A Kind of Hush

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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3 comments
  1. cassandracogno said:

    When they break into the wealthy pimp Trewin who works with the dad and steal his files they look at his computer screen and one of the boys remarks:

    “He delivers kids like pizza” which echoes this headline from 1989 – nine years before the film was made in 1998.

    https://spotlightonabuse.wordpress.com/2014/04/06/islingtons-kids-on-wheels-minicab-service/

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    http://old.bfi.org.uk/sightandsound/review/221

    Synopsis from BFI website with plot spoilers: “Outside Kings Cross station in London, rent boy Simon picks up a punter, who is then beaten and robbed by Simon’s mates, Mick, Tony, Wivva, Fish and Stu. They return to their favourite café to count their loot. The gang have in common a history of sexual abuse, and see themselves as avengers, out to get even with their exploiters. After beating up another john in a urinal, they seek out and attack Merriman, Tony’s former foster father. Unlike the other members of the gang, Stu works as a trainee for the kind-hearted Chef and his wife Beryl, and is trying to build a relationship with waitress Kathleen. Chef’s sudden illness prompts Stu to find his own sister Jen, who was also a victim of their abusive father, and his collaborator Trewin, a wealthy pimp who procures boys. Stu and the gang go to Trewin’s house in search of material to blackmail Trewin with. But when Trewin takes Jen’s daughter Kirsty hostage to recover the evidence, Stu’s concern is for her welfare. When the handover is botched, Fish attempts to climb onto Trewin’s moving vehicle and is killed when it crashes. Stu agrees to a reunion with his father, now implicated along with Trewin, but beats him savagely before urinating on him. The friends bury Fish at sea.”

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    I just watched – very powerful film, thought the hold Stu’s abusing father has over his sister, and her small child (the product of incest?) is terrifying – but the film isn’t all bleak, sad though the subject is, Roy Hudd is the kind Chef/substitute father and employer to Stu and the support for the lads have for one another is less bleak even though it also spirals into revenge vigilanteism. Lots of dialogue that resonated (even chef giving Stu it’s an alright to be gay chat being friendly, raising the making of assumptions about sexual orientation based on the gender of the person someone has been sexually abused by as an issue survivors have to contend with) and most distressingly to watch, Tony’s reaction to confronting his former abusing foster father.

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