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Peter Righton

A recently discovered press cutting shows that Peter Righton was questioned about indecent assaults on children by the Obscene Publications Squad in November 1994 – several months after the Hereford & Worcester investigation had been shut down, and after the BBC documentary Secret Life of a Paedophile had been broadcast. It can be assumed by the absence of any further news reports that he was never charged with an offence, despite clear evidence from his diaries including names and ages of victims, along with the name of the institution where he abused them. The November 1994 arrest took place in Eye, Suffolk – presumably at Lord Henniker’s estate, where he had been living since his 1992 arrest.

The Independent, 10th November 1994

A former lecturer on child social work is being questioned about indecent assaults on children. Scotland Yard’s Obsene Publications Squad arrested Peter Righton, 68, in Eye, Suffolk.

 

Peter McKelvie ( former Hereford & Worcester team manager) gives some background to the case:

“One of the many reasons I contacted Tom Watson MP in October 2012 was my anger and frustration that Peter Righton had been allowed to die with just one minor conviction for possession of indecent images of children when I knew how evil a web he had spun in full sight of leading social work agencies such as the National Children’s Bureau and the National Institute of Social Work not to mention the high regard he was obviously held in at the Department of Health

Much has been made of Savile being given the keys to Broadmoor

Righton didn’t need the keys, he could walk in to any children’s home or local authority boarding school in the UK on ” official business “

I was given full access by West Mercia police to Righton’s diaries and letters which gave the clues to a large network of Paedophiles with “official ” access to children.
Unfortunately my team weren’t allowed to pursue these leads ourselves as the alleged offences occurred outside our statutory geographical boundaries
We had to pass all our relevant information on to other local authorities.
 With the full support of my then Director of Social  Services, David Tombs, I wrote a report for the Department of Health pleading for them to agree to fund and set up a “National Joint Social Worker/Police investigation team” so that we could pursue all the leads we had and go anywhere the evidence took us
Righton in his diaries had made the task of investigation relatively straightforward.
He had listed the names and ages of each boy he had abused from 1957 onwards in categories of which institution the victims had been resident at the time,and most sickeningly of all, had scored each child’s level of abuse from 1 ( touching) to 10 ( buggery )
My Director was prepared to release me and 2 of my social workers to be part of such a team if we were seen as suitable applicants
Nothing came of this request and this huge body of evidence against Righton fell in to a black hole
A small group of us, a very senior Police  Officer, two very experienced investigative journalists and myself met with a senior Opposition Party MP in 1994 to lodge a complaint and demand action.
We named MP’s that we believed might be involved in this organised network
Nothing came of that either

My Director David Tombs retired in 1994 and my team was closed down and disbanded virtually immediately afterwards.”

Originally posted on Desiring Progress:

[Updated: I am immensely grateful to Peter McKelvie, Liz Davies, Martin Walkerdine and @Snowfaked (on Twitter) for providing extra information which has helped to fill in gaps in my earlier account]

I do intend at some point to publish a comprehensive account of all that can be ascertained about the life and activities of the sinister figure of Peter Righton, perhaps the most important of all figures in terms of the abuse scandals soon to be investigated by the national inquiry, and believed to have been a serial abuser himself with a great many victims. Both demands of time and also legal constraints do not permit this at present, but for now I wanted to publish some information and sources on Righton’s activities up until the early 1980s. 

Righton was born in June 1926 as Paul Pelham Righton, in Kensington . He grew up in Kent , and attended Ardingly College…

View original 3,710 more words

Dear Mr. Wilson,

I wonder if you would be prepared to help me.

I am a retired Child Protection Team Manager and the source of Tom Watson, MP’s PMQ to David Cameron on 24th October 2012, regarding the high profile paedophile ring that was partially exposed as a result of a police raid on Peter Righton’s home in 1992. The allegations that I took to Tom Watson resulted in the setting up of the ongoing Metropolitan Police investigation, Operation Fernbridge.

Today I have become aware, after the intense speculation surrounding the article in the Mail On Sunday regarding the MP “north of Watford” , of your previous role with Social Work Today and by implication BASW.

I was heavily involved with the making of the BBC’s Inside Story Documentary in 1994 – The Secret Life of a Paedophile – which was about Righton. It remains very much unfinished business for me as to how much of a major player Righton was in an international not just national network of abusers, and I admit to almost obsessional behaviour in trying to get the whole truth out on how evil a man he was and how many vulnerable children were abused directly by him or through the access he provided for fellow paedophiles.

Righton made little secret to close colleagues of his inclinations, as described by Barbara Kahan and Daphne Statham in the Secret Life documentary. Did your paths cross when you edited Social Work Today from 1976 – 79?

I have recently been told that Righton and Cyril Smith not only knew each other but may have operated together as paedophiles. Nothing in the 3 days I spent at Evesham Police Station in 1992 going through the tons of paperwork, letters, diaries etc removed on arrest from Righton’s home gave a clue to any such relationship.

However I am aware that Cyril Smith was the Liberals spokesperson on Social Services during your time at SWT and so it was highly possible that they knew each other through that link.

If you wish to check on my authenticity you can google the Spotlightonabuse site and look at my various contributions such as “An Open Letter to David Cameron”.

I will also now send you communication seperately between myself and Norman Baker who has agreed to meet me on 13th May as Minister of Justice to discuss my concerns raised in the Open Letter to Cameron.

I know that you have a reputation of being a very successful campaigner (“We can only try to edge the world in the right direction” is a quote of yours I understand) and so I hope you will appreciate what I am trying to achieve.

Incidentally and I hope you don’t mind me raising this, can I assume that today in the Mail isn’t the first time you have made such serious allegations about what you knew to be happening with the “MP north of Watford”. I would like to believe that you passed this information to the Police at the time or certainly not long afterwards.
If you are able to share what happened to it after that I would be grateful to know. I am not asking for the name of the MP!!

Yours sincerely,

Peter McKelvie

 

Please Note – as of 7th June, no reply has been received to this letter

Red Hill School was a special boarding school in Maidstone, Kent. It was where Peter Righton started his career in 1957 and where he went on to sexually abuse a number of vulnerable young boys. This was reported in the BBC Inside Story documentary, The Secret Life of a Paedophile. Peter Howarth also worked there, and was later jailed for child sex offences that took place at the Bryn Estyn home in Wrexham.

A recently discovered news report shows that a convicted child sex offender worked as a helper at Red Hill School in 1978/79. James Russell applied for the job using the false name of James Stewart, and lied about his background to disguise his criminal record. He had “three convictions for offences against young boys, and had spent most of the last eight years in jail”.

Two friends gave him references, and were both fined £200 after admitting “helping Russell by not disclosing his name and mis-stating his character”. One of the friends was Nicholas Douglass of Muntham House School.

Muntham House was a special boarding school 50 miles away from Maidstone in Horsham, West Sussex. In 1998, Nicholas Douglass was jailed for 16 years for his part in a paedophile ring that abused young boys at Muntham House in the late 1970s. (The Argus 25.08.98)

News of the World, 1st July 1979

NOTW010779

The morning after the broadcast of ‘Secret Life of a Paedophile’ in 1994, Richard Johnson, the author of the book A Kind of Hush, rang in to the Inside Story team to say that at 1.30 am he had received a phone call from ‘Mick’ (who the central character in A Kind of Hush is based on) to say that the documentary had vindicated him and everything he had told Richard about many years before. According to Richard Johnson the book was loosely based on a paedophile network that included Peter Righton, a Labour MP, a well known Labour politician, and a central figure allegedly named as a major paedophile in Islington children’s homes.

This information is based on written evidence seen at first hand by Peter McKelvie.

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