The Most Dangerous Man In The World – The Scottish Play

In my post ‘The Most Dangerous Man In The World – Part V’ I discussed how under New Labour even posts in the Treasury were given to people who had in the past been involved in colluding with or concealing organised child sexual abuse or the associated abuses in psychiatry. I also noted that many of these people were women, enabling New Labour to hide under the umbrella of equal opportunities. There was one woman who went from strength to strength after occupying a junior post in the Treasury whilst Gordon was Chancellor whom I did not mention in that post, because she and her network are worthy of a post in themselves. I am referring to Helen Liddell aka Stalin’s Granny.

Liddell was Economic Secretary to the Treasury, 1997-98 – she was succeeded in that post by Patricia Hewitt. I haven’t discovered WHY Liddell acquired the moniker of Stalin’s Granny, but she seems to have been known as such for a long time and has herself made comments which suggests that she revels in the reputation which led to it. Stalin’s Granny is on record as having boasted that Scottish Labour is littered with the bodies of people who had underestimated her. It might be worth readers bearing this reference to dead Scottish Labour politicians in mind whilst reading this post.

Liddell was Labour MP for Monkslands East between 94-97 – and then Airdrie and Shotts, where she remained MP until 2005 until she made way for John Reid. The seat of Monklands East had been held by John Smith – Liddell was elected after Smith died.

Stalin’s Granny might not have made it into the Commons until 1994, but she had been busy in the Labour Party for a very long time before that. Liddell went to Strathclyde University and after graduating worked as an economist and then as Assistant Secretary for the Scottish TUC, 1971-76. We know that people who work for the TUC gain an awful lot of information about health and welfare professionals who abuse their positions and they also know who has done what to conceal sometimes very serious offences.

Liddell was then BBC Scotland economics correspondent, 1976-77. So like everyone at the BBC, she’ll have known about Jimmy Savile – who had a particular fondness for Scotland and owned a house at Glen Coe, which Prince Charles visited on at least one occasion.

Stalin’s Granny was General Secretary of the Scottish Labour Party, 1977-78, at 26 yrs old.

Now Stalin’s Granny was something to do with Neil Kinnock and his team when Kinnock became leader but I haven’t been able to find out what exactly – various books and articles that I’ve read mention Liddell being on the scene and part of his entourage when journalists and bigwigs met Kinnock. Kinnock would certainly have found Liddell useful, particularly if he wanted to  keep the involvement of Labour Councillors and politicians in child abuse quiet, because Helen Liddell was an aide of Robert Maxwell and was known to be close to him. Between 1988-92, she was Corporate Director of Cap’n Bob’s Scottish news interests, namely the Scottish Daily Record and the Sunday Mail – Alastair Campbell worked for the Cap’ns Mirror’s London office between 1982-86. Being a mate of the Cap’n would obviously have given Liddell great power in the rest of the UK as well. Between 1988-92, Alison Taylor, Mary Wynch and I were all making representations to everyone possible about the criminality in north Wales. Former children in care in north Wales were being found dead in suspicious circumstances and in April 1992 five witnesses were killed by a firebomb (see post ‘The Silence Of The Welsh Lambs’). Reports of a paedophile ring in north Wales involving Westminster figures had appeared in the London-based press and Superintendent Gordon Anglesea – who was later jailed for abusing boys in care in north Wales – began a libel action against Private Eye, HTV, the Observer and the Independent On Sunday after they named him as a child abuser. The North Wales Police had begun an investigation into the possible paedophile ring.

When Maxwell went overboard in Nov 1991 and the subsequent scandal blew up about the millions missing from the Mirror’s pension funds, Stalin’s Granny at one point was denying that she had ever worked for him. She obviously felt the same way about working for Neil Kinnock.

An article by Jackie Ashley article in the Guardian in 2003 mentions that Liddell was a supporter of devolution during the years when Callaghan was in Gov’t – Kinnock famously campaigned against devolution in Wales (see post ‘News From Sicily’). Ashley also mentions that Liddell was mates with John Smith and Donald Dewar.

Stalin’s Granny also knew someone else who later became a big name in Blair’s Gov’t – John Reid. They went to school together.

I have found one intriguing reference to Liddell and Kinnock, in Andy McSmith’s book ‘Labour – The Inside Story’. It concerned the appointment of the General Secretary to the Labour Party’s NEC in 1985. According to McSmith, the right of the Labour Party wanted Liddell – she was backed by Roy Hattersley, who knew a lot about organised child abuse himself. The candidate favoured by the left was Larry Whitty. Although Tony Benn and Neil Kinnock loathed each other, they actually joined forces to support Whitty and he was appointed. Whitty remained as General Secretary of the NEC until 1994. I can’t remember the circumstances under which Larry Whitty left that post, but I do remember angry ranting in the New Statesman and other such publications, accusing Blair of ousting Whitty as part of his grand plan to seize total control of the Labour Party.

Larry Whitty is a graduate of St Johns College, Cambridge. He worked for the TUC, 1970-73 and was employed by the GMBUTA, 1973-85. The GMBUTA had lots and lots of members working in health and social care, local gov’t etc. Whitty is described as part of the ‘reforming’ leadership of Kinnock and was involved with the expulsion of Militant. Whitty oversaw the election of John Smith and then Blair as Labour Party leaders. He was European Co-ordinator for the Labour Party, 1994-97. Whitty toddled off to the House of Lords with the paedophiles’ friends in 1996. In 1997 he was appointed Lords Whip re education and foreign affairs. In 1998 Whitty was appointed as a junior Minister at the Dept of Environment, Transport and the Regions and then he was a junior Minister at DEFRA, 01-05. In 2007 he became Chairman of Consumer Focus.

Larry Whitty’s  brother Geoff Whitty was Director of the Institute of Education at London University, 2000-10. The Institute of Education seemed to do very well for itself whilst Blair and Brown were in Gov’t. Geoff Whitty now works at an Australian university, so presumably he knew that the gravy train would be stopping when Labour lost the election.

 

Andy McSmith’s book also provides an interesting anecdote re Kinnock and his Sep 1985 speech to the Labour Party conference in Liverpool, the speech during which he confronted Derek Hatton and the other Militant members of Liverpool City Council. This speech has been constructed by Kinnock’s hagiographers as an example of his ‘oratory’ but it was actually just a rant. Michael Carr MP died at the hands of the Top Doctors because he really did confront Militant (see post ‘News From Sicily’). Kinnock is alive and troughing along with the rest of his family, which suggests that he didn’t ever really put his neck on the line.

McSmith reveals that in the days before the conference Kinnock was on top of the world because he had a Cunning Plan. He was going to take on the NUM with regard to their desire for retrospective legislation to reimburse their funds which had been sequestered by the courts. McSmith maintains that Kinnock knew that he faced almost certain defeat on this issue but considered it a price worth paying for taking on Militant. So Kinnock gave the miners a kick but didn’t say a word about Thatcher’s aide Sir Peter Morrison being involved with a paedophile ring in north Wales – because the Social Service Depts of the inner London Councils like Lambeth, Islington and Camden were also hosting paedophile gangs supplying kids to the Westminster Paedophile Ring. The Lambeth Council of which Peter Mandelson was a member, the Islington Council which was led by Margaret Hodge who backed one Tony Blair for the Labour leadership and also numbered Jack Straw among its members. As for Camden – I need only mention the names Tessa Jowell and John Mills.

 

After her stint at the Treasury, Blair appointed Stalin’s Granny Minister of State in the Scottish Office with responsibility for education and industry, 98-99 and then Minister of State for Trade and Industry, 1999-01. Between 2001-03 Liddell was Secretary of State for Scotland.

Whilst Liddell was Secretary of State for Scotland the Scottish press ran some very hostile articles about her. By this time, Scotland had its own Parliament – Jack McConnell was by now First Minister and Scotland felt that they really did not need a highly paid woman in a grace and favour mansion in Whitehall having any input into their affairs. It was also noted that although the Scottish Parliament had taken over nearly all the functions of the old Scottish Office, the Scottish Office was employing more and more people and costing more and more money. Liddell was flying off around the world on exotic trips in her capacity as Secretary of State, but no-one quite understood why.

In 2003 the post of Scottish Secretary was abolished and the Scottish Office was merged into the Department of Constitutional Affairs.

After this, there were predictions in the media that Liddell would be given a job as a European Commissioner, although that didn’t happen – it was Kinnock and Mandy who bagged those positions. Not that Liddell ended up on benefit – in 2005 she was appointed British High Commissioner to Australia. She remained in post until 2010 when she was given a peerage.

In 1972 Liddell married Alisdair Liddell. Alisdair Liddell featured in my post ‘A Secret And Forbidding Place To Work?’. Alisdair Liddell was Director of Planning in the UK Gov’ts Dept of Health 1994-2000 – I think that Liddell was married to Jenny Abramsky by this time. He resigned after repeatedly clashing with Ministers over policy and subsequently became a Senior Associate at the King’s Fund, Senior Counsel to Bell Pottinger and non-executive Deputy Chair of Healthcare Locums plc. Who said that NHS hospitals were employing locums because of The Cuts (see post ‘The Most Dangerous Man In The World – Part V’) – it was Gov’t policy, their mates were running the companies supplying the agency staff.

Alistair Liddell went to Fettes College and then to Oxford – just like Tony Blair. Liddell was born in 1949, Blair in 1953.

 

In 2013 Stalin’s Granny was appointed a member of the UK Gov’ts ACOBA (Advisory Committee on Business Appointments). This means that Stalin’s Granny is one of those who fails to prevent former Gov’t Ministers and civil servants from accepting lucrative positions in industry which exploit their Gov’t contacts.

In Dec 2016 the Scottish Herald published an article under a headline  which stated that Liddell ‘vows to right wrongs of Catholic Church sex abuse scandal’. It explained that Liddell the ‘veteran fixer’ who was ‘a senior member of Tony Blair’s Cabinet’ had been appointed by the Bishops Conference – the ruling body of the Catholic Church in Scotland – as the Chairwoman of the Independent Review Group to oversee efforts by the Church to deal with abuse survivors and put safeguards in place. Stalin’s Granny was quoted as saying that she would ensure that a ‘light was shone into every corner, that wrongs are righted and in a timely manner’, that the Review Group will contain ‘safeguarding professionals, specialists in evaluation of organisations, a representative of Police Scotland and a canon lawyer’. In other words the people who allowed the en massse abuse of children to happen. Liddell stated that the Group would be ‘transparent and fearless’ and wanted to prove people wrong ‘who think that I cannot be independent as a Catholic’.

Helen – it is not you being a Catholic that is the problem. It is that you were a mate of Robert Maxwell, Neil Kinnock and Tony Blair and helped them to conceal organised child abuse.

Stalin’s Granny’s sense of judgement was evident in a 1998 piece in the Independent, after she demanded the ‘right of reply’ to an Indie leader column about the standing of the Labour Party in Scotland. Helen robustly explained that the Labour Party is Scotland had masses of support and that Blair was truly loved in Scotland, indeed that ‘after every trip by Tony Blair, our morale is boosted’. Blair had recently been on a visit to Balmoral, presumably one of those when Cherie was alleged to have fallen out with Lilibet – wasn’t it on one of the visits to Balmoral that Cherie forgot her contraceptives and Leo was the result?

Helen – how many MPs does the Labour Party have in Scotland at present? You had quite a lot pre-Blair….I think that you now have one.

 

Now let us consider Stalin’s Granny’s two close mates, John Smith and Donald Dewar.

John Smith’s death resulted in Blair becoming leader of the Labour Party and PM. John Smith was immensely popular, was leading Labour higher and higher in the polls and the consensus of opinion was that had he lived, John Smith would have led the Labour Party to victory in 1997. The one thing that nobody expected was his premature death on 12 May 1994. Smith was a moderniser, but he had a cautious approach to reform which was frustrating Blair and Brown.

John Smith went to Glasgow University – he read history, 1956-59 and then law, 1959-62. He joined the Labour Party in 1955 before he went to university. Whilst at university he debated in the Glasgow University Dialectical Society – Smith’s close friend Donald Dewar was a member too – and was also a member of the Glasgow University Union.

In 1963 Smith qualified as a solicitor and in 1967 he became an advocate at the Scottish Bar, during which time he also worked as a libel lawyer for the Daily Record and Sunday Mail.

Smith was elected as the MP for North Lanarkshire at the 1970 General Election. In 1971 he joined the group of Labour MPs led by Roy Jenkins who voted in favour of Britain joining the EEC – other members of the group included Hattersley, Shirl, Dr Death and Bill Rodgers. Smith later sat with all of these MPs in Jim’s Callaghan’s Cabinet. Details of Roy Jenkins, Fattersley, Shirl, Dr Death maintaining their silence despite their knowledge of the organised sexual abuse of children have appeared in previous posts.

Smith became a junior Minister in 1974 under Harold Wilson. Once Callaghan was appointed PM Smith was made a Minister of State at the Privy Council Office, serving with Michael Foot as Lord President of the Council and Leader of the House of Commons. Michael Foot was a Labour MP in south Wales for decades – he undoubtedly will have heard the allegations that people like George Thomas and Leo Abse were abusing children and I bet, like Kinnock, he knew what was going on in north Wales as well; it was concealed by people whom he worked with in Wilson’s and Callaghan’s Gov’ts. I was reading some material about Foot’s wife a few days ago – Jill Craigie – and she told an interviewer that when she first married Foot she knew that he had a reputation for promiscuity so she reassured him that if he had ‘needs’ that did not involve her, she would be quite happy if he made his own arrangements and she wouldn’t ask any questions. Which suggests that it wasn’t simply extra-marital affairs that constituted the putative needs but more exotic sexual tastes. There is also another anecdote involving Michael Foot in which he was alleged to have been approached by a journo with dirt on a member of the Labour Party and Foot reminded the journo that he knew a great deal about the sexual relationships of the proprietor of the newspaper for whom the journo worked and that if this particular scandal hit the press, the activities of the newspaper proprietor would become public knowledge.

While Smith worked with Michael Foot he was able to pilot highly controversial devolution proposals through the Commons.

In Nov 1978 Callaghan appointed Smith Secretary of State for Trade, a position that he retained until the 1979 General Election.

In 1983 boundary changes resulted in John Smith’s constituency becoming Monklands East. In Oct 1983 Smith was Fattersley’s campaign manager for the Labour leadership election. Hattersley lost to Kinnock – and became Deputy Leader of the Party.

In 1987 Smith held Shadow Cabinet positions in Employment, then Trade and Industry and was then appointed Shadow Chancellor by Kinnock.

On 9 Oct 1988 Smith experienced chest pains which were sufficiently severe to cause him to cancel his flight to London and go to Edinburgh Royal Infirmary. He was given an EEG and was told by the attending doctor that ‘whatever it is we don’t think it is your heart’. Smith subsequently suddenly collapsed from a heart attack, was briefly unconscious and after coming round spent three days in intensive care. He left hospital on 20 Oct 1988.

Following his heart attack, John Smith lost three stone and became serious about mountain walking.

After Labour’s unexpected – well unexpected by Kinnock, Mandy et al, the rest of us saw it coming – General Election defeat in April 1992, John Smith was elected Labour leader.

Smith died on 12 May 1994 after suffering a heart attack. Tony Blair was subsequently elected leader of the Labour Party. A by-election in John Smith’s constituency resulted in Stalin’s Granny being elected. I have found a reference to the ‘bitter battle’ in Monkshead in 1994, but no further details…

 

Donald Dewar was a close friend of both Stalin’s Granny and John Smith. Donald Dewar was the inaugral First Minister of Scotland in 1999, the result of the devolution process that John Smith had helped bring about.

Dewar had also studied history and then law at Glasgow University. He was Chair of Glasgow University Labour Club and President of Glasgow University Union. At university, he met not only John Smith but also Menzies Cambell – later leader of the Lib Dems – and Derry Irvine. Dewar later served in Blair’s Cabinet with Irvine, 1997-99, Dewar was Secretary of State for Scotland and Irvine was Lord Chancellor. The atmosphere was rather frosty because although Dewar and Irvine had been friends when young, in 1972 Dewar’s wife Alison left Dewar for Irvine – the Dewars were divorced in 1973. Dewar never remarried and never forgave Derry Irvine either.

After he graduated in 1964, Dewar worked as a solicitor in Glasgow. He joined the Labour Party and in 1966 was elected as the MP for Aberdeen South. Between 1967-69, Dewar was PPS to Tony Crosland, the Education Secretary. Dewar found it difficult to get along with Tony Crosland and later described him as ‘a very odd man’. Tony Crosland was bisexual and had an affair with Roy Jenkins when they were young. Crosland was also close to Ernest Armstrong, former MP for North West Durham and father of Hilary Armstrong, who succeeded her father’s seat and became a member of Blair’s inner circle. Previous posts discussed how Ernest Armstrong would have known about children being abused by paedophiles at Axwell Park Approved School in Gateshead and almost certainly used his friendship with Tony Crosland to keep a lid on it. Two of the people working at Axwell Park School relocated to Bryn Estyn in north Wales in 1973 and established a paedophile ring there. No matter how odd Donald Dewar thought Tony Crosland, his role as Crosland’s PPS would mean that he would know if Crosland was concealing that paedophile ring.

In April 1968 Roy Jenkins proposed Dewar for a Minister of State position, but Dewar was not appointed.

In the 1970 General Election, Dewar lost his seat to Ian Sproat, a Conservative. Whilst Dewar was out of Parliament he hosted a Radio show on Radio Clyde. He also worked as a solicitor, as a Reporter on children’s panels and was involved with Lanarkshire local authority. Dewar became a partner in Ross Harper Murphy in 1975.

Dewar was selected as candidate for the seat of Glasgow Garscadden after his friend Willie Small died unexpectedly. Dewar won the subsequent by-election which was held in April 1978 – his win was seen as halting the rise of the SNP.

In March 1979 Dewar campaigned for a YES vote in the referendum on devolution – Dewar’s side won by a narrow majority but fell short of the 40% required. However the result did contribute to the downfall of Callaghan’s Gov’t in May 1979.

In opposition Dewar was Chairman of the Scottish Affairs Select Committee. When Foot became leader of the Labour Party Dewar was appointed to the front bench as Scottish Affairs spokesman.

In 1981 Dewar was nearly deselected by hard left activists in his constituency. However he hung on and rose through the ranks quickly. He was Shadow Secretary of State for Scotland, 1983-92 whilst Kinnock was leader of the Party. Dewar was Shadow Secretary of State for Social Security, 1992-95, under leader John Smith, then under acting leader Margaret Beckett, then under Blair. When Blair became leader he made Dewar Opposition Chief Whip – so Blair knew that Dewar was able to strong-arm people into doing what he wanted.

At the 1997 General Election, Dewar was re-elected – boundary changes meant that his constituency was now Glasgow Anniesland – and was appointed Secretary of State for Scotland. He worked on creating the Scotland Act. Dewar subsequently stood for the Scottish Parliament and was elected as the MSP for Glasgow Anniesland – so he was MP and MSP for the same constituency.

In 1999 Dewar became leader of the Scottish Labour Party and FM, but in a Coalition Gov’t with the Scottish Lib Dems. The Deputy FM was Jim Wallace, the leader of the Scottish Lib Dems.

In Oct 2000 Donald Dewar had a fall and suffered a brain haemorrhage from which he died in Edinburgh’s Western General Hospital. It was suggested that the haemorrhage was a result of the anti-coagulants  that Donald had been prescribed following a repair to a leaking heart valve that he’d undergone in May 2000. He’d only been leader of the Scottish Labour Party and FM for a year. There wasn’t the outpouring of grief that there had been when John Smith died. But then Derry Irvine and Dewar hated each other – the Derry who was a very, very big mate of Blair’s. The Derry who knew about the paedophile gangs targeting kids in care that absolutely everybody was keeping quiet about, some of the witnesses to which had been murdered. Dewar died nine months after the Waterhouse Report was published, before the gnashing of teeth and claims that it was a huge cover-up had died down.

In 2001 the Daily Telegraph reported that Donald Dewar had left behind more than £2 million in his will and that when his pension and insurance were taken into account it amounted to nearly £3 million. It came as a very big shock to everyone. Dewar had stocks, shares, property, paintings, rare books and personal savings. Almost half of his legacy was from investments, including in Railtrack, Powergen and Thames Water – utilities which had been privatised by the Tories, privatisation which had been fiercely opposed by the Labour Party.

As everybody reeled from the surprise of Dewar’s fortune, people explained that he was a frugal man who only drove a Peugeot and purchased his suits at Marks & Spencer. It was also suggested that perhaps he’d made money when he worked as a solicitor. Dewar only worked as a solicitor for the few years when he wasn’t sitting as an MP. The only solicitors who made millions of pounds over the course of a few years in the 1970s were people like David Napley, whose clients included Jeremy Thorpe and Greville Janner. Furthermore M&S suits aren’t so cheap that people who buy them find themselves millionaires.

After Donald Dewar failed to make a recovery at the hands of the Top Doctors, Henry McLeish became FM of Scotland – but not for very long.

 

Like Donald Dewar, Jim Wallace the Deputy FM was also a lawyer, but Wallace was a barrister. He was a student at Downing College, Cambridge and then read law at Edinburgh University. He graduated in 1977 and worked in a legal practice in Edinburgh. Wallace joined the Liberals in the early 70s- whilst Jeremy Thorpe was the leader of the Liberal Party.

Wallace was nominated as the Liberal candidate for Orkney and Shetland in 1983 when the seat was vacated by Jo Grimmond. He won the seat in June 1983 and retained it until 2001. Wallace was also MSP for Orkney, 1999-07 and leader of the Scottish Lib Dems, 1992-05.

Jim Wallace’s constituency  made headlines in 1991 when the Orkney Satanic Abuse Scandal exploded. Some very odd things had been happening on Orkney but the world woke up in Feb 1991 when police, social workers, people from Royal Scottish Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children as well as legal authorities from Scotland’s most senior Sheriff carried out pre-dawn raids on houses in South Ronaldsey and removed nine children from their families and flew them to locations on the Scottish mainland on the grounds that their parents and others on Orkney were Satanists.

The background to the case stretched back to 1986 when the father of one family on Orkney had been imprisoned for abusing one of his children. Everybody presumed that this was a very unfortunate one-off until some years later social workers and police removed more children from families on the same island – two of the children taken into care were told that their mum was dead. Local people were outraged at what had happened and began a campaign to have the children returned – it would be six years before the last of those children were returned to their parents.

It was the children of those who had dared campaign on behalf of their neighbours who were removed in Feb 1991. The house of the Island’s Minister the Rev Morris MacKenzie was also raided and various items seized. Extraordinary allegations were levelled at the Rev MacKenzie and the parents of the children – that they had been indulging in full blown Satanic rituals, whilst naked of course, in various outdoor locations on South Ronaldsey. Even the obvious reasons as to why this would be highly unlikely – such as South Ronaldsey being bloody freezing in winter, far too cold to spend hours outside starkers worshipping Satan and the fact that South Ronaldsey has  a complete lack of features such as trees and hills, so even if the Minister and his mates were outside freezing their knackers off worshipping Satan they would be visible to half the island. It cut no ice with the Experts  – they were absolutely convinced that there were devil worshippers on South Ronaldsey and what’s more the worshipping involved children.

The case came to Court in April. Sheriff David Kelbie dismissed the case as ‘fatally flawed’ and was clearly aghast that anyone could have believed such nonsense. The children were returned to their parents in the same month. However, the Reporter appealed against Sheriff Kelbie’s dismissal of the case and in June 1991 the appeal was upheld by another Court, who was highly critical of David Kelbie. However the Reporter took the view that the publicity surrounding the case had been severely compromising and the application was abandoned.

The seized objects returned to the islanders included a videotape of an episode of Blackadder and a model aeroplane that the children had made from two pieces of wood – which social workers had described as ‘a cross’. Rev MacKenzie was asked to sign for the return of ‘three masks, two hoods, one black cloak’, but refused to sign until the inventory was altered to read ‘three nativity masks, two academic hoods, one priest’s robe’.

An Inquiry into the matter Chaired by Lord Clyde published its Report in Oct 1992. Lord Clyde was high critical of the police, social workers, Orkney Islands Council and particularly condemned the social workers’ methods, training and judgment. Liz McLean – the social worker who had led the interviews with the children – had previously been involved in the Rochdale Satanic Abuse Scandal which had resulted in children being removed from their homes amidst farcical allegations which were later found to have no substance, was harshly criticised by Lord Clyde and had also been criticised in another investigation in Ayrshire.

In 1996 four families accepted compensation and an apology.

In 2006, by which time all the children involved were adults, some of them spoke publicly. They described incredibly distressing experiences and one of them spoke at length about how aggressive, intimidating and manipulative Liz McLean was. The former children described being constantly interrogated and asked the same questions repeatedly until the ‘right’ answers were given. One young woman told of how she was asked to draw a picture of what the adults had been up to with her – she was completely nonplussed so she drew a picture of a pony. She was told to draw another picture so she did – but that wasn’t satisfactory either. Eventually the interviewing social worker drew a picture herself and told the girl to copy it.

One of the social workers involved, Janet Chisholm, refused to apologise and maintained that the social workers’ suspicions were correct and that the denials of the children was simply more evidence that they were Keeping Secrets, the Secrets in question being Satanic Abuse Secrets. And when women say no they mean yes, as Dr Dafydd Alun Jones would no doubt confirm.

More recently, the GP on South Ronaldsey, Dr Helen Martini – who is married to Dr Richard Broadhurst, the now retired GP who was the island’s doctor at the time of the Satanic Panic – proffered her opinion. Dr Martini maintained that the problem was that the health service, social work departments and councils are run by stupid people – that there is ‘an awful lot of stupidity but no malice’. As an example Dr Martini mentioned that one family involved were Quakers and social workers became very concerned when they learned that the family prayed without a Minister present.

Dr Martini is correct when she says that there is an awful lot of stupidity – the stupidities of so many are so enormous that they would never be believed if they were not witnessed – but not everyone is that stupid and there are huge levels of sheer malice.

Look at the dates of the idiocies on South Ronaldsey – the madness broke out in late 1989, escalated during 1990 and then erupted in Feb 1991. It’s north Wales again – Alison Taylor, Mary Wynch and I were writing to the authorities about what we had witnessed in north Wales. Alison and I – as well as my friends who knew what had happened to me – were being unlawfully dismissed from our jobs and I was being dragged through the Courts in the wake of mental health staff perjuring themselves as they tried to have me imprisoned for very serious offences. By Feb 1991 St George’s Hospital Medical School had joined in the cover-up of the criminality in north Wales (see previous posts).

There weren’t Satanists on Orkney – but there were paedophile gangs operating in children’s services right across the UK and at least some of those people responsible for the Satanic Panic on Orkney knew it. Like Cleveland, Rochdale and Nottingham, Orkney was a very useful distraction on the part of a social work establishment that had become horribly corrupted. People were piping up about what was happening to children in care and this was social works response.

The person who first started giving seminars and providing ‘training’ to social workers re Satanic Abuse in the UK was a social worker in north Wales. A massively vulnerable learning disabled sister and her brother – two adults who couldn’t cope after their elderly parents died – were banged up in  the North Wales Hospital Denbigh on the basis that they were involved with Satanic Abuse. This was an institution in which people were illegally imprisoned, in which patients were being sexually exploited and which was facilitating a paedophile ring.

Whilst this was going on Jim Wallace was MP for Orkney and Shetland. In 1992 when it was clear that the allegations of Satanists on Orkney had no basis at all Jim became leader of the Scottish Lib Dems. In April 1992, days after the General Election, five witnesses to the North Wales Child Abuse Scandal were killed by a firebomb. Jim doesn’t seem to have used his position to speak out or assist those families whose lives had been ripped apart. Not that it did Jim any harm – he was Minister of Justice, 1999-03; Deputy FM 1999-05; Minister for Enterprise and Learning, 2003-05 and was given a peerage in 2007. Jim hit the jackpot for a while after the resignation of Henry McLeish as FM – between 28 Oct 2000-Nov 2001 Jim was acting FM of Scotland. During the period of the wailing and the gnashing of teeth that followed the publication of the cover-up which was the Waterhouse Report.

In 2008 Jim Wallace was appointed as a member of the Calman Commission on devolution, Chaired by Sir Kenneth Calman, a man who knows a great deal about Top Doctors concealing organised child abuse (see post ‘The Most Dangerous Man In The World – Part V’).

In May 2010 Jim Wallace was appointed as Lord Advocate for Scotland under the Coalition Gov’t led by David Cameron – he was also appointed Deputy Leader of the Lords. In 2013 Cleggy made Wallace leader of the Lib Dems in the Lords.

Jim Wallace is an elder of the Church of Scotland.

 

Jim Wallace was Deputy FM whilst the FM was Donald Dewar, then Henry McLeish, then Jack McConnell.

After Donald Dewar met an unfortunate end, Henry McLeish became FM of Scotland but ended up resigning after he was found to be sub-letting his constituency office. Jack McConnell was then FM, 2001-07.

Jack McConnell went to university with two friends of mine. McConnell came from the Isle of Arran and went to Stirling University, where he was President of the Students’ Union and was very obviously preparing himself for a career in politics.

Donald Dewar had a house in Stirling as well as his flat in Glasgow.

After he graduated in 1983 Jack worked as a teacher and was a member of Stirling District Council, 1988-92. He became General Secretary of the Scottish Labour Party in 1992 – the position became vacant as a result of John Smith becoming leader of the Labour Party. Jack inherited a Party crippled by bitter in-fighting – furthermore one MP, Gordon McMaster, committed suicide. Between 1989-98 McConnell was a member of the Scottish Constitutional Convention. In 1997 as General Secretary Jack managed Labour’s successful devolution referendum campaign. His really big break came in the 1997 General Election – the Tories were completely smashed and were left with no seats at all.

In 1999 Jack McConnell was elected as the MSP for Motherwell and Wishaw – Donald Dewar immediately appointed him as Minister for Finance. Jack soon found himself in hot water when he was accused of doing favours for his friends at lobbying company Beattie Media, including the son of Jack’s mentor John Reid. If Jack ever wanted to keep a story out of the media, he has a useful friend to assist him – he is good friends with Kirsty Wark of Newsnight fame and her husband Alan Clements, a TV producer.

There was one story that Jack knew would become public if he became FM though, so he fessed up in public in the name of honesty and transparency. In 1990 Jack married Bridget Brown but in 1993 he had an affair with Maureen Smith, the Labour Party’s Scottish Press Officer. Jack and Maureen were quite blatant and Jack’s dad admitted that The Sun got hold of the story in 1994. But not a word was published. So why did Jack know that it would become public if he became FM? Because by then Jack had an Enemy. After John Smith died, Jack backed Blair for the leadership and Gordon was mightily pissed off with him. Jack himself had a reputation as a fixer and a spinner and would happily leak stories to the media – he was doing this with a vengeance in 1996. As the 1997 General Election loomed, Jack discovered that a poisonous whispering campaign against him was coming from Gordon’s mates in north London and it was doing Jack a lot of damage. Yet for some reason this stopped – but no-one explained why. Gordon is not a man to forgive people who have crossed him. Bridget knew that and told her friends that she was really worried that Gordon was going to go for Jack’s jugular if Jack became First Minister – so Jack fessed up and placed the story in the media himself. The whole saga was published in an article in the Scottish Herald in Nov 2001. Jack’s mum admits that Jack is a ‘wee bit ruthless’ – well he has to be in his position, it’s just politics…

There’s one thing that Jack really hates though, as he explained to the Scottish Herald – child abuse. Jack thinks that it’s unforgivable and that children must be protected. Just as well really because in Nov 2001 the claims that Waterhouse was one big whitewash had not yet died down.

Jack feels so passionately about child abuse that he knew exactly who to invite to set up the first independent inspection body for the social services in Scotland in 2005 – the Scottish Gov’t invited Alexis Jay to do it! That is the Alexis Jay who is currently making a big issue out of Chairing IICSA (Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse) and who is investigating every instance of abuse since the dawn of time. Survivors and witnesses have walked out of Alexis’s Inquiry in despair, pointing out that it was social workers who abused them, so how can they be expected to have any confidence in an Inquiry Chaired by a senior social worker? Survivors have also denounced Alexis’s Inquiry as a ‘social workers talking shop’. The Inquiry is also haemorrhaging lawyers as well. Nonetheless Alexis battles on reassuring us all, Esther-like, that she cares about the children.

Supporters of the social workers talking shop point to Alexis being a visiting Prof at Strathclyde University and the independent Chair of CELCIS (Centre for Excellence for Looked After Children). I thought that Alexis might be involved with ‘excellence’, wherever excellence is involved things have usually gone very badly wrong. Alexis comes highly recommended. Keith Vaz, the man who has worked as a lawyer for three different Councils whilst their children’s services were infiltrated by paedophiles, the man who has been caught with his trousers down – literally in that incident in which he was passing himself off as a washing machine salesman – repeatedly, but continues to get himself appointed or elected to responsible positions by his colleagues in Parliament, described Alexis as ‘clearly a suitable candidate with vast experience’.

So what experience does Alexis have?

After Alexis left school she worked as a journalist on the now defunct magazine ‘Scotland’. Alexis however realised that her heart was in social work when in her early 20s she ‘fell in love’ with the man whom she later married, Chris Jay, who was a social worker. Alexis doesn’t have children herself but Chris does – he had acquired a few by the time that he met Alexis. I’m not entirely sure but I get the impression that Chris might have been married to someone else when Alexis fell in love with him – however that does happen and unless someone knows someone else very well indeed, one should not judge in cases of relationship break-ups. What interests me though is that Chris Jay wasn’t a common or garden social worker. Chris was a very senior social worker – he was Deputy Head of Social Work for the former Strathclyde Regional Authority, then the biggest authority in the UK. So Alexis embarked upon a career in social work. Alexis moved to Glasgow to live with Chris.

At some point Alexis did her social work training at Moray House School of Education, which is now part of Edinburgh University – Alexis grew up in Edinburgh.

Alexis spent six years in Glasgow where she worked with the first Women’s Aid refuge in the Gorbals. If Alexis spent six years doing that, she will know all about the abuse of children in care, the abuses of psychiatry and examples of dissenters being fitted up to save the careers and reputations of rather more privileged people. Alexis simply tells journos that she has worked for over thirty years in deprived areas of Glasgow and Edinburgh.

Alexis impressed people so much that she rapidly rose – she ended up as Chief Inspector of Social Work in Scotland. In this capacity Alexis ‘oversaw’ the allegations of Satanic abuse in Orkney. Ah – so now we know who it was who sent a crowd of completely mad social workers, police and other officials out to the Western Isles to seize children from their homes during the night and subsequently tried to intimidate the children into colluding with crazy allegations against their parents and the Minister. Some of the children from Orkney were placed in Glasgow – Alexis’s stamping ground. When Alexis ‘oversaw’ all this, she will have known what was happening in north Wales. Alexis ‘oversaw’ something else as well – ‘social service failure’ in the case of Colyn Evans. Colyn Evans was a teenaged sex offender who whilst he was only 17, murdered a 16 year old girl who had befriended him, Karen Dewar. After Evans murdered Karen he put her body in a wheelie bin and tried to set fire to it. He also attempted to decapitate her with a bread knife. Colyn Evans had left a ‘care home’ and had been placed in temporary accommodation in Tayport, near to Karen’s house, by Fife Council.

Jack McConnell’s wife Bridget used to work for Fife Council.

Colyn Evans didn’t come from Scotland – he ended up in Scotland when his parents moved there. Colyn Evans and his family came from Aberdare – in Wales. Evans had been accused of  14 sex offences between the ages of 10 and 16 years. A report by Alexis and the police concluded that although there had been ‘failures’ in the way that Evans’s case was ‘managed’, the ‘mistakes’ had no bearing on Karen’s death. Somehow I thought that might be the conclusion.

So why did Jack McConnell’s Gov’t need Alexis to become the Chief Exec of SWIA (the Social Work Inspection Agency)? Jack established the SWIA in 2005 because  it became clear after two big scandals – the death of 11 week old Caleb Ness from Edinburgh and another case involving an Inquiry concerning the case of a learning disabled girl in the Borders – that there were systematic failures which did not reflect well on the previous Inspectorate and the Mental Welfare Commission. It was also decided that the remit of the previous Inspectorate did not go far enough. So a new body was established with a wider remit and Alexis was appointed CEO. The Alexis who had been the Chief Social Work Inspector of the previous Inspectorate which had screwed up so badly.

When the functions of the SWIA and the Care Commission were taken over by the Care Inspectorate in 2011 dear old Alexis stayed in place as Chief Social Work Inspector to the Scottish Gov’t until 2013.

I was not surprised to learn that Aexis has previously been the Chief Social Work Advisor to the Scottish Gov’t and the former President of the British Association of Directors of Social Work.

An article in the Guardian in 2015 quoted Alexis as saying that ‘politicians wanted to keep a lid on child sexual abuse’. Yes Alexis – that’s why they keep appointing you to the most senior positions in social work in Scotland and it’s why someone thought that it would be a good idea to ask you to Chair the IICSA.

There may be another reason for Alexis’s success, as well as her being married to a senior social work manager and successfully concealing mountains of crap. In March 1993 an article appeared in the Scottish Herald which mentions that Chris Jay, the Senior Deputy Director of Social Work for Strathclyde Regional Council, had withdrawn his application for the post of Director of Social Work ‘for personal reasons’. In March 1993 Scotland was still coping with the fall out from the outbreak of insanity regarding the chaos that was caused by Alexis and co in South Ronaldsey. The article also mentions that the ‘equal opportunities lobby’ wanted more women in senior management positions. So that was the green light for the Scottish establishment to promote a grossly incompetent woman who had presided over failure and catastrophe, rather than a grossly incompetent man who had presided over failure and catastrophe. And of course being a woman, Alexis will Care – and she isn’t in possession of a penis, so she won’t be leading a Satan worshipping session like your average Church Minister in the Western Isles would be. In 2000 Alexis was appointed Director of Social Work for West Dunbartonshire County Council.

Alexis shares her talents with the Third Sector as well – she is a Trustee of the Royal Voluntary Service, of which HM the Queen is Patron and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, is President. Another Trustee of the RVS is Sir Paul Williams, who featured in my post ‘The Reality Is, There Is No Problem’. Sir Paul is the former Director General of Health and Social Services for the Welsh Gov’t and CEO of NHS Wales. Paul spent his whole career in the Welsh healthcare/social services system. He was there throughout the years of paedophilia, criminality, lobotomies and the illegal imprisonment of the victims of paedophiles or people who had dared complain, Paul was on the scene throughout it all.

 

The man who appointed Alexis with her dire track record to the highest positions in her profession, Jack McConnell, is a UK Ambassador for Action for Children.

In 2007 Jack was an advisor to Clinton Hunter Development Initiative in Malawi and Rwanda. In 2008 Gordon Brown appointed Jack as the PM’s Special Representative on Conflict Resolution Mechanisms.

Jack is a non-executive Director of Optical Express and DCM (Optical Holdings). So it’s Jack’s business interests benefiting from all that expensive laser eye-treatment that has been so heavily promoted over the past few years.

Jack’s friend and mentor is John Reid, Blair’s former Health Minister who in that capacity encouraged private companies to run treatment centres for knee, hip and eye operations.

Like Jack, John Reid went to Stirling University. Reid went to Stirling as a mature student and then stayed on to do a PhD, so he could well still have had connections at Stirling when Jack arrived in 1979.

John Reid, like Stalin’s Granny, was brought up as a Catholic.

At Stirling Reid was a member of the Communist Party of Great Britain, but skilfully appealed to Labour students as well which resulted in him becoming President of the Students’ Union.

After finishing his PhD Reid worked as a researcher officer for the Labour Party in Scotland. Between 1983-85 he was political advisor to Neil Kinnock. After Kinnock lost the 1983 General Election in a big way, he went to Reid to ask him why the Labour Party was being rejected so robustly by the electorate. Neil – there were complex multiple reasons, but I think that one of the reasons might have been the leader. Of course, if you had exposed Thatcher’s aide Peter Morrison and others whilst they were abusing children in north Wales and elsewhere, Thatcher would have been sunk. Instead you used your knowledge of what was happening to maintain your own position. Whilst my friends and I had our lives and careers destroyed and some people died – but at least a third rate tosser like you and scores of other third rate tossers were able to spend your lives in jobs that you couldn’t do and then spend your later years troughing in the European Parliament and the Lords.

Reid was one of the earliest Labour Party ‘modernisers’, so he’d obviously forgotten about his socialist principles by 1983. Between 1986-87, Reid was the Scottish Organiser of the Trade Unions for Labour.

In 1987 John Reid was elected as MP for Motherwell North – which became Hamilton North and Bellshill. He held the seat until 2005. Between 2005-10 Reid was MP for Airdrie and Shotts – he succeeded Stalin’s Granny in that constituency.

In 1989 Kinnock appointed John Reid Shadow front bench Spokesman for children. So we can assume that John Reid knew exactly what was happening to children at the hands of the social services and others….

Always a man of good judgement, during the Bosnian war Reid became friends with Radovan Karadzic and spent three days as Karadzic’s guest at a luxury Geneva lakeside hotel. This was during the period of Radovan’s indicted war crimes, April 1992-July 1995.

During the early 1990s there were a number of incidents in which John Reid got pissed and brawled in the Commons.

Reid held seven Cabinet posts in seven years under Blair.

In 1999 he took over from Stalin’s Granny as Secretary of State for Scotland, where he remained until 2001. He was appointed Secretary of State for N Ireland in 2001, as a consequence of one of Mandy’s resignations. In 2002 he became Chair of the Labour Party and Minister without Portfolio and for a brief three months from March 2003 Reid was Leader of the Commons and Lord President of the Council.

John Reid was appointed Secretary of State for Health after Alan Milburn’s resignation in June 2003. Private Eye reported that when Reid was given the job his response was ‘oh fuck, not health’. Well there was the matter of Mid-Staffs wiping out patients which everybody knew was happening but concealed nonetheless, the ever demanding BMA and the Top Doctors, the careers of whistleblowers to ruin, the institutionally corrupt drain on taxpayers money which was host to serious criminality… Reid had the answer – it was he who was responsible for giving the Top Doctors a 22% pay rise in return for them doing even less work and opting out of weekend and evening treatment.

John Reid also brought in ‘tough challenges’ for hospitals in order to reduce hospital acquired infections. This happened in Wales as well and resulted in Ysbyty Gwynedd fiddling their stats whilst Keith Thomson was Chief Exec of the North West Wales NHS Trust – I have a mole who told me that before the box ticker went around the wards to count the number of people diagnosed with hospital acquired infections, anybody with hospital acquired infections would be temporarily removed from the ward on and the box ticker would studiously ignore the temporarily empty bed and not ask any questions. Keith was also prepared to risk patients’ health quite blatantly. At one point there was an MRSA infection in the Hergest Unit. It was known and the staff were ordered not to tell the patients – neither was the ward cleaned. One patient had already needed extensive surgery as a result of contracting MRSA. The Hergest whistleblower discreetly approached all patients who had open wounds – there were a few because there were self-harmers on the ward – and told them not to use the bathrooms. So the patients went unwashed but at least no-one else had to have parts of their anatomy surgically removed because of Keith Thomson’s dishonesty. At the time that Thomson was doing this, Health Inspectorate Wales was publishing reports signed by their then Chief Executive Dr Peter Higson complimenting the North West Wales NHS Trust on its excellence and high quality of care.

Reid became Secretary of State for Defence in 2005. In Jan 2006 Reid committed 3,300 troops to Helmand province. In March 2006 Reid denied that there was a civil war in Iraq and reassured everyone that ‘we will not allow a civil war to develop’. In Feb 2010 Reid found himself giving evidence to the Iraq Inquiry.

A fine record of achievement on the part of John there.

Obviously after his success at Defence, there was only one job for John Reid – Home Secretary. He was appointed in 2006. John created 8000 more prison places and reformed the probation service. Eleven years later the prisons are in chaos. This morning one of the leading items on Radio 4’s Today programme was the admission that healthcare in one of the prisons in Liverpool is so bad that prisoners have died unnecessarily and there has been publicity in the last few days regarding the new-style privatised probation service monitoring serious offenders by giving them the occasional telephone call.

John Reid called for reform of the Human Rights Act in 2006 after the Afghans who hijacked a plane in order to escape the Taliban and landed in the UK won their appeal to remain in the UK. The Human Rights Act was the work of Charlie Falconer who worked out that it would be a useful way of enabling the likes of Cherie to set up in business advising dictators but because at the same time Charlie withdrew virtually all legal aid in the UK there was no danger of anyone who had been ruined or harmed by the state being able to seek redress under the Human Rights Act.

I was delighted to hear Lord David Neuberger – who was until very recently President of the Supreme Court – on the radio yesterday telling us that we are all now fully protected by the Human Rights Act. So that’s why so many NHS patients are dying and their relatives are unable to get answers or why nearly every UK social services dept has a major problem with the grooming and trafficking of children in their care but those kids can’t gain redress either. All we’ve got is Alexis and her Inquiry which most people have walked out of.

Lord Neuberger’s father was a Top Doctor – Prof of Chemical Pathology at St Mary’s, Paddington. Lord Neuberger’s brother Michael is or was Prof of Molecular Immunology at Cambridge University. Lord Neuberger’s brother James is Prof of Medicine at Birmingham University. Prof Robert Bluglass concealed the criminal activities of Dafydd et al in north Wales, whilst they facilitated a paedophile ring – Bluglass had a Chair at Birmingham University. As did Professor Ian Brockington who I think should have raised the alarm about one Dr Tony Francis whilst Francis worked with Brockington in Manchester, before Francis relocated to north Wales. Lord Neuberger’s three children are all solicitors. So the Neuberger family are doing really well out of the Human Rights Act.

Lord Neuberger was Chair of the Schizophrenia Trust, 2003-13 – it is now known as Mental Health Research UK.

John Reid was tough on terrorism as well, so that’ll explain the idiocies happening such as primary school children being reported to the police after they told a teacher that they lived in a terraced house and the teacher became over-excited and thought that the kiddies had told them that they lived in a terrorist house. Well the family were Muslims, you can’t be too careful and we know that schools have to look out for signs of radicalisation in the reception class.

Reid voted for the NHS Foundation Trusts – which simply encouraged the likes of Mid-Staffs and Keith Thomson to tell even more lies – and voted for British National Identity cards. He supported the Iraq war and after there wasn’t a civil war in Iraq he voted against a motion calling for an independent inquiry by a committee of Privy Councillors into the Iraq war.

John Reid left the Cabinet when Blair resigned and didn’t return. In 2010 Reid was given a peerage.

In 2007 Reid became Chairman of Celtic Football Club. In 2008 he was appointed an honorary Professor at UCL, to the Chair of the Institute of Security and resilience Studies. In 2008 Reid became a group consultant for G4S.

 

So there’s a few of the details from some of scenes of The Scottish Play. There do seem to be an awful lot of premature deaths involved of middle-aged men who were experiencing manageable conditions that the Top Doctors usually seem to treat quite successfully. The thing that I notice about The Scottish Play is that the actors must know how bloody dangerous it is consulting Top Doctors because they were well aware of the circumstances in which some of their colleagues died. For example, John Smith appointed Joe Benton as Chief Whip after Benton won the Bootle by-election. The reason why Benton became MP for Walton is that the previous MP – Michael Carr – had been told by Top Doctors at Walton Hospital that he was hyperventilating and to go home and make an appointment with his GP. In total Michael Carr spent less than 30 minutes in the hospital. Carr had a heart attack hours later, was taken back to Walton Hospital where the Top Doctors finished the job and ‘were unable to revive him’. Carr had fought Militant on a rather more personal level that Neil Kinnock ever did. Walton was an area dominated by Militant and the NHS unions contained many supporters of Militant. For details of the very sad story of Michael Carr and the spineless DPPs – Sir Allan Green and Dame Barbara Mills, an in-law of Tessa Jowell – who would not take on a load of bastards who deliberately let a patient die, see post ‘News From Sicily’.

I have mentioned that John Smith had previously been told by a Top Doctor at Edinburgh Royal Infirmary that he definitely didn’t have heart trouble days before he had a heart attack. The circumstances of his death were as follows:  on 11 May 1994 Smith had made a speech at a fundraising dinner at the Park Lane Hotel. At 8-05 the next morning he had a heart attack at his flat in the Barbican. His wife phoned an ambulance and he was taken to Barts where he died at 9-15 am. On the 28 April Smith had visited the A&E dept where he died to campaign against its proposed closure. The doctor who gave Smith the guided tour of the A&E dept was Professor Mike Besser. Mike Besser was the Top Doctor who treated John Smith when he was admitted to Barts A&E after his heart attack – Besser tried so hard to save him, but he just couldn’t. John Smith was 56 years old.

MPs cried in the House when they heard that Smith had died. And I bet that the Top Doctors got every penny that they had been demanding before his death.

I can remember the death of John Smith very well. I was a patient at the Hergest Unit at the time and I heard the news flash on the radio that he had died. I went off into the patients’ garden to tell everyone that John Smith had died. The patients’ garden was directly outside Tony Francis’s (Dr X’s) office, the Dr Tony Francis who was concealing the paedophile ring in north Wales and who unbeknown to me was spending a lot of time perjuring himself and encouraging other people to do the same in an attempt to have me imprisoned. Francis came out of his office and asked me exactly what I had heard on the radio and how John Smith had died. He then commented that it was a great a pity and disappeared.

Very soon after John Smith’s death, Dr Dafydd Alun Jones and members of the Arfon Community Mental Health Team made complaint after complaint about me to their colleagues – including Tony Francis – and occasionally to the police, maintaining on the basis of these complaints that I was ‘dangerous’ and should be prevented from visiting the Hergest Unit and transferred to the forensic psychiatry team. When the complaints were investigated they were found to be baseless. This process continued until 1997 when the Arfon Team finally hit the jackpot and the police arrested and charged me, alleging that I and another patient had threatened a member of staff from the Arfon Community Mental Health Team over the phone. I received a letter from the hospital management telling me that I would  be refused all care and support, that my key worker – who was at the time the Hergest whistleblower who had been incredibly helpful – had been ordered off my case and was under instructions to have no contact with me at all under any circumstances. I was told that if I went to Ysbyty Gwynedd I would be arrested. I received a phone call from a police officer in Bangor who asked me to drop into Bangor Police Station for a ‘chat’. When I arrived I was arrested, driven to Caernarfon Police Station for some unknown reason and charged as soon as I walked through the door. Many hours later I was left to find my own way home to Bethesda, some miles away from Caernarfon, with no car and no money.

I then received a letter from the hospital stating that I was now deemed to be a dangerous patient and thus my ‘care’ was being transferred to the forensic psychiatry team. The pantomime went on for months until the case was heard at the Magistrates Court. During the case, the CPS lawyer read out a statement from the woman whom I was alleged to have threatened, a CPN called Bridget Lloyd, who stated that I was such a threat to her that she had been issued with a personal alarm by the Gwynedd Community Health Trust which she carried with her at all times.  The Court was also told that Lloyd had stated that she had young children, that she was ‘absolutely terrified’ of me and that if I was acquitted the Trust would make a safe house available for Bridget and her children because a murderous onslaught from me was inevitable.

I was acquitted, as was the other patient who was on trial with me.

After the acquittal I received a letter from the Hergest Unit saying that I would not be receiving an apology and that the Hergest whistleblower would not be reinstated as my key worker. I then found out that before the case had been heard Dr Tony Francis had kindly prepared a report for the Court for their use – for WHEN I was found guilty. The report stated that I was dangerous and should be handed over to the forensic team with a view to having me placed in a secure unit.

Last year my lawyer forwarded me some documents relating to that case. Among them were copies of documents that Bridget Lloyd had sent to managers in Gwynedd Health Authority in which she stated quite clearly that she wasn’t frightened of me, that she had only ever met me once many years ago and that she didn’t think that I’d recognise her if I did see her. That memo was dated shortly before she made her statement to the police. It was also acknowledged that I hadn’t actually phoned anyone at all – but everyone ‘knew’ that I had told the other patient to ‘threaten’ Bridget. Not that he had threatened her either – he had sworn at one of her colleagues. Because they had previously tried to have him arrested for something that he had not done…

Tony Francis killed himself shortly after Operation Pallial reopened the investigation into the North Wales Child Abuse Scandal. I understand that his widow Sadie told her neighbours that he committed suicide because of me. Which is very odd because I hadn’t seen him for many years although I had seen Sadie – I’d bumped into her a few months before and she was very chummy and told me that she heard that I was planning to publish a book about my experiences with the mental health services. She then asked me if I was still in contact with Brown.

We can’t ask Tony what they were all up to because he’s dead – just like John Smith and Michael Carr and Donald Dewar – so perhaps Sadie Francis and Bridget Lloyd would like to explain themselves to Operation Pallial.

Eight months after John Smith died Gordon Anglesea was awarded £375k in libel damages against Private Eye, the Observer, HTV and the Indie on Sunday, after they named him as someone who had abused boys in care in north Wales. One of the young men who gave evidence against Anglesea was found dead some three months later.

Last year Gordon Anglesea was imprisoned for historical sex abuse against children in care in north Wales. He died in prison. The Police Federation turned out in force at his funeral to wave him a fond farewell. Before he died, they were supporting him in his planned appeal against his conviction and a barrister had offered their services for free.

Thank God our human rights are now so well protected by Lady Brenda Hale, Charlie Falconer, Cherie et al.

There was of course another Scottish politician who pissed off a few people who also met an untimely death – Robin Cook. Whilst mountain walking. Just like that.

There must be so much hand-washing going on among the performers of The Scottish Play that industrial quantities of soap will be needed.

When I first made a complaint in 1985 about the Top Doctors who were facilitating a paedophile ring in north Wales, it was actually Tony Francis who became very aggressive with me and snapped that I would find that no doctor would agree to treat me ‘after this’. Well they certainly did all they could not to, including Francis himself – and when they were told by lawyers that they had a legal obligation to treat me they simply spent years trying to have me fitted up for serious offences and then incarcerated.

Thank God I’m not a Scottish Labour politician who actually trusted the bastards and kept giving them more money – I’d be dead.

A Secret And Forbidding Place To Work?

I wrote my earlier post ‘Their Trade Is Fuckwittery’ after reading Greg Dyke’s book ‘Inside Story’. I mentioned in that post that Greg’s book was so full of gems and leads that I’d never have time to blog about it all, so I was just going to write about a few of the highlights. In ‘Their Trade Is Fuckwittery’ I concentrated on the shambles that was TV-am and the questionable conduct of those who were running that company, as well as providing a few details about ITV and Yorkshire Television, two very big players in independent TV. People tend to believe that Gov’ts always have the BBC over a barrel because of the existence of the licence fee and the Charter, which are of course completely in the hands of the Westminster Gov’t, but as I made clear in ‘Their Trade Is Fuckwittery’, other media folk not involved with the BBC didn’t dare fall out with the Gov’t – during the 80s, the Thatcher administrations – because the Gov’t was busy drawing up the legislation relating to broadcasting. There is a very close symbiotic relationship between all broadcasters and Gov’t – Dyke’s book makes the extent of this very obvious.

This blog has previously named towering figures in broadcasting – such as Huw Wheldon of the BBC – who had direct links to those who were overseeing the abuse of kids in care and mental health patients, which might explain why investigative documentaries about such matters rarely got to see the light of day. It wasn’t just the fault of a few individuals like Huw Wheldon though. Senior figures from right across the political spectrum have been identified as being involved with such abuses, so it’s not just a matter of waiting for a change of Gov’t before receiving the all-clear for a documentary – the next Gov’t coming along will be just as compromised. Virtually every other page of Dyke’s book names a senior political figure who is best mates with an influential figure in broadcasting, there are hundreds of close connections between the two sectors. The media world is also small and incestuous, nearly as bad as the world of health and social care – it is just one big game of musical chairs, with people jumping between organisations in ever more senior roles, where they become ever more closer to but at the same time more beholden to politicians. Remember the case of James Purnell, the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport until he resigned in 2009 – he managed to leave a job in Gordon Brown’s Gov’t, spend four years as Chair of the IPPR and then walked into a job as Director of Strategy at the BBC on a salary of £295k pa.

Since Jimmy Savile’s death it has become clear that an awful lot of people at the BBC and elsewhere knew that he was sexually assaulting children and young people, despite the official silence. What really struck me as I was reading Dyke’s book though is how many very senior people in TV will definitely have known about organised child sexual abuse and its ramifications. I tend to just perceive people on TV as being obsessed with issues that don’t really matter, people who appear on prime time and talk asinine nonsense. I forget that a great many of these people started their careers as journalists or researchers, either on newspapers or on regional TV or radio. Local journalists do know what goes on – they will freely admit this, but then explain that they couldn’t publish because the editor wouldn’t allow it. That will be true – but their editors will be the local journalists of yesteryear, who are now dining with politicians and don’t want to upset the Gov’t…. This is how a complete silence surrounding certain subjects is maintained.

Dyke names powerful figure after powerful figure in the media whom he worked with years ago when they were local journos or researchers on news programmes or investigative projects who undoubtedly came across the matters discussed on this blog but who never broadcast them, even when they were in a position to do so. A glaring example is Janet Street-Porter, whom Dyke worked with back in the dark ages in the current affairs dept of LWT on a local London programme. Janet was one of the journos going out and about. Street-Porter has latterly reached the dizzying heights of ‘Loose Women’, where matters Jimmy Savile and sexual exploitation by media figures have recently been discussed, as they have on other TV programmes. I watched a clip of someone angrily interrogating Janet and asking her why she had never said a word previously. Janet squawked away in a very vexed manner, maintained that she ‘couldn’t’, because she was a ‘woman’ and women get ‘harassed’. The interrogation continued and Janet then stated that when she was ten she was molested and when she told her mum her mum slapped her. Janet Street-Porter as traumatised victim. An interesting notion – yet Street-Porter went through a phase not so long ago of writing articles denouncing her mother as the most vile old cow and even maintained that she loathed everything Welsh because her mother was Welsh. She may well have been quite right about her mother but EVERYTHING about Street-Porter’s life and career from her teens onwards suggests that she is pretty tough – it is far more likely that she didn’t publish or broadcast because she wanted promotion. By the time that Street-Porter was being interrogated by an angry viewer she wasn’t ten, she was a wealthy senior media executive in late middle-age who scared the knickers off many of her colleagues.

If Street-Porter had really wanted to expose Savile or others like him, she could have – but she knew that the dinner invitations and commissions would dry up if she did. Street-Porter did most admirably have a go at the NHS when her sister died in truly appalling conditions – Street-Porter was editor of the Indie on Sunday at the time and published some very damning articles despite the squealing of the NHS and I was most grateful that she did this. Yet the Indie on Sunday was one of the papers that Gordon Anglesea sued for libel in 1994 after they and others named him as abusing kids in care in north Wales. Last year Anglesea was jailed – for abusing kids in care in north Wales. Did the Indie on Sunday – or anyone else – put the boot in? No. Anglesea had been demonstrated to be a child molester, a liar, a perjurer and someone who trousered nearly £400,000 in libel damages as a result of his criminal activities. Anglesea had also enjoyed the full support of the Police Federation throughout. One of his accusers was found dead shortly after Anglesea won his libel case. Er – fancy a follow up investigation or even an article then Janet? No? Never mind – it’s why I started this blog…

There is only one reason why I am not even ruder about Janet and the others regarding their extended silence – and that is that some very unfortunate things tend to happen to people who merely bump into and spill the pints of those involved with the North Wales Child Abuse Scandal. Like the young man who dared appear on TV and name Gordon Anglesea as one of his abusers whilst he was a kid in care in north Wales, they tend to be found dead. Janet and her mates are far safer than the former residents of children’s homes or the mental health patients of north Wales, but Greg’s book does mention something similarly very worrying. That Richard Dunn, the head of Thames TV who were responsible for making and broadcasting ‘Death On The Rock’ the documentary about the shooting of the three members of the IRA by the SAS in Gibraltor in 1988 – that so enraged Thatcher and her Gov’t – was in Aug 1998 found dead at the bottom of his swimming pool. The reason given for the cause of his death doesn’t quite add up and anyway don’t bodies float?

Dyke’s book teams with evidence of the favours that people in the media do for politicians whilst they are all on their way up. The earlier part of Dyke’s career as a media big-hitter took place under Tory Govt’s – first Thatcher’s administrations, then Major’s – but the latter half was under New Labour. It was Dyke’s almighty ding dong with Blair’s Gov’t that saw him resign as Director-General of the BBC. Greg caused havoc, but he also got rid of Alistair Campbell as Blair’s Rottweiler in Chief, so we have that to be grateful for.

Dyke’s account nicely illustrates how favours and feuds going back decades and indeed generations influence present day decisions. Greg himself goes back a long way in terms of his friendships with people who later became very powerful. Although as a manager Greg took a very Thatcheresque view of the trade unions in TV and delighted in thwarting them, he admits that a few years previously when he was of them, he too screwed the management over and fleeced them – it’s how he knew the techniques that the unions would employ when he joined management.

Greg’s early power base was at LWT, which certainly seemed to serve him well. At LWT he worked with a John Birt, a Peter Mandelson and a Michael Grade. When Dyke was applying for what seems to be his first go at a worthwhile job at LWT, he was told by a colleague at LWT that John Birt was the most important person on the Board – Birt was then head of features and current affairs at LWT and had been described to Greg as ‘all powerful’. Greg did his best to toady to John Birt in the interview but unfortunately he didn’t actually manage to identify who John Birt was and ingratiated himself to the wrong person. Greg didn’t get the job, but he did get another job with LWT soon afterwards. Greg observed that as Birt became very powerful within LWT, Mandelson – who was a producer – became his best friend.

Birt left LWT in 1987 to become Deputy DG of the BBC – Birt was valued for his expertise in current affairs and was responsible for news and current affairs as Deputy DG. Birt will have certainly have been party to a lot of information by this stage in his career. He had worked at Granada between 1966-71 where he’d been part of the World In Action team, becoming joint editor in 1969. He joined LWT in 1971 and was founding editor and executive producer of Weekend World. Birt then became head of current affairs, then controller of features and current affairs. He worked on Weekend World with Peter Jay.

Peter Jay was the son of two Labour politicians who then married Margaret, the daughter of Jim Callaghan, who later became PM. When Callaghan became PM in 1977 Peter Jay was appointed Ambassador to the US by his friend, Foreign Secretary Dr David Owen. Jay had never held public office and was not a diplomat. Jay did well out of his friends though – he landed a job as Economics Editor of the BBC courtesy of his mate John Birt. At one point Jay was Chief of Staff to Robert Maxwell. Jay was founding Chairman of TV-am (see post ‘Their Trade Is Fuckwittery). Between 2003-09 he was a non-executive director of the Bank of England.

Birt took a break from LWT in the mid-70s to work with David Frost producing The Nixon Interviews, in which they famously managed to get Tricky Dicky to fess up to serious wrongdoing. Birt returned to LWT in 1982 as Director of Programmes. It was in this capacity that he revived the career of a singer with whom he had been friends many years ago when they were young – this is the lady whom I have mentioned in previous posts and comments who was a patient of and a friend of the Professor in the Dept at St Georges Hospital Medical School in which I worked between 1989-91. The Dept which was chaotic, riddled with workplace bullying and which sometime after I left became embroiled in a research fraud scandal, then another scandal in which a fertility consultant was accused of pressurising NHS patients into donating eggs to private patients, then yet another scandal before the Dept was closed down (see post ‘St George’s Hospital Medical School, 1989/1990’). This was also the Dept which employed an MSF rep, David Hole, who as far as I could see was corrupt. Only a few years previously, the Professor of Paediatrics at St Georges, Oliver Brooke, had been jailed for the possession of child porn. At the same time, the Dept of Psychiatry, along with the associated psychiatric unit Springfield Hospital, were as corrupt as fuck and were colluding with the criminal activities of NHS staff and social workers in north Wales, including the concealing of abuse of children in care and of mental health patients (see post ‘Some Very Eminent Psychiatrists From London…’). The occupational health physician at St Georges, Dr Nicky Mitchell-Heggs, was also on board with all this.

I am sure that John Birt’s showbiz friend knew nothing about the shenanigans behind the scenes at St George’s at all, all she saw were Top Doctors grovelling to her as their highest profile private patient, but I have been told that it was substantially as a result of this lady’s very good relationship with St George’s that the lid was kept on the wrongdoing there. She thought that they were great and used to occasionally mention them when interviewed. By the time that I worked at St George’s this lady was LWT’s biggest star – the two light entertainment shows that she hosted were the root of LWT’s success and profits in the 1980s/90s and she was the highest paid female presenter on UK TV. Her fame was used to conceal some real horrors at St George’s.

Birt’s friend won’t have known what St George’s were concealing, but it’s very likely that Birt with his background in current affairs and extensive network did. Not only was Birt big mates with Mandelson – who was Director of Communications for the Labour Party – but Birt was also a member of the Labour Party at the time of his appointment to the BBC, although this was only revealed later. Which was certainly ironic because Birt had been recruited by Thatcher’s old mate Duke Hussey, who had been appointed as Chairman of the BBC Governors because Thatcher and Tebbit et al were fuming at what they believed were the pinkos working on the Today programme and the broadcasting of a few other things that had upset them, such as ‘Maggie’s Militant Tendency’ (see post ‘Wheels Within Wheels Or Flies Drawn To The Same Incestuously Corrupt Shithouse?’).

Birt was appointed as DG in 1992 and remained in post until 2000. His tenure was certainly controversial. He – along with Hussey – was loathed by many and numerous people became very alienated. Birt was perceived to be Thatcher’s lap dog and he also really liked Management. So much so that as well as all the highly paid managers already in the BBC, Birt spent huge quantities of money on management consultants McKinseys and Co – who had also been sent into the NHS by Gov’t in a vain attempt to address the entrenched corruption and bad practice. Although Hussey and Birt were both hated by much of the media world, they didn’t like each other very much either. Dyke maintains that months used to pass without them even speaking to each other and the final straw came in 1995 when Panorama broadcast the infamous Tell All interview with Diana, Princess of Wales. Hussey was mates with members of the Royal Family and was horrified that he hadn’t been told about the programme until he wasn’t in a position to stop it.

When Birt became DG of the BBC, he fell out with another person with whom he’d been big mates with in LWT as long ago as the 1970s – Michael Grade. Grade got so pissed off with Birt that Grade left his senior post at the BBC and went to Channel 4. Grade later described Birt’s BBC as a ‘secret and forbidding place to work’ in the McTaggart lecture in Edinburgh. The following year the McTaggart lecture was given by Dennis Potter, who put the boot into Birt’s groin even harder and described him and Hussey as ‘croak-voiced daleks’.

It was Birt who was behind the expansion of the BBC into online services, which enraged many people because it squeezed out virtually all other competitors – Birt created a whole New Media Division.

Despite the high levels of dissatisfaction all around at the BBC with Birt’s activities when he was DG, when he left the BBC he picked up a peerage and was appointed as strategy advisor to Blair. Of course Birt already knew Blair – they had known each other since the 1980s. It was Birt who in his capacity as DG at the BBC in 1998 had ordered a blackout on any references to Mandelson being gay, after Matthew Parris let it slip on Newsnight. Mandy had also been a Councillor in Lambeth Borough Council in the late 1990s – Lambeth children’s homes had been choc full of paedophiles for years, but whether Birt was censoring that piece of info as well I do not know. Blair also knew Greg Dyke and Greg’s mate Barry Cox from LWT. Greg first met Blair in 1980 at Barry Cox’s – Greg was a producer with LWT and Blair was working as a barrister, presumably as George Carman’s junior, but told Dyke that he wanted to be a Labour MP. Barry Cox and his wife Fiona Hillary (who was Dyke’s PA for many years) were neighbours and friends of Blair and according to Dyke, when Cox was Director of Corporate Affairs at LWT in the early 1990s (by which time Dyke was Chair of LWT), Cox warned Blair of Murdoch’s dominance and ambitions to achieve further dominance of British TV. Blair knew about the danger that Murdoch posed, but maintained that Labour could do a deal with Murdoch. So that’s how Murdoch ended up taking over the world and telling UK PMs what to do, blackmailing a twelve year old Charlotte Church into singing at a private event of his by threatening to publish stories about her mum who had mental health problems if she didn’t – although Murdoch published the stories anyway a few years later – whilst his staff hacked into the mobile phones of murdered teenagers and purchased stories from police officers, prison officers and NHS staff.

Birt had already begun advising Blair before he was appointed his strategic advisor – Birt had previously dispensed pearls of wisdom regarding criminal justice. Birt – the man who had been DG at the BBC whilst everyone kept schtum about Savile.  Once he became strategy advisor, Birt also advised Blair on drugs, health and crime reduction, as well as other matters. Since then Birt has picked up numerous other advisory roles and directorships, including a consultancy at McKinsey and Co.

In 2005 Birt began a relationship with Eithne Wallis, the former head of the National Probation Service, whom he later married. The wedding was attended by, among others, Mandelson and Trevor Phillips, Chair of the Commission for Equalities and Human Rights. Phillips had worked at LWT along with Birt and Mandy.

Although most people are very rude about Birt’s legacy at the BBC – producer Tony Garnett stated that Birt’s regime of ‘totalitarian micromanagement’ remained even after Birt himself had departed – James Purnell believes that Birt’s ‘boldness’ saved the BBC. It certainly ensured that a lot of things were never broadcast, including a lot of things about Mandelson et al.

The Chair of the Governors who appointed Birt, Duke Hussey, later said that he should not have done so. I mentioned previously that Hussey was a political appointment, made by Thatcher et al. No matter how keen Thatcher was to give the Guardianistas at the BBC a kicking, Hussey didn’t seem to be a good choice for Chairman, although he was there for ten years, 1986-96. Hussey had previously worked for Fleet Street, but not as a journalist – all his experience had been as a manager, but he hadn’t had a great deal of success. He had nearly succeeded in destroying the Daily Mail when he had management responsibility for Associated Newspapers. Hussey then became Chief Exec and MD of the Times Newspapers in 1971. He entered into a disastrous war with the unions in the late 1970s during which he decided to lock them out – the lock-out lasted so long that the papers went out of production for the best part of a year, without the unions conceding anything. The proprietors sold out to Murdoch after sustaining substantial losses. The world was astonished that Hussey remained in place after Murdoch took over, but it was speculated that Murdoch only wanted Hussey in place for the shin dig that he was soon to be holding to celebrate the bicentenary of the Times at Hampton Court. Hussey was able to rope Prince Charles in as a guest which afforded Murdoch some good PR.

Hussey was able to secure a high profile Royal because he had close links to the Royal Family. Hussey’s wife Susan had when young been appointed as Woman to the Bedchamber of Elizabeth II, a position that she retained for the rest of her life. Susan was also godmother to the Duke of Cambridge and the Queen occasionally dined at the Husseys’ home. Hussey’s wife also provided close links to the Tory Cabinet – Susan was the elder sister of William Waldegrave, who held a number of Cabinet posts, including that of Secretary of State for Health, 1990-92. Yes, Waldegrave was in office whilst the paedophile ring which involved Thatcher’s aide Sir Peter Morrison raged in north Wales and the mental health services resorted to criminal activities in order to conceal it, whilst they busied themselves with perjury and perverting the course of justice in an attempt to imprison me, whilst five witnesses were killed in an arson attack and whilst the associated corruption at St George’s was in full swing. Waldegrave had also worked in the Conservative Research Dept in 1971 – Matthew Parris worked in that Dept in the 70s and alleged that not only were there many gay men employed there, but at least one senior member of staff was very predatory and was known to go out seeking younger men. Staff in that Dept also holidayed in a destination in Italy at a place known as the Villa of Shame where ‘boys’ were supplied.

Hussey was Chairman of the Royal Marsden Hospital, 1985-98.

Hussey was offered the position of Chairman of the BBC over the telephone by Douglas Hurd, the then Home Secretary. Hussey cheerily admitted that he knew nothing about the BBC – he didn’t even know where it was. When Hurd offered him the Chairmanship Hussey had to look up the location of the building where he would be working. Alisdair Milne was the DG in place when Hussey was appointed but was forced out by Hussey and the Governors within months. Sir Michael Checkland, an accountant, was appointed DG by the Governors as the ‘compromise candidate’, with Birt as Deputy DG. Checkland remained as DG until 1992 and did the bidding of Thatcher’s Gov’t. After his retirement, Checkland was involved in NCH (the National Children’s Home) – which had links to the North Wales Child Abuse Scandal. Checkland also sits on the Board of the Wales Millennium Centre. Checkland was Vice-President of the Royal Television Society between 1985-94. So he was in post when my friend who worked at the Royal Television Society and who wanted to make a documentary about what had happened to me in north Wales was bullied out of her job and later won a case against them for unfair dismissal. I think that it’s about time that I named the foot soldiers who did the dirty deed where my friend was concerned – they were Tony Pilgrim and Claire Price. Price still works at the RTS. Hey Claire, did you know about that employee of yours who was convicted of indecently assaulting a ten year old boy? And did you know that one of your colleagues told my friend – whom you unlawfully hounded out of her job – that it was ‘a pity’ about him being caught?

Hussey’s Vice-Chair at the BBC was Lord Joel Barnett, the Labour MP who had been Chief Secretary to the Treasury when Denis Healey had been Chancellor of the Exchequer under Jim Callaghan. Barnett was Vice-Chair between 1986-93 – he had succeeded William Rees-Mogg.

Hussey was given a peerage in 1996. His obituaries mention that it was uncertain why he was ever offered the position of Chairman of the BBC above other people with links to the Conservative Party – there was speculation that it could have been as a result of his Royal connections or that perhaps William Rees-Mogg suggested his name, Rees-Mogg having been the editor of the Times and supportive of Hussey whilst he was Chief Exec and MD of the Times Newspapers. Greg Dyke suggests that it was Murdoch who recommended that Thatcher appoint him.

Dyke maintains that Hussey assisted Murdoch’s business interests by carrying out negotiations involving the Premier League and thus licence payers money was used to help Murdoch.

Hussey stood down as Chair of the BBC in 1996 – Sir Christopher Bland was then appointed and remained Chair until 2001. Bland had been Deputy Chair of the ITA – which then became the IBA – in 1972 and Chair of LWT in 1984. Bland had been involved with the Conservative Party – he had been a member of the GLC for Lewisham, 1976-70. Lewisham was yet another Council which had a problem with the abuse of children in care – a reader of this blog sent me a link recently concerning a number of cases of abuse that were of course concealed by Lewisham Council when they were brought to their attention. Bland had been Chair of the Tory think tank the Bow Group, 1969-70.

Bland was a Director of ITN, sat on the GMTV Board and was also Chair of LWT. He joined the Board of LWT (Holdings) in 1984 and after the 1993 franchise renewal when LWT was taken over by Granada, Bland was one of the people – along with Dyke – who made a great deal of money. Dyke states that he made £7 million and Bland made much more. According to Dyke this bonanza was engineered by Neil Canetty-Clarke, a merchant banker on placement with LWT, who later became financial director. The huge profits resulted from a clause that had been added to the relevant Parliamentary Bill by David Mellor, who was at the time a junior Home Office Minister.

Christopher Bland was Chair of Hammersmith and Queen Charlotte’s Hospitals NHS Special Health Authority, 1982-94 and Chaired Hammersmith Hospitals NHS Trust including Charing Cross Hospital, 1994-97. So Bland presided over the research fraud and bad behaviour that was occurring in Hammersmith Hospital in the mid-late 1980s, as detailed in my post ‘A Cause Close To Our Hearts’. He will also have been Chair when Lord Robert Winston employed a gynaecologist who was a serial sexual harasser, but passed him onto St George’s Hospital Medical School rather than ensure that he was removed from circulation. Bland was a member of the PM’s advisory panel on the Citizens Charter and co-owned Leith’s School of Food and Wine, with Caroline Waldegrave, wife of Tory Cabinet Minister and Secretary of State for Health 1990-92, William Waldegrave.

Christopher has a son, Archie. The ability to land plum jobs in the media is obviously a genetically inheritable trait – in 2004 Archie was named ‘Guardian Student Columnist of the Year’. In 2012 he became Deputy Editor of the Independent – the youngest Deputy Editor in the paper’s history and possibly the youngest ever on Fleet Street! In 2013 Archie was appointed a senior writer at the Indie and Indie on Sunday and he is at present Deputy National Editor at the Guardian. Perhaps we can expect Archie soon to be given responsibility for some major London teaching hospitals pervaded with corruption carrying out some questionable animal experiments.

Greg Dyke was appointed DG of the BBC shortly before Bland stepped down. Greg’s book describes considerable opposition to his appointment. He believes that the Editor of the Times Peter Stothard led the fight against his appointment. Pauline Neville-Jones, a BBC Governor and a Tory, opposed Dyke’s appointment. William Hague, then the leader of the opposition, wrote to the Chair of the BBC stating that Dyke was unsuitable on the grounds of his Labour Party membership and donations to the Party – Dyke had donated to Blair’s leadership campaign in 1994. Alan Yentob – who later achieved infamy through his involvement with Kids Company – also wanted the job as DG.

Like Bland, Dyke was a media executive who had been asked for his remedy for the NHS. In the summer of 1997, Dyke met Margaret Jay – Minister of State for Health, daughter of former PM James Callaghan and wife of Dyke’s media colleague Peter Jay – at David Frost’s garden party (Greg was a regular at Frost’s garden parties, he bumped into Alistair Campbell at one of them a few years after the huge scrap between the BBC and Campbell). Margaret Jay, Minister of Health under Frank Dobson, subsequently asked Dyke for new ideas regarding the Patients Charter – Dyke was helped in this by Alison Nield, an Angel who became an NHS manager. Dyke’s report was published in Nov 1998, whilst Margaret Jay was leader of the Labour Party in the Lords.

At the time that Margaret Jay was tapping Greg for his wisdom, havoc had broken out in the mental health services in north Wales – this was before devolution, so the NHS in Wales was still run from Westminster. The Hergest Unit had really hit the buffers. The corrupt manager Alun Davies was in the process of closing down the day centre – which was the only part of the Hergest that functioned properly and was overwhelmingly popular with the patients – on the orders of the dreadful Dr Terry Maxwell, the Medical Director of Ysbyty Gwynedd. Maxwell had been given a merit award in return for cutting the mental health services and I suspect that Davies will also have received a ‘performance related bonus’ for his role in the dirty deed. At this time the better staff at the Hergest Unit were very obviously voting with their feet and leaving and the unit was unable to recruit replacements. Patient care began to suffer greatly and a number of patients killed themselves – others became destitute. One consultant, Dr Tony Francis (Dr X), went into meltdown – he was having huge rows with his colleagues in public, patients were told by Angels that Francis was ‘mentally ill’ (which was true, but the information should not have been communicated and certainly not in that manner) and Francis took (very) early retirement soon after. What was happening in north Wales at this time? The Waterhouse Inquiry. By 1998, the witnesses had given evidence and the most appalling catalogue of abuse in the children’s homes in north Wales had been revealed – abuse that had been concealed by the education system, the NHS and many others. Sir Ronnie Waterhouse famously did his best to discredit the witnesses, but it was crystal clear that something very, very grim had gone on over many years and Ronnie did have to fess up to that. Tony Francis killed himself a few years ago – just as Operation Pallial re-opened the investigation into the North Wales Child Abuse Scandal. I was told recently that he was under investigation himself, but I do not have documentary evidence of this.

So what were Greg’s suggestions for turning around an institutionally corrupt sclerotic NHS which for years has colluded with the abuse of vulnerable people? I haven’t read the report that he compiled for Margaret Jay, but Greg outlines his views in his book. He bangs on about leadership – the NHS has a surfeit of leadership, they’re all fucking leaders in the NHS, I think that they’ve got quite enough leadership – and states that the senior managers in the NHS should be doctors. That is the opinion of many people and one can see the logic, but there are problems with that idea. Good doctors very rarely want to be managers – they want to be doctors. Traditionally in the NHS, there were doctors who became managers (they were called administrators in those days) – it was usually what was done with doctors who were so bad that letting them loose on patients was not a good idea. The documents that my lawyers obtained pertaining to my own case contain numerous references to these doctor-managers that worked in north Wales in the 80s and 90s – for example, Dr Cedric Davies and Dr David Jones. It is quite clear from my documents that these two people had only one function – their status as clinicians was used to further conceal the criminal activities of their colleagues. The lethal lobotomist Dr T. Gwynne Williams had also been given a managerial role – unsurprisingly it compounded the problems. What the NHS desperately needs is high calibre, honest managers who are able to genuinely facilitate the work of the practitioners in the NHS. The NHS has such a rotten culture that managers like that really don’t want to work in the NHS. If they are tempted in, they leave again very quickly.

Greg does of course mention the necessity of ‘culture change’. Everyone who is asked to give their opinion on the NHS mentions this. It is obviously the polite response from people who can barely believe what they have discovered going on in the NHS. But because it’s the NHS no-one dares state what has been uncovered, so it’s all breached in terms of the need for a ‘culture change’. We need HSE prosecutions and indeed even corporate manslaughter charges in certain cases before the ‘culture change’ can begin to happen. Not that the general public have any idea of the state that the NHS is in – because the media won’t report it will they Greg…

Greg mentions in ‘Inside Story’ that Mal Young, who was responsible for drama series at the BBC, was concerned that Holby City and Casualty didn’t reflect real hospitals. Was Mal referring to the fact that in these dramas there are very rarely staff portrayed who are vindictive and abusive to patients or who regularly make mistakes so serious that patients are harmed? Or that these dramas never show staff lying at inquests or in Court, or altering medical records to conceal cock-ups? No, Mal was concerned because he believed that the ‘BBC hospitals’ didn’t show the same racial mix as NHS hospitals – Mal wanted more ethnic minority actors in these dramas, so he sent the producers into some real hospitals to see what they were like. In which case, the producers will have actually noticed that ethnic minority staff in NHS hospitals are disproportionately represented in cleaning, cooking and portering jobs and that if they are practitioners they overwhelmingly tend to be working in the more junior roles or in the less prestigious specialities where recruitment is difficult.

Now I don’t see that on the dramas that Mal was responsible for. Holby City has a consultant neurosurgeon who is Afro-Caribbean and hailed from the ghetto. That would be a very rare thing alone, but Holby City has also managed to find a consultant cardiac surgeon who I think has now been given a Chair as well – one who leads the unit furthermore and is a world expert on experimental cutting edge procedures – who grew up in a children’s home and was sexually abused whilst she was there. The same cardiac unit has yet another surgeon who is Afro-Caribbean and the first in her family to go to university. That’s one hell of a hospital and it’s certainly nothing like any UK NHS hospital that I’ve ever come across – it is a hub of upward social mobility that simply does not exist in UK medicine. Casualty did its bit by having a romance – and then a wedding, albeit one that went badly wrong – between an Asian female doctor and a white male porter. There is a great deal of social snobbery in hospitals and the nearest to the Casualty scenario that I ever came across was a porter at Ysbyty Gwynedd who was caught serially having sex with people on hospital premises. Was he sacked? No – because he actually had a place to read medicine at Guys and Tommy’s and he was working at Ysbyty Gwynedd for a few months before taking up his place. There were similar incidents whilst he was a medical student. He qualified – and returned to work at the Hergest Unit as a psychiatrist. There were a number of concerns raised about him – including by me. I wrote to the GMC, only to find that Keith Thomson, the CEO of the North West Wales NHS Trust, also wrote to the GMC stating that I had made ‘outrageous allegations’. There was no investigation. Some four years later I heard that this man had attacked his wife so violently that she was sectioned such was her distress and that his two children had been taken into care as a result of severe neglect. It was only then that he was stopped from working as a doctor. How did I know all this? Because he was one of my neighbours and I knew him well for about ten years. As did the rest of the village. We saw him attack his dog so ferociously that the dog nearly died and the vet threatened to prosecute him, we saw him kick a neighbour’s cat across the garden because he ‘didn’t like cats’ and we saw a previous partner of his leave with her child and refuse this man access because she was so frightened of his violence. The Rev Wynne Roberts, the hospital chaplain at Ysbyty Gwynedd, was friends with this doctor, knew about his violence and said nothing. Wynne Roberts sat on the Bangor University School of Healthcare Sciences Ethics Committee and was also a member of the Mental Health Act Commission. Wynne had previously worked as a priest in the Church in Wales but had been obliged to leave after he had a sexual relationship with a parishioner – whilst Wynne was married to somebody else as I think was the parishioner concerned – whereupon the North West Wales NHS Trust employed him as their hospital chaplain and later gave him a management role (see post ‘Music Therapy Anyone?’).

Beat that Mal.

Greg states in his book that Foundation Hospitals are the way forward because they ‘give power to local managers’. The local managers in the NHS are like Martin Jones and Keith Thomson – they are mini versions of the corrupt ferocious bullies that are the regional managers and the most senior directors. It is the NHS model of management. Mid-Staffs occurred because a bunch of lying callous dickwits wanted to achieve foundation status – if the managers are both thick and corrupt, no model of management is going to be successful. The mortality rates at Mid-Staffs were known throughout the NHS hierarchy, right up to the level of Secretary of State. The problems had begun under the Tory administrations of the 80s and 90s and became worse and worse and worse, because the response of everyone was to conceal the serious problems. Mid-Staffs was in crisis at the time that Margaret Jay was bollocking on to Greg about the Patients Charter. Whilst patients drank water out of vases, were told to crap in their beds by Angels who couldn’t be bothered to walk across the ward with a bed-pan and were ‘assessed’ by receptionists – and died unnecessarily in great numbers.

Dyke’s observations on the culture and management at the BBC include that there is much inbreeding at the BBC – that is, people working in the BBC being married to each other or being in relationships with each other (just like the prevailing situation in the NHS). What Greg doesn’t mention is that this sort of inbreeding at the BBC is also often the basis for securing jobs or promotion – as is sexual relationships between staff. Neither does Dyke mention the number of BBC staff who are the children of media executives/professionals, often specifically those who have worked for the BBC.

Dyke mentions that in the 80s the BBC was ‘very white, very male’, but with initiatives pushed through by John Birt ‘who felt passionately’ about gender equality this has all now changed – the glass ceiling has been well and truly broken. Dyke also mentions the efforts that the BBC have made towards better representation of ethnic minorities in the workforce. Greg wrote his book some ten years ago. A few weeks ago, a huge rumpus followed the revelations that women at the BBC earned far, far less than their male colleagues – even when sitting in the same studio, presenting the same programme – and that very few people from ethnic minorities were in senior positions or on higher salaries. Because the debate pivoted around gender inequality, the many other injustices barely received a mention. Although women were paid less than men at the BBC, women doing jobs needing a high level of education, knowledge and competence were paid a pittance compared to the airheads presenting light entertainment programmes. Claudia and Tess from Strictly Come Dancing were earning twice as much as Laura Kuenssberg or the women journalists on the Today programme. And everyone was grossly overpaid anyway.

The BBC does now have many senior female executives. They behave pretty much as the senior male executives always have – they are ruthless and obsessed with their status and money. Many of them achieved their positions via relationships with their male senior colleagues and have evolved into cougars continuing this fine tradition with their more junior colleagues. Greg observes that in the BBC, the upper echelons consist of ‘competing individuals in a climate of fear’. Yes – and the women carry on just like the men. Greg doesn’t mention social class – the BBC still draws it’s staff – particularly the senior staff – from the middle classes who have been educated at Oxbridge or Russell group universities. Of course there will be plenty of excellent graduates coming out of those institutions but this phenomenon definitely squeezes out everybody else – it is also closely linked with the nepotism that is so obvious at the BBC. My mum/dad went to Oxbridge/Durham/St Andrews/Bristol, read humanities and spent their careers in the BBC and now I’m doing exactly the same…It’s because we’re all so talented! Unless my mum is Eve Pollard who has edited most of the nation’s biggest circulation newspapers, in which case I’ve evolved into Claudia Winkleman which is why I get paid nearly £500k for wearing too much eyeliner and wiggling my bum once a week on Strictly Come Dancing.

Dyke’s book mentions a few of these women who have broken the glass ceiling at the BBC. One is Jenny Abramsky – now Dame Jenny – who when Dyke was DG was Director of BBC Radio. Abramsky was responsible for digital radio – she ‘persuaded, threatened, cajoled’ everyone at the BBC to push this through; the BBC spent £18 million/yr on new digital services and then had to spend many more millions on the transmission system. There is still a proportion of the population who cannot receive digital radio. When Abramsky strong-armed the BBC into the switch- over to digital radio, it was actually the TV audience which was expanding at the time – radio listeners were dwindling. According to Dyke however, everyone was ‘too scared of incurring Jenny’s wrath’ to oppose the idea. It was commercial radio which really benefited – they wanted the switch to digital because they wanted the new radio stations which would result and they knew that only the BBC was big enough to push the switch-over through.

Jenny Abramsky was married to Alasdair Liddell. Liddell went to Fettes College – the same school that Blair attended and the school at which Blair’s father taught. Liddell was an NHS manager! In the 80s he was involved in the creation of the University College Hospitals Trust – so Alasdair will have known about the dodgy research practices there then. He then went on to manage the East Anglian Regional Health Authority between 1988-94, where he experimented with many of the structures that were later introduced into the NHS – structures which failed. So it was hardly surprising that in 1994 Liddell was appointed Director of Planning for the NHS in the Dept of Health. Liddell went on from success to success – he was the brains behind NHS Direct, another disaster and also worked on various IT projects for the NHS. The ones which cost millions but never got off the ground. In 2000 Liddell left the NHS and joined the PR firm Bell Pottinger – which has just imploded as a result of some very foolish decisions that they made in South Africa. Liddell also joined a company called Healthcare Locums. Now I wonder how they make their money?? Liddell was of course a Senior Associate of the Kings Fund. Liddell is now dead.

Another woman who broke the glass ceiling at the BBC was Carolyn Fairbairn, who when Greg was there was Director of Strategy. Fairbairn had previously worked for the World Bank, as a journo on the Economist, as a consultant at McKinsey and Co and in John Major’s Policy Unit in 10 Downing Street, developing policy on health and social care no less. It was Fairbairn who led the BBC team to secure the DTT licence. According to Greg, Andy Duncan – who later became CEO of Channel 4 – and Emma Scott ‘sold’ the idea of Freeview. The beauty of which was that because the customers have to buy the box, if the box doesn’t work or goes wrong, it’s the customer’s problem not the BBC’s.

Dyke maintains that the BBC wanted people to go digital – the Gov’t planned to switch the analogue signal off because if it wasn’t switched off the BBC couldn’t defend the range of digital services. Freeview also sustains the licence fee – the more Freeview boxes there are, the harder it is for the BBC to switch to subscription services and most boxes can’t be adapted for pay TV. In 1998 the BBC agreed to pay £5 million to BSkyB to put TV services on the BSkyB digital platform – although BSkyB wanted the BBC to do this anyway.

Since her involvement in this scam, Fairbairn has been a Director the FSA, a Director of Capita, a non-executive director of the Competition and Marketing Authority, Lloyds Banking Group and the UK Statistics Authority. In 2015 Fairbairn was appointed Director General of the CBI – the first woman to hold the post! Woman’s Hour had better add her to their Power List. Fairbairn’s husband is described as a ‘multi-millionaire property developer’. So she can afford to be ripped off over her Freeview box – however at least she doesn’t have to run the risk of Crapita screwing up their assessment for her disability benefits, as they have done for thousands of other people.

Dyke was well-known for claiming that he would dispense with the managerialist insanity that John Birt imposed upon the BBC and for subsequently coining the slogan ‘cut the crap’. Cutting the crap sounds an excellent idea, but Greg did seem to introduce quite a lot of crap of his own. He lists numerous initiatives that he introduced – ‘Just Imagine’, ‘Leading The Way’, ‘The Big Conversation’. Why the staff of the BBC just can’t go into work and do their jobs he doesn’t explain, but Greg did all sorts of bizarre things to demonstrate to the staff that a new style of management had arrived, such as ‘allowing the staff to busk in the foyer of Bush House in London at lunchtime’. Presumably Claudia’s 500 grand a year isn’t enough for her to make ends meet, she’s got to play the penny whistle and pass the hat around as well. For ‘The Big Conversation’, Greg boasts of having 17,000 staff in a ‘huge live discussion’ – this meant that £250k had to be spent on extending part of the BBC building to cram in an additional 8000 staff in order that they could ‘watch and participate’. Greg maintains that a ‘party atmosphere’ prevailed and in all 400 events were held, including in Delhi, Moscow, Cairo, Nairobi, as well as across the UK. At TV Centre in White City, Cerys Matthews entertained everyone and food and booze was supplied.

Anyone still up for paying their licence fee?

Greg observes that the only people who didn’t take part in all this idiocy were the Governors – they probably thought that they had better things to do with their time. Like go to Glyndebourne, on BBC expenses obviously. There was one exception – Gavyn Davies, the Chair of Governors who was appointed after Bland, did participate in the crap that hadn’t been cut. But then Gavyn Davies had previously been a partner at Goldman Sachs. Gavyn had also worked in Harold Wilson’s Policy Unit, 1974-76; had been economic advisor to James Callaghan 1976-79 and was one of the ‘wise men’ to the Chancellor of the Exchequer during the 1992-97 Parliament. Gavyn was recommended for the post of Chair of the BBC by Tessa Jowell.

An ‘inspirational leader’, Susan Spindler, was Director of the crap known as ‘Making It Happen’ in 2002. I presume that this is the same Susan Spindler who was involved with making the documentary series ‘Doctors To Be’ which followed the careers of a group of medical students at St Mary’s Hospital Medical School some ten years before ‘Making It Happen’ – which left out a great many things…

More money was wasted on leadership. The BBC used Ashridge Business School for their ‘leadership training programme’. Ashridge Business School was originally a trust established by Bonar Law, the former PM. In 1929 it became a ‘College of Citizenship’ which was established to help the Conservative Party develop it’s intellectual forces in the struggle with left-wing organisations such as the Fabian Society – it was a cross between a think tank and a training centre. It was then re-launched in 1959 as a College providing ‘management training’.

Greg himself was sent to Harvard Business School at a cost of $30,000 which Christopher Bland was happy to sign off. Not only does Greg make it clear that anyone who paid the fee would pass the course – which sounds very familiar – but for some reason it was Greg’s course at Harvard that prompted him to rejoin the Labour Party. Perhaps because Miliband, Yvette et al had all done a stint at Harvard – what with them being so very radical and Yvette being a Woman who’s first job was driving a tractor in Yorkshire, or so she claimed when she thought that she was a dead cert to become Labour leader.

Dyke discusses devolution of broadcasting and tells us that in 2003 he suggested to the Governors that some of the BBC services should be relocated to Manchester, in the wake of much feeling that the BBC was far too centred upon the south east of England and that Scotland and the north of England had become alienated from the BBC. Abramsky threatened to resign if Radio 5 Live moved to Manchester, Jana Bennett the Director of TV – another Strong Woman Who’s Broken The Glass Ceiling – wanted BBC 3 to stay in London and the children’s dept also refused to move. BBC did of course end up building a big centre at Salford – and there has been endless trouble because the staff refused to move out of London.

Even Gavyn Davies was savaged for suggesting that too much BBC money was spent on the southern middle classes, but Greg mentioned that whilst he was DG he sent ‘a signal’ by appointing Pat Loughrey from N Ireland as Director of Nations and Regions.

It wasn’t a signal that anyone noticed. In 2005 I was a member of the public at a ‘meet the BBC’ event in Cardiff. This was when Michael Grade had taken over as Chair and Mark Thompson was DG. Grade and the other Governors were there, as was Thompson and Mark Byford (Mark Byford’s dad played a role in concealing the North Wales Child Abuse Scandal – please see post ‘Top Of The Cops’). The audience were all from Wales – obviously – and Rhun ap Iorwerth, now Plaid AM for Ynys Mon, who used to work for the BBC, was the man with the microphone who went among the audience. Grade gave the best display of rude, anti-Welsh bigotry that I have ever witnessed. The big idiot sat there pompousing away bellowing at Rhun ‘you’re tall aren’t you’. It took me a few minutes to work out what it was all about – it was Grade’s idea of a joke, because as we all know, Welshmen are small, so that they can fit down the mines. Rhun’s height is within the normal parameters for an adult UK male. It didn’t stop there – the rudeness regarding everything Welsh and the lame stereotypes continued all evening. The only person who didn’t lapse into this was the Governor for Wales who had to share a platform with this bunch of twats. He did make a few comments that suggested that they were revealing themselves to be a bunch of racist bastards, but it was water off Grade’s back, the insults continued. When a member of the audience raised the question of Ann Robinson recently insulting the Welsh on TV, we were told that the Welsh had to know when to take a joke. Well I look forward to Ann Robinson blacking up and joining in a song and dance routine a la the Black and White Minstrels and we’ll see what happens. Further details of Grade and his colleagues’ appalling crassness at that event can be read in my post ‘News Round Up, May 18 2017’. Greg Dyke mentions in his book that in 2000 he gave a lecture to the Commission for Racial Equality (CRE). I presume that Grade, Ruth Deech and Richard Tait were not in the audience.

Greg observes that Michael Grade was ‘a good and brave Chief Exec of Channel 4, willing to stand up against bullying from politicians’. Well that’s interesting Greg, because the reason that I take an interest in Grade is that back in the 1980s when Grade was a nobody on the make most famous for simply being a relative of Lew Grade, one of my friends worked as the box officer manager for the Edinburgh Fringe Festival one summer. My friend received a very rude demanding letter from a Samuel Brittan, journo on the FT and brother of Leon – later the centre of child sexual abuse allegations. The letter demanded that my friend send Samuel a ticket for the Fringe and arrange hotel accommodation for him – it ended by saying that Samuel worked at the FT ‘and anyone at the Financial Times can vouch for me’. The letter arrived shortly before the Fringe was due to open, so of course the tickets had sold out and accommodation in Edinburgh is booked up months in advance for the duration of the Festival anyway. My friend wrote back to Samuel explaining that she wasn’t able to send him a ticket or arrange accommodation because both had sold out.

Shortly after, a diplomatic incident occurred. My friend was summoned by High Authorities at the Fringe and given copies of the rude letter that Samuel had written her – as well as a copy of a letter that Brittan had then written to Grade FUMING that my mate hadn’t pulled strings for him and a reply from Grade to Brittan, telling Brittan that he was ‘appalled’ at my friend’s ‘rudeness’ and that Grade would ensure that Brittan got a ticket for the Festival ‘even I have to give you mine’. Someone had demanded that my friend should be dismissed over all this – only that wasn’t really possible, because it was just a summer job. I wanted to send the correspondence to Private Eye – but my friend was then told by a well-wisher that Grade was about to become head of Channel 4 and her planned career in media would be wrecked if any of us publicised the letters.

Grade was given a peerage in 2011. He sits as a Conservative – his wiki entry states that Grade didn’t announce that he was a Tory until 2010. He didn’t need to, some of us had known for years…

A couple years after the BBC event in Cardiff I was chatting to some BBC folk from Cardiff who were all telling me how much ‘charisma’ Michael Grade had and how it was this that had taken him to the top. At the same time there were articles appearing in the UK liberal broadsheets about Grade’s winning ways and yes his ‘charisma’ and how he wears red braces and matching socks. Not a word about doing favours for people who’s brothers are Cabinet Ministers running a corrupt Home Office and who are widely believed to have been tangled up in a child sexual abuse scandal that was covered up by a corrupt Home Office whilst he was Home Secretary. If matching red braces and socks are the essential ingredient to being Chairman of the BBC, there are a great many other people who would be capable of doing that job without grovelling to the relatives of some very unsavoury politicians.

Dyke mentions in his book that Tessa Jowell was very keen for Blair to appoint Grade as Chair of the BBC. Tessa herself earlier in her career knew about the abuse of children in care and psychiatric patients, she worked for some of the organisations that were actually perpetuating and concealing this (see post ‘Tower Hamlets, Paul Boateng and Tessa Jowell’). However Dyke also observes that Tessa just went along with whatever Blair ordered her to do which is why she was such a pushover when she was at Secretary of State for Media, Culture and Sport. Dear old Tessa did once say that she’d jump under a bus for Blair – so one can’t tell if the driving force behind Grade’s appointment as Chair was Blair, Tessa or someone else. What is clear is that it is very likely that Grade knew something about the chaos and wrongdoing of the inner London boroughs where children were being abused in the 70s, 80s and 90s – run by Councillors like Tessa – and the wrongdoing at the Home Office, run at one point by his mate Samuel’s brother. Grade had spent donkeys years at LWT – he’ll have learnt something from all those current affairs and politics programmes about London that he was involved with making and he’d been toadying around enough politicians for a sufficiently long time to have heard a few things about them as well. Someone who was very much opposed to Grade’s appointment as Chair of the BBC though was John Birt. He tried to influence Tessa and then wrote to Blair telling him that Grade was the worst public appointment he’d made as PM.

It’s not just the Chairs of the BBC Governors who have chums in Gov’t, their relatives do as well. Gavyn Davies’s wife Sue was one of Gordon Brown’s inner circle. As for a few of the other Governors – at one point the Vice-Chair of the BBC was Richard Ryder. Ryder was a former Tory Whip and responsible for organising the revamp that Thatcher underwent in the late 70s. Ryder knew about Sir Peter Morrison’s activities (see post ‘I Want Serious Money Now Please’). Sarah Hogg, wife of Tory Cabinet Minister Douglas Hogg was a Governor – Hogg had previously been head of John Major’s Policy Unit at the time of Black Wednesday in 1992 (see post ‘Running The Country – And All That Jazz’). Although Sarah claims to be one of the UK’s leading economists and was head of the Policy Unit, Black Wednesday wasn’t her fault. So that’s why Sarah was given a life peerage in 1995, just three years after someone else crashed the economy. Sarah then became Baroness Hogg, although she was already Viscountess Hailsham. Hogg was the first women to Chair a FTSE 100 company. Sarah’s daughter Charlotte has inherited her mother’s talent for highly paid jobs – Charlotte Hogg was at one point the Deputy Governor of the Bank of England, but the Deputy Hogg had to resign when an unfortunate undeclared conflict of interest was discovered – Charlotte’s brother had his snout in the same trough but the Hoggs forgot to mention it. Another Governor was Heather Rabbatts, the former Chief Exec of Lambeth Borough Council between 1995-2000. So she was running Lambeth Council when Mandelson was a member. Heather was the youngest Council Chief Exec in the UK. She is a black female barrister who advertises her disadvantaged background. I wonder whose Chambers that she might have passed through? Would you happen to know anything about all those kids who were abused whilst in the care of Lambeth Heather? The kids to whom huge amounts of compensation was later paid, not just because they were molested but because Lambeth knew that it was happened but did nothing? Some of those kids were sent by Lambeth to children’s homes in north Wales…

Heather was a BBC Governor between 1999-01. Heather was on FIFA’s anti-discriminatory task force until she resigned in 2015 after Sepp Blatter was re-elected as President. So she was busy not discriminating there whilst he was President for his first innings at FIFA then – didn’t she notice what he was like? Heather was named in the Woman’s Hour Power List!

 

Greg’s time as DG ended notoriously as sparks flew between the BBC and Blair’s Gov’t – most obviously in the form of Alistair Campbell – which eventually resulted in the resignation of Dyke and Gavyn Davies and a number of other Governors. The row was precipitated by a report regarding Saddam Hussein’s WMD by Andrew Gilligan that was broadcast on the Today programme that Blair et al took umbrage over. The Gov’t tried to pressurise the BBC into saying that Gilligan’s story wasn’t true and when the BBC refused to do this, Mandelson rang his old friend Caroline Thomas who was Director of Policy at the BBC and told her that the BBC would get the full force of the Gov’t PR machine. Mandy was as good as his threat and Campbell et al mobilised against the BBC. In the cross-fire Dr David Kelly’s name was made public by the MoD and Downing Street’s Press Office. Dr Kelly was later found dead, supposedly as a result of suicide, although the injuries that were stated to have been found on Dr Kelly’s body and the quantity of drugs that were said to have been found in his blood would never have been enough to kill him. A group of medics did make this point in a letter to the press sometime afterwards, but nobody took any notice of them. If only they’d alleged that they were being attacked by dangerous mental health patients – their concerns would have been headline news then.

The uproar was such that it led to the Hutton Inquiry, which was about as honest and transparent as the Waterhouse Inquiry. Before Hutton published his exoneration of Blair, Dyke alleges that Philip Gould, a member of Blair’s clique, was asked if the Report could prove difficult for the Gov’t. Gould is alleged to have replied ‘don’t worry, we appointed the right judge’. When Rebekah Brooks ended up in deep shit after the serious wrongdoing of News International became public, it is alleged that she went to Blair for advice and was told ‘tough up and arrange an inquiry that will clear you’. Which is exactly what Brooks did – as well as ‘leaving to start a family’ (I think Rebekah had to resort to fertility treatment to do this, she was no spring chicken, so presumably starting a family had not been a priority previously), receiving at least one million from Murdoch – to pay for the pram and nappies obviously – only to return at a very senior level in Murdoch’s empire a few years later! A lot of people were of the opinion that Brooks should have gone to prison along with her staff. But she had advice from Blair and shared horses with David Cameron…

Grade himself departed from the BBC in a puff of smoke to move into the most senior position at ITV. The next Chair of the BBC was Chris Patten who angrily refused to shoulder any responsibility at all when Jimmy Savile and the Newsnight allegations regarding the abuse of children in north Wales exploded in his face. This is the Patten who was Chair of the Conservative Party when Sir Peter Morrison was busy with kids in care in north Wales, the Chris Patten who’s wife Lavender was the Patron of the Oxford Mindfulness Centre that was established and run by Professor Mark Williams. Not only was Patten himself Chancellor of Oxford University at the time, but Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy was based on a research fraud that Williams had carried out whilst he was working as a clinical psychologist in Bangor in the late 80s/early 90s (see post ‘The Biggest Expert Of The Lot’). Whilst patients killed themselves and were left destitute. Williams’s ‘fieldwork’ was carried out by the notoriously abusive Arfon Community Mental Health Team, whose colleagues were some of the social workers responsible for the abuse of children in care in north Wales. An early publication of Williams’s had an acknowledgement to Keith Fearns. Keith Fearns was the Gwynedd social worker who perjured himself in court on the orders of Lucille Hughes in order for Gwynedd County Council to obtain a High Court injunction against me to prevent me pursuing my complaints against Gwynedd Social Services. Fearns had never met me when he swore his affidavit. Lucille Hughes was named in the Waterhouse Report as knowing that a paedophile ring was operating in Gwynedd Social Services when she was Director, but she failed to act.

Like the NHS, the BBC seems to be a complete recidivist. One of my friends worked there in the late 80s and he spent the best part of a year watching the entrenched corruption, with commissions given out to friends of people at the BBC and the fuckwit children of bigwigs at the BBC turning up in plum jobs. He also noticed that a lot of the senior managers at the BBC were older gay men who had a rather worrying sexual interest in much younger boys. The BBC seems to have got away with a great deal in its time. Just before my friend worked there, Private Eye used to provide updates on the activities of a manager there whom they named ‘spanker’. I can’t remember Spanker’s name, but I do remember the Eye’s regular reports on him. Spanker was interested in women rather than men, but he made a habit of asking young women who had applied for jobs at the BBC whom he was allegedly interviewing if they’d let him spank them. Spanker continued to do this even after the Eye began publishing articles about him – he did eventually resign but it took a while. Neither do I remember hearing about Spanker from any other media outlet.