa Gabor who still called themselves Miss no matter how many times they had been married and divorced. (Miss Joan Collins still does.) So Brookes really broke the mould there – if any readers know what that was all about, please do tell, Beata would hardly be the first to be flying the feminist flag.

In 2013 Brookes joined UKIP. She became very angry with Tories like Cameron calling UKIP ‘fruitcakes’ and ‘clowns’ and stated that ‘you don’t behave like that in politics’. No, what you do is take part in a conspiracy to conceal a vicious paedophile ring and remain silent even when the victims who have been brave enough to give evidence against that ring start turning up dead. Lest anyone needs reminding of just what the Celtic Iron Lady was party to, here’s another quick resume – witnesses were found hanging from trees, hanging from stairwells, dead from overdoses although they’d given up drugs years previously, were found inexplicably dead in cars, some were run over and killed on roads and one teenaged boy was found in a local town with unexplained injuries so serious that he died from them a few hours later. This doesn’t include the people who ‘committed suicide’ after being ‘helped’ by Dafydd and his colleagues. Neither does it include the five people with connections to the North Wales Child Abuse Scandal who were killed in an arson attack at a party in Brighton, to which they had all been invited. The partygoers variously died from smoke inhalation or burns and some people escaped by jumping out of windows and were impaled on the railings below. A man who was alleged to have ‘confessed’ to starting the fire was hit by a lorry and killed himself a few days later.

Beata Brookes died in her eighties in the comfort of the Spire Yale Hospital (a private hospital in Wrexham) in 2015. So she didn’t risk her neck with the NHS that she had helped poison or in one of Dafydd’s ‘nursing homes’. Upon hearing of her death, Andrew R.T. Davies, the leader of the Welsh Conservatives, described Beata as an ‘incredibly talented politician who will be sorely missed’ whose ‘career was varied and hugely successful and I pay tribute to everything she did within public life, the voluntary sector and for the Welsh Conservative Party’.

Victorian Values anyone? Or shall we just go Back To Basics?

 

What of Beata’s rivals from the 1983 campaign whom she had so ruthlessly tried to shaft?

 

Geraint Morgan was the Conservative MP for Denbigh between 1959-83. So he spanned the Years of Brutality and Lobotomies then. He cannot possibly been have been as bad as Beata Brookes, but like others who have held political ambitions in the direction of the Denbigh area such as Ieuan Wyn Jones and Paul Flynn, Geraint wasn’t going to even whisper in protest – he was after the votes of all the Denbigh staff, the patients didn’t have votes to cast. Although Geraint was appreciated for being a Welsh speaker and was known to dutifully reply to constituents when they raised issues with him, Geraint had other interests. He was a barrister and busied himself with that. After the 1983 dust-up, Morgan resigned from the Conservative Party and supported Plaid, although he never became a member. That’s the Plaid who embraced Dafydd as an activist and candidate and included so many other people who said nothing about the paedophile gang or the abuses at the North Wales Hospital, although they all knew about it. Geraint Morgan was eventually appointed a Crown Court Recorder. He worked on the Northern Circuit. As did Sir John Kay, who issued a High Court injunction against me on the basis of Jackie Brandt and Keith Fearns perjuring themselves, Keith Fearns never having met me and Brandt having met me two or three times. At the time Fearns and Brandt were employed as social workers by Gwynedd Social Services and I now have copies of the letters exchanged between Lucille Hughes (Director of Gwynedd Social Services), Ron Evans (the lawyer employed by Gwynedd County Council), Jackie and Fearns, in which Evans and Lucille instruct Fearns and Brandt to make statements about me. John Kay issued that injunction just before Geraint Morgan was appointed a judge. Like so many featured on this blog, Geraint was a law graduate from Aberystwyth University and a member of the Gorsedd of the Bards.

 

The one person who does not seem to have been dwelling in the same cesspool as everyone else was Sir Anthony Meyer. He had previously had a career as a diplomat in the Foreign Office and served in the British Embassies in Paris and Moscow. He was elected as the Conservative MP for Eton and Slough in 1964 but lost the seat to the Labour MP Joan Lestor in 1966. His defeat was attributed to his refusal to play the ‘race card’ in what had become a heated debate about immigration. He sought another Tory seat, but had great difficulty, being on the very liberal wing of the Tory party and being a very enthusiastic European. An old Etonian contact, Nigel Birch, who was the MP for West Flintshire, then asked Sir Anthony if he would replace him as the candidate as he was standing down. Sir Anthony was elected for West Flintshire in 1970. He was popular but very critical of Thatcher. After surviving the bunfight in 1983, in 1989 he famously stood as the stalking horse against Thatcher in a leadership challenge. He knew that he didn’t have a hope of winning, but it did the trick – it encouraged a few other people to challenge her soon afterwards. He was deselected by the Conservative Party for his ‘treachery’ in 1992 and later joined the Lib Dems. So although it was Geoffrey Howe who delivered the killer blow, we have Sir Anthony to thank for kick-starting Thatcher’s demise. We also have him to thank for keeping a bloody monster out of Parliament when he mounted a High Court challenge to her and her henchmen in 1983.

 

Whilst I was reading about Beata, I saw across another name that I’d previously come across as well – Tom Ellis. Brookes was re-elected as MEP for north Wales after defeating Ellis in 1984, when he stood for the SDP.

Tom Ellis went to Ruabon Grammar School and studied chemistry at UCNW (Bangor University). In 1957 he became manager of Bersham Colliery. He was President of Wrexham Fabian Society and in 1970 was elected the Labour MP for Wrexham. In 1981 he defected to the SDP – Ellis was one of the founder members. He became President of the Welsh Social Democrats. After boundary changes in 1983 he stood for the SDP in Clwyd South West but lost. As MP for Wrexham, Tom Ellis is someone else who will have heard about the paedophile ring – Bryn Alyn and Bryn Estyn were located just outside Wrexham. He’ll have known about the horrors of the North Wales Hospital Denbigh as well. But as I detailed in my post ‘Dr Death’, the Top Doctors of north Wales were attracted to David Owen like flies around a honeypot. And their support was just so much more valued than the support of people who ended up dying so that the Top Doctors and the paedophiles’ friends could continue with their noses in the proverbial trough. Dafydd, Gwynne and Lucille really did have it all sewn up nicely – although virtually everyone knew what they were doing.

 

 

 

 

 

Lest We Forget…

The title of today’s post is blatantly cribbed from the latest issue of ‘Private Eye’ which I picked up this morning. It contains a ‘Sylvie Krin’ special, a short story – about Prince Charles of course – ‘Lest We Forget’. It’s timely – over the past 24 hours or so, there seems to have been an awful lot that has been forgotten by a great many people who are appearing in the media.

I am of course talking about the latest sex trafficking scandal that is receiving wall to wall coverage, the imprisonment of seventeen men and one woman in Newcastle for the sexploitation of under-aged girls, as well as associated drugs offences. Once more, publicity has been given to a case in which nearly all those found guilty were British born South Asians (although some were of Iranian and Turkish descent). News reports are stressing that ‘hundreds’ of South Asian men have now been convicted of this type of offence. Yes they have – but what is receiving much less (indeed often no) publicity is the huge numbers of people who are not South Asian who are being banged up for these offences as well. I am glad to say that more and more of those now elderly people who committed offences against children in care in north Wales in the 70s and 80s are gradually being imprisoned. This is receiving no media coverage. They are not South Asian. But they all worked – or associated with people who worked – with kids in care. Once more I implore people to look at the running theme – it is NOT ‘South Asian’ men. It is that vulnerable people in the care of the welfare services were the victims. I note that one of the girls in the Newcastle case had learning disabilities – as well as young people in care, the targets of sex offenders are frequently youngsters with learning disabilities or mental health problems. The National Crime Agency is now stating that this sort of offending is happening in EVERY PART of the UK – there are not South Asians living in every part of the UK, so it simply cannot only be them committing the offences.

Yet Lord Ken MacDonald, the former DPP, appeared on the ‘Today’ programme this morning – and is now being quoted by everyone and has been ‘backed up’ by Labour MP Sarah Champion – saying that society needs to be honest and admit that this is a ‘profoundly racist crime’. It isn’t. This is if anything a profoundly classist crime – the victims are usually (although not always) from disadvantaged social groups, who are on the receiving end of ‘care’ and advice from the professional classes. Wake up everyone – the forerunners of this were the organised paedophile gangs that infiltrated the children’s care system in the 70s and 80s. Those gangs whose conduct was concealed and facilitated by huge swathes of professional people employed in social work, psychiatry and the law. Who were assisted by corrupt police officers and charities like MIND and the NSPCC. Gangs who were greatly helped by councillors and politicians who would not speak out lest they ended up covered in crap in public – the politicians who in turn ensured that the extent of the problem was never reported by the media. Neither should we forget that the security services also assisted in the cover-up – to protect the politicians and a few of their own who were actually perpetrating child abuse.

So where are that lot now? Well I’ve named scores of them on this blog – they are senior politicians, some of whom are sitting in the Lords. They are senior executives of charities. They are barristers practicing in chambers specialising in ‘Human Rights’. They are judges sitting in the highest courts in the UK. They are Chairs of NHS Trusts and Boards. They are Professors of social work, psychology, nursing and psychiatry. They are Gov’t appointed Commissioners – the most outrageous example in north Wales being that of the North Wales Police and Crime Commissioner, Arfon Jones, the man who chauffeured North Wales Police Inspector Gordon Anglesea to the venues where he sexually molested boys. Arfon is currently responsible for tackling trafficking and modern slavery in north Wales!

There has been a great wailing and a gnashing of teeth because it has been revealed that the Chief Constable of Northumbria paid a convicted child rapist £10k for information that led to the arrest of the Newcastle gang. He has been robustly condemned by – among others – ironically the NSPCC. The Chief Constable had to resort to this because of the wall of silence that is being maintained by the professions and people mentioned above. However the people named on this blog have received much more than £10k – their noses are stuck well into some very deep troughs.

Keen readers might remember the name of Lord Ken MacDonald from my post ‘A Future Leader Of The Labour Party’, in which I detail the backgrounds of all the DPPs – all of whom have failed to prosecute numerous child abusers against whom there was much evidence. Ken was DPP between 2003-08. Ken was the first pupil barrister of Lady Helena Kennedy – who relied on ‘expert witness’ Professor Nigel Eastman in many of her cause celebres. Eastman was one of the psychiatrists at St George’s Hospital Medical School who knew about the criminal activity of Dr Dafydd Alun Jones whilst Dafydd concealed the paedophile ring that operated in north Wales. Ken’s appointment caused quite a row at the time because of the obvious conflicts of interest involved. Ken’s ultimate boss was the Attorney General Lord Goldsmith – who was a mate of Tony Blair, the then PM. Ken was a business partner of Tony’s wife Cherie Booth – they had co-founded the chambers Matrix, along with Tim Owen. Despite all the fuss, Ken’s appointment was defended by the Solicitor General at the time who was someone called Harriet Harman – who back in the 1970s had been the legal officer for the NCCL, whilst the NCCL had been affiliated to PIE. In fact Harriet even wrote a document which gives the distinct impression that she was campaigning on behalf of paedophiles whilst she was employed by the NCCL.

The Blair Gov’t defended Ken’s appointment on the grounds that it had been made by an ‘independent’ panel, consisting of First Civil Service Commissioner Lady Usha Prashar, Lord Justice of Appeal Sir Robin Auld, Permanent Secretary at the Department of Constitutional Affairs Sir Hayden Phillips and Permanent Secretary at the Cabinet Office Sir David Omand. So how independent were they?

Usha Prashar is a fairly standard example of someone who achieved greatness during the New Labour years – she was elevated to the Lords in 1999. Her career was based on her ‘expertise’ in race relations and equality – what else? Between 1986-91 she was Director of the National Council for Voluntary Organisations, which encompassed those charities that were ignoring or concealing child sexual abuse.

Robin Auld is a member of the Athenaeum. As was Jimmy Savile, Marjorie Wallace and quite a few others named on this blog who have concealed child sexual abuse or the wrongdoing of psychiatrists who have concealed it.

Hayden Phillips was a Civil Service mandarin. He joined the Civil Service as Assistant Principal in the Home Office in 1967 and continued to travel upwards until he became PPS to Roy Jenkins between 1974-76, when Jenkins was Home Secretary. Phillips was Assistant Secretary in the Home Office between 1979-81 and Assistant Under-Secretary of State in the Home Office between 1981-86. So Hayden occupied senior positions in the Home Office during the time when it was directly managing Bryn Estyn – whilst the boys there were beaten and molested – and whilst Leon Brittan was Home Secretary. The Leon who was alleged to have been a paedophile himself and who ‘lost’ the dossier given to him by Geoffrey Dickens MP which gave the names and details of Westminster figures who were alleged to have sexually abused children.

David Omand is also a former mandarin, who began his career at GCHQ and ended up as it’s Director in 1996. After that he was Permanent Secretary at the Home Office and then First Permanent Secretary and Security and Intelligence Co-Ordinator in the Cabinet Office. Omand was among those who decided that Dr David Kelly should be pursued for talking to the media about the dodgy dossier of Iraq/WMD/Alistair Campbell fame. The David Kelly who was later found dead, having ‘committed suicide’ by making a cut to his wrist which was not substantial enough to have killed him and by taking a non-lethal quantity of paracetamol. So David Omand worked for the security services. The security services who were known to have concealed the activities of the Westminster Paedophile Ring.

Ken MacDonald is now a Lib Dem peer. As DPP he established the Organised Crime Division. There’s certainly a need for that now isn’t there. Although Ken’s inside knowledge concerning the reasons why will never hit the media – in 1980 he married Linda Zuck, a TV producer for an Islington-based company ‘Illuminations’. They won’t have produced anything that illuminated the paedophile ring that was known to be in operation in the children’s homes run by Islington Council at the time. Whilst the Council was led by Blair’s mate Margaret Hodge.

Both Blair and Cherie have been on Radio 4 today. An interview with Blair by Peter Hennessey was broadcast this morning. Blair spent a lot of his time talking about how much he’d enjoyed acting, both at school and at university. We noticed your penchant for acting Tony – as well as for lying. In particular, lying to the House. Then Cherie was wheeled out for the ‘World At One’ to talk about modern day slavery and trafficking! Cherie was given quite a lot of time to bang on about her concerns and she talked about Albanians, Romanians, people from the Far East, Vietnamese, nail bars, domestic workers and child labour utilised in carpet production. What she did not mention were the criminals in the 70s and 80s who abused children in care and trafficked them into prostitution, whilst fuckwits like Tessa Jowell and Margaret Hodge who were later elevated to high office by Cherie’s own husband ignored their activities. Neither did Cherie mention that a number of recent prosecutions identified that service users and homeless UK citizens were being trafficked into forced labour and prostitution. Just like the service users at Prestwood Homes were (see post ‘A Convenient Arrangement With The Private Sector’). Those service users who’s pleas for help were ignored by the police, by MIND, by their social workers…

I think I can understand why the National Crime Agency is now investigating cases of modern slavery in every town in the UK, even if the causes of this are a mystery to Cherie.

Despite being committed to human rights, Blair and Cherie now both run consultancies in which they charge a great deal of money to dispense advice to some particularly nasty dictators.

A further irony of the coverage on ‘the World At One’ concerning modern slavery was the advice that people who know about such matters should ring Crimestoppers – as the Hergest Unit patient described in previous posts did, repeatedly, in the late 90s, giving details of the criminal activities of Dr Dafydd Alun Jones, only to be accused of making hoax calls.

Whilst I am delighted to see that some of those named on this blog whose past activities suggest that they have information of interest to Inspector Knacker are finding themselves in hot water – Meri Huws’s grand post is about to be abolished by the Welsh Gov’t and it looks as though Baroness Patricia Scotland of Corruption won’t last much longer as Secretary-General of the Commonwealth – this all absolutely stinks. The payment of £10k to a rapist is trivial when compared to the scale of the collusion of so many others who even have the temerity to appear in the media discussing the Serious Problem of Human Trafficking. What did they expect to happen when they concealed the forced prostitution of vulnerable people by organised criminals thirty years ago? Did Margaret Hodge, Patricia Scotland and Tessa Jowell think that the paedophiles and their associates were all going to revert to a law abiding existence when Maggie, Patsy and Tess took their seats in the Lords after so generously assisting those scumbags in their activities?

As for ‘but we didn’t know’ – yes you did, all of you. I told you. Alison Taylor told you. Mary Wynch told you. We wrote and we wrote and we wrote. We wrote to MPs, to Ministers, to Secretaries of State, to the GMC, to Inspectorates of Social Services, to Chief Constables and we even contacted the media. Alison was sacked, I was hounded out of jobs and harassed and Mary and I were arrested and illegally imprisoned. And you lot moved heaven and earth to conceal all of it. Whilst the bodies of young people after they had given evidence about the abuse that they had suffered in care kept turning up and five such people died in an arson attack on a building as they attended a party to which they’d all been invited (see post ‘The Silence of the Welsh Lambs’). After which the body of the man who had allegedly ‘confessed’ to starting the fire was discovered.

And I’m sitting here along with 10,000 documents detailing much of the criminal activity signed by the criminals’ own hands – waiting for an explanation as to why a forged document purporting to be a letter from me turned up in the possession of the GMC, why a forged certificate of indictment was found in the possession of the north Wales Court service and why the Police National Computer record relating to me was falsified several times.

Well? Anyone? Exactly how fucking stupid are all you High Court Judges and Human Rights barristers, many of whom have crawled into the Lords? Lady Hale? Cherie? Helena?

 

 

 

 

MIND Are Out For Mental Health – Never For Themselves Of Course…

MRegular followers of this blog will know that I – and some of those commenting on my posts – have been bringing to public attention the appalling hypocrisy of MIND, an organisation claiming to be the ‘voice of the service user’ whilst concealing serious abuses in the mental health services and even entering into ‘partnerships’ with abusive services and individuals  (see posts such as ‘The Mysterious Silence Of MIND’, ‘Newly Discovered – Parabl’ and ‘The Commissioning Of Parabl – And Yet More History’).

I have explained that I first became aware of the corruption of MIND when I went down to see William Bingley, their Legal Director, in 1987 regarding the criminal activities of the north Wales mental health services. Bingley admitted that he knew all about the wrongdoing of Dr Dafydd Alun Jones and indeed he knew a lot more than I did. I gave Bingley yet more evidence re Jones et al but not only did Bingley continue to keep quiet regarding Dafydd and co but when Bingley later became Chief Exec of the Mental Health Act Commission, he and that organisation continued to collude with Dafydd and Dr Tony Francis (Dr X), although they knew about the continued illegal detention of people and abuse of the Mental Health Act in north Wales. I knew from my meeting with Bingley that he knew an awful lot about Dafydd – including the deaths in Dafydd’s ‘care homes’, the allegations that the wrongdoing in north Wales was linked to Freemasonry and the existence of Dafydd’s extensive ‘sex therapy’ practice and the possible purposes of that business. I have no idea whether Bingley knew that Dafydd et al were concealing the paedophile ring that was operating in north Wales at the time though – the paedophile ring that was concealed again at a higher level by Thatcher’s and Major’s Gov’ts. However before Bingley began working for MIND, he worked as a research assistant for Matthew Parris, A Tory MP who had previously worked as Thatcher’s correspondence secretary. A man whose autobiography told of his summer trips – in the company of friends – to a place in Italy that they named the ‘villa of shame’, where they would be visited by ‘boys’ whom Parris described as ‘always willing’. For more background on Parris and his connections, see post ‘A Pretty Classy Piece Of Operation’.

I had thought that I had previously dug up a substantial amount of shit and compromising info on MIND, but I’ve spent a bit of time doing more research on a few other key figures in that organisation and I’ve found much more worrying info – that organisation has been compromised for decades. Here are a few of the highlights that I have dug up.

The current Chief Exec is the disgusting Paul Farmer whom I have blogged about previously. Farmer’s reputation is plummeting fast as a result of his enthusiasm for MIND to land contracts from the Dept of Work and Pensions, contracts that are all about forcing ‘service users’ into employment that may well be unsuitable and for which they may well be too ill. Farmer’s enormous salary has also been made public by disability activists – he trousers in excess of £100k pa for his role as the Voice of the Service User – and I’m delighted to say that this unscrupulous git has been met with protests on his travels around the UK. I was expecting the BBC to wheel him out for him to give his comments regarding the latest round of bad news re the UK’s mental health services, but mercifully we were spared that for once. Had he done the rounds of the BBC studios perhaps somebody would have finally asked him why he and his lame organisation have kept so quiet about the crisis – which has been evident for many years. Of course Farmer also knew all about the criminal activities of the north Wales mental health services many years ago. When I wrote to Peter Hain in his capacity as Secretary of State for Wales in approx. 2005 giving him full details of what had happened to me t the hands of the mental health services, I cc’d the letter to the Chief Exec of Rethink (I didn’t cc it to MIND because I knew that they were ignoring what was happening in north Wales) – who at the time was one Paul Farmer. I never received a response, although a few months later Farmer then became Chief Exec of MIND!

But what of previous CEOs of MIND? Before Farmer, the CEO was Richard Brook, who was appointed in 2001. Brook was CEO when I e mailed MIND HQ about the assaults being carried out by Hergest Unit staff on patients – only to receive an e mail back written as though it was to a small child telling me that what I had to do was go to the yellow pages and look up ‘solicitors’ and go and talk to one of them…. At this time the ‘service user reps’ for the Hergest were heavily involved with MIND – those reps who wet themselves at the thought of confronting Hergest staff and managers concerning the gross abuses that were endemic. One of those ‘service user reps’ admitted to me that she knew that residents in Prestwood Homes were being abused – furthermore, Prestwood Homes were taking full advantage of free MIND facilities such as walking groups, drop in centres etc without paying MIND a penny, although Prestwood were charging thousands of quid a week for a ‘placement’. Somebody else involved with MIND knew about the abuse of residents at Prestwood as well – Geoff Lees, who is now Director of Vale of Clwyd MIND. I told him about it, whilst he was still working as a social work tutor at Coleg Menai in Bangor. I know that a number of other people told him what was going on at Prestwood as well. For details of the horrors at Prestwood and the unfortunate death of a young woman support worker there who witnessed even more that I did, see posts ‘A Convenient Arrangement With The Private Sector’ and ‘The Commissioning Of Parabl – And Yet More History’.

Richard Brook was able to publicise unacceptable practice if he felt like it though. In 2004 the ‘Daily Mail’ ran an article entitled ‘Why I Resigned Over This Disgraceful Happy Pill Cover-Up’. The article explained that Brook had resigned from the MHRA (Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulation Authority) after he discovered that they had known about the side effects of the anti-depressant Seroxat but had not publicised them. Brook claimed that he had been threatened with legal action by Prof Kent Woods, the CEO of the MHRA, if he revealed that the MHRA had been ‘sitting on’ it’s knowledge of Seroxat’s side effects. Brook stated that MIND had been ‘tracking Seroxat’ for a decade’. So MIND knew about Seroxat and it’s problems as well then – but then they’d known about the problems in north Wales since 1979 at least, when Mary Wynch was illegally arrested and imprisoned (see post ‘The Mary Wynch Case – Details’) and had done or said nothing. In this article, Brook mentions the ‘Panorama’ programme about Seroxat that had been screened the year before – that will be the programme that featured Dr David Healy, who worked at the Hergest Unit! So MIND had got into bed (so to speak) with two psychiatrists from north Wales – Dafydd, who years before had been involved with MIND and David, as he Bravely Spoke Out. Brook told the Mail that following the ‘Panorama’ programme, MIND held a demo outside the offices of the MHRA. As opposed to outside of the Hergest Unit, where patients were being assaulted, framed for serious crimes, refused treatment no matter how ill they were and were committing suicide.

Brook maintains that he went to see the Health Minister Lord Warner to tell him of his concerns regarding SSRIs and Warner told him that he would speak to the MHRA. Warner then simply issued a guide to doctors detailing the max recommended dose of Seroxat (that must have been why Dr Richard Tranter, Healy’s friend, protégé and PhD student prescribed a friend of mine three times the maximum recommended dose of Seroxat then). It was at this point that the man of principle Brook resigned from the MHRA. Brook told the Mail that there was an urgent need for an inquiry into the MHRA and stated that many people involved with the MHRA also have connections to the pharmaceutical industry. Which is true – but then MIND’s hands are as dirty as those of any advisor to the pharmaceutical industry.

In Jan 2006 Brook featured in a BBC News online report and commented on the mental health of people living in rural areas. He stated that ‘the extent of mental health problems in the countryside is likely to be hidden’ – it was in north Wales, it was hidden by MIND, they knew that huge numbers of people were being given a diagnosis of ‘borderline personality disorder’ and refused care after being told that they were ‘untreatable’. At the time the area served by the Hergest Unit had the second highest rate of suicide for women in England and Wales.

After defending people with mental health problems so successively, upon leaving MIND Brook was appointed CEO of the newly created Office of the Public Guardian! Just the sort of person that was needed in such a position obviously. After a year guarding the public, Brook then became CEO of the deaf-blind charity SENSE.

MIND’s CEO before Brook was Judi Clements, who was in post between 1992-2001. So she oversaw those crazy years in which I was repeatedly arrested by the mental health services for ludicrous reasons, in which Dafydd resisted efforts to shut down the North Wales Hospital Denbigh and for his pains walked away with the contract to provide ‘substance abuse services’ for North Wales (see post ‘The Evolution Of A Drugs Baron?’) – the years which also saw the massive cover-up of the paedophile ring in north Wales which was the Waterhouse Report, in the wake of which a lot of people who’d been victims of that gang as children were found dead after becoming ‘users’ of the mental health services. Judi’s tenure also spanned the years in which Prestwood Homes were established and became big business within just a few months, what with the constant supply of vulnerable people from secure hospitals available for Prestwood to traffic them…

Something must have happened on Judi’s watch, because there is virtually no info from MIND available about Judi, it’s as though she never passed through their doors. However, there is some info about her in an article in HSJ from 2010. HSJ told us that after being Chief Exec of MIND for nine years, she was leaving due to health related problems, namely diabetes and arthritis. A David Peryer, the Chair of Trustees of MIND, stated that Judi would be ‘sorely missed’ – so that’s why they subsequently air-brushed her out of history. Preyrer mentioned that MIND was currently undergoing restructuring to concentrate on ‘supporting local offices’. These were of course the ‘local offices’ which included those in north Wales who were so helpfully providing free services to Prestwood Homes and who then began entering ‘partnerships’ with CAIS to provide yet more ‘services’ after being handed contracts by the Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board – many of whose former staff and their friends were now working with MIND.

Judi didn’t just leave MIND, she did a Richard Tranter and left the UK for New Zealand. Despite the diabetes and the arthritis, Judi seems to have bounced back and in 2005 when she relocated to New Zealand, she landed a job as Chief Exec of the Mental Health Foundation over there. She ‘moved on’ in 2015. In Feb 2015 Judi featured on the website of the New Zealand Law Society, promoting her forthcoming seminar on Mindfulness for the New Zealand Law Society Auckland Branch. On this website Judi was described as an ‘experienced Chief Exec in the NGO sector’ with a ‘background in law, social policy, housing, local government and management practice’. It was explained that ‘after a successful career in local government service management, policy and practice development, Judi moved to the NGO sector’. So which failing local authority did Judi work for prior to keeping the lid on the barrel of shit in MIND then? Judi has an LLB – so she will recognise serious crime when she sees it. Or indeed conceals it – or even facilitates it.

Judi has sat on ‘several Gov’t advisory groups covering mental health, social policy and NGO development’.

Between 1989 and 1992, Ros Hepplewhite was Chief Exec of MIND. Whose reign also spanned the Dafydd years, but then the Dafydd years have gone on for the last five decades so everyone’s implicated where Dafydd is concerned. So perhaps it’s more helpful to mention that Ros’s reign spanned the period of time during which St George’s Hospital Medical School and Springfield Hospital colluded with Dafydd – although they knew what he was up – to in his attempts to have me labelled dangerous and banged up. The early 1990s of course also saw allegations that a paedophile ring was active in north Wales involving political figures appear in the London based media. Dafydd and his mistress Lucille Hughes were concealing and facilitating this paedophile ring – it was Dafydd and Lucille to whom St George’s Hospital and Springfield turned for ‘evidence’ of my dangerousness. It was in 1992 that five people with connections to the North Wales Child Abuse Scandal were killed in an arson attack on a flat in Brighton (see post ‘The Silence of the Welsh Lambs). So Ros was pretty close to some serious action.

However I can’t find any references to Ros’s activities at MIND. Although Ros did hit the headlines after she left MIND. In 1993 Ros was appointed CEO of the Child Support Agency – which was a Gov’t disaster as big as the NHS IT system that had to be shelved after a few billion had been spent on it. Although unlike the CSA, the failed NHS IT system was not thought to have contributed to anyone’s suicide…Ros was famously removed from her post and the CSA metamorphosed into something else because Gov’t could not withstand the embarrassment any longer.

I have found a reference to Ros on the blog of the Labour MEP for London, Mary Honeyball. Mary’s post dated Jan 11 2010 discusses examples of what she believed was outrageous sexism. Honeyball believes that Ros was removed from her post as a result of such sexism – nothing to do with the suicides of distraught parents then, or the numerous parents who were never able to collect their maintenance payments, or the absent parents who used every trick in the book not to pay up leaving their former partners destitute whilst the CSA refused to listen to their pleas for help… Tragedies as a result of the chaos that was the CSA involved both men and women – and of course the children. Honeyball entertainingly stated that Dame Barbara Mills the DPP was also the victim of sexism. Babs has featured on this blog previously – she was the DPP whilst the CPS found excuse after excuse not to mount prosecutions against numerous paedophiles despite stacks of evidence being presented (see post ‘A Future Leader Of The Labour Party’). Mary Honeyball also extended her ‘sympathies’ to the former Home Secretary Jaqui Smith, who was ‘hounded’ for being a ‘high profile woman’. No, Jaqui Smith became a source of national entertainment when it was revealed that her husband had rented porn films, the cost of which Jaqui had then reclaimed on her Parliamentary expenses. In a desperate attempt to salvage herself in the eyes of a nation rolling around laughing, Jaqui then tried to construct herself as a latter day Mary Whitehouse and began speaking out about Porn and Sex, which culminated in her presenting a documentary about prostitution. Unfortunately she did this whilst wearing one of those brightly coloured plastic macs when she was filmed under street lamps, which caused one of the better Radio 4 comedians – it might have been Sue Perkins – to comment that Jaqui looked like something out of ‘Band of Gold’.

Mary Honeyball ends her post by explaining that she speaks as someone ‘who ran’ the Association of Chief Officers of Probation in the mid-90s – she mentions that she didn’t have a background in probation, but that she was appointed on the basis of her other talents. So that’s why at that time some of those accused of molesting children in north Wales or failing to act when their colleagues were molesting children found it possible to move into careers with the Probation Service.

Ros Hepplewhite was CEO of MIND whilst the most dreadful scandals involving the abuse and even murder of patients occurred at Ashworth and Broadmoor. Don’t remember the Voice of the Service Users saying much about all that at the time.

At the time of my initial encounters with Dafydd and the paedophiles’ friends in the mid-80s, the CEO of MIND was Christopher Heginbotham – he’d been appointed CEO in 1982. He was in post at the time that I had my meeting with William Bingley. I suspect that Chris and Bingley might have been chums – Heginbotham was appointed CEO in 1982. Bingley was working as lobbyist for MIND at that time and landed his plum full time post there in 1983. Bingley’s mother Lady Juliet Bingley was also a bigwig in MIND and was Chair 1978-84. Furthermore Heginbotham departed from MIND in 1989 – Bingley ‘moved on’ into the post as Chief Exec of the Mental Health Act Commission in 1990. Bingley eventually wound up in the Chair of Mental Health Law and Ethics at the University of Central Lancashire and then in a role at the University of Cumbria after resigning from his post as Chair of an NHS Trust when a few awkward questions were asked about his business interests. Heginbotham also eventually secured a position at the University of Cumbria. References to William Bingley seemed to have disappeared from the MIND website recently, but I know that MIND named a building after him in Lancashire, ‘William Bingley House’. I wonder if it’ll be a bit like the fall out after Jimmy Savile’s death and MIND will end up renaming the building in a desperate attempt to pretend that they’d never met Bingley? But guess what? Heginbotham ended up in Lancashire too – where I presume that he still is.

Bingley and Heginbotham were at MIND when Savile was appointed General Manager of Broadmoor. I do not remember them questioning the appointment. What’s the betting that there’s some photos somewhere of dear old Jim with folk from MIND that are now well hidden? Should anyone know of any, please do let me know…

Heginbotham is a Director of something called ‘Values Based Commissioning Ltd’ in Lancashire, which began life in 2011. The other Director is a Christine Heginbotham. It is described as ‘health and social care consultancy’. Christopher Heginbotham has also published a book on Values Based Commissioning of Health and Social Care. So what is this all about?

According to an article in HSJ from June 2013, ‘Values Based Commissioning’ (VbC) ‘aims to put users’ views at the heart of reshaping services’. The discussion concerns the commissioning of mental health services by CCGs (Clinical Commissioning Groups) and it is explained that ‘expertise’ in this area is ‘varied’. However, as readers may have guessed, a few aficionados are on hand to help! HSJ quotes words of wisdom from Rethink’s Associate Director of Policy, Research and Campaigning, Victoria Bleazard, as well as Sophie Corlett, Director of External Relations at MIND. A Joint Commissioning Panel on Mental Health (JCPMH) was established in 2011, which is co-chaired by the Royal Colleges of Psychiatrists and General Practitioners – this Panel produced ‘guidance’. VbC is ‘a new type of commissioning’ (which must be why it involves the same old people and institutions as the previous commissioning did), ‘prioritising service users’ values and experiences’ (the Royal Colleges mentioned, Rethink and MIND have such good track records in that area don’t they).

HSJ identifies a Dr Neil Deuchar as the architect and champion of VbC – he’s a psychiatrist from Birmingham, a specialist advisor on commissioning and JCPMH Co-Chair. The other Co-Chair is Liz England, a GP who is Mental Health Lead for a Locality Care Group within a CCG and National Institute for Health Research Clinical Lecturer at the University of Birmingham. Deuchar is quoted as saying that ‘patient power is the key’ and that ‘co-production between patient and carer groups, clinicians and commissioners is vital’. There then follows a bit of asinine text headed by the words ‘what do service users think?’

So Christopher Heginbotham saw an opportunity then – an insane system was devised by a Gov’t that had relied on the likes of Heginbotham and his mates at MIND for advice, this insane system was then explained to the world by HSJ and promoted by MIND and their friends, by which time Heginbotham had written his book and set up his company – presumably with Mrs Heginbotham – to serve the insane system. The insane system was entirely dependent at every stage on the involvement of the very same people and institutions that were colluding with the likes of Dafydd and the paedophiles’ friends.

Is it surprising that five years down the line we have Sir James Munby, the President of the Family Courts, hitting the roof because there is virtually no provision in the whole of the UK for a suicidal 17 year old girl who is due to be released from ‘secure custody’? Although no-one has explained why a girl in her state is IN secure custody, allegedly alone in a seclusion room from which everything has been removed except a mattress on the floor. That’s going to do her a power of good isn’t it. Furthermore I guarantee that I know how that barbaric regime will be described on that girl’s records – there will be a reference to her being ‘nursed’. I have heard mental health nurses taking about ‘nursing’ people in ‘seclusion’ or ‘nursing’ them ‘on a mattress on the floor’. The whole system is completely nuts and the people working within it have been sent nuts by it if they weren’t already nuts when they took up their employment.

If readers have been impressed by the calibre of MIND CEOs described so far, hold on to your hats whilst I tell you about Heginbotham’s predecessor, Tony Smythe, CEO from 1974-82.  Smythe’s incumbency pre-dated the internet, but Smythe was quite something and info about him is still available online. Smythe’s full name was Clifford Anthony Smythe. He categorised himself as a radical anarcho-pacifist until the day that he died in 2004 and was involved with a number of political causes. He was appointed General Secretary of the NCCL in 1966, a post that he held until 1971. It was in the 70s that it became clear that the NCCL had been infiltrated by paedophiles who had conflated their cause with gay liberation – paedophiles also infiltrated the Campaign for Homosexual Equality (CHE) at this time and a number of those guilty of abusing children in north Wales were active in CHE. Smythe was at one point Vice-President of CHE. In 1971 Smythe became involved with MIND. His obituary describes him as establishing an ‘executive committee’ which led to ‘service users becoming involved in management and policy decisions’ and that this ‘chimed with Tony’s anarchist belief’.

Now this talk of the active involvement of ‘service users’ also surrounds Bingley and his mother. Which ‘service users’ do people think that the Bingleys and Smythe liberated? Psychiatry was dreadful in the 70s and early 80s – it was particularly gross in north Wales but it was pretty grim everywhere else as well. There is no way that ‘service users’ had any voice anywhere in the 70s – who are MIND actually talking about? Radical ideas were bandied around by people like Laing et al but these ideas didn’t touch mainstream psychiatric practice – it is dishonest to pretend that they did.  I am wondering if all this guff about the active involvement of ‘service users’ in MIND is simply a glorified reference to one or two influential people in the organisation who may have had mental health problems themselves at some point. Of course Dr Dafydd Alun Jones told everyone that he suffered from a ‘nervous illness’ himself – it was a good excuse when he was challenged about his appalling conduct.

CHE was usually led by people who were gay themselves, so I was interested to read that Smythe had a ‘lifelong partner’ Jeanne and five daughters. Jeanne died in 2001.

Smythe and Jeanne were involved with Haringey MIND long after Smythe had stepped down from his post as CEO. Tony Smythe was listed as a Director of Haringey MIND between 1998-2000 and Jeanne between 1990-92 and between 1996-97.

I have mentioned previously that Dr Dafydd Alun Jones had a contact in Haringey Social Services – when I finally got out of the North Wales Hospital in Jan 1987, he told me that he had rung Haringey Social Services to ‘let them know’ that I would be living on their patch. This was not any sort of referral for aftercare – this was just the way that Dafydd conducted himself. I have also mentioned that I now have copies of letters between Alun Davies, the manager of the mental health services in Gwynedd and Laurie Wood, the manager of the North Wales Hospital Denbigh, in which they discuss their ‘friend’ at St George’s trying to find out which dept I was working in when I started working there in 1989 – there is also a reference to their friend accessing mail that was sent to me at St George’s in an attempt to discover my home address. There is no clue as to the identity of this friend in my documents, but whilst I was working at St George’s I was visited by a junior doctor called Jimmy Schroff who had come to find me because he’d heard that there was a girl from Bangor working there – Jimmy Schroff seemed to know everyone whom I had made a complaint about in north Wales and furthermore he had done his GP training in the practice of Dr D.G.E. Wood (see post ‘St George’s Hospital Medical School, 1989/1990’). Jimmy Schroff died some years ago – his widow works at the Betsi.

Tony Smythe was also a Director of an organisation on the Embankment called Reach Volunteering in 1990/91. In 1992 and again between 1995-2001 Jeanne was a Director of ‘an inclusive community hub’ called the Markfield Project.

Tony Smythe kept interesting company. He was acquainted with an actress called Adrienne Corri who died in 2016. Corri had a cult following and was noted for being rather excessive, sometimes swearing aggressively at her own audiences. She was friends with Ronnie and Reggie Kray. In the days before they were both banged up when it dawned upon everyone that despite hanging out with Barbara Windsor and Adrianne Corri they were a pair of vicious thugs. Who had also murdered people. Ronnie of course ended up in Broadmoor and there was a lot of huffing and puffing from some Tory MPs when it was revealed in the press that he had superstar status in Broadmoor, was politely called Mr Kray by the prison officers (who according to the likes of Professor Robert Bluglass were ‘nurses’) who generally pandered to him. What the Tories expected from an institution which Edwina Currie had appointed Jimmy Savile to run I do not know. Perhaps they should have taken a bit of notice of the other patients who complained that they were being beaten up and sexually abused by the ‘nurses’. As well as by Savile.

In 1968 whilst Tony Smythe was still leading the NCCL, they sponsored a production of Samuel Beckett’s play ‘Come and Go’ which starred Adrienne Corri. It was advertised as ‘gala entertainment concerning depravity and corruption’. The evening included other entertainment as well and was compered by George Melly. The George Melly who was famously promiscuous but whose wife was very tolerant of his desire for an open marriage. Much has been written about Melly’s bisexuality and his penchant for numerous extra-marital relationships, but his wife was I suspect much more tolerant than most people realised. Many years ago, George Melly came to do a gig at Theatre Gwynedd in Bangor. I know a man who was at the time of Melly’s performance in Bangor 16 yrs old. Melly paid to have sex with him. This was whilst the age of consent for gays was still 21. I have never seen Melly’s name included among the Rolfs or the Saviles or the Gary Glitters, which is extraordinary, particularly as some years before he died Melly gave an interview to a newspaper mentioning how much he enjoyed caressing the thighs of pre-pubescent boys. Yet no-one commented on this at all. Melly retired to Wales of course – to the Brecon Beacons.

Tony Smythe’s years as CEO of MIND covered the period of time which saw Mary Wynch unlawfully arrested and illegally detained in Denbigh for a year by Dafydd. Whilst she was in Denbigh Mary told me that she witnessed the patients in Dafydd’s ‘young people’s ward’ having sex with each other – after being encouraged to do so by Dafydd – whilst the nurses watched the show. Mary approached MIND for advice regarding her unlawful imprisonment. William Bingley admitted to me that MIND received grant funding from Gwynedd Health Authority and that Dafydd wrote to MIND telling them that he would block their dosh from Gwynedd if they advised Mary. Bingley told me that they didn’t succumb to Dafydd’s threats. However I now know that Bingley wasn’t in the least bit truthful regarding his stories of fighting for patients rights. What’s the betting that they slung Mary overboard lest they lost their dosh from Gwynedd Health Authority? Bingley also admitted to me that Dafydd had been a ‘leading light’ in MIND himself in the 1960s.

The General Secretary of MIND immediately prior to Smythe was Mary Appleby. She was CEO from 1951-74. Whilst Dafydd was a leading light in MIND! At the same time that Gwynne was lobotomising people and the paedophile ring was growing and growing, assisted by John Allen’s collection of children’s homes, the Bryn Alyn Community, which was doing a roaring trade in accepting children from across the UK but particularly from the London boroughs and the West Midlands…

Appleby died in 2013 and her obituary in the ‘Guardian’ mentioned that she became involved in MIND because there were mental health issues in her family. The ‘Guardian’ tells us that it was as a result of Mary’s efforts that MIND (then still called the National Association for Mental Health) became hugely influential, employing 200 people and was consulted by the Gov’t, the judiciary, the NHS and social workers’ organisations. In the early 70s a group of Scientologists tried to join MIND. Scientologists, although they are a rather eccentric group of people themselves, famously loathe psychiatry. They attempted to join MIND after alleging that psychiatrists were illegally imprisoning people, torturing people and were ‘carrying out perversions’. Mary fought the Scientologists in the High Court to keep them out of MIND. However, she allowed Dafydd to remain in.

Mary Appleby worked in both the War Office and the Foreign Office. She Chaired the Bench of Magistrates in an inner London juvenile Court for many years. She contributed to Gov’t Inquiries on mental health and social services. She sat on the appeals panel for the BBC and ITV and was a Member of the Immigration Appeals Tribunals. She also sat on the Selection Committee for the Civil Service. A pretty well-connected and influential lady then – even at Whitehall level.

Tony Smythe took over from Mary Appleby in 1974, but Appleby remained a Vice-President of MIND until her death in 2013. She will have not only had substantial influence regarding the appointment of Smythe, but she wielded considerable influence over that organisation for decades. She will have known exactly what sort of people were being appointed, what they were getting up to and indeed what they were concealing, ignoring or colluding with.

 

So what about those who have Chaired MIND? Let’s take a look at some of them….

Between 1969-78 Christopher Mayhew MP was Chair. Mayhew spent many years as a Labour MP but in 1974 he defected to the Liberals. In 1974 the Liberal MP Cyril Smith was busy abusing boys (and had been for some years) but it is now admitted that there was assistance from the security services in ensuring that he was never prosecuted (see post ‘Dr Death’). Mayhew is perhaps most famous however for taking part in a mescaline experiment in 1955 with Dr Humphrey Osmond. The plan was to film Mayhew on a mescaline trip for ‘Panorama’ but the programme was never broadcast. Humphrey Osmond was a psychiatrist who was well-known for his research into hallucinogens and schizophrenia – he was the man who administered mescaline to Aldous Huxley in the 50s which resulted in Aldous Huxley writing ‘The Doors of Perception’. Osmond also experimented with peyote when he went to stay with Native Americans.

So Mayhew was a man up for experimentation. He was given a peerage in 1981.

Between 1978 and 1984, William Bingley’s mother Lady Juliet Bingley was Chair. Juliet Bingley grew up in Harley Street – her father was a surgeon at Barts. She studied social administration at the LSE, during which time she undertook a placement in Liverpool at the Personal Services Society. In 1945 she qualified as a medical almoner (what we would now call a social worker). Her first job was at Barts. Juliet Bingley was married to Admiral Sir Alec Bingley who in 1959 was appointed NATO commander-in-chief of the Royal Navy’s Mediterranean fleet in Malta. The family only spent three years in Malta but Juliet got to work out there. She became involved in the development of health services for elderly people – but she was also good mates with the former Prime Minister of Malta, Dom Mintoff. Mintoff had just resigned as PM, which meant that Malta was under direct rule from London – Juliet became the ‘messenger’ between Mintoff and the London Gov’t and continued to play this role throughout the 70s and 80s during the various crises in Anglo-Maltese relations. Alec Bingley died in 1972 which was when Juliet became involved with MIND. She was initially Chair of the Local Associations Committee before becoming Chair of the whole organisation. In 1973 she also took up a post as medical social worker at St Marks, a hospital for gastro-intestinal disorders in London and was Chair of the Heads of Departments Committee there.

Juliet Bingley was busy with other charity work as well as MIND. In 1979 she founded the National Association for Colitis and Chrohns and she was also a founding Trustee of the Carr-Gomm Society, a charity now working for the homeless.

Well with a mum and dad with backgrounds and connections like that William Bingley was certainly not going to do anything to put Dafydd out of action whilst he and Lucille facilitated a paedophile ring supplying boys to Westminster figures and others in London who were enjoying the protection of the security services at the time. Come to think of it I don’t think that Juliet would have been particularly inclined to put a stop to Dafydd’s activities either – and she was incredibly well-connected among the very Top of the Top Doctors as well as the highest echelons of Gov’t should she need to protect him…

How did the Bingley clan ever manage to convince anyone that they were the Voice of the Service Users?

The person who succeeded Juliet as Chair of MIND was Lord David Ennals – he was Chair between 1984-89. Ennals was a Labour politician. In 1967 he was appointed Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State in the Home Office under Jim Callaghan. The Home Office that was at that time directly managing Bryn Estyn, where a brutal regime overseeing the violent sexual abuse of teenaged boys was becoming established. Ennals became Minister of State for Social Services in 1969. He lost his seat in 1970 and it was then that he became the ‘Mind campaign’ Director for the National Association of Mental Health. This campaign was established to fundraise but also to clarify the policies and aims of the organisation – as a result of the campaign in 1972 the charity changed it’s name to MIND. It was whilst Ennals was Chair that Tony Smythe was appointed Chief Exec – supposedly on the basis of his ‘human rights’ experience. Ennals remained campaign director until 1973 and was re-elected to Parliament in 1974. He lost his seat again in 1983 and was elevated to the Lords – then he popped back to MIND again to become Chair.

Ennals has a few close relatives who are worth mentioning. His younger brother Martin was a human rights activist and Secretary-General of Amnesty International. His son Paul has fingers in numerous pies.

Sir Paul Ennals was Chief Exec of the National Children’s Bureau (NCB) between 1998-2011. That’s the NCB to whom Peter Righton, a social care expert and academic who was a founder member of PIE and a convicted paedophile, acted as a ‘consultant’ (see post ‘The Waterhouse Tribunal – Who Was Involved And What Happened To Them Subsequently?’). Despite such worrying connections, the NCB, being an umbrella organisation, has links with many other organisations, including Barnardos – some of those involved with child abuse in north Wales had worked for Barnardos. The NCB also collaborates with the NSPCC – which works with Esther Rantzen’s Childline (see post ‘Ian Brockington’s Mischief’ for the questionable background of Valerie Howarth, the first Chief Exec of Childline) – and works in partnership with the Department of Health.

Paul Ennals is Chair of Haringey Local Safeguarding Children Board; South Tyneside Local Safeguarding Children Board; Gateshead Local Safeguarding Children Board; Sunderland Local Safeguarding Children Board. I do not know why Ennals has interests in both Haringey and the north east of England but I presume that he does a lot of commuting. If anyone living in the north east hopes to escape Paul Ennals’s safeguarding when they hit 18, they’ll be disappointed – he also Chairs the Safeguarding Adults Board of Gateshead and South Tyneside.

Before Ennals was involved with the NCB he was Director of Employment at the RNIB. He has Chaired or played a leading role on numerous Gov’t taskforces, working groups etc concerned with SEN, disabled or very young children.

Between 1994-2001 David Peryer was Chair of MIND. Peryer had previously been Director of Humberside Social Services. On 23 April 1998 Peryer gave evidence to the Select Committee on Health, along with Liz Sayce (Policy Director of MIND), Peter Wilson and Dinah Morley. Wilson had been Director of Young Minds for six years, was a child psychotherapist and had ‘many’ many years ago’ been a social worker. He had also worked in child and adolescent mental health at another institution familiar to readers of this blog, the Maudsley. In addition Wilson stated that he had worked in ‘child guidance’ in London. Dinah Morley was the ‘professional services manager’ for Young Minds. She had previously been the Assistant Director of an unidentified London borough, responsible for mental health and children’s services. Before that she ran a multi-disciplinary mental health team. She is also a member of a Health Authority.

So these witnesses all had vast experience of working in organisations and fields that had screwed up badly. Indeed Peryer told the Committee that he began working the field of child protection in 1977 in East Sussex, ‘shortly after the Maria Colwell case’. Maria Colwell was the first high profile death of a child in recent decades that was attributed to the fuckwittery of the welfare services.

The Committee were happy to rely on the advice of this bunch nonetheless. Liz Sayce in particular had a lot to say to the Committee. She was keen to tell the Committee of the sort of problems that ‘service users bring to us’ – did they include abusive psychiatrists, mental health staff perjuring themselves in order to secure convictions against them or their illegal detention in secure units? No, the service users complained of being bored in day hospitals. So Liz recommended that day hospitals should be shut and service users encouraged to attend college. I remember the results of Sayce’s recommendations well. The day hospitals were indeed closed down – nothing replaced them, so service users had nowhere to go at all and lost touch with their friends whom they used to meet in the day hospitals. So service users ended up being bored at home, alone. In the two years following the closure of the day hospital at the Hergest Unit, service users could be seen hanging about in the local towns destitute. A number of them died. As for ‘going to college’ – well a very small number of ‘service users’ benefited greatly from this and it turned their lives around. However Sayce’s ‘encouragement’ of such activity was interpreted by mental health teams as ‘coercion’ and certainly in north Wales numerous ‘service users’ were frog marched into college courses – they were told that they would lose social services support if they didn’t ‘take responsibility for getting better’ and enrol. Many of them did not have the academic ability needed for the courses that they had been coerced into joining and even more of them were far too fragile emotionally to cope with a college course. I knew of one course in which at the beginning of term about 15 service users enrolled at the behest of their mental health teams – every one of them withdrew before the course was half-way through and two of them were so distressed that instead of handing in essays to their tutor they handed in suicide notes and accounts of how they had been sexually abused by members of their chapel when they were children. The college ‘counselling service’ was in no way equipped to deal with the difficulties that these students were encountering. Not that the mental health team cared – once the ‘service user’ had enrolled, the mental health team ticked a box marked ‘recovered’ and forgot about them. A lot of ‘service users’ paid a very high price as a result of Liz Sayce’s advice.

No-one noticed – Sayce fucked up peoples lives all over again a few years later once she had been appointed Chief Exec of the Disability Rights Commission and a leading light on the UK Commission for Employment and Skills. It was Sayce that advised the Gov’t – what with her unique insight and being the Voice of the Service User – to close the Remploy factories on the grounds that they were ghettoes. Hundreds of Remploy staff volubly protested that they loved working at Remploy, that their disabilities were such that they couldn’t hold down other jobs – Remploy staff came forward with the most harrowing accounts of their mistreatment in previous workplaces and begged for Remploy to be reprieved. But Nurse Liz knew best and in 2012 told anyone who would listen in no uncertain terms that Service Users must be Included, that Remploy was Old Fashioned and that the Gov’t proposed Access To Work Fund was far more Empowering (it was also much cheaper and merely involved chucking a few hundred quid at a few service users to pay for simple adaptions on things like cars). The Gov’t followed Sayce’s advice and shut the Remploy factories down. Many of the former Remploy staff never worked again and are now on benefits. Furthermore I think that Theresa May et al are now proposing to whittle away at the Access To Work Fund anyway.

The Gov’t is still grappling with the advice that Liz gave them in 1998 – she recommended that health care and social care should NOT be merged. That’s why there is still such extreme inequity in the treatment of those people classed as needing ‘social care’ as compared to those whose needs are categorised as ‘medical’. But somebody was stupid enough to allow Liz to ‘lead’ on creating the Disability Agenda forming the basis of policy for the next two decades….

In Jan 2017 Liz announced her retirement from the Disability Rights Commission – she’d been shortlisted for a post as a Disability Commissioner on the European Human Rights Commission! For fuckwittery, arrogance and sheer irresponsibility, Liz is only matched by Rachel Perkins.

In 2001 David Henry took over as Chair. I can find no info about David Henry at all other than that whilst he was Chair of MIND he was given two free tickets worth £1,500 for the opening ceremony to some grand event in his capacity as ‘leader’ of a UK charity.

The present Chair, Ryan Campbell, has been in post since 2012. He was formerly the CEO of a ‘drug, alcohol and mental health charity in the south east of England’ and is currently the CEO of Demelza Hospice Care in Hindhead, Surrey. Ryan was previously involved with Age Concern and has been an expert advisor to Gov’t on the development of health services; is the author of DoH guidance to commissioning in the Third Sector; has been an advisor and taskforce member to DoH guidance on High Impact Changes in Health and Social Care (2008); and was the UK rep to the International Network for the Prevention of Elder Abuse.

Ryan is also a member of something called the ‘Association of Chairs’, which seems to be no more than a collection of freeloading dipsticks who become Chairs of outfits like MIND. Ryan explains on their website that he joined the Association ‘because I need a network’. Of course you do Ryan. To propel you onwards and upwards in the face of your dismal performance in order that one day you too can bag a seat in the Lords or a place on the EHRC alongside Rachel bloody Perkins.

 

It is because of people like this lot that so many other people are dying and suffering in the UK’s health and welfare system.

 

NB. BBC News Wales and the ‘Daily Post’ online are reporting that there is pressure on Wales to provide ‘fix rooms’ in which drug users can inject heroin. North Wales Police and Crime Commissioner Arfon Jones – he who as a young PC chauffeured Gordon Anglesea to the venues at which Anglesea molested boys and who many years later as Police and Crime Commissioner ‘made a mistake’ which resulted in Anglesea’s widow receiving 50% of his police pension although Anglesea died in prison as a convicted child abuser – is fully in support of the idea. Well it’s another great business opportunity for Dafydd and Lucille at CAIS – they can provide shooting galleries in which the CAIS clients can inject the goodies which they have been sold by their ‘peer guides’ and draw down a grant from the Welsh Gov’t to fund it all! I used to know someone who always quipped that CAIS stood for ‘Come And Inject Some’.

Anyone for co-production?

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A Few More Who Might Be Able To Answer Questions

I mentioned in a post a couple of days ago that I was about to begin reading Jack Straw’s autobiography, ‘Last Man Standing’. I finished it this morning and it was very much a case of the Ghost of Private Eyes Past – Straw talks about all the things that provided Eye readers with so much entertainment throughout the Blair and Brown years. Lord Levy, the Millennium Dome, Prezza assaulting a member of the public, Hans Blix searching for Saddam’s WMD down the back of the sofa, Lord Derry Irvine of the very expensive wallpaper, Charlie Falconer, the Hutton Report, it’s all there. Jack talks a lot about his friend Condi Rice and mentions many things that will remind everyone of why so many people cancelled their Labour Party membership during the Blair years. Jack seems to think that he’s dealing with these matters in a way that constructs them as positive, but he doesn’t manage that very successfully.

Jack’s interpretation of history is rather different than that of many other people. ASBOs ‘were a success’ – no Jack, ASBOs criminalised thousands of vulnerable people including children with mental health problems, autism and Tourettes, they were a disaster which is why they were abandoned. The return of Mandelson to Gov’t was a ‘positive’ move – no, that was the final straw (so to speak) for many of us – and best of all, Alistair Campbell was a man of ‘integrity’. Er, OK Jack, whatever you say. So what does Jack have to say about that rather difficult business involving the death of Dr David Kelly? Well, Dr Kelly ‘tragically died in July 2003’ but Jack doesn’t mention the circumstances. I seem to remember it had something to do with a dodgy dossier, the most enormous row with the BBC and the hounding and scapegoating of Dr Kelly – the root of all this being Alistair Campbell.

Jack is very scathing in his book about someone who stood for election against him on one occasion, even more scathing than he is about the BNP. Who was this candidate who pissed Jack off so much? It was Craig Murray, the former Ambassador for Uzbekistan. I went to listen to Craig Murray speak when he came to Bangor a few years ago and it was fascinating. Craig was of course famously withdrawn from his post in Uzbekistan and was subjected to much Gov’t criticism because he drank, partied and had some relationships with local women. But Craig did something else which was probably what really bothered the Foreign Office – he refused to shut up about the appalling human rights abuses happening in Uzbekistan, which included people being boiled alive. Craig was told that he was ‘over-focussed on human rights’ and was transported back to England where he ended up in a psychiatric hospital. During his lecture, Craig described how he was interrogated and subjected to extreme pressure by British officials and at one point he was told that all this was being done on the personal orders of Jack Straw, who was at the time Foreign Secretary….

There are plenty of pointers in Jack’s book to his slipperiness – for example whenever a scandal broke, whether it was on his watch as Home Secretary or later as Foreign Secretary, he always seemed to be conveniently due to leave the UK that very night and thus was at the airport or on the plane, so it was inevitably a case of ‘I know nuzzing…’ At the very beginning of his book, Jack revels in the fact that even as a young man who had done little more than work for the NUS he had already gained a reputation as a duplicitous git – he boasts that Barbara Castle gave him a job as her political advisor because of his ‘low down cunning’. People who read the comments section of my blog might have noticed that one of my correspondents has been mentioning that Barbara Castle, Jack Straw and Norman Warner were covering up terrible things happening to disabled people in the mid-70s – Jack speaks admiringly of Norman Warner in his book and obviously really rated him. Jack mentions that Norman became Lord Warner – it’s becoming a familiar scenario isn’t it…

Jack did of course cause a bit of a stir at one point by going public on his habit of asking fully veiled women visiting his surgery in Blackburn to remove their veils before they spoke to him. At the time that Straw did this, The Veil was becoming an issue, seemingly because people believed that the country was teaming with Muslim women concealing bombs beneath their burkas. Straw represents Blackburn, a constituency with a high proportion of Muslims and I suspect that he has sufficient knowledge to know that Daily Mail columnists’ prejudices rarely reflect reality. He’d represented Blackburn for decades, had a home there and no-one had ever tried to blow him up with weaponry concealed in Islamic dress. He also will have known that for some fully veiled women at least, asking them to remove their veil is like someone asking him to remove his trousers. Jack spoke out about another sensitive subject in his part of the world as well – the sexual grooming of young white girls by some Pakistani men. Fearless Jack asks ‘what’s the point of being in politics and not saying what you think about the difficult issues…’

So was Jack always frank about difficult issues?

One massively difficult issue that landed on Jack’s desk when he was Home Secretary was that of Thatcher’s friend General Pinochet. Pinochet had arrived in England, had tea with Thatcher and a few other old mates and then found himself under arrest because the Spanish Gov’t wanted him extradited to face trial for torture. Jack stressed that he really did think long and hard about this, it took him months and he wasn’t going to be swayed by anyone else’s opinion – indeed he refused to discuss the matter of the murdering old bastard with anyone else at all. Readers may remember that Pinochet wasn’t extradited because some Top Doctors came to his rescue and presented ‘expert’ evidence that Pinochet was incredibly frail and far too ill to stand trial. Pinochet flew home and was famously filmed landing in Chile, immediately getting up out of his wheelchair, happily walking towards his supporters and greeting them enthusiastically.  Jack was horrified! Pinochet had tricked the ‘system’! He was another Ernest Saunders, just when Jack had assured everyone that no way would he allow another scam like that! So whose advice had Jack relied upon – whilst he was refusing to discuss Pinochet’s case with anyone of course? For a start, that of the Chief Medical Officer, Liam Donaldson.

Liam Donaldson wasn’t quite as successful as other Chief Medical Officers had been at pulling the wool over everybody’s eyes – although he did keep bollocking on about successfully achieving ‘patient empowerment’ – and he ended up resigning as a result of the ‘modernising medical careers’ disaster, which screwed up the job application process for thousands of junior doctors. Liam was of course no rebel – indeed when Liam was CMO Mid-Staffs was quietly brewing away and he didn’t put a stop to it, Harold Shipman was brewing away and he didn’t manage to catch that in time either and of course the Top Doctors in north Wales were doing the most appalling things (I note that Donaldson studied at Bristol Medical School at the same time as Dr D.G.E. Wood…). However Top Doctors do get very angry if their paths are crossed in even a minor way and the BMA turned on their own and went after Liam’s blood. One Dr Richard Marks, Head of Policy at the BMA, very obviously wanted Donaldson’s head on a plate and was greatly pleased when he got it. I am wondering if Richard Marks is a member of the high profile Marks medical family, which includes the former Chair of the BMA Dr John Marks and Professor Vincent Marks, whom I worked for at the University of Surrey – both of whom kept quiet about the wrongdoing of the Top Doctors in north Wales (see post ‘The BMA At The Root Of Another Mystery’). I bet he is, being a Top Doctor who reaches the highest echelons of the medical establishment does run in families. Obviously the superior genes…

Liam ‘oversaw’ the medical assessment of Pinochet. I have long wondered who actually provided the dishonest expert report which enabled a vicious dictator to return home and die peacefully of old age in luxury when the bodies of many of his victims had not yet been recovered. It is very difficult to access such info, because a lot of secrecy surrounds Top Doctors’ expert reports to Courts. Of course, Court cases are (usually) public and the expert reports can decide whether someone is imprisoned, banged up for life in a special hospital or allowed to go free immediately, but not any old Tom, Dick or Harry can read those reports or even find out the identity of the Top Doctors giving evidence. I had always intended to publish the packs of lies that Dr Dafydd Alun Jones, Dr James Earp and Dr Robert Kehoe wrote about me in their capacity as ‘expert witnesses’ to demonstrate what the Top Doctors are actually capable of, but before I began this blog I took legal advice and was told ‘sorry, you are not allowed to ‘reproduce’ their reports in any way’. But they can lie about me… So I have just provided as many details about them as I am legally allowed on the blog. My friends have of course all read the reports and were suitably wowed by the lack of integrity of the Top Doctors who put their names to those documents.

However Jack’s book reveals the name of the Top Doctor who was so helpful to Pinochet! It was Sir John Grimley Evans, who is now Emeritus Professor at Oxford University. After Pinochet made his spectacular recovery as soon as he touched Chilean soil and the shit hit the fan, John Grimley Evans tried to shoulder the blame onto Straw, quibbling over the use of one word in his report. The uproar didn’t harm the long term prospects of dear old Sir John though – in 2005 Parliament still thought highly enough of him to receive written evidence from him for the Select Committee On Science and Technology regarding quality of life in old age. He is a Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences and between 1999-2014 was listed as a Director of St Luke’s Hospital Oxford, which seems to be a care home. But there’s also a passing reference in Straw’s book to the ‘team’ of medical officers working for the Home Office who were employed on the Pinochet case! So there was Jack, John Grimley Evans and a team of Top Doctors – how did they all manage to get it so wrong?

I remember the case of Pinochet like it was yesterday, because by that time I had discovered how dishonest Dr Dafydd Alun Jones regularly was in his Court reports and I had shared this information with another Hergest patient who had also been stung by Dafydd. This patient entertained himself by ringing Dafydd whilst pretending to be calling from the Spanish embassy to ask Dafydd if he’d certify Pinochet fit for trial. Little did I know that that they might as well have asked Dafydd, his opinion would have been worth about as much as that of Straw, Evans and the Home Office medical officers.

The thing about poor old Jack and his claimed ignorance regarding the wrongdoing of the Top Doctors is that it doesn’t quite add up, whether it’s his Gov’ts lack of nous concerning the growing shit-storm at Mid-Staffs – or Top Docs concealing paedophile rings – or Pinochet’s health assessment. For a start Jack’s daughter Charlotte was a medical student and is now a Top Doctor herself. (Charlotte raised money for Cancer Research UK recently and requested donations to enable the noble scientists and Top Doctors at Cancer Research UK to find a ‘cure’. For  snapshot of what goes on at Cancer Research UK, see post ‘A Cause Close To Our Hearts’.) But Jack was very close indeed to someone who really will have known all about the Top Doctors and could have also found him a reliable expert witness to give an opinion on Pinochet – his wife Alice. Alice was a mandarin in the Dept of Health! Furthermore, Jack reveals that in 1997-8 Alice was a senior civil servant in the Treasury working for Gordon Brown, but shortly afterwards was appointed Director General in the DoH! Pinochet was flown back home in in 2000. Come on Alice – why didn’t you tell Jack? Ooh and why didn’t you explain to Jack that where grooming young people in care is concerned it really is not only Pakistani men up to no good – it wasn’t Pakistani men ‘grooming’ (ie. raping and trafficking) the kids in north Wales, it was the social services who were being assisted by the Top Doctors! And once those kids had been beaten into submission and were agreeing to have sex with anyone who asked, they were taken off down to London to have sex with folk in Westminster! Jack claimed to be clamping down on people trafficking in 2000…

Alice is not the only person who might have been able to enlighten Jack re child abuse/the use of psychiatry to conceal such abuse – that is if he didn’t already know something about it from his time working with Barbara Castle and Norman Warner in the DHSS between 1974-76. Jack’s early forays into politics were as a Councillor in Islington – which had a serious problem with a paedophile ring in it’s children’s homes. Jack was also a member of the notorious ILEA between 1971-74 and was Deputy Leader of ILEA 1973-74. Jack is not afraid to level criticism at ILEA in his book – he tells us that he knew that standards in inner London schools were often unacceptably low. There were close links between ILEA, the GLC and the London Councils – those Councils whose children’s services had been infiltrated by paedophiles.

Jack’s work on London Councils and with ILEA resulted in him rubbing noses with an awful lot of people who will have known about the paedophiles running riot in the children’s homes – because those buddies of Jack’s were running those Councils. Jack makes reference in his book to someone whom he admires greatly, the ‘inestimable’ Valerie Amos. Valerie is now Baroness Amos, but long ago at the dawn of time Valerie worked for Lambeth Borough Council – which had a child abuse problem among it’s children in care as big as that in Islington or in north Wales. Indeed, children from Lambeth were also sent up to homes in north Wales where they were molested. The Shirley Oaks Survivors Association from Lambeth are publishing their own accounts of the abuse to which they were subjected, so fed up are they of Gov’t investigations going nowhere. Lambeth Council has paid out millions in compensation to children who were abused in it’s care and it accepts that it will be paying out much more. As in Islington and north Wales, the Council was told what was happening to those kids but the Council let it continue. Amos describes her work with Lambeth as one of her ‘career achievements’ – others include her work with Camden Council and Hackney. Camden – she’ll know this blog’s old friends Tessa Jowell (see posts ‘The London Connection’ and ‘Tower Hamlets, Paul Boateng and Tessa Jowell’) and John Mills (see post ‘One Dangerous Fucker’) then! Like so many people who worked for or ran those London Councils in the 70s and 80s whilst paedophiles ran riot in the children’s services, Valerie used her ‘work’ on ‘equality and diversity’ with those councils as a springboard into a career in ‘equalities and diversity’ boosted by New Labour.

Between 1989-94 Valerie was Chief Exec of the Equal Opportunities Commission. In 1995 she formed Amos Fraser Bernard and was an advisor to the South African Gov’t on public service reform, human rights and employment equity. In August 1997 she was made a life peer and became the Secretary for International Development in Blair’s Cabinet. Amos acquired this position after Clare Short resigned. (Straw is incredibly rude about Clare Short in his book – did she have a few too many principles for you then Jack? Clare Short was not one for turning a blind eye as the shit that gathered under Blair mounted up.) In 2003 Amos took over as Leader of the Lords when the previous Leader, Lord Williams Of Mostyn, died. Jack liked him. Lord Williams of Mostyn featured in my post ‘Y Gwir Yn Erbyn Y Byd’ – he defended Gordon Anglesea after Gordon Anglesea sued Private Eye after the Eye accused him of molesting boys in children’s homes in north Wales. Anglesea won the case and shortly after the trial Mark Humphreys, the young man whom had given evidence that Anglesea had abused him, was found dead. Last year Gordon Anglesea was convicted of abusing boys in north Wales children’s homes and imprisoned. Valerie – standing on the shoulders of greats! Indeed, it was onwards and upwards.

Although Valerie left the Cabinet when Gordon Brown became PM, her stellar career didn’t stop. In 2007 she became a Director of Travant Capital Partners, a Nigerian private equity firm. Poor old Valerie ended up mired in allegations of corruption when it was revealed that Travant Capital had received £15 million from DFID, the Gov’t Dept that she used to lead.  In his book ‘Catholic Orangemen of Tongo’, Straw’s nemesis Craig Murray claims that he was told by a Director of Travant that the company ‘had access to DFID funds because Baroness Amos was a Director’.

In 2007 Amos also became the EU’s representative to the African Union. In 2010 she was appointed Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Co-Ordination.

In addition to these plum appointments, Valerie has had numerous others – she was the British High Commissioner to Australia and in 2015 she was appointed Director of SOAS (University of London). She was the Deputy Chair of the Runnymede Trust 1990-98, a Trustee of the IPPR, was involved with project Hope (an NGO promoting healthcare), was a Trustee of VSO and was a Director of Hampstead Theatre. Guess what else? In Sept 2008 Amos Chaired the GMC’s Equality and Diversity Forum! She has also been a non-executive director of University College London Hospitals Trust and between 1994-98 she was Chair of the Board of Governors at the Royal College of Nursing Institute.

So like so many who have been closely associated with organisations in which children were sexually abused and exploited, Valerie Amos is a good friend of the Top Doctors and Angels. A number of people have noticed that throughout her career in the higher echelons of public life, Valerie Amos has not been democratically elected to one position, they were all ‘appointments’. Well considering that Lambeth Borough Council oversaw the worst excesses of child abuse and ended up in such a financial mess that many of it’s Councillors were banned from office, I very much doubt that anybody would vote for anyone who had played a key role in that Council.

 

Jack’s book mentions a close colleague of his who also knew all about the shortcomings of Lambeth Borough Council who has starred on this blog recently – Paul Boateng (see post ‘Tower Hamlets, Paul Boateng And Tessa Jowell’). I have mentioned before that Paul’s wife Janet is a former Lambeth social worker. I have now read a bit more about the Tyra Henry case and Janet was involved up to her eye-balls. Tyra was a 22 month old girl who was murdered by her father Andrew in 1984. The case gained massive publicity because of the severe cruelty involved and the gross failings of Lambeth Borough Council. Tyra died two days after she had been left at a London hospital under a false name. She had suffered extreme physical abuse and there were 52 bite marks on her body. It transpired that her injuries had been inflicted by her father – Tyra had been allowed to live with him after he was released from prison, although there had previously been a decision not to allow this to happen. Before Tyra’s birth, her father had already assaulted her six month old brother, who was left blind and permanently brain damaged as a result of the attack – he was in care.  The Inquiry into Tyra’s death was led by Stephen Sedley QC – a colleague of Michael Mansfield and one of that generation of radical lawyers who did take on cases against the British state but who never seemed to be as outspoken as one would have expected about cases of abuse of children in care or the abuse of people in the mental health system.

In 1984 the Chair of Lambeth’s Social Services Committee was Janet Boateng. The Vice-Chair was Stephen Bubb. The aftermath of Tyra’s murder caused a massive rift between the Lambeth Councillors and the social workers employed by the Council (Janet of course had been in both positions.)  The Councillors and social workers both blamed each other for the dreadful state of the children’s services in Lambeth. It is reflective of the concerns of Lambeth Council at the time that the blame game wasn’t played out in terms of allegations of incompetence – it involved allegations of racism. Black Councillors maintained that white social workers were unable to work appropriately with black families and the white social workers made counter-allegations of not receiving ‘training’ and ‘support’ to work with black families. Where this left Janet Boateng who was black, a Councillor, Chairman of the Social Services Committee but had also worked as a social worker in the same Borough I do not know. I do know that it is ironic that the chaos and tragedy that presided in this Borough launched the careers of a group of people like Boateng and Amos, who were then lauded and honoured for their ‘services’ to equality and diversity. Amos’s biography is littered with references to her ‘firsts’ – the first black woman Cabinet Minister, the first black woman to become head of a UK university, one of the most influential black people in the UK etc. Whilst Amos and co played identity politics a little black girl was murdered – Tyra is not mentioned anywhere in the extensive guff about Lady Boateng or Lady Amos that is so readily available.

What was the fate of Boateng’s Vice-Chair, Stephen Bubb – a white man? Like the Ladies of Lambeth, Bubb has thrived. He is now Sir Stephen Bubb, Director of ‘Charity Futures’. His knighthood was awarded in 2011 for ‘services to the voluntary sector’.

Bubb describes himself as ‘influential in both the Labour and Conservative Parties’ with his ‘longstanding advocacy of charities replacing public services chiming with both parties’ policy of promoting competition and choice in areas such as healthcare’. Bubb has a website, ‘Bubb’s Blog’, and a recent post sees Bubb fuming angrily that the present Gov’t is ignoring the charity sector. I think that’s because of the embarrassment that was ‘Kid’s Company’ Stephen, it was a rather disillusioning process for those who promoted the idea of the ‘Big Society’. Bubb’s determined to ram his message home though, he’s very busy indeed working hard lobbying for the Third Sector. ‘Bubb’s Blog’ is currently hosting a ‘guest post’ by Henry Brook who is on ‘work experience’ with Bubb. Henry waxes lyrical about the global possibilities for the Third Sector and mentions that there’s a lot of wealthy people in China although Africa is still a bit too poor to participate in the jamboree.

Bubb is certainly a man who’s been on a political journey and who’ll work with anyone. In 1976 he was a research officer for the TGWU’s Jack Jones. In 1980 he was a negotiations officer for the NUT. Then there were his glorious achievements at Lambeth – Labour Party Member for Lambeth Borough Council from 1982 and Chief Whip to the Labour Group. In 1987 he was Lead Advisor concerning pay negotiations to the Association of Metropolitan Authorities (both Tessa Jowell and John Mills had positions on this body as well). In 1995 Stephen was Director of Personnel for the National Lottery Charity Board. Between 2000-06 he was Chief Exec for  ACEVO, the Association of Chief Execs of Voluntary Organisations. Since 2006 Stephen has been Chairman of the Adventure Capital Fund, a ‘social enterprise’ now administering ‘Communitybuilders’. He was Chairman of ‘Futurebuilders England’ in 2008. He founded ‘Charity Futures’ to ‘investigate the challenges to and provide support for the Third Sector for the next generation’ (does that translate as ‘my kids need a job now as well?’). In 2011 he was seconded to the Dept of Health as part of Andrew Lansley’s NHS ‘listening exercise’.

I haven’t actually researched all these different Third Sector organisations that Bubb has created – I know that’s remiss of me, but I suspect that I know what I will find. A very big gravy train, the passengers upon which will be other folk like Bubb, former Councillors from disastrous 80s Councils who did really well for themselves once Blair became PM and are still prospering as no-one dares mention the phrase ‘The King’s New Clothes’ now that they have been given gongs and been put in charge of so many things. Bubb became notorious for defending big salaries in the charity sector – he was paid in excess of £100k pa at ACEVO. ‘Bubb’s Blog’ tells us that he is ‘globally recognised’ and provides ‘strategic advice to Governments and businesses usually at Prime Minister, Minister, Mayor and Chairman level’. Bubb is Secretary General of the ‘European Third Sector Leaders Network’, which was ‘founded through his passion and drive’.

So what brought this globally-recognised-advisor-to-Prime Ministers’ career in local government to an end back in the 80s then? Lambeth Borough Council was one of the councils that refused to set a rate during the rate capping row with Margaret Thatcher’s Gov’t. Therefore the Councillors were surcharged for causing the Council financial loss through wilful misconduct. They were sacked and disqualified from office in 1986. Not that it held Stephen back from sitting in judgement on others – between 1980 and 2000 he served as a Youth Court Magistrate in Inner London.

Bubb has also dabbled with the Top Doctors – he was a member of the Local Health Boards of Guy’s Hospital and St Tommy’s Hospital.

Bubb found himself in the spotlight in 2013 when he held his 60th birthday party. I wouldn’t have thought that a birthday party could cause a diplomatic incident, but Bubb held a bash at the House of Lords with a number of cabinet ministers, Baronesses, media folk and charity leaders. They all had a great time and went back to Stephen’s place afterwards for champagne and fireworks. Stephen was particularly chuffed to receive a birthday card from Tony and Cherie. It was subsequently revealed that Stephen’s party had cost a great deal of money and that the bill had been footed not entirely by Stephen – although he is a very well-paid man – but partly by ACEVO. When questioned, ACEVO maintained that it was money well-spent because the party was ‘part of it’s [ACEVO’s] on-going work in building stakeholder relationships’.

The guest who made the welcoming speech at Stephen’s party – that was partly funded by people who were duped into believing that they were supporting charitable work – was Baroness Hayter. Dianne Hayter is the Deputy Leader of the Lords and is described as a ‘powerful advocate’ for the Third Sector. She is an old friend of Stephen’s from their Young Fabians days and was a founder member of ACEVO herself, whilst she was Director of ‘Alcohol Concern’. Bet she’s a mate of Tony and Cherie’s as well. Dianne is married to Professor David Caplin who works at Imperial College. David Caplin is a physicist – perhaps they have a bit more integrity than the Top Doctors at Imperial.

Whilst trumpeting the wonders of the Third Sector, Stephen tells us on his blog that ‘state provision often neglects the consumer or beneficiary’. That Stephen is because it was so often run by people like you and Janet Boateng – you neglected the beneficiary to such an extent that a little girl was murdered and even then you tried to tart it up as a race relations problem. The charity sector is now blighted with exactly the same problems as the state sector – because you lot have now moved in and colonised that. Stephen mentions on his blog that ‘more than a third of mental health services are provided by charities’. Yes and the leading story on all the news programmes today has been the scandalous state of the nation’s mental health services. This morning it was revealed that thousands of mental health patients are spending YEARS in hospital after they have been deemed to be fit for discharge because there is no accommodation for them and at lunchtime it was reported that Sir James Munby, the head of the Family Court, has been unable to find suitable psychiatric care for a suicidal teenaged girl. Munby has sated that if care for her cannot be found ‘society will have blood on it’s hands’. You obviously haven’t noticed Sir James – society has been awash with the blood of the mentally ill for decades. And you’ve only just woken up to it. No doubt Paul Farmer and Marjorie Wallace will pop up on the ‘Today’ programme tomorrow to give us all a lecture about the horrors of people remaining in hospital for years because of a lack of accommodation. Well why haven’t they mentioned it before? The rest of us knew that it was happening – in fact I e mailed a number of politicians about this some three years ago….

 

Many years ago a book was published called something like ‘The Court of The Blairs’ which was an account of some of the rather shallow, dysfunctional people lining their own nests who surrounded Tony and Cherie. Valerie Amos, Janet Boateng and Stephen Bubb are pretty good examples of the outer circle. (Blair’s inner circle was comprised of the likes of Silvio of course…)

 

Somebody else who might be able to enlighten us all regarding what was going on in Lambeth at the time of Tyra’s murder is a man whose name crops up in reports of the case from that time – the Chair of the British Association of Social Workers Southwark, John Wheeler. John Wheeler is now based in the north east of England – I suspect like some others who were previously associated with Lambeth, he’s air-brushed that bit out of his CV – and doubles up as ‘John Wheeler Solutions Ltd’. He has a website that bangs on about him having experience in ‘solution focussed’ practice and expertise in ‘training and development’. The site mentions his ‘thirty years experience as a social worker/family therapist’ and tells us that he has ‘co-developed a model for complex child protection issues’. Wheeler is a visiting lecturer in solution focussed practice, systemic practice and narrative therapy at the following Universities: Northumbria, Newcastle, Durham, Sunderland, Teeside. He teaches on the following courses: social work, psychology nursing, systemic practice and child protection.

John has published too – in ‘Clinical Child Psychology and Psychiatry’, on brief solution focussed therapy. The Hergest Unit used to offer that – Brown observed that it will certainly be brief but there won’t be many solutions. There weren’t many solutions for the therapist either. He was a nurse with a PhD who had been told by the North West Wales NHS Trust to pass himself off as a clinical psychologist. One of the many patients whom the Hergest Unit tried to frame for a crime that she didn’t commit found out about this and complained. The therapist was subsequently sacked – not for false representation, because the Trust had forced him into that, but for allegedly having a relationship with a patient. The therapist knew a friend of mine and his story was that he had actually only begun a relationship with the patient a year after she had been discharged after meeting her again at a party. But Ysbyty Gwynedd were smarting with embarrassment that they’d been caught misrepresenting the status and qualifications of their staff, so he was the scapegoat.

Like the esteemed Professors Poole and Robinson of Bangor University, John Wheeler has been paying visits to India to dispense his pearls of wisdom. He’s also been popping over to Poland to show them how it’s done. John’s website is advertising an ‘online certificate of competence’. He has helpfully provided diagrams and instructions concerning how to fold and read your certificate of competence if you’re too incompetent to work out how to do it.

I really do recommend a visit to John’s website. It can be summed up by one phrase – ‘Clare In The Community’.

John’s website doesn’t only detail his expertise regarding focussing on solutions. He plays in a ceilidh band and also recommends singing as a way to deal with stress and to bond with other people.

One has to be careful if one’s a service user and one does a bit of singing though. Some years ago there was a young man who was a patient at the Hergest Unit – he suffered from bouts of severe depression – who had two young children. His first baby was a girl and he was delighted – a couple of years later his wife became pregnant again and this time he thought that it would be really great if they could have a boy, one of each. His wife gave birth to a little boy and the day after the birth, this young man took his little girl for a walk in Snowdonia. He was so happy about the birth of his second child that he was singing. He was stopped by a policeman and interrogated regarding who the little girl with him was – on the grounds that he might not be suitable to be responsible for a little girl, what with him being a singing service user. The incident caused quite a furore, because his fuming wife contacted the local media. Both she and her husband gave interviews regarding the idiocy of a young father being stopped by the police because he was singing in the woods. About ten years after this incident, the young man sadly became ill with depression again and killed himself. I knew his wife – she told me that it was heartbreaking, both she and he knew that he was becoming very depressed again but they didn’t know why. There was no help forthcoming from the Hergest Unit – by this time the day centre had been closed and Alun Davies et al had just about destroyed ‘the service’ completely. But at least north Wales was crawling with those experts in suicide prevention that I have previously blogged about and dear old David Healy was making regular media appearances.

Someone else whom Jack Straw will know who has knowledge of the insanity at Lambeth is Lord Herman Ouseley, the former Chair and Chief Exec of the Commission for Racial Equality 1993-2000.  Before he made his career in ‘equality and diversity’, Herman was Chief Exec of ILEA and Chief Exec of Lambeth! (Herman has removed all references to Lambeth from his wiki entry, but he was very much there.) Herman has been at the ‘forefront of challenging institutional racism in organisations’. Like so many of his contemporaries who were involved in running the car crash at Lambeth, Herman is now a management consultant advising on equality and diversity issues. It was Herman who introduced Paul Boateng, husband of Janet, to the Lords when Boateng was given a peerage.

Following hot on the heels of Herman as the Chairman of the Commission for Racial Equality was Gurbux Singh. Sing hadn’t worked for Lambeth but he had been just about everywhere else that managed to disgrace itself in the 1980s – the GLC, Hackney, Brent and Haringey. Gurbux ended up as Chief Exec of Haringey Council and he was there at the time that Dr Dafydd Alun Jones rang them up to have a word with them about me when Dafydd discovered that I would be living there after I left the North Wales Hospital Denbigh! Gurbux – how did you know a crazed old bugger in north Wales who was concealing a paedophile ring? Gurbux was a member of Jack Straw’s Race Relations Forum when Straw was Home Secretary and was also an advisor to the Association of London Government and a member of our old friend the Association of Metropolitan Authorities. No doubt Gurbux would have been elevated to the Lords by Blair as well if only he hadn’t come unstuck at a cricket match in 2002 by getting pissed, threatening a policeman and getting himself arrested. The incident caused him to resign from the CRE. This wasn’t because of the drunkenness or the arrest, it was because Singh told the policeman that he (Singh) knew Ian Blair the Deputy Commissioner of the Met – now Lord Blair, a big mate of another man called Blair – and would have the policeman sacked.

Yet another old lag who made a career out of her ‘expertise’ in equality and diversity was Judith Hunt. Judith used to edit the GLC magazine ‘Equalities’. Judith is now Judith Hunt OBE and runs an outfit called ‘Judith Hunt Associates Ltd’. She is of course an ‘executive coach’ and ‘consultant’ ‘working across the sectors’ dispensing advice on ‘diversity and equalities’. She is a Board Member for Transport for London and a Member of the Audit Committee there.

Judith’s previous positions include: National Officer and Assistant General Secretary of ‘a national trade union’ (she doesn’t say which one, so presumably there’s been a bit of trouble there); Director of Personnel at the GLC; Chief Exec at London Borough of Ealing for 7 years; Chief Exec of Local Gov’t Management Board 1993-99; Chair of Camden and Islington Health Authority 2000-02; Chair, London Health Observatory 2002-06.

Come on Judith, with a CV like that you’ll have known something about the abuse of children and the associated cover-up by the Top Doctors.

Judith was a Board Member of the CPS, 2002-05. The CPS that could not explain why it did not prosecute Greville Janner and numerous other high profile child abusers – including the dozens in north Wales against whom there was substantial evidence. Judith is now a non-executive director of the CPS and the Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal. She has contributed to the delivery of the CPS Diversities strategy.

Judith has also contributed to the Civil Service Commission and the ESRC Research Priorities Board – so that’s why the ESRC does what it’s told by the Gov’t, even when the agenda is obviously so lame!

People actually pay Judith for her advice – including the NHS and Dept of Health.

The website of ‘Judith Hunt Associates Ltd’ is well worth a visit as they used to say on ‘Blue Peter’, because one can click on the various people who assist in her consultancy. They are all as equally vacuous as Judith and use very similar phrases to describe their work, phrases which are actually meaningless. Judith curiously claims to carry out ‘health checks’. Which is seriously weird, because I don’t think that she’s a Top Doctor, even if the NHS and DoH are wasting good money on her ‘advice’.

Another former leader of Lambeth (1986-88) who could answer a few questions is Linda Bellos – she too is now a management consultant, ‘Linda Bellos Associates’ – in equalities and diversity, although Linda specialises in LGBT issues. Linda was one of the Lambeth Councillors who resigned over the rate capping saga – and I think that she was the leader when the Council finally imploded. Linda has advised the British Army, the Met, the CPS and the Association of Chief Police Officers!

 

So there we have it, a bunch of people who ran the most dangerous, chaotic Councils in England – whose children’s services were pervaded by paedophiles – many of whom ended up being disqualified from office and who effectively bankrupted their authorities. Who better for Blair to elevate to the Lords and appoint to lead Gov’t Commissions, advise the NHS, the police, the CPS etc on ‘equality’? It was after all only the most disadvantaged children in the country who suffered and died in the ‘services’ that they ran.

There are two other people who might be able to answer questions as well, although they are not friends of Tony and Cherie. One is Ted Knight, who was leader of Lambeth Borough Council from 1978. Ted was disqualified from office but for many years remained active in Unite. However, when Jeremy Corbyn was elected leader of the Labour Party, Ted announced his re-entry into politics and he’s now busy in Lambeth once more. The other is a man called John McDonnell, who was involved in the GLC and hung around a lot with Ted and co. This John McDonnell will know something. I wonder where he is now…

 

NB. I heard on the news earlier that Rogue Top Doctor Ian Paterson has had his prison sentence increased. The judge who increased it made a speech about a shocking breach of trust, how could any Top Doctor ever behave in such a way etc etc. I’ve got news for Lady Justice Hallett – plenty of them are capable of doing so. After all I’ve got 10,000 documents showing that scores of them concealed a paedophile ring and tried to have me imprisoned by perjuring themselves. No doubt when Paterson is eventually released, the GMC will put him back on the register and double his pension pot to compensate for his lost earnings whilst he was inside. There has also been a GP in east London arrested for numerous sexual assaults on patients. Is that the sound of loud snoring that I can still hear coming from the direction of north Wales?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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?

Did Glenda Occupy A Key Role In Keeping It All Out Of The Media?

I resorted to purchasing a copy of the ‘Times’ this morning, although I loathe encouraging Murdoch by doing this. I splashed out however because in today’s ‘Times’ magazine, Theresa May’s former press office manager Katie Perrior has written a tell-all piece about the chaos reigning at Number 10 as a result of May’s reliance on her two notorious Chiefs of Staff, Fiona Hill and Nick Timothy. Perrior’s revelations confirm what I have long suspected about May – that she’s not that bright, not that confident and relies on vacuous twats to advise her, which is how she ended up doing things like wittering on about her kitten heels and posing in a pair of not very nice overly expensive trousers which allowed her opponents to comment on the gulf between her lifestyle and that experienced by the rest of the nation. I was interested to watch this phenomenon damage May so badly because it is of course what all female politicians have subjected themselves to ever since the manufacture of Margaret Thatcher. Idiots like Hazel Blears purchased handbags costing hundreds of pounds and described such bags as ‘aspirational’ rather than ‘over-priced’ and politicians like Nicola Sturgeon and Leanne Wood have very obviously spent a lot more time taking advice on their hairstyles, shoes, the precise length of their skirts and the style of those boring little Young Margaret Thatcher jackets that are de rigueur for female politicians than they ever have reading economic or political theory. That’s why none of them ever make any intelligent comments about gender, health policy, social inequality, economic policy etc. Compare what comes out of their mouths when they’re busy on their way to smash glass ceilings and show the boys how to do it with what comes out of someone like Yanis Varoufakis and our lot are laughable. It’s not as if there aren’t any good female economists around to advise them as well if they wanted a testicle free zone.

Perrior does indeed drop a few pearls of wisdom whilst giving a resume of her career. Perrior’s career as a spin doctor for the Tories started in 2000 when she was interviewed for a junior role by William Hague’s Press Secretary. Perrior was taken on and describes the asinine tasks that she and her colleagues were given to do. She mentions that they were ‘doing jobs way above our pay grades but there simply wasn’t anyone else to do it’. Interestingly she notes that ‘more than 20’ of these rather air-headed young gofers are now ‘either MPs or lords’. Perrior went onto work for Theresa when she was Transport Secretary and Party Chair, but Perrior then left to join the ITN news department because of the allegedly low pay. She subsequently worked for Channel 4 News and as Press Secretary for David Davis. After that she established ‘The Research Shop’ with Nick Timothy. A Jo Tanner who worked with her is now Head of Press at the British Chamber of Commerce. Following this Perrior worked on Boris’s mayoral campaign with the appalling Lynton Crosby in 2008 for ten months, then on the lame ‘Women2Win’. After the successful Brexit campaign she ‘offered her services’ to Theresa during the leadership race and ended up as Director of Communications at Number 10. She’s now dished the dirt on them.

It is entertaining to have my suspicions about Theresa’s reliance on dipsticks confirmed, but unlike a lot of people I’m not that interested in Fiona Hill or Nick Timothy. It is well-established that they are a pair of shites who have damaged the Tories, but it was fairly clear that they were a liability when Theresa was Home Secretary because they were causing problems them.

The person that I am interested in is the woman who gave Katie her big break, Hague’s Press Secretary when he became Tory leader in 2000. It was Amanda Platell – the right wing hate filled scribbler for the ‘Daily Mail’ who is the ultimate example of the sort of female journo satirised by the ‘Private Eye’ Glenda Slagg column, although Platell has a deeper interest in politics. The ‘Eye’ has described Platell as being ‘one of the killer Bimbos of Fleet Street’. I’m interested in Platell because Hague became Tory leader after he assisted a lot of people out of a very tight spot by organising the whitewash of the organised child abuse in north Wales that was the Waterhouse Inquiry when he was Secretary of State for Wales. I have mentioned many times how Sir Peter Morrison, Thatcher’s aide and MP for Chester, was known to be abusing under-aged boys and was visiting children’s homes in north Wales. It is only relatively recently however that I learned that the kids being abused in Ty’r Felin, the children’s home in Bangor, were being trafficked to London where they were being used to provide sexual services after being introduced to a Tory lobbyist and businessman who was also one of Thatcher’s speechwriters (see post ‘Are You Local?’). This man occupied space in the notorious Dolphin Square apartments in Pimlico and Edwina Currie and William Hague claim to be friends of his.

Platell only met Hague ‘a few months’ before her appointment as his Press Secretary ie. Head of News and Media at Conservative Central Office, but she was described as ‘very much Hague’s appointment’. At the time she was described as being ‘a friend’ of Hague’s new wife Ffion and Ffion was said to be a ‘strong supporter’ of Platell’s appointment. Ffion has featured on this blog before (see post ‘A Few Of The Relevant Politicians Re Mary Wynch’s Case’). She met Hague when she was a senior civil servant in the Welsh Office. The Welsh Office that had concealed the paedophile ring for decades, the Welsh Office that employed a crooked solicitor Andrew Park, who concealed the criminal activities of the two psychiatrists Dr Dafydd Alun Jones and Dr Tony Francis (Dr X), who were associates of Lucille Hughes the Director of Gwynedd Social Services, who colluded with that paedophile ring. So people involved with the cover-up of a vicious paedophile ring, many of whose victims had been found dead in suspicious circumstances, ensured that Amanda Platell was appointed as Press Secretary at Conservative Central Office. The Waterhouse Report was published in 2000. Amanda was Hague’s Press Secretary between 1999-2001. Did Hague think that he might be particularly in need of a good Press Secretary sometime in 2000? In 1999 no-one knew how much of a cover-up Sir Ronald Waterhouse would publish, but they did know that hundreds of former children in care in north Wales had told the Waterhouse Inquiry how they were beaten, flogged, kicked, punched, starved, forced to do unpaid labour, sexually abused by the ‘care’ staff and other visitors, taken to other places where they were sexually abused by people whom they did not know, transferred to other even more abusive institutions if they complained about being abused or ended up in the mental health system. Everybody did know that even if Ronnie turned out to be a star performer, the shit was going to hit the fan when that Report was published and a bit of nifty work with the media would be needed.

Let’s look at why Hague might have thought that Amanda was the right woman for the job.

Amanda is an Aussie, from Perth, who arrived in London in 1985. Her father was a journalist too, on ‘The West Australian’. In London she worked as a freelancer for the ‘Observer’ and the ‘Sunday Express’. She was a member of the start-up team when Eddy Shah launched ‘Today’ in 1986. Murdoch’s News International purchased it in 1987, and as well as hosting Amanda, ‘Today’ employed Alastair Campbell as political editor and his partner Fiona Millar as news editor. Platell left ‘Today’ for a short while to work for Robert Maxwell’s short-lived ‘London Daily News’ but returned to ‘Today’ in 1987 when David Montgomery was deputy editor. In 1993 she became managing editor of the Mirror Group, but moved to the Independent in the same year, first as marketing director and then as managing director.

The allegations concerning dreadful wide scale child abuse in north Wales and a paedophile ring that possibly involved public figures and politicians emerged in the London media in the early 1990s. Amanda could not have missed those stories.

In 1996 Platell was acting editor of the ‘Sunday Mirror’ and was the senior colleague of Alastair Campbell. In 1998 she became acting editor of the ‘Sunday Express’ but was sacked by Rosie Boycott after Amanda published a story about Mandelson’s gay relationship with his Brazilian partner. The publication of this story followed a spat between Platell and Mandelson at the Labour Party conference. So Platell discovered what could happen if one published a story that embarrassed a high profile politician. She’ll also have worked out the power and advantages that one would enjoy if one suppressed such stories.

Following Hague’s lacklustre performance as leader, Platell left her job at Conservative Central Office and in 2002 became a freelancer for the ‘Daily Mail’. Her bile filled column goes under the title of ‘Platell’s People’. Well now the readers of this blog know who ‘Platell’s People’ actually are, let’s look at a few more of these people and their contacts in greater detail.

David Montgomery. Platell seems to have thrived whilst working under Montgomery – she worked with him on ‘Today’ and when he moved to head the Mirror Group in 1994, she became group managing editor with a place on the Board. David Montgomery was originally from Northern Ireland. In 1973 he worked for the ‘Mirror’, then in 1979 the ‘Sun’. Between 1985-1987 he was editor of the ‘News of the Screws’ and Director of News(UK)Ltd, a subsidiary of News International owned by Murdoch’s News Corporation. Between 1987-91 he edited ‘Today’ whilst it was owned by Murdoch. Following the death of Robert Maxwell in 1991, between 1992-1999 Montgomery was Chief Exec of Mirror Group PLC. During his tenure at Mirror Group PLC Montgomery took a stake in the ‘Independent’ and the ‘Independent on Sunday’. It was the ‘Independent On Sunday’ that former senior police officer Gordon Anglesea sued for libel in 1994 after they published allegations that he’d sexually abused boys at Bryn Estyn. For details of some of the puzzling aspects of the trial and the conduct of the judge and the lawyers involved see posts ‘Y Gwir Yn Erbyn Y Byd’ and ‘Y Gwir Yn Erbyn Y Byd – A Few Additional Comments’. In 2016 Anglesea was imprisoned after he was convicted of abusing boys at Bryn Estyn.

In 2000 Montgomery founded the Mecom Group, a London-based investment company, specialising in the mergers and acquisitions of newspaper and media companies in Europe. In 2005 they purchased Berliner Verlag – the purchase was made in partnership with an American private equity firm. A number of journalists employed by titles owned by Berliner Verlag were most unhappy at the direction in which they felt that the new owners would take the company.

So Amanda had a Big Mate in Montgomery and both of them were undoubtedly in a position to have received much information relating to the North Wales Child Abuse Scandal.

But Montgomery is related to a few interesting folk as well. He married Sophie, the daughter of the 3rd Baron Birdwood. The second wife of Sophie’s grandfather, Lady Jane Birdwood, is politely referred to as a ‘politician’ on the family’s wiki entry. Lady Jane Birdwood was a one-off as a politician, she was famously bonkers in that she was so anti-Semitic and right-wing that she denounced a leader of the National Front as a ‘socialist’, although at one point she was a member of the National Front herself. Presumably she became disillusioned when they moved to the left. She ended up in hot water legally on a number of occasions because of her penchant for distributing race hate literature and maintained that the Jews died in the Holocaust as a result of typhoid. Jane Birdwood was not the only notable relative of Montgomery’s wife. Sophie was the ex-wife of Simon Marquis (Sophie married three times, each time to a peer!), the 3rd Earl of Woolton. Simon’s mother married again to Owen Lloyd George, another British peer and became Countess Lloyd George of Dwyfor (in north Wales). Owen Lloyd George succeeded to the Lords in 1968 and was the Deputy Lieutenant of Dyfed – although he was from a family with their origins in Llanystumdwy, north Wales (he was the grandson of David Lloyd George ie. THE Lloyd George), he did not have a home in Wales until the mid 80s, when he purchased a house in Pembrokeshire. The family were of course a massively influential north Welsh political family and Owen Lloyd George carried the sword at the Investiture of Prince Charles in 1969 at Caernarfon. Owen’s mother was from the McAlpine family.

People familiar with the North Wales Child Abuse Scandal will recognise the name McAlpine. In 2012 Lord Alistair McAlpine was named on ‘Newsnight’ by a former resident of Bryn Estyn, Steve Messham, as having been the man who had sexually abused him whilst Messham was in care at the home. McAlpine denied this and successfully sued a number of people who repeated Messham’s claims, including George Monbiot and Sally Bercow, the wife of John Bercow, the Speaker of the House of Commons. Steve Messham later stated that he’d been mistaken. McAlpine died in 2014 at his house in Italy. I can only presume that like Matthew Parris, the former Tory MP and ‘Times’ journo, McAlpine liked Italy. Parris has a house in Catalonia, but in his autobiography he wrote about holidaying at a place in Italy with his political friends that they named ‘the villa of shame’ – he noted that there were some good parties at the villa with ‘boys’ who were ‘always willing’.

Alistair McAlpine spent a lot of time in Perth, Western Australia during the 60s and 70s. That’s where Amanda Platell came from! He had business interests out there and in quite a big way as well. He was an advisor to Thatcher and raised millions for the Tory party. He raised money from Asil Nadir who featured in my post ‘A Stalker’s Network’. Nadir of course stole millions from his company Polly Peck and later was imprisoned, but not for very long and managed to escape even that for many years by fleeing to Cyprus. McAlpine was on record as saying that the funds that were received from Nadir should be given to Polly Peck’s creditors. McAlpine also cultivated the company of Mohamed Al-Fayed. McAlpine was Chairman of the Conservative Party between 1979-1983 but joined Goldsmith’s Referendum Party in 1996. It is recorded that McAlpine was ‘very critical of the Conservative Party under William Hague’. I don’t know why because I would have thought that everyone had a great deal to thank Hague for, after organising the cover-up by Ronnie Waterhouse. I suspect that some people were so grateful that they even felt like making him leader of the Party.

After McAlpine sued the various people who repeated the claims that he had abused a boy who was in care in north Wales, he kindly donated the damages that he was paid to the BBC charity Children In Need. One of the many who presented Children In Need was Esther Rantzen, who claimed that she did not know that Jimmy Savile was a child abuser and could not remember being contacted by someone who later appeared in the media saying that she had told Esther that Savile was a child abuser. I contacted Esther in the 1980s when she maintained that she was campaigning for better mental healthcare and detailed the abuses happening at the hands of psychiatrists in north Wales – who were also concealing the paedophile ring. Esther didn’t write back and I expect that she’s forgotten about my letter as well. A number of children who had been abused in care claimed to have contacted Esther’s charity Childline but did not receive help. Childline’s first CEO was Valerie Howarth, the former Director of Social Services for Brent – four year old Jasmine Beckford was abused and murdered on her watch. Esther had got to know Valerie because Valerie had trained Esther’s sister when they both worked as social workers for Lambeth Council. Whilst Lambeth Council’s children’s homes were infiltrated by paedophiles.

I’m glad to say that there was one person with a bit of sense associated with Children In Need though and that was Sir Roger Jones, who at one point was Chairman of the charity. Sir Roger had made a point of keeping Jimmy Savile well away from Children In Need whilst he was Chairman because he had heard rumours about Savile’s interest in young children, thought that Savile was deeply unsavoury and was on record as saying that ‘the biggest thing to guard against was paedophiles – they were just like flies around the honey pot’. Before Sir Roger became Chairman, Savile had been involved with Children In Need in 1984, 1987 and 1989. Sir Roger was on the BBC Board of Governors between 1996-2002, so one wonders how the lowdown on Savile had escaped others in the BBC. Such as Esther. Sir Roger was the Governor from Wales. As a good proportion of those kids being abused by organised paedophiles had been trafficked from north Wales, perhaps Sir Roger took a rather more dim view of the activities of Savile and his ilk than the media twats in London who think that they’re the centre of the universe and will do pretty much anything to get what they want, including ignoring the serious abuse of sheepshaggers’ children.

Another one of Platell’s People was Rolf Harris, a friend of Jimmy Savile. Amanda was horrified when Rolf was convicted of sexual assaults on children and got himself imprisoned and she penned an article about her inner turmoil for the ‘Daily Mail’ in July 2014, which ran under the headline ‘My Old Friend Rolf Groomed Me Too’. Amanda was deeply traumatised: ‘It was inconceivable to me that the man I’d come to love and trust as a true friend had been serially assaulting girls for decades’. Amanda explains that she was ‘in denial’, because her and Rolf went back a long way. She blames herself for having being duped by Rolf by having been exposed to him on the TV when she was young. In fact Rolf was so successful at grooming the youthful Amanda over the airwaves all those years ago that as a special treat, Rolf turned up to her 40th birthday party in 1998, whilst ‘this star’ was ‘at the height of his fame’. He drew some cartoons for her and she sat on his knee and this was the beginning of a friendship that lasted for the next 16 years, but ended when she realised that she had been ‘conned by a cunning and manipulative paedophile’.

This is a woman who had worked in a senior capacity for Robert Maxwell, Rupert Murdoch and had been Alastair Campbell’s boss. Furthermore, everyone in their 50s was exposed to a good dose of Rolf if they had watched TV when they were kids. I saw Rolf on his lame TV show when he used to appear with someone dressed up as a Koala calling themselves Coojee Bear – presumably Amanda continues to think that was a real Koala. I had a particularly lethal dose of Rolf because my gran used to buy me a comic called ‘Teddy Bear’ which had a cartoon story featuring Rolf and a Koala in every issue. My friend Brown used to read ‘Teddy Bear’ as well when he was little, so he too was dangerously exposed to Rolf. Now we did not consider ourselves groomed by Rolf and even if we were London media twats and in a position to invite Rolf to our 40th birthday parties I don’t think that we would have bothered. And I certainly wouldn’t have sat on his knee. Because I would have been 40 not 4 and he was a complete idiot anyway.

Amanda  shared further insights with the readers of the ‘Daily Mail’: ‘pathological  offenders…the really clever ones, spend…99% of their time grooming people around them…Was Rolf always truly evil, a psychopathic monster, like Jimmy Savile, who gleefully manipulated all those around him? Looking at the picture of him published this week, posing with Savile on a trip to Broadmoor, the similarities are chillingly apparent. Could Rolf have been as dark, as sick, as twisted as that monster beside him?’

I’ve got an answer for Platell and her People. Rolf and Savile were probably about as dark, as sick and as twisted as the monsters that run the UK media, who failed to report on the activities of very serious criminals with links to public figures, including some in the Houses of Parliament, who were molesting children and even found it worth their while chucking a petrol bomb into a building where some of their victims were holding a party when those victims had finally started to talk about what had happened to them and it looked as though there might be a few prosecutions on the horizon. The very worst of those monsters in the media were personally employed by the politicians who were covering all of this up.

In Nov 2011 the infant who was groomed by Rolf was accused at the Leveson Inquiry by the actor Hugh Grant of performing a ‘hatchet job’ on him in the ‘Daily Mail’. This was a reference to a particularly poisonous article that Platell had written after Hugh Grant’s partner had given birth to their baby. I have read the statement that Grant submitted to the Inquiry and it makes for sober reading. One evening whilst Grant was appearing on ‘Question Time’ discussing the closure of the ‘News Of The World’, Murdoch and press standards, Grant’s partner received an anonymous phone call from someone who said ‘tell Hugh Grant to shut the fuck up’. Grant goes on to explain in his statement how he did not accompany the mother of his baby to hospital when she gave birth because they were trying to avoid a media scrum and he had ‘too many experiences of hospital staff being paid to leak information to the press’.

Yes, the Top Doctors and Angels do that.

Hugh Grant then goes on to state that nonetheless  that there was a leak to the ‘Daily Mail’ regarding the details of his visit the following day to his partner and their baby and the ‘Mail’ had also discovered the assumed name of Grant’s partner which they had used for the hospital booking. The ‘Daily Mail’ repeatedly rang Grant’s PR people in New York for a comment – they had somehow managed to obtain a number that wasn’t publicly known as well. The ‘Mail’ threatened to print the story, but Grant suspects that the reason that they did not was because they had obtained their information unethically and illegally from a hospital source. The ‘Mail’ had also acquired the mobile number of Grant’s partner and rang her on that. A story about the birth then appeared in ‘Us’ magazine in America. The UK tabloids subsequently printed ‘garbled/twisted’ version of the story. Grant’s partner’s home was then besieged by press and photographers, as was his own house. The mother of Grant’s partner was harassed by the press. Neighbours were doorstopped. Grant gives details of the extreme harassment that they all faced from the press, which included one incident of a car being driven at one of them. Grant noted that the ‘reporting’ on behalf of the ‘Daily Mail’ was done by Keith Gladdis, who had previously worked for the ‘News of the Screws’, which was of course closed down after the methods that were being used to obtain personal information about people for stories – including phone hacking – were revealed. It was at this time that Platell’s character assassination of Hugh Grant was published in the ‘Daily Mail’.

All this about London hospitals leaking info, Hugh Grant and Amanda working as the Press Manager for a politician who organised the cover-up of the paedophile ring in Wales brought back a few memories for me. Previous posts have described the grossly unethical conduct that I witnessed whilst I worked in London medical schools and how I now have documentation demonstrating that the psychiatrists who were concealing the paedophile ring in north Wales were in contact with people whom I was working with in London medical schools. I have mentioned how I was bullied out of a job at St George’s Hospital Medical School just at the time that the victims of the paedophile ring in north Wales had started speaking to the media and that a close friend of mine – whose parents knew what had happened to me in north Wales and who worked in the media herself and who wanted to make a documentary about it all – was bullied out of her job at the Royal Television Society at exactly the same time. That was in the spring of 1991. I came across a reference the other day to there having been a big scandal brewing involving a paedophile ring with connections to Westminster but it had ‘all been covered up in 1991’.

One of my more obnoxious colleagues at St George’s who did all that she could to make my life unbearable was a particularly vile and aggressive researcher, who seemed to hold a lot of influence with our supervisor Dr Cathy Wilson. This researcher wasn’t ever one for sensitive behaviour – she shagged one junior doctor in the laboratory – but she certainly had a real downer on me. I never found out what this researcher’s problem with me was, but she slammed doors in my face as I walked into laboratories and offices, she refused to allow me access to laboratory equipment and then told Wilson that I wasn’t doing any work, she never communicated with me in anything other than an angry shout and I understand that she told various people that it was going to be ensured that I ‘went back to Wales’. This woman came from quite a privileged background and used to spend much time name dropping to let the rest of us know how many aristos that she hung out with, but she also spent a lot of time ingratiating herself to luvvies. There was one young male luvvie that she was in hot pursuit of at the time – in 1990 – who was beginning to become very famous but was still based in London. I am pretty sure that it was Hugh Grant. Just before he became – HUGH GRANT????!!!!! I don’t know who exactly encouraged the dreadful Mandy Leigh to treat another researcher in the way that she did but I have a message for her: I was bullied out of that job and subsequently nearly framed for a very serious crime that I did not commit because I had crossed the paths of some Top Doctors who were facilitating a paedophile ring you obnoxious over-privileged sharp elbowed bullying cow. There are now a number of police investigations going on into the activities of the people who were determined to ensure that I ended up outside of polite company and back in the clutches of those who were colluding with organised crime. Would you like to contact whichever police station that you are now in close proximity to and make a statement naming the people who told you to behave in the way that you did?

Amanda Platell ironically suffered at the hands of the Top Doctors herself. In 2012 she penned a column for the ‘Daily Mail’ about the evils of the NHS offering IVF. Amanda reveals that she too had IVF but she Paid For It Herself, which is obviously a rather more worthy thing to do than access it on the NHS. The joke was on Amanda though – Amanda didn’t get pregnant despite handing over many thousands and then found out that in women over 40, IVF and associated interventions have a very low success rate but no-one told her. No Amanda, they won’t have. Because a lot of Top Doctors running IVF clinics are very unscrupulous (see post ‘The BMA And It’s Ethics’) and they see people like you coming a mile off – you have a lot more money than you do scientific knowledge and they will lie to you and milk you dry, whilst conning you that ‘going private’ will buy you something better than the plebs who are treated under the NHS get. Furthermore they know that if they keep their expensive smiles frozen on their faces and carry on lying to you, you’ll even write articles in publications like the ‘Daily Mail’ encouraging other mugs to part with their money as well.

Lest anyone think that I’m being somewhat unsympathetic to Amanda’s fleecing at the hands of the Top Doctors, I’m experiencing compassion fatigue because in a way Amanda brought this upon herself. Because Platell and her People won’t publish anything about one of the worst scandals that a lot of Top Doctors have been involved with – the concealing of the North Wales Child Abuse Scandal. I know this because before Amanda published poison about Hugh Grant and before she published her tale of woe about ripped off by the Top Doctors, two people with media links told me that the evidence that I had regarding the Top Doctors and the North Wales Child Abuse Scandal was so damning that I ought to go to the London-based media, because the Welsh media would be far too frightened to publish it. They both gave me the contact details of ‘Daily Mail’ journalists. I was very iffy – I didn’t feel that comfortable at the idea of getting into bed with the ‘Daily Mail’ – but I was told that what the Top Doctors were getting up to was so serious that I really should get it out in the public domain in any way that I could. I sent the story to two different ‘Daily Mail’ journos – I didn’t ask for any money. I received an enthusiastic e mail back immediately upon receipt of each e mail. Then a long silence…. never heard another word. Not even when three years ago or so Tom Watson unleashed the hounds of Hades when he went public on allegations that children had been sexually abused by people with links to Westminster. You’re quite right Tom, they had been. But Platell and her People worked for the very politician that covered it all up.

Of course Hague’s successor Theresa has now organised the Independent Inquiry Into Child Sexual Abuse – which is falling apart at the seams. I notice in today’s ‘Times’ dear old Murdoch has let the world know that the Home Office have now been fined £366,000 by the Treasury for breaching Whitehall rules regarding the salary of the latest Chair for that Inquiry, Professor Alexis Jay. Jay was the ‘choice’ of the current Home Secretary Amber Rudd. Rudd implied that the previous Chair – who has walked out and returned to New Zealand – Judge Lowell Goddard, had been up to no good. However it transpires that Lowell Goddard withdrew because Rudd was trying to force a team of Home Office officials onto her to run the ‘Independent’ Inquiry. Which would have not made it an Independent Inquiry led by Lowell Goddard. The Shirley Oaks Survivors Association, a group of former residents of children’s homes in Lambeth who suffered abuse whilst they were there, walked out of the Inquiry for the same reason. They also stated that Alexis Jay, a former social worker, was turning the Inquiry into a ‘social workers talking shop’. Yes, that’s exactly what she’ll do. Because it is the social work profession that was infiltrated by paedophiles that caused havoc and social work as a profession still has not come to terms with it and will not admit it. And to remain in that profession at any senior level one will just have to have turned a blind eye to some fairly sordid things. So when they are confronted with what went on, social workers start talking about the need to fight stigma and to safeguard children and to make sure that no other child ever suffers and how everyone must feel safe but no-one must be blamed. What they will not do is name the paedophiles or their colleagues who allowed those paedophiles to commit offences against children in care. The Shirley Oaks Survivors Association however have done exactly that on their website. They are still in touch with Lowell Goddard.

The Waterhouse Inquiry whitewashed what went on in north Wales because Hague appointed Ronald Waterhouse, a man who had personal connections with many of the people who actually facilitated the paedophile ring in north Wales, along with a team of lawyers and officials from the Welsh Office who knew what was going on at the time and colluded with it, to run the Inquiry.

I think that it’s about time that I did a bit of research on Amber Rudd and her connections to see if I can work out why she not only had such faith in Alexis Jay, but was prepared to break Whitehall rules in order to appoint her.

 

 

 

‘A Future Leader Of The Labour Party’

The keener followers of this blog may have noticed that one of my readers, Richard, has recently referred to a number of high profile murders and miscarriages of justice in the comments section of the blog. Two of the cases to which Richard referred, the deaths of Hilda Murrell and Lynette White, I remembered well.

I was aware that Lynette was a prostitute in Cardiff who was murdered in 1988, that three innocent people went to prison for her murder as a result of corruption in the South Wales Police, that years later there was an attempt to prosecute a number of serving and former police officers but that the trial collapsed. What I didn’t realise until Richard e mailed me was that Lynette had been forced into prostitution at the age of 14, escaped from the gang involved but had been trapped by them again and forced back into sex work – Lynette was murdered just before she was due to give evidence in two criminal trials, one involving an allegation of attempted murder and one involving an allegation of procuring a 13 year old girl for prostitution. Since Richard e mailed, I’ve done a bit of research into Lynette’s case and the police corruption involved – it’s a seriously grim sequence of events spanning many years. I was aware that the trial of the numerous police officers accused of corruption collapsed, but I didn’t realise who was responsible for the collapse of the trial. It was the then Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) – one Sir Keir Starmer. Keir Starmer is now the Labour MP for Holborn and St Pancras and until Jeremy Corbyn captured everyone’s hearts Keir was constantly described by commentators as ‘a future leader of the Labour Party’. Admittedly the pillocks who work as political commentators were saying this about scores of people, including Jess Phillips, Dan Jarvis and Jo Cox, but Keir certainly has a big fan club. Having read up about Lynette’s murder and the aftermath I really do hope that Keir never does become leader of the Labour Party.

Lynette disappeared in Feb 1988 and the police ‘conjectured’ that she was holed up somewhere in order to avoid giving evidence at the forthcoming attempted murder trial which was scheduled to begin at Cardiff Crown Court on 15 Feb 1988. Indeed, the police had been searching for her with the intention of arresting her to ensure that she did give evidence. Some weeks before Lynette’s body was found in a flat in Cardiff that was used for the purposes of prostitution – her throat had been slit, she had been stabbed in the heart seven times and there was a total of 69 wounds on her body – she had given an interview for the BBC explaining how a gang had drugged her and taken her to Bristol when she was 14 and forced her into prostitution. She managed to get back to Cardiff but was effectively trapped into prostitution again. Lynette was well-known in Cardiff – most of the money that she earned was given to her boyfriend, who was also her pimp, to fund his cocaine habit. He was Stephen Miller who as well as having a drug habit was described as ‘having the mental age of 11’.

The investigation into Lynette’s murder was led by Detective Chief Superintendent John Williams, the head of South Wales Police’s CID. Williams drew up a list of suspects, which initially included a paedophile with a history of mental illness who had been described by a Top Doctor as a ‘psychopath’. South Wales Police were so convinced of his guilt that he was placed under surveillance. However DNA evidence subsequently eliminated him from the investigation. The South Wales Police continued to pursue a number of other people, including Lynette’s boyfriend/pimp Stephen Miller. The techniques used by the South Wales Police left a lot to be desired. Miller was interviewed over the course of four days, 19 times for a total of 13 hours and was denied access to a solicitor for the first two interviews. Miller eventually confessed to killing Lynette after denying it 307 times. His ‘confession’ implicated other people. In Nov 1988 five black and mixed race men were charged with Lynette’s murder despite there being no scientific evidence suggesting their involvement.

The murder trial took place at Swansea Crown Court in Oct 1989. The trial was interrupted in Feb 1990 – after a considerable amount of evidence had been heard – after the judge, Justice McNeill, died suddenly of a heart attack. A retrial was held at Swansea in May 1990. In November 1990 after the longest murder trial in British history, three of the men were found guilty and imprisoned for life. The two men who were acquitted had spent two years in custody and one of them, Ronnie Actie, was subsequently found dead in his back garden in Sept 2007. Police described his death as ‘not suspicious’. Just like the deaths of those former residents of children’s homes in north Wales who alleged that they had been abused and forced into prostitution. The judge presiding over the trial was Sir John Leonard who in 1986 had achieved notoriety as a result of the Ealing vicarage rape trial. Three men had burgled a vicarage in Ealing, raped the 21 year old  daughter of the vicar and bludgeoned the vicar and his daughter’s boyfriend with a cricket bat. Leonard gave the burglar who had not been involved in the rape a longer sentence than the two who had and commented that the trauma suffered by the young woman who had been raped was ‘not so great’. An outcry followed with demands for Leonard to resign, which snowballed when the woman who had been raped spoke publicly about it all. Leonard didn’t resign which was why he was till in circulation a few years later to preside over Lynette’s murder trial, which resulted in an enormous miscarriage of justice.

Early in 1991 a journalist questioned the safety of the convictions of the ‘Cardiff Three’ and a Channel 4 documentary followed. In May 1991 two of the Cardiff Three were given leave to appeal, although Stephen Miller’s application for leave was denied. A investigative journalist discovered two alibis who had not been called as witnesses at the original trial. Following this Gareth Pierce took up the case of the Three and instructed Michael Mansfield QC.

In Dec 1992 the appeal was held. Lord Peter Taylor was brutally frank in his comments regarding the way in which the police had bullied and hectored Miller after hearing a tape of a ‘travesty of an interview’. Mansfield argued that the police had done everything possible short of physical violence in order to extract a confession from Miller. Lord Taylor was so shocked at the contents of the tape that he ordered that a copy be sent to the DPP in an effort to ensure that no such police ‘interview’ ever took place again. The convictions of the Cardiff Three were quashed and they were all released. One of the men was diagnosed with PSTD and spoke of the effect of being wrongfully convicted of murder – he commented that the conviction had wrecked him. This man subsequently died of a perforated ulcer at the age of 49 in 2011.

In Sept 2000 the case was reopened. Fresh forensic evidence was obtained and new DNA technology subsequently identified the man who really did murder Lynette, Jeffrey Gafoor. In 2003 Gafoor pleaded guilty to murdering Lynette at Cardiff Crown Court. Sir John Royce sentenced Gafoor to life imprisonment – but Gafoor’s tariff was actually less than the tariff that Leonard had given to the three men who were wrongly convicted.

In 2004 the IPCC announced that they would be investigating South Wales Police. In April 2005 five retired police officers were arrested and charged with false imprisonment, conspiring to pervert the course of justice and misconduct in public office. Days later four more retired police officers were arrested and then a further thirteen people were arrested. In May 2005 three serving police officers were arrested. By Nov 2005 over 30 arrests had been made, including 19 serving or retired police officers, one of whom was an inspector.

In Feb 2007 four witnesses who were not police officers were charged with perjury. In Dec 2008 three of them were convicted and imprisoned – the fourth person was found unfit to stand trial. Despite imprisoning them, Sir David Maddison accepted that the police had seriously hounded, bullied, threatened, abused and manipulated these witnesses over several months. In March 2009 the CPS announced that there was sufficient evidence to prosecute three serving police officers and ten former police officers with conspiracy to pervert the course of justice. Two further witnesses were charged with perjury. In 2011 the largest police corruption trial in British criminal history was held at Swansea Crown Court. A further four retired officers were scheduled to stand trial in 2012. One of the ‘witnesses’ was a convicted armed robber who had been in HMP Cardiff at the same time as the original innocent defendants who had agreed to act as a police informant in return for police representations at his Parole Board hearing. This man had claimed that one of the Cardiff Three had confessed to him in person that he’d murdered Lynette.

During the police corruption trial the defence counsel constantly raised objections to the non-disclosure by the prosecution of relevant documents. In Nov 2011 Sir Nigel Sweeney ordered the prosecution to produce specific documents requested by the defence. Four documents were found to be missing and the police concluded that they had been destroyed in 2010 on the instructions of Detective Chief Superintendent Coutts. Nicholas Dean QC, counsel for the prosecution, offered no further evidence on 1 Dec 2011 and invited the judge to direct the jury to return not guilty verdicts. The trial collapsed. It was revealed that the instruction to Nicholas Dean not to offer further evidence had come from the very top of the CPS – the DPP, Keir Starmer. The South Wales Police made yet another referral to the IPCC. In Jan 2012 the missing ‘destroyed’ documents were found in the office of Detective Chief Superintendent Coutts, in the original box in which they had been sent from the IPCC.

After the collapse of the trial, Tom Mangold, the BBC journalist who had covered the case for Panorama, commented that ‘if the 13 accused Cardiff detectives had been found guilty, presumably all previous cases – hundreds – will have had to be reopened and re-examined’. By the time that the trial had collapsed, all the police officers charged had been allowed to retire. Not that the officers involved thanked their lucky stars that they’d got clean away with framing three innocent men through browbeating and harassing vulnerable witnesses and allowed a very dangerous man to escape justice. No, eight former officers and seven others sued the South Wales Police for damage to their reputations, malicious prosecution, false imprisonment and misfeance in public office by South Wales Police. In June 2016 Justice Wyn Williams dismissed their case.

So Keir Starmer did a very big favour to a bunch of thoroughly corrupt officers who seemed to want to ensure that the person who murdered a girl who had spoken to the BBC about being forced into prostitution at the age of 14 was never caught. Keir was appointed DPP in 2008. He was appointed by the Attorney General at the time – a Lady who has featured a number of times previously on the blog, Patricia Scotland QC! (Please see posts ‘Baroness Patricia Scotland QC Was On Board As Well’, ‘More On Baroness Patricia Scotland QC – And Her Very Sleazy Friends’ and ‘Even More About Baroness Patricia Scotland QC’.) Patricia was of course the barrister who represented the Welsh Office at the Waterhouse Inquiry. The Welsh Office that failed to inspect children’s homes whilst ‘care’ staff were being sent to prison for abusing their young charges, the Welsh Office that ignored people like Alison Taylor and me who were telling them that something was terribly wrong with the social services and mental health services in north Wales, the Welsh Office that employed a Medical Ombudsman, Professor Robert Owen, who concealed abuse and criminal activity in the mental health services – and the Welsh Office that had it’s very own corrupt lawyer Andrew Park, who was advising the mental health services on how to frame me…. Like so many lawyers who seem to be advising people who have abused others, Keir is a barrister specialising in human rights. He was previously joint head of Doughty Street Chambers. He’s in good company there. Helena Kennedy works at Doughty Street, the St Helena who has relied on the expertise of Professor Nigel Eastman, one of the psychiatrists at St Georges Hospital Medical School who was presented with evidence that patients were being abused and framed in north Wales but who ignored it. There’s another star at Doughty Street as well – Theo Huckle QC! The Theo who, in his capacity as Counsel General for Wales, had sight of nearly 10,000 documents spanning more than twenty five years, demonstrating that throughout that time the mental health services and social services in north Wales and elsewhere had lied on oath, had encouraged other people to lie on oath, were refusing treatment to patients who had made complaint even when those patients were seriously ill and were framing patients for serious offences. Theo also had sight of evidence demonstrating that the Welsh Office, the GMC and the Mental Health Act Commission colluded in all of this and had even forged documents. Oh dear Theo, those documents are now in my possession – I really don’t think that your credibility as a human rights lawyer is too high at present…

In Dec 2013 the Labour Party announced that Keir Starmer would lead an inquiry into changing the law to give further protection to victims in rape and child abuse trials. I’m not sure that giving such a remit to Keir is a good idea.

To return to the collapse of the South Wales Police corruption trial after Keir’s helpful intervention. The judge who ordered that the ‘missing’ documents – which weren’t actually missing at all – be produced and who then directed the jury to acquit the corrupt officers when the missing documents which were obediently sitting in their box waiting to be produced in court ‘couldn’t be found’ also has a bit of previous. Sir Nigel Sweeney was appointed as a High Court judge in 2008. He presided over the mistrial of Rolf Harris when Rolf was up in front of him charged with a number of indecent assaults. When Sweeney was still a barrister he was the prosecuting counsel in a case that I have previously detailed on this blog – that of Michael Stone. Michael Stone is currently in prison for the murders of Lin and Megan Russell and the attempted murder of Josie Russell. The Russells were attacked on a country lane in Kent – they had only been living there a matter of weeks, having just moved from Snowdonia. There was no forensic evidence against Michael Stone and he has always denied being responsible for the attacks. He was only arrested after a Top Doctor contacted the police and told them that Stone fitted the profile of the killer. Michael Stone had been abused whilst he was a kid in care and after his conviction it was admitted that the mental health services had ‘failed’, but hey their ‘failings’ couldn’t be blamed for the attack on the Russells.

As well as ‘failing’ it was also demonstrated that the mental health services had lied on certain points during the investigation into their care and treatment of Michael Stone. But of course they were exonerated – the investigation was led by Sir Robert Francis QC, he who tried to have me imprisoned in 1991 for harassment because I kept writing letters claiming that the mental health services in north Wales were abusing patients and involved in criminal activities (see post ‘The Sordid Role Of Sir Robert Francis QC’). The man who instructed Robert Francis to demand my imprisonment was Tony Francis (Dr X), one of the Top Doctors who was breaking the law himself and had been the subject of my complaints. Their case was funded by the Medical Defence Union and at least one of the solicitors acting for the MDU, Ann Ball, knew exactly how serious my allegations were because she had read my letters of complaint and had a telephone conversation with me which lasted at least 30 minutes in which I told her of the abuses happening in north Wales. Michael Stone has unsuccessfully appealed against his conviction. A crucial part of Stone’s defence hinges on a shoelace that was found at the scene of the crime which it is alleged if forensically examined will suggest that the murderer is actually someone else (the name being bandied around is Levi Bellfield). Stone’s team attempted to have the lace examined – the lace disappeared in transit. There is information on the internet which alleges that Nigel Sweeney knew at the time of Stone’s original trial that forensic examination of the shoelace would clear Stone but Sweeney chose to keep quiet about this.

The fallout from the collapse of the South Wales Police corruption trial in 2011 was such that the Home Secretary at the time, Theresa May, was asked to hold a public inquiry. She refused, but in Feb 2015 she did agree to an investigation into the collapse of the trial to be led by Richard Horwell QC. Horwell’s investigation was expected to have presented it’s findings in the summer of 2015 but it was delayed by the South Wales Police officers attempts to sue. Richard Horwell still doesn’t seem to have completed his investigation. Like so many people involved in miscarriages of justice, Richard Horwell is interesting himself. He was the barrister who defended Max Clifford, who is currently in prison for a series of sexual assaults, including one on a twelve year old girl. Horwell advised on matters relating to the inquests of Diana and Dodi and he currently describes himself as advising ‘schools and others’ on ‘how to respond’ to the Goddard Inquiry. So he’s advising institutions who employed paedophiles how to cope with being investigated by the Independent Inquiry Into Child Sexual Abuse. That noble history apart, there is another reason why Theresa May might have preferred an investigation into massive police corruption which happened under a Tory Gov’t between 1988-1990 (the Home Secretaries at the time were Douglas Hurd and David Waddington) to be carried out by Horwell rather than by a full public inquiry. Horwell practices at Three Raymond Buildings, the chambers of Alexander Cameron QC. Who is the brother of David Cameron – the PM when Theresa appointed Horwell. Obviously Richard Horwell is considered a very safe pair of hands.

I decided to write about the case of Lynette White because I noticed that yet again, the DPP had made a decision that seemed to protect people who were involved with the abuse and/or forced prostitution of children. The DPP is the head of the CPS. The CPS was established in 1986 but it seems to have a truly dire track record in a number of areas, one of those being taking action against child abusers.

When the CPS was established the DPP was Sir Thomas Hetherington. It was Hetherington who, along with the Attorney-General at the time Sir Michael Havers, refused to prosecute Sir Peter Hayman, the diplomat who was a member of PIE and found to be in possession of ‘extreme’ paedophilic literature (see post ‘A UK Network’). Hetherington was also DPP at the time of the unlawful arrest and imprisonment of Mary Wynch from north Wales (see post ‘The Mary Wynch Case – Details’). In 1987 Sir Allan Green was appointed DPP. Allan Green was the DPP whom Alison Taylor wrote to in 1988 informing him that she had witnessed the abuse of children in care in north Wales. Sir Allan resigned in Oct 1991 after an incident which was described as him ‘kerb crawling in Kings Cross’. The details however seem to be that for some reason that he never explained, after attending a Law Society function he went to Kings Cross to talk to prostitutes working there. No-one ever got to the bottom of any of it – although Green was knighted after he resigned. Three months after Green’s resignation his estranged wife Eva was found dead at her home. Her body was discovered by Green’s son Robin and there was a suicide note found on the stairs addressed to him. Toxicology tests showed that there had been much higher than therapeutic levels of temazepam in her blood but not enough to kill her. It was claimed instead at her inquest that Eva Green had died from suffocation – she was found with a plastic bag over her head. People were puzzled because the night before she had had dinner with her son and seemed fine and she was talking about her holiday plans. The reason that her son discovered her was that they had arranged to go out for lunch together. The coroner concluded that nonetheless Eva Green must have had personal problems of which people were unaware. Surely it was actually her husband who had the personal problems?

My antennae only started twitching at the sad tale of the nature of Lady Green’s death when I saw the name of the coroner who had carried out the inquest. It was Dr Paul Knapman. Knapman was the coroner for Westminster for years, between 1980-2011 and prior to that he had been the deputy coroner. He had been involved in some very high profile inquests, all the famous London disasters, including the Iranian Embassy siege, the Libyan Embassy siege, the sinking of the Marchioness boat, the Clapham Junction rail disaster and the London bombings in 2005. But I remembered his name for another reason. Knapman was known to be Westminster’s answer to Dewi Pritchard Jones – he was a coroner who frequently came out with some rather odd conclusions in the case of suspicious deaths, particularly if there had been allegations of foul play on the part of Establishment figures or institutions. Knapman could be relied upon to reassure everyone that nothing untoward had happened. I remember seeing his name in ‘Private Eye’ constantly. I then heard about him when I went to do an MSc at the Royal Postgraduate Medical School. The thing that really took me aback was how even a very conservative woman with a great faith in the professions there completely accepted that Knapman was corrupt. This was a lady who retained an enormous belief in the noble motives of nearly everyone in medicine and law, but even she concurred that Knapman could not be trusted. I read a bit more about Knapman this morning – and I discovered that before he trained as a lawyer, he qualified as a doctor, from St George’s Hospital Medical School no less! If one’s going to be a corrupt member of the middle classes I cannot think of a better start to one’s career. Knapman qualified from St George’s in 1968. In 1975 as Westminster Deputy Coroner he was involved in his first really high profile inquest, that of Sandra Rivett, Lord Lucan’s nanny, whom everyone has always assumed was murdered by Lord Lucan. By the time that Knapman had got round to announcing that Lord Lucan should stand trial for murder Lucan had buggered off and was never seen again. However the aspect of the Lord Lucan business that I always wondered about was the declaration by various people that his wife Veronica was ‘mad’. Veronica was sectioned and lost custody of her children. Now it wasn’t Veronica who was ever accused of murdering the nanny, it was her husband. The allegation that Lady Lucan was barking was based on her staggering around London in a state claiming that her husband had just tried to kill her. Well somebody had, she was injured- I think with a head wound – and shortly afterwards her nanny was found murdered and her husband disappeared without trace. Somebody was certainly behaving in an unhinged manner but it wasn’t her. I only learnt the other day which hospital it was that Lady Lucan was taken to after she had been attacked – it was St George’s. A few weeks ago Lady Lucan gave a lengthy TV interview – I didn’t watch it but I did read extracts. She spoke of how her husband was manipulative and abusive and how after they married she feared that he was trying to have her categorised as ‘insane’. She was experiencing mild depression and anxiety and was seeing a doctor on a private basis but maintained that Lord Lucan was conspiring with that doctor to have her ‘locked up’. Well that’s what happened in the end, she was sectioned and labelled mad, even though by then someone had tried to murder her.

I cannot find any references anywhere to the hospital it was in which Lady Lucan was detained. But I am absolutely sure that it would be well within the capabilities of St Georges’s to arrange the detention of a woman who was being abused by her husband and declare her to be irrational and mad. Because they did that in 1991. When I was a patient at Springfield Hospital – the mental health unit attached to St George’s – there was another patient there whom I made friends with. She was a lady who some years earlier had entered into an arranged marriage. She and her husband had moved to London and her husband had become increasingly abusive. By this time she had two children. Her husband constantly told her that he would have her confined to a mental hospital and gain control of the children. Which is what he did. He came to visit her frequently in Springfield and brought the children with him. After he left she would inevitably be incredibly distressed. Whenever patients brought this to the attention of the nursing staff – most of whom were hostile towards and uninterested in patients – the nurses would maintain that this lady was upset because she was missing her children. However that lady told me and other patients that she was distraught after her husband’s visits because he had been threatening to kill her. None of us were in a position to know what her husband had said to her because whenever he visited he spoke a language that no-one else on the ward spoke, including the nurses. I do know however that the lady in question was deceived into going to Springfield. She was driven there by her husband who had told her that he was taking her for a day out in the country – only he drove her to Springfield where she was forced into the ward and detained against her will. I witnessed her confront the nurses about her mode of arrival and they freely admitted that this was indeed what had happened. They simply told her that if she’d have been told that she was going to a psychiatric hospital she wouldn’t have got in the car. Of course she wouldn’t, she had an abusive husband who was threatening to kill her and planning to have her incarcerated in a mental hospital whilst he made off with the kids. And as far as I could see, part of his plan had worked like a dream.

But then abused women were frequently to be found in Springfield. Another patient was a lady who had worked as a secretary at Scotland Yard. She had been raped in her own house by her boss, a senior police officer. She had been admitted to Springfield in the aftermath and was in such a bad way that she was terrified of entering her house again after what had happened. She told me at length that she felt that the staff at Springfield had no understanding of how she felt and that they were trying to coerce her into discharging herself before she was ready. A few days after she told me this, a nurse told her that she wasn’t facing up to her problems and that they would be discharging her anyway. Back to the house that she was terrified to re-enter – and the rapist would of course still know where she lived. To read more about the glories of Springfield Hospital see post ‘Some Very Eminent Psychiatrists From London…’

St George’s is not the only questionable name that Knapman has been associated with. The first judge whom had been charged with carrying out the inquests of Diana and Dodi backed out on the grounds of pressure of work. So on March 2 2007 Knapman was appointed coroner for Diana’s inquest and he appointed Elizabeth Butler-Sloss – Sir Michael Havers’s sister – as deputy coroner. She resigned just over a month later. Not that Knapman was defeated. In June 2007 he appointed Lord Justice Scott-Baker as assistant deputy coroner. Lord Justice Scott-Baker was the judge who in 1995 inexplicably imprisoned a vulnerable former patient of the North Wales Hospital Denbigh. That case had all the hallmarks of someone under attack by those we know and love in north Wales – please see posts ‘So Who’s Path Had Susan Brooke Crossed?’, ‘More On The Susan Brooke Case’ and ‘Updates On The Cases Of Susan Brooke And Sara Thornton’.

As befitting someone whose whole career has involved huge quantities of dodginess, Paul Knapman was appointed Deputy Lieutenant for Greater London in 2008 and Deputy Lieutenant for Westminster in 2013.

After Sir Allan Green resigned as DPP, Barbara Mills – who later became Dame Barbara – was appointed. The CPS really came into it’s own under Barbara Mills. Staff morale hit rock bottom, there were constant allegations that the CPS wasn’t prosecuting when they should have been and the nicest thing that anybody had to say about Barbara Mills was that she was well-coiffured. It would seem that Barbara’s hair was the only thing that was in order at the time. Prior to her appointment as DPP Barbara Mills had been Director of the Serious Fraud Office. There’d been trouble whilst she was there. The SFO investigated a company set up by David Mills – Barbara’s brother-in-law – regarding allegations that bribes had been received from Silvio Berlusconi, but Mills himself wasn’t investigated. (Mills was later convicted in the Italian courts of receiving a bribe from Silvio.) David Mills was of course married to Tessa Jowell, the Tessa who was a child care officer in Lambeth – where the children’s services had been infiltrated by a paedophile ring. Subsequently Tessa became deputy director of MIND – whilst she was in post MIND held a conference at which the rights of paedophiles were discussed and a recommendation to abolish the age of consent was made (see post ‘Tower Hamlets, Paul Boateng And Tessa Jowell’). Months after Tessa departed from MIND the legal director of MIND, William Bingley, admitted to me that MIND knew all about the criminal activities of Dr Dafydd Alun Jones and the north Wales mental health services. For many years Tessa was a Councillor in Camden. Babs’s husband John was also a Councillor in Camden.

The highest profile disaster on Mills’s watch was the failure to prosecute anyone for the murder of Stephen Lawrence. Mills eventually resigned in 1998 after criticism for repeatedly refusing to prosecute following deaths in police custody. Mills’s regime touched north Wales in a big way though. It was during Barbara’s tenure that the CPS failed again and again to prosecute following the revelations of the serious abuse of children in care in north Wales. Whilst Barbara was DPP the North Wales Police held a major investigation into child abuse. They collected 2,600 witness statements and 300 cases were sent to the CPS – there were only seven prosecutions. None of those prosecutions involved anyone more senior than bottom feeding care workers. It was on Barbara’s watch that there was a failure to prosecute Gordon Anglesea – although a recommendation was made to the CPS by the police that he should be prosecuted – the senior police officer who in 2016 was finally imprisoned for molesting children in care.

Barbara Mills did put her foot down hard once whilst she was DPP though. After the investigation into the wrongdoing of the West Midlands Serious Crime Squad which resulted in the wrongful convictions of the Birmingham Six, Barbara placed a 75 year embargo on all documents relating to the investigation. So even though the Birmingham Six were beaten up and framed by the West Midlands Police, even they’re not allowed to read about it.

The failure to prosecute Greville Janner for abusing children in Leicester can also be traced back to the regimes of Allan Green and Barbara Mills. It has now been admitted that in the early 90s the evidence was there and no-one can understand why the CPS didn’t prosecute.

Of course Allan Green and Barbara Mills had a good reason why they weren’t prosecuting paedophiles. They were far too busy prosecuting me, as well as a few other patients and former kids in care in north Wales who had dared complain about what was happening to them. During the years that Allan and Babs were running the CPS, I was arrested again and again and again, at the behest of the mental health services. They only ever managed one successful prosecution – in 1993 I was convicted of staring at a social worker in Safeways and ordered to pay £60 costs. The social worker admitted in the witness box that she’d lied in her original statement to the police and then started crying. No questions asked, I hadn’t launched the attack on her that she claimed that I had, but I had stared at her and that was obviously a far more Serious Matter than a social worker perjuring herself. I knew of many other people in north Wales who were also being dragged through the courts for asinine ‘offences’ after they had made complaint about the ‘services’. Meanwhile a paedophile ring ran riot in the children’s homes in the region and patients were seriously abused in the mental health services. And people who had complained kept turning up dead. Shortly after being taken to court and relieved of £60 for staring at a social worker whose colleagues were operating a paedophile ring, I wrote to Michael Mansfield after reading his book ‘Presumed Guilty’ and told him some of what was happening in north Wales. He did reply but he simply thanked me for my letter and commented ‘that it is always good to have support’. I have always wondered about this. It may simply have been that Michael Mansfield was snowed under with fan mail or requests for help from the oppressed, but I have noticed – and given scores of examples on this blog – how no high profile ‘radicals’ will touch anything to do with either the north Wales Child abuse scandal or the abuse of psychiatry in north Wales. Indeed some of those with a reputation for radicalism have connections with those who have been directly involved in the abuse themselves. The nations chambers are choc full of allegedly radical lawyers or human rights lawyers some of whom I know are well aware of what has gone on in north Wales and none of them will say a word. The ultimate example being Theo Huckle – who built his reputation partly on clinical negligence work.

On many occasions I complained to the GMC about the conduct of certain Top Doctors. My concerns were ignored. Barbara was of course a legal assessor of the GMC.

Barbara is now dead so I presume that we will never receive an explanation as to why chaos reigned in the CPS whilst she was DPP.

After Barbara’s resignation, Sir David Calvert-Smith became DPP. He was in post between 1998-2003. He later became a High Court judge. David did a bit better than Barbara but not much. He failed to prosecute anyone for the murder of Damilola Taylor, but he did manage to prosecute Harold Shipman. Although if Barbara and the GMC had been doing their jobs properly in the first place, Shipman wouldn’t have murdered hundreds of people. Towards the end of his term, Calvert-Smith decided that CPS lawyers would make the decisions regarding charging suspects rather than the police. Obviously a decision that was taken on the basis of the outstanding track record of the CPS. Calvert-Smith’s successor fully implemented this decision.

It was on Calvert-Smith’s watch that a CPS lawyer made the decision to prosecute me for ‘threatening to kill’ Alun Davies, the manager of the Hergest Unit, after I’d told his secretary over the phone that he was a fat idiot. The case rumbled around the Crown Courts of north Wales for two years, with me being on bail and constantly living with the threat of being imprisoned for years should anyone believe the lies that were being told, but the case eventually collapsed and I was convicted of calling Davies a fat idiot. Which I’d always been happy to admit to having done. No-one ever managed to explain the numerous staff from the Hergest Unit who’d made statements saying that they’d witnessed me threatening to kill Davies. It was also whilst Calvert-Smith was DPP that I was arrested three times in one weekend, again on the say so of the mental health services. The cases collapsed each time, but no-one wondered what might have been going on. Not even when the first case collapsed and I walked out of the door of the magistrates court to find a policeman outside saying ‘I’m really sorry but we’ve been told to arrest you again’. That case was dismissed, as was the next one. If David Calvert-Smith can explain why the CPS found it within them to mount these prosecutions against me when they were incapable of prosecuting people who raped children in their care – some of whom were later found dead – he’s welcome to get in touch.

In 2003 Ken MacDonald – later Lord Ken – became DPP. Ken is now a Lib Dem Peer. Ken has rubbed noses with a few who have been named and shamed on this blog. He was the first pupil barrister of Lady Helena Kennedy of the Corrupt Expert Witness. Ken had co-founded the chambers Matrix with Cherie Booth aka Mrs Tony Blair, so his appointment as DPP by the Attorney General Lord Goldsmith, a friend of Mrs Blair’s husband who just happened to be PM, caused quite a row with allegations of extreme cronyism being made. But Lord Goldsmith, Blair’s mate, reassured everyone that nothing could be further from the truth so Ken remained in post. When he’d finished being DPP in 2008 – no doubt after failing to prosecute a few people who could cause intense embarrassment for New Labour if they were prosecuted – Ken returned to work at Matrix. Matrix was of course established in anticipation of the business that would be forthcoming in the wake of Labour establishing the Human Rights Act – the Act that has proved a Godsend in terms of protecting the Human Rights of those who are abusing the Human Rights of people with less money than themselves.

Hot on the heels of Ken came Keir Starmer. After Keir, in Nov 2013 came one of the contemporary breed of Strong Women, a woman who like Patricia Scotland is lauded for breaking down barriers – Alison Saunders. Alison is the first DPP who isn’t a QC and the first DPP who was appointed from within the CPS. As the CPS has been hopelessly corrupt since it was established it is therefore unsurprising that Alison is proving to be as bad as Barbara Mills. (They don’t do much for the feminist cause do they.) Saunders failed to ensure that Leon Brittan was interviewed in 2014 regarding an historical rape allegation and in April 2015 Saunders refused to prosecute Greville Janner despite the mountain of evidence against him. In June 2015 her decision was overturned and it was announced that Janner would face trial for child abuse. Medical evidence from a Top Doctor was then produced and although this was contested, Janner was deemed to be unfit to stand trial and so instead a trial of the facts was to be held. Janner died before that ever happened. The CPS certainly served him well. For further details of the many idiocies of Alison since she has been DPP please see post ‘Sisters Are Indeed Doing It For Themselves’.

So there we have it – over thirty years of the CPS under DPPs of Gov’ts of differing political hues. The running theme is if you’re involved with organised child abuse they’re not going to touch you.

 

 

Don’t Be Silly, He’s Nice

Most of Ronnie Waterhouse’s whitewash was dedicated to excusing people employed in social care or social work who had abused children in care. However for those of us au fait with the mental health services in north Wales, there is a chapter that makes even more dreadful reading than the rest of the Waterhouse Report – the chapter concerning Gwynfa, a residential NHS unit for children with mental health problems, or in Ronnie’s parlance, ’emotionally disturbed and maladjusted children’. I need to remind readers yet again here that Ronnie’s definition of ‘disturbed’ and ‘maladjusted’, or indeed the mental health service’s definition, may well not be what the rest of the world – even in those days – would define as disturbed or maladjusted. In north Wales NHS speak it simply means that you’ve complained about a Top Doctor breaking the law or abusing their position. Ronnie’s chapter on Gwynfa demonstrates that this was as true in the children’s mental health services as it was in the adults’ services.

Gwynfa was a residential unit in Colwyn Bay that was a combined clinic and school. It was established in 1961 as an NHS psychiatric hospital for children with an on-site school. With the establishment of Clwyd County Council in 1974 the residential/clinic part became the responsibility of Clwyd Health Authority and the school became the responsibility of Clwyd County Council. Until 1982/83 the North Wales Child Guidance Clinic Service offered and monitored admissions, but after that it was administered by the Mental Health Unit of Clwyd Health Authority – yes, that bunch of goons who allowed Dr Dafydd Alun Jones to illegally bang up anyone who crossed his path, who oversaw a shagfest in the North Wales Hospital Denbigh and who failed to investigate any complaints, even those of serious abuse of patients. Gwynfa by this time was an 18 bed unit for children below school leaving age, staffed by eight qualified nurses, six ‘other’ nurses (who won’t have actually been nurses if they weren’t qualified) and four psychologists. A child psychiatrist, Dr Barry Kiehn, was appointed in 1981 his remit being specifically Gwynfa and according to Waterhouse it was at this time that ‘the concept of a therapeutic community was introduced’. In April 1993 the administration of Gwynfa was taken over by the Clwydian Community Care NHS Trust after an NHS reorganisation. Of course the people managing and staffing the Clwydian Community Care NHS Trust were exactly the same corrupt old gits who had managed and staffed the previous organisations. Letters in my possession regarding my own case written after the ‘reorganisation’ are signed by exactly the same people and use exactly the same phrases as before. Believe me, nothing changed. The average stay for the patients at Gwynfa was five months, although some were there a lot longer.

The overall responsibility for managing Gwynfa was taken by the Principal Nursing Officer, who was responsible for recruitment and selection of staff. They reported to the Unit Nursing Officer (later known as the Director of Nursing Services) at the North Wales Hospital Denbigh, who visited Gwynfa about once a month. So Gwynfa was ultimately run by the person who ran Denbigh. When I read that I knew that the tales from the children at Gwynfa would be bad. Gwynfa was shut down in 1997 – I wonder whether that decision had been made in anticipation of what former patients might say to the Waterhouse Inquiry.

Between 1972-1990 the Principal Nursing Officer for Gwynfa was Nigel Mannering Berry. By 1972 he had already been employed there for nine years. Waterhouse tells us that Berry qualified as a registered mental nurse in 1959 and had been previously employed at Denbigh. So the ‘therapeutic community’ for children was run by something out of the ark who had worked at Denbigh when Gwynne the lobotomist was in full swing. Waterhouse notes that Berry had no specific training in dealing with ‘disturbed’ children. Waterhouse states that since 1974 there had been five internal investigations/reviews of the conduct of specific members of nursing staff at Gwynfa.

In 1986 a male member of staff had head butted a boy patient. The nurse received a final warning (which suggests that he’d done similar things previously) and was transferred to ‘another hospital’ for adults. Probably the North Wales Hospital, presumably so he could head butt patients there.

In 1991 an investigation was held into the relationship between a 16 year old girl with a depressive disorder and a 45 year old auxillary nurse, Robert Martin Williams. We are told that the investigation began after a ‘letter’ was found, but staff were unable to encourage the girl to supply details of Williams’s activities. I wonder how hard they tried. Waterhouse notes that Williams had been previously ‘counselled’ (!) regarding his behaviour towards patients after other staff members raised concerns about him. He denied an unspecified ‘offence’ and resigned. Waterhouse goes on to explain that in 1996 the girl told the police that Williams had actually raped her twice. Waterhouse refers to a ‘highly incriminating letter’ which he had seen himself. Williams was charged with two counts of rape and in March 1997 was convicted at Mold Crown Court of both offences and sentenced to six years in prison. I note that like many other children at Gwynfa this girl had not been in care, so could not even be dehumanised and dishonoured like so many of the ‘troublesome’ young people in the children’s homes who were abused. Neither was she ‘disturbed’ or ‘maladjusted’ – even Gwynfa described her as ‘depressed’. So a 16 year old girl with depression was raped twice by a member of staff. And nothing happened until some years later when there was a major police investigation into the care of children in north Wales. Had there not been that investigation, Clwyd Health Authority and the North Wales Hospital would have sat on those rapes forever. Waterhouse notes that the girl who had been raped ‘did not feel able’ to use the complaints system. No-one asked her why. Of course, readers who have read my earlier posts will know that by the time that this teenager ‘did not feel able’ to use the complaints system, I had used that system and I had used it to raise concerns about, among other things, Dr Dafydd Alun Jones’s conduct towards female patients and staff at the North Wales Hospital physically assaulting patients. I got nowhere and interestingly enough at the time that this girl was being raped in Gwynfa, I was being dragged through the High Court by Sir Robert Francis QC – at the behest of psychiatrists in north Wales – who was demanding my imprisonment for ‘harassment’ because I was writing numerous letters alleging that patients were being criminally abused in the north Wales mental health services (see post ‘The Sordid Role Of Sir Robert Francis QC’).

But it transpired that there had been many other allegations of abuse by children who had been patients at Gwynfa and that by July 1993 it was clear that there was a problem with allegations of a ‘serious nature’. It was about this time that I was receiving letters from Laurie Wood, the former manager of the mental health services in Clwyd who then became Chief Exec of the Clwydian Community NHS Trust, refusing to reopen my own complaint and reassuring me that he was certain that no-one else was having the sort of experiences that I had – although of course at the same time maintaining that nobody had behaved improperly in my case at all. In July 1993 Detective Superintendent Ackerley from the North Wales Police was invited to conduct a fuller investigation into Gwynfa. That’s the North Wales Police whose officers conspired with Dr Dafydd Alun Jones to unlawfully arrest people and detain them in the North Wales Hospital – the same North Wales Police who returned children to children’s homes after they’d run away to escape the beatings and the buggery, the same North Wales Police who returned patients to Denbigh if they ran off even though they were being held there illegally. The same North Wales Police who employed Gordon Anglesea, who was abusing boys in care himself.

Waterhouse intriguingly tells us that ‘at some stage’ the NHS Trust ‘became aware’ that seven former patients had made serious allegations to the police against a member of staff who was still employed at Gwynfa, referred to only as Z. The Trust asked the police to ask the former patients who had made statements for their permission for the Trust to access the statements for internal disciplinary purposes. Only four patients gave permission. Waterhouse simply observes that because of this the NHS Trust had to investigate the matter ‘on an incomplete basis’. Ronnie doesn’t ask why the other patients had given statements to the police but wouldn’t co-operate with the Trust. Had they perhaps found themselves repeatedly up in Court after NHS staff made daft allegations about them? Ronnie tells us that the legal advice that the Trust Board received was that the available evidence was insufficient to justify Z’s dismissal. That advice would have come from the same source as the advice to repeatedly arrest me after I made serious complaint – that source being Andrew Park, the bent solicitor from the Welsh Office. Two members of staff were transferred to a day hospital. There’s a familiar pattern here – serious allegations made against a staff member, complaints mysteriously dropped or not followed up, the member of staff at the centre of the allegations transferred to work somewhere else with equally vulnerable people. Exactly what happened when I complained about the SEN Stephen Rose, employed at the North Wales Hospital, assaulting me. No investigation, but Rose relocated to Park Lane Hospital – an institution notorious for staff abusing patients. Regarding Z, it gets worse. Yet further allegations against Z were made at a later date and Z was finally suspended in July 1997. In March 1999 the CPS stated that a prosecution was not justified.

Altogether 27 people told the Waterhouse Tribunal that they had been abused at Gwynfa. 23 people complained about incidents between 1974-1987, 10 of them named Z. At the time that Ronnie submitted his Report, the police investigation into Z was continuing. Ronnie states that it would be ‘inappropriate to make any further comment’ because he had not heard any evidence from Z and Z’s ‘legal position was not clear to the Tribunal’. So even with all those lawyers, the team of paralegals and administrators from the Welsh Office and his numerous advisors, poor old Ronnie – a former High Court judge – couldn’t clarify Z’s legal position. So no more was said. Not that Ronnie had reached his zenith with this comment – he admitted that although there were allegations of sexual abuse against four members of staff, ‘they do not suggest a pattern of such abuse among staff’. His rationale for this thinking was bizarre – it was because each allegation of sexual abuse was made about a different member of staff, on a different occasion, by a different patient. Which suggests to me that there was one hell of a problem – particularly as one member of staff was already in prison for the double rape of a patient and dear old Z was at the centre of a police investigation. It’s also highly likely that there were many more allegations that no-one ever got to hear about. We learn from Ronnie’s Report that a 13 year old girl was indecently assaulted but did not report it at the time and that a 17 year old male patient was buggered in 1979/80, but that this allegation didn’t come to light until the police interviewed the complainant in 1992 – in 1993 there was a decision not to prosecute.

Ronnie didn’t just hear about sexual abuse at Gwynfa. Again and again bizarre stories – bizarre but all too believable to those of us who know how the mental health services routinely conducted themselves – were related by former patients. A boy who was described as ‘behaving disruptively’ at a private school in Llandudno was sent to Gwynfa – but he thought that he was going into hospital to have his heart investigated! Who told him this cock and bull story? And what was the nature of his ‘disruptive behaviour’ at the private school in Llandudno? Which school was it? We know that people were diverted into the mental health services if they crossed the paths of certain people or questioned abuses – is it possible that something was going on in the school in Llandudno that shouldn’t have been? This boy told Waterhouse that his year at Gwynfa had been a ‘waste of time’, that he hadn’t been helped, that the education at Gwynfa was inadequate, but he also told of two very serious assaults from male members of staff. On one occasion, a harness was made of rubber rings and he was yanked up on a door using this contraption – it was incredibly painful but he was told by the ‘nurses’ who did this to ‘take it in good spirit’. On another occasion he was dropped onto the ground outside from a first floor window. Each of these incidents was constructed as being the patient’s own fault. As every assault on a mental health patient in north Wales always is.

A girl felt so uneasy about Z that she told her (female) social worker that she didn’t like him. The social worker told her not to be silly, he was nice. The girl persisted with her concerns about Z – the social worker stated that she was ‘seeking attention’. Again this is depressingly familiar – over the last thirty years, I and others consistently raised concerns about staff who were doing things that they shouldn’t have been doing. We too were fobbed off constantly with idiocies – I lost count of the number of times that I was told that Dafydd Alun Jones had ‘helped people’, that ‘other patients like him’ or even, yes, that he was ‘nice’. He wasn’t, he was/is a fucking criminal who was abusing patients and everyone knew it. What chance did CHILDREN stuck in a residential unit for months have against staff who were groping them, raping them and throwing them out of windows? Ronnie admits that one witness at the Tribunal remembered being physically assaulted by Z – Ronnie simply states ‘we say no more about it’. Other former patients remembered being gagged with elastoplasts that were then ripped off, hit on the head with a pool cue, hung out of a window, regularly assaulted and beaten up. One witness described how a dog collar was put on him and he was led around on a lead – he was seven years old. One former patient compared Gwynfa to a prison. Which it was, but probably one with fewer safeguards.

Waterhouse details two ‘therapies’ that were used at Gwynfa. ‘Pyjama therapy’ – where the children had their clothes removed and could only wear pyjamas. (I witnessed an adult male patient subjected to this at Ysbyty Gwynedd in the early 1990s.) But Gwynfa also had ‘bed therapy’ – children’s clothes AND pyjamas were removed from them so they were forced to remain in bed. Presumably naked under the covers with a bunch of rapists ‘caring’ for them. Sexual assault therapy could well have followed.

Despite the graphic accounts of the daily abuse that so many children endured, Ronnie decided that ‘the picture we have received of conditions at Gwynfa has been incomplete’ and ‘we have not attempted to reach detailed conclusions about the regime at Gwynfa’. Ronnie does have a bit of advice concerning Gwynfa though. He notes that it was staffed by male adult psychiatric nurses with no experience of child care, so he recommended that there should be more social services involvement, with trained residential care staff being introduced and that senior staff should have qualifications in residential child care. So instead of being assaulted by a bunch of former Denbigh nurses, the children could be assaulted by the sort of children’s social care staff that the rest of Ronnie’s Report was concerned with.

It seems that the abuses at Gwynfa only came to light when in Sept 1991 a former Gwynfa patient appeared on TV and a police investigation followed. Clwyd Health Authority reacted by ordering an investigation and a report from Irene Train, who was at the time of the Waterhouse Inquiry, Divisional General Manager (North) of Clwyd’s Community and Mental Health Unit. Irene featured in a previous blog post ‘It’s A Piece Of Cake’. In 1990 after Stephen Norris the Officer in Charge of a children’s home called Cartrefle had been convicted of sexual assault, the ACPC (Area Children’s Protection Committee) was asked to conduct a review. Irene Train was Vice-Chair – and then Chair – of the ACPC. She was at that time Director of Public Health Nursing in Clwyd Health Authority. So Irene was someone else who was in a very senior position, was very well-networked and even Chaired the ACPC – who was just so taken aback by all the allegations of violence and rape that emerged after people started appearing on TV and in the press. Irene presented ‘written evidence’ to the Tribunal informing Ronnie that: there was now ‘confidential free telephone facilities for patients to obtain individual counselling’; the development of child advocacy services; and that patients were informed of their right to have their complaints dealt with by the Chief Exec and a right of appeal to a non-executive director of the NHS Trust. Right – there is no confidentiality in the north Wales mental health services, the entire system works on gossip and rumour; hardly any of the ‘counsellors’ employed know anything about counselling, nearly all of them have been ‘trained’ by the same lame abusive idiots that have spawned the disaster in the first place; the ‘advocacy’ services positively ensure that no competent ‘advocate’ is ever employed and most of the ‘advocates’ are ‘service users’ themselves who are dependent upon the system and far too frightened to challenge it; the Chief Exec was Laurie Wood, who was ultimately responsible for the abusive services and who was very much part of the problem; a non-executive director of the NHS Trust will not step on anyone’s toes. So I really don’t think that Irene Train’s bright ideas were ever going to stop any future patients being abused.

So the children at Gwynfa were raped and assaulted and as with the children in care I expect that many – if not most of them – will be dead by now. What of those responsible for the ‘service’? Such as Dr Barry Kiehn, the child psychiatrist specifically responsible for the ‘therapeutic community’ that was Gwynfa? Barry Kiehn is now retired and living the life of Riley. His twitter feed informs us that he lives in Colwyn Bay (as so many featured in the wrongdoing detailed on this blog do) and he enjoys opera, classical music, ballet, art, ceramics, travel, languages, science and singing. How did such a cultured man stand by whilst his young patients were sexually assaulted and battered by a bunch of ageing thugs who had been transferred from the North Wales Hospital Denbigh? What about Irene, the most senior nurse responsible for those thugs? Irene is now retired but she keeps busy. In 2003-2004 she was Secretary for St David’s Promotions Ltd – that’s the fundraising bit of St David’s Hospice. The St David’s Hospice in Llandudno that gave the former manager of the Hergest Unit Alun Davies a job as Chief Exec after his corruption and mismanagement left the Hergest Unit a heap of smouldering rubble; the St David’s Hospice who, once Davies finally went, gave the dreadful Trystan Pritchard a job as Chief Exec – the Trystan who was responsible for lies, deceit and mismanagement when he worked at Ysbyty Gwynedd, the Trystan with Masonic connections who was on excellent terms with the regime of managers previously employed by the North West Wales NHS Trust. Please see post ‘The CEOs Of St David’s Hospice’ for more information. In 2006 however, Irene Train turned up as a company director, along with a Howard Geoffrey Train and a number of other people with the surname ‘Train’, of an outfit called H Domestic Agency Ltd. H Domestic Agency’s address is 99 Blimco Grove, Cambridge, should anyone wish to contact Irene and ask her a few questions about her glorious career in Clwyd. As for Nigel Mannering Berry, the pig who was ‘Principal Nursing Officer’ at Gwynfa, who oversaw the brutality and the abuse after gaining so much ‘experience’ at Denbigh – well he lives in Colwyn Bay as well. Specifically at 40 Yerburgh Avenue, Colwyn Bay, LL29 7NB. But guess what? Between 1993-94 Nigel was a Director of Colwyn Bay Masonic Hall! Ah, the Masons that never provided any sort of protective network at all for anyone involved in the North Wales Child Abuse Scandal – we know that because Ronnie confirmed in his Report that there was no evidence of Masonic links and so did Stephen Crabb, who was Secretary of State for Wales when the cover-up that covered up Ronnie’s cover-up, ie. the Macur Review, was published. I invite Ronnie and Stephen Crabb to do what I’ve just done, google Nigel Mannering Berry and read that very long list of names that are associated with the Colwyn Bay Masonic Hall – and that’s just the Colwyn Bay contingent. And if they’ve got time Ronnie and Stephen can google dear old Mrs Train and her former associates at St David’s Hospice – they’re all there, the elderly negligent fuckwits from yesteryear who brought the north Wales NHS to it’s knees.

There is of course one elderly negligent fuckwit who was in a senior management role with the Clwyd mental health services whilst horrors were being perpetuated at Gwynfa who has not yet been put out to grass. That is Dr Peter Higson, the current Chairman of the Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board. Let me remind you Higson: a 16 year old girl with depression raped twice; a 17 year old boy buggered; a seven year old boy fitted with a dog collar and led around on a lead; children dropped out of windows; hit with pool cues; regularly assaulted and beaten.

Waterhouse makes an passing observation regarding Gwynfa that I find telling. That most of the patients there were actually from Gwynedd – and that Barry Kiehn was categorised as a child psychiatrist employed by Gwynedd Health Authority. So it was those fine upstanding Top Doctors from Gwynedd who were referring children to a ‘hospital’ where they were beaten and raped.

Do all these people not owe the world an explanation? Or am I just being silly because they’re nice?

 

 

 

More Post-Waterhouse Glittering Careers

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

 

 

‘Ain’t Nothing Clean’ – Not Even The Welsh Calvinistic Methodists

My post ‘It’s A Piece Of Cake’ detailed the findings of the Jillings Report – or at least those findings that anyone was allowed to read, what with the Jillings Report being so heavily redacted by the time that it was eventually published. The Jillings Report investigated sexual abuse in children’s homes in Clwyd and in that post I provided a few details regarding the managers of Clwyd Social Services during the period under investigation, 1974-1995. The over-riding impression that one is left with from the Jillings Report is how clueless the managers all were and the enormous degree of cronyism involved in appointments. I thought that I’d have a look at what the Waterhouse Report said about it all and I also decided to do a bit of research on the most senior figures in Clwyd County Council – and their fate after they had been outed as presiding over the biggest child abuse scandal in the history of the UK.

Ronald Waterhouse introduces his discussion regarding the management of Clwyd County Council by observing that as Clwyd County Council ceased to exist on 1 April 1996 – a local government reorganisation most conveniently occurred just as John Jillings submitted his report – and stating that the Council ‘could not therefore be represented before us’, mentioning this as one of the many difficulties that the Waterhouse Tribunal was faced with. The successor authorities were represented – by the crooked former Gwynedd County Council lawyer Ron Evans and counsel Merfyn Hughes QC – but they didn’t purport to present a case on behalf of Clwyd County Council. Ronnie states that it was ‘left to the Tribunal itself to conduct the investigation…and to seek out appropriate witnesses’. So that’s why Ronnie did such a hopeless job – he had to do it all himself, supported only by the other two stooges who completed his panel, the Treasury Solicitor’s team, the lawyers representing the Welsh Office, the team of paralegals and administrators from the Welsh Office dispatched by the Welsh Office, Gerard Elias QC, Ernest Ryder, Gregory Treverton-Jones, Ron Evans and Merfyn Hughes QC.

Clwyd County Council was formed in 1974. It’s first Director of Social Services was Emlyn Evans (1974-80) and his Deputy Director was Gledwyn Jones. Neither of them had a specialist background in child care matters. Evans had previously been the Director of Social Services for Denbighshire from Jan 1971 and for Flintshire from approx April 1973. So he knew the patch well and he’ll also have known Dr Dafydd Alun Jones and the lobotomist Dr T. Gwynne Williams who were unlawfully banging up any awkward customers in the North Wales Hospital. Jillings observed that serious child abuse had probably been happening in the region for decades and my own inquiries suggest that is almost certainly true… When Evans retired in 1980, he was succeeded by Gledwyn, who remained as Director of Social Services until 1991. It was acknowledged that there were serious problems in the Social Services Dept before Evans retired and an internal investigation, the O and M Report (by Clwyd’s Organisation and Methods dept), reported in Feb 1980. The report was highly critical and described the sorry state of the management of child care services.

When Gledwyn was appointed Director, John Coley was appointed his Deputy Director. Coley had been the Assistant Director of Dorset Social Services since 1974 and after he left Clwyd in Feb 1984 he was appointed Senior Deputy Director of Tayside Regional Council. John Jevons then succeeded Coley as Deputy Director. Jevons had no experience in child care either, although he had previously spent ten years as the Social Development Manager in the Milton Keynes Development Corporation. In 1991 Jevons became Director of Clwyd Social Services when Gledwyn retired. One of the managers beneath Gledwyn and Jevons with responsibility for children’s services was John Llewellyn-Thomas, who came to Clwyd in Feb 1984 from the Regional Planning Unit for Wales. Prior to that he had been a probation officer. Llewellyn-Thomas was initially responsible for residential homes for children and then in 1986 his responsibility was widened to cover virtually everything concerning children’s services. In April 1991 he was appointed Assistant Director of Children and Family Services and after that he became Director of Social Services for Torfaen.

Waterhouse noted that the Deputy Directors in the 80s were ‘not closely involved in children’s services’, although Coley had a ‘specific role to play in Clwyd County Council’s function as an adoption agency’. However, Coley ‘cannot recall any complaints or allegations of abuse in respect of children in care reaching him’. Jevons, when he was an Assistant Director, had an input into policy ‘mainly in respect of mental handicap and mental illness’ and as Deputy Director he retained those responsibilities and took on others, but continued to be heavily involved in mental health strategy. Gledwyn was concentrating his energies on children’s services. So Jevons was partly responsible for Dafydd and the lobotomist being given free reign then – who were discrediting and imprisoning people who had complained about being molested whilst in care. Jevons attended Senior Management Team meetings but couldn’t remember any matter of complaint relating to the children’s services being discussed at any of the meetings.

In the 80s, the middle managers responsible for children in residential care were Geoffrey Wyatt and Raymond Powell (Assistant Directors of Social Services) and John Llewellyn-Thomas (Principal Officer for Children from 1984). Until 1987 Gordon Ramsey was responsible for placements and from Jan 1988, Michael Barnes was directly responsible for children’s homes.

Waterhouse described ‘turmoil’ prevailing in Clwyd Social Services as the 1980s drew to a close and they prepared for the implementation of the Children’s Act 1989 and the NHS and Community Care Act 1990. The NHS and Community Care Act certainly caused them traumas because the North Wales Hospital Denbigh was stuffed full with people being held there unlawfully, most of whom should never have been there in the first place and Dafydd, Peter Higson, Laurie Wood et al knew that they were going to have some explaining to do when that place was emptied. And of course there was the matter of the patients who had disappeared and those that Gwynne had more than likely killed whilst he was lobotomising them. In 1990 there was a major reorganisation in Clwyd Social Services and it was split into three divisions on a geographical basis. Waterhouse makes a point of saying that he’s not going to enter into details about this, so that reorganisation must have been hiding a multitude of sins. After the reorganisation, John Jevons was promoted to Director and the position of Deputy Director was dispensed with – there were instead three new Divisional Directors.

Geoffrey Wyatt retired in Sept 1992 – he had been responsible for the registration and inspection of children’s homes. John Llewllyn-Thomas left Clwyd in April 1991 – he had been a member of the Welsh Office’s working party regarding preparation for the Children Act. During this time Clwyd had one of the highest proportions of children placed in residential care in Wales. In Jan 1992, Jackie Thomas was appointed as Principal Officer (Children). She only lasted in this post until April 1994 and then left as a result of a long term illness.

So that lot were the people screwing up big time on the ground. What of the most senior people in the Council as a whole, the Chief Executive and the County Secretary? The first Chief Exec of Clwyd was T.M. Hadyn Rees. Hadyn Rees had been around for donkeys years. He originated from Swansea and in 1947 was appointed as assistant solicitor to Caernarvon County Council. The following year he went to Flint County Council in a similar role and became the County Clerk in 1967. He retired in 1977. Mervyn Phillips succeeded Hadyn as Chief Exec and stayed in the post until 1992. He had been Deputy Chief Exec from the creation of Clwyd County Council. Phillips was a solicitor who was a law graduate of Liverpool University. When Mervyn stood down in 1992, he was succeeded by Roger Davies. Davies was a solicitor and an Oxford graduate who in 1977 became Director of Legal Services in Clwyd, was County Secretary from 1980 and then Deputy Chief Exec from 1982 (although he was still usually referred to as the County Secretary). He became Chief Exec in Aug 1992 and remained as such until Clwyd’s dissolution. So between them, Hadyn Rees, Mervyn Phillips and Roger Davies knew that region very well indeed and had been at the top of the tree for a very long time. Yet none of them took responsibility for anything concerning the rampant abuse of children in care in Clwyd and the operation of a gang of paedophiles involved in organised crime.

Roger Davies serviced/attended the Social Services Committee and Mervyn Phillips shouldered the responsibility firmly onto Roger and Gledwyn, the Director of Social Services. Waterhouse stated that Phillips ‘relied heavily upon the Director of Social Services and the County Secretary’. Yet Phillips only met Gledwyn about twice a month, although he spoke to Roger almost daily. Waterhouse claims that Phillips ‘learned for example of the convictions of social services staff when they occurred through the Director or County Secretary and similarly of the request made by Mr Justice Mars-Jones for an investigation’. He also maintains that the ‘failure to inform the Chief Exec of criticism of management and practices of the department was part of a pattern of deliberate non-disclosure’, which resulted in ‘ineffective monitoring’ by the Chief Exec. It seems that there were a number of damning internal reports concerning the social services dept of which it is claimed that Phillips knew nothing. So Waterhouse believed that Phillips knew nuzzing, even when staff of Clwyd were appearing in the media being carted off to prison for abusing the children in their care. I shall explore how likely this was later on. However it was admitted that when Gledwyn was in hospital in 1987, Jevons did discuss Mars-Jones’s request with Phillips and Phillips decided that Roger Davies would carry out the investigation. Jevons himself claimed that when he became Director of Social Services in April 1991 he received no guidance from Phillips or Davies regarding which matters to refer to the Chief Exec – this was not long before Phillips’s retirement and just before the major police investigation into child abuse in Clwyd. Waterhouse summarises Phillips’s management style by stating that ‘Phillips did not offer regular discussions or supervision and did not expect to be informed of day to day business’. Whilst he mildly admonishes Mervyn Phillips et al for taking their eye off the ball, the person who comes in for the most serious condemnation was one of the people with least clout, Iorwerth Thomas, who was ‘a striking example of a person who never shouldered his assigned responsibility for the children’s services’. Unlike those highly paid law graduates who were also solicitors who had been employed in the system for decades and who of course had no idea at all of what was going on.

Waterhouse notes at one point in the Report that between 1977-1980 Emlyn Evans ‘thought that Arnold was living up to his high commendation by the Home Office’. This is a reference to Matt Arnold who was the head of the monstrous Bryn Estyn home, which was one of the most intense centres of paedophile activity, as well as being a place of very great physical cruelty. A number of staff from Bryn Estyn alone were convicted of the sexual abuse of children, the worst offender being Peter Howarth. Howarth had known Arnold since the mid 1960s and they had both worked together at an approved school in Gateshead, where there were allegations that Howarth had sexually abused boys. It was Arnold who brought Howarth to Bryn Estyn with him when Arnold was appointed head. So the Home Office had ‘highly commended’ Arnold – of course until 1974, Bryn Estyn was run by the Home Office. A number of the staff who were eventually convicted of child abuse had worked at Bryn Estyn whilst it was run by the Home Office. That would have been the Home Office under Ted Heath. Gledwyn Jones expressed a similarly high opinion of Arnold. Raymond Powell (Assistant Director, Children In Residential Care) between 1974-89 held the same opinion of Arnold. Powell claimed that the atmosphere at Bryn Estyn was ‘always good’ and that the ‘boys seemed to be happy’. The boys who were constantly running away because they were being physically injured and repeatedly molested. Waterhouse notes that Geoffrey Wyatt, Arnold’s line manager, was faced with great difficulty – it was admitted that Arnold did whatever he wanted, ‘felt able to approach the Director of Social Services directly when he chose to do so’ and that Arnold was ‘wrongly permitted to run Bryn Estyn as his own fiefdom’. Waterhouse also mentions that Arnold earned ‘substantially more’ than Wyatt.

Shouldn’t Ronnie’s antennae at least have twitched at this point? Arnold is out of control, his line manager can’t reign him in, Arnold is paid SUBSTANTIALLY MORE than his line manager and he’s got a hot line to the Director of Social Services. Furthermore he was ‘highly commended’ by the Home Office and was running a home for them – a home where boys were being molested by a paedophile ring. A ring that those boys alleged contained a number of public figures and politicians… One of the boys who dared complain was transferred to Neath Farm School, a place that had an even worse reputation than Bryn Estyn – the other boys were known to have feared that the same thing would happen to them if they complained. Sounds as though that all this could be connected with the putative Westminster paedophile ring…

Regarding the bigwigs at the top of Clwyd County Council who had not a clue that children were being abused, that is T.M. Hadyn Rees, Mervyn Phillips and Roger Davies:

Hadyn Rees died in 1995 and his obituary in the ‘Independent’ was revealing. It described Hadyn Rees as having spent ‘a lifetime in public service in Wales’ and that he lobbied for the setting up of Mold Law Courts, which made the town the principal legal centre in north Wales. Hadyn Rees also campaigned after Thatcher’s policies devastated industry on Deeside and Shotton, especially after the steel works closed down. He was said to have ‘immersed himself in the battle to bring in new employment’ and his activities led to the establishment of Deeside Industrial Park. So somehow he had a lot of clout in high places. One obituary stated that ‘his battles with the Welsh Office to secure parity with south Wales when discussions of Gov’t funding was discussed became something of a legend – and won him wide respect’. So this solicitor who had been working in north Wales since the late 1940s and who oversaw a Council whose children’s homes were rife with paedophile activity had a lot of power at the Welsh Office. The Welsh Office who ignored complaints about the paedophile gang that was operating in the social services that Hadyn Rees ran, the Welsh Office who knew that the mental health services in the region – which were banging up the former residents of children’s homes – were involved in criminal activities and who used their own crooked lawyer Andrew Park to conceal this. But guess what – Hadyn was clerk to the North Wales Police Authority between 1967-77. The North Wales Police who were accused of failing to take action against the paedophile gang and who employed Gordon Anglesea as an officer, who was eventually imprisoned for abusing boys in care in north Wales. Upon retirement Hadyn Rees became a magistrate in Mold and then in 1985 became Chairman of the Magistrates in Mold. That will have been as useful as his stint with the North Wales Police Authority. Of course, one of the biggest movers and shakers that there was in north Wales at that time, Lord Lloyd Tyrell-Kenyon, was also a member of the North Wales Police Authority. He was the father of Thomas Tyrell-Kenyon, who in 1979 was involved in an embarrassing incident after having sex with a teenage boy who was in the care of Clwyd Social Services. Please see post ‘Y Gwir Yn Erbyn Y Byd’.

Hadyn had his fingers in a lot more pies than law n order though. He was Chairman of the Welsh Water Authority 1977-82; a member of the Severn Barrage Committee 1978-81; a member of the National Water Council 1977-82 and a part-time member of BSC (Industry) Ltd 1979-83, which is the name that British Steel formerly went under. But didn’t Hadyn battle so hard for the people of Clwyd when Thatcher shut the steel works down??? Hadyn however seems to be best known for Mold’s crowning glory – Theatr Clwyd. It is acknowledged by one and all that Theatr Clwyd was a result of Hadyn’s vision and it was even opened by HM the Queen in 1976. Hadyn was a member of the Welsh Arts Council 1968-77 as well, so that might have loosened a few purse strings even if the gay brothels staffed by children in care didn’t. Like so many others who seemed to be connected with the business of concealing the abuse of children in care in north Wales, Hadyn Rees was a member of the Gorsedd of the Bards.

Mervyn Phillips succeeded Hadyn as Chief Exec. Mervyn is a man of many good deeds as well. Mervyn is best known for being the first Chairman of Nightingale House Hospice in Wrexham. Nightingale House started as a day ward in Wrexham Maelor Hospital and in an interview for the Daily Post Mervyn explained that ‘I was coming up for retirement in 1992 [just when the police were investigating the abuse of children in the care of his County Council] but I was approached to ask if I could help raise funds to set up the hospice’. Mervyn was given one hell of a task – he was asked to raise £2.5 million in order to open the hospice, but he did it remarkably quickly. Building started in 1994 but Mervyn seemed to have found the speediest builders in Wales and it was completed and opened in 1995. Mervyn explained that the money was ‘raised through donations and people involved in health care’. Now I don’t think that Mervyn raised £2.5 million by rattling a tin in Wrexham town centre but I do know that a lot of people involved in ‘health care’ in north Wales are very dishonest indeed and concealed the paedophile gang that operated in the children’s homes. I wonder if Merv persuaded them to stump up and if they did I wonder which budget the dosh for the ‘donations’ came from.

Mervyn is a busy bee though. Companies House data reveals that Mervyn is a director of the Clwyd Fine Arts Trust; was a director of the Bodelwyddan Castle Trust (resigned Jan 2017); was a director of the Wrexham Hospital and Cancer Support Centre Foundation [the original name of Nightingale House Hospice] (resigned May 2014); was a director of Gladstone’s Library (resigned 2005); was a director of the Welsh Calvinistic Methodist Assurance Trust (resigned 2005); was a director of Nightingale House Lottery Ltd (resigned 2001); was a director of Nightingale House Promotions Ltd (resigned Feb 2001); was a director of the European Centre for Training and Regional Co-Operation (resigned Feb 1999); was a director of Clwydfro (resigned March 1994); was a director of the Institute for Welsh Affairs (resigned June 1993). There is also a reference on the internet to Mervyn being involved with the Flying North Derbyshire Tinnitus Support Group of all things – along with David Owen, the Chief Constable of the North Wales Police who led the force when it investigated abuse in children’s homes whilst Mervyn was Chief Exec. There was a lot of people who thought that Owen should not have led that investigation because allegations had been made that his own officers had been involved with the abuse. But Owen refused to appoint an outside officer to lead the investigation and the Home Secretary at the time refused to intervene regarding Owen investigating his own force either.

Mervyn Phillips also oversaw the redevelopment of Tyddyn Street Church, Mold in June 2012. The dosh for this came from Cadwyn Council, which provided £14,823 from the Flintshire Key Fund – this money came from the Rural Development Fund for Wales 2001-13, funded by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development and the Welsh Gov’t. (Flintshire was one of the successor authorities when Clwyd was dissolved and Mold is in Flintshire.) I’d love to know who was sitting on the grant awarding committee.

In 1985 Mervyn was appointed to the Registered Homes Tribunal. That was at the time the body responsible for appeals relating to the registration of nursing homes, care homes and children’s homes.

In 1991 Mervyn appeared in the Birthday Honours!

In Aug 1999 Mervyn appeared on the BBC in his capacity as the Secretary of the Presbytarian Church of Wales Social Issues Committee, raising concerns regarding genetic engineering and the use of GM plants. Mervyn referred to ‘the Christian perspectives on the importance of creation and human dignity’. I’m not sure that there was much dignity in being passed around a paedophile ring and having the living daylights beaten out of you if you dared complain, but at least it didn’t involve genetic manipulation.

Interestingly enough, when Gordon Anglesea died in prison last year, there was a big turn out at his funeral, including from the Police Federation and the Methodist Church. I wonder if Mervyn was among the mourners.

Merv’s generosity knows no bounds though. In July 2015, a local paper in north Wales ran an interview with Gethin Davies, who was stepping down after being on the Board of the Llangollen International Eisteddfod after 45 years. Gethin was explaining this history of the Royal International Pavilion and said that in 1958 the Eisteddfod purchased the fields where the Eisteddfod is held for £12,000, which ‘turned out to be a very good piece of business’. Part of the parcel of land was then leased to Denbighshire County Council with the proviso it be available to the Eisteddfod. Gethin went on to say that they ‘later worked out a deal with Clwyd County Council thanks to Mervyn Phillips’ ‘which has also proved crucial’. The Royal International Pavilion was opened by HM the Queen in 1992. Next time the Queen is invited to open something that’s the brainchild of a Chief Exec of Clwyd County Council I suggest that she asks to see all the paperwork. Like Mervyn, Gethin Davies was a solicitor. Gethin read law at Aberystwyth University – as did scores of others named on this blog – and was a partner in GHP Legal in Wrexham. GHP is described as a ‘major sponsor’ of the International Eisteddfod. Gethin is the only person who has ever been Chairman of the International Eisteddfod twice, between 1992-03 and 2013-15. Readers might remember that Ronnie Waterhouse too was involved in the International Eisteddfod and was President, 1994-97.

Mervyn was succeeded as Chief Exec by another solicitor, Roger Davies, an Oxford graduate.  He died in 2013 and his obituary mentioned his ‘great service’ to the public. He retired shortly before Clwyd was dissolved in 1996. Which was probably the only possible path open to him – he had been the Director of Legal Services for Clwyd, then the County Secretary, then the Deputy Chief Exec, then was appointed Chief Exec in the middle of the police investigation into the child abuse. He was never held responsible for what happened either.

I gained a clue as to how no-one at all in Clwyd Council, except for one bottom feeding social worker, was held responsible for the biggest child abuse scandal in the UK when I read the minutes of a meeting of Denbighshire County Council (a successor authority to Clwyd) held on 7 Dec 2010. Councillor D.I. Smith was noted as having offered prayers at the commencement of the meeting. There were references to Councillor H.H. Evans winning the ‘Welsh Local Gov’t Politician Of The Year’ Award and the ‘many other awards’ recently won by the Authority. There were tributes paid to three senior officers who were retiring. One of those was Roger Parry, the Finance Chief, who had started working in (the original)Denbighshire County Council in 1971. One of Roger’s sayings was, it was noted, was ‘struggling on’. The meeting heard how Denbighshire ‘inherited’ ‘enormous debt’ at the establishment of the Unitary Authorities in 1996 (ie. after Clwyd was dissolved) and they ‘did indeed struggle’, but Roger helped turned things around. Roger was described as ‘pretty cool in a crisis’. Roger thanked the Members and the Corporate Director and said ‘in particular’ ‘in the early 1990s all had worked together well when facing problems and it was likely that similar problems would have to be faced in the future and his advice was for all to work together, bury any difficulties to deliver for the Authority’. Roger then warned them all not to touch the balance!

So not only was Clwyd host to the worst case of organised paedophilia in the UK but they’d nicked all the money as well – and not one person has ever been held accountable for any of it because they all stuck together like glue and Roger got them out of it by being cool in a crisis. Rather more cool than the kids who had been abused in Clwyd’s children’s homes who collapsed in Court whilst giving evidence and became so distressed during the Waterhouse Inquiry that Ronnie Waterhouse dismissed them as not being good witnesses. And after he retired he organised the International Eisteddfod which was held in the Pavilion which sounds very much as though it was paid for by some of the money that had disappeared from Clwyd County Council.

Before staff from the North West Wales NHS Trust perjured themselves in an attempt to have me imprisoned, someone sent a memo around asking for ‘more nurses down the police station to make statements please’ (the Angels obliged – scores of them trooped down to the cop shop to lie their arses off and although the case collapsed against me in Court not one of them was prosecuted for perverting the course of justice). Can I appeal for more former employees of Clwyd County Council down the police station please – only unlike nurses employed by Ysbyty Gwynedd they won’t have to lie about serious crime because they bloody well committed it.