1. Troyhand said:

    The Age (Melbourne, Aus.) – Jul 6, 1987
    Sex abuse row parents to sue doctors, says paper

    London, Sunday – Private prosecutions for assault will be brought against the doctors involved in the Cleveland child sex abuse controversy, ‘The Sunday Times’ reported.

    The paper said some of the parents whose children were taken into care planned to sue Australian-born paediatrician, Dr Marietta Higgs, and her colleague, Dr Geoffrey Wyatt.

    The two doctors are at the centre of a row in Cleveland in the north of England after 113 children were diagnosed as sexually abused in a two-month period.

    The parents will launch legal action on the grounds that consent was not given for some of the intimate examinations of their children, and that these examinations constitute assault.

    * Police are seeking a child-care officer after allegations of sexual assault against at least 30 young boys, a Scotland Yard spokesman said today.

    Daniel Swales, 36, who worked at the Orchard Lodge Children’s Home run by Southwark Council in South London, has been missing since police began receiving complaints, the spokesman said.

    The allegations concern boys aged 6-13 who joined soccer teams Mr Swales organised in the South-East London League.

    Mr Swales had worked at the home for the past two years as a child-care officer.

    A team of 10 detectives is investigating, and inquiries are being made in the Manchester and Blackpool areas.

    The spokesman said that besides boys involved in a soccer club children may have been invited to Mr Swales’s home in Penge, south London, or taken on holiday.
    – AAP, PA

  2. Troyhand said:

    Independent – Friday 01 May 2009
    Prison that dangerous children call ‘home’ is to close

    The small suburb of Anerley, in the south London borough of Bromley, is the epitome of commuter-belt tranquility: tree-lined streets, BMW X5s parked on the high street and half-hourly trains to central London.

    Yet a few hundred yards from the station, tucked away at the back of William Booth Close, is Orchard Lodge, London’s last secure children’s home.

    Its residents, boys aged between 12 and 16, fall into three categories. Some are there on welfare grounds, perhaps because they repeatedly self-harm; others are on temporary stay for remand purposes; and others still have been sentenced. The majority have usually committed terrible crimes: armed burglary, sexual abuse, rape, manslaughter, and even murder.

    Opened in 1986 by boxer and local boy Henry Cooper, Orchard Lodge’s pleasant campus spreads over six-and-a-half acres and combines grassy knolls with a series of inoffensive-looking buildings. An administration block caters for the 70 full-time staff; there’s a concrete play area, a school with six classrooms and three secure units, each with eight bedrooms.

    The 13 other similar homes around the country belong to local authorities. Orchard Lodge is privately owned.

    Security is intense and unremitting. Contact with the children is heavily restricted, but The Independent was given access to facilities at the Lodge.

    Staff members enter the secure area using a huge bunch of keys strapped around their waist. Visitors, including this correspondent, are instructed to leave all belongings outside – everything from wallet, phone and keys to pen and pad – because, according to Annette, the facilities manager, “they’ll have them off you”. There are security cameras and flashing alarms on ceilings, and a sign on each gateway between secure and unsecure areas that reads: “WARNING! Do not enter secure area if red light is flashing”.

    At lunchtime, extra standby staff patrol between the maths and art classrooms. Some of the kids are frustrated or hyped after a boring morning, and need to be restrained by staff before settling down for a plate of stew, chips, and salad. One of the younger children entertains his peers with card tricks, saying he’s the next David Blaine.

    The bedrooms, painted mauve, are 12ft by 10ft, with high ceilings. One contained typical teenage accoutrements: Playstation, small television, magazines. The atmosphere is thick with a sense of encroaching institutionalisation, although patient staff bring a tangible compassion to these young lives.

    But despite their efforts, despite the exceptional needs of the young boys, and despite being the last secure home for children with such vulnerabilities in the capital, the Lodge will soon close. The Youth Justice Board (YJB) has announced that the Lodge’s bid to re-tender this year has been unsuccessful. The Glen Care Group, a private firm which runs similar institutions around the country, and bought the Lodge from Southwark Council in March 2006, cannot afford to keep it open.

    That means the 16 boys who live here will be transferred elsewhere in England, potentially as far as afield as Southampton or Nottingham, distancing them from their families and entrenching feelings of dislocation and detachment. The closure will entail redundancy for the army of committed carers. The Lodge’s self-styled governor, a public servant named Dennis Scotland, feels “very, very downbeat”.

    “It came as a huge shock,” he says, “because this is the last of its kind in London and you just didn’t think they would consider it. The service was doing very well, and London needs these provisions. These boys are being packed off to far flung places, for nobody’s good.”

    Frances Done, chair of the Youth Justice Board, told The Independent that the number of beds required in secured children’s homes had fallen from 219 to 191 this year, and that in a quality assessment exercise Orchard Lodge was one of four to come bottom.

    “We offered transitional funding to them to focus on welfare,” Miss Done said. “These places cost over £200,000 a year. We’re doing all we can to look after vulnerable children, and minimise travel distances for families.”

    Mr Scotland, 50, has run Orchard Lodge since October. A father of three children (now grown-up), he has spent two decades working in residential services, for St Christopher’s Fellowship, a children’s charity and housing association, and as a youth worker in west London. His empathy with the boys is obvious. “There are a number of boys who get caught up in this not because they’re bad boys but because these nasty situations are beyond their control. You meet them and you can’t believe the crimes they’ve committed. Some are so sharp, and charming, and kind.”

    Many of the youngsters sent here self-harm viciously – “there’s head-banging, cutting, that kind of thing” – and most have witnessed shocking brutality. One 12-year-old saw his brother’s murder. Another received public exposure when he was convicted of involvement in a high-profile gang murder.

    Sporting a bling watch and M&S Autograph suit, Mr Scotland is a role model to his residents, many of whom are, like him, black or from ethnic minorities. His authority is augmented by their knowledge of his own troubled childhood. Mr Scotland’s mother died in childbirth, and his father committed suicide when he was three. Growing up on Durlston Road in Hackney, east London, he was raised by Jamaican foster parents but was a “demotivated, unsettled loner” at school. He was illiterate at 14. Four years in Jamaica, from 14 to 18, were, he says, his saving.

    At a time when politicians talk of Britain’s “broken society”, Mr Scotland is sceptical of Westminster’s glare. “Many of the boys here come from families where there is no structure, boundaries, or order. Some lived on estates where the pressure to join gangs is huge, and several have no father. But while family breakdown is an important factor, it’s not the only factor. There are social currents in play, like communities with no resources.

    “Politicians who talk about this stuff haven’t enough on-the-ground understanding. They operate on another level, quoting all the figures. But to understand this stuff you have to feel it.

    “We have a secure provision in London, the last one left, and they’re letting us close, jeopardising these boys’ future. The impoverished families of these boys are being told they have to go on a 200-mile trip if they want to see their sons. What’s tough on crime or tough on the causes of crime about that?”

  3. Troyhand said:


    Dr Epps has worked almost exclusively with children, adolescents and their families since qualifying as a clinical psychologist in 1986.
    • Between 1986 and 1989 he was Honorary Lecturer in Psychology at the Institute of Psychiatry (University of London) and a Senior Clinical Psychologist with the Bethlem Royal and Maudsley Hospitals Special Health Authority. His clinical work was divided between the adolescent in-patient psychiatric unit at the Bethlem Royal Hospital (Beckenham, Kent) and Orchard Lodge Regional Resource Centre (Penge, South London), a social services facility with secure and open provision for delinquent boys. He also saw outpatients at the Maudsley Hospital (Camberwell), and had teaching and research responsibilities.

    Why men behave badly

    There are only a handful of old murals left in London and Penge has one of them. Located on the back of the Hollywood East pub, formally called the Park Tavern, is a mural of a Victorian scene depicting the pub, the Crystal Palace at Sydenham Hill, all set amongst the fields and industry of south east London

    The mural was painted in 1982 by the Coal Yard Youth Group and the Orchard Lodge Regional Resource Centre, a children’s secure home that closed in 2009. The mural must be loved locally, because apart from a bit of tagging, the piece hasn’t been removed when the pub changed hands. Let hope it stays around to remind us what great projects can be done with young people!

  4. Simon said:

    This is a problem, I remember things and really don’t want to, I remember vanguards yet I don’t want to remember that arsehole

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