Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 16°C

min temp: 11°C

Search

Kesgrave: School abuse inquiry files can not be found as calls grow for second probe

11:44 19 December 2012

Dan Poulter MP calling for re-opening of Kesgrave Hall inquiry

Dan Poulter MP calling for re-opening of Kesgrave Hall inquiry

Archant

AS calls grow for a renewed investigation into alleged child abuse at a Suffolk school it has emerged files relating to the original inquiry no longer exist.

shares

Suffolk Constabulary and Suffolk County Council have admitted they are not able to trace details relating to a probe which began in July 1992 into numerous allegations by pupils of Kesgrave Hall.

The documents appear to have been destroyed according to replies to Freedom of Information requests from both organisations.

A spokesman for Suffolk Constabulary said: “Suffolk Constabulary no longer holds the files in relation to crimes occurring of this nature at Kesgrave Hall School due to the age of the offence and that review, retention and disposal guidelines at the time scheduled for its disposal.”

In reply to its FOI request the county council said: “This school was a private school that closed in 1993. We have no records.”

However, the council is now understood to be double-checking its files to ensure this is correct.

Meanwhile, Central Suffolk and North Ipswich MP Dan Poulter has joined calls from ex-students for a re-opening of the investigation which originally involved around 30 allegations from pupils dating back to the 1970s.

Up to 10 students are now reportedly alleging they were subject to, or witnessed, physical or sexual abuse at the school.

Mr Poulter has written to Suffolk’s chief constable to urge him to re-open the inquiry.

He said: “I was extremely concerned to hear about the allegations of widespread child abuse of former pupils at Kesgrave Hall School in the 1980s and 1990s.

“I would urge anyone who has been the victim of abuse to come forward and immediately contact Suffolk Police so that their complaints can be properly investigated.”

A Suffolk police spokesman said: “Suffolk police encourage anyone who has been a victim of abuse to contact police and would like to reassure them that their complaints will be taken very seriously and investigated thoroughly.”

A spokeswoman for Suffolk County Council said the original inquiry was a matter for police to comment on.

Although the school was not run by the county council, social services teams were responsible for inspecting conditions there.

One of Kesgrave Hall’s former teachers Alan Stancliffe was convicted in 1999 for subjecting three young pupils to years of sexual abuse. The then 50-year-old was given a 12-months imprisonment at Ipswich Crown Court. However, Stancliffe, of Pontefract, was convicted again in 2007. This time he was jailed for two years for three indecent assaults on another Kesgrave Hall pupil.

One of the victims in Stancliffe’s 1999 case, Lee Woolcott-Ellis - who has waived his right to anonymity, said he is considering making further complaints against other people.

Mr Woolcott-Ellis, of Ramsgate, said: “ There’s every possibility that I will step forward with other people from Kesgrave Hall, and I’m hoping others will do the same because with corroborated evidence it will be easier to pursue the case. I want to encourage and support other people who have been victims to come forward and speak out.”

At the end of the 1992 investigation four members of staff at the boarding school for emotionally disturbed boys were suspended amid allegations of physical abuse.

They are said to have received psychiatric help before being reinstated. No charges were brought.

shares

0 comments

Landscape gardener jailed

An “unscrupulous” landscape gardener accused of posting flyers containing misleading information through the doors of several elderly and vulnerable people in the Felixstowe area has been jailed for 10 months.

Grand opening of the new premises for the Stowmarket and Area Foodbank. 
L-R:  Stowmarket Mayor Barry Salmon, Mike Smith and Needham Market Mayor Josephine Lee.

A Suffolk town’s foodbank has officially moved into its own premises.

Gallery:Back to school with Kindred Spirits

Yesterday, 17:41
Playtime fun at Clifford Road, School, Ipswich, in March 1974. What playtime games do you recall? (Photo by Paul Nixon/Archant)

Schools soon begin another term and proud parents will be filling Facebook with first day at school photos.

Fire crews were sent to a lorry fire in Stansfield

Firefighters from Wickhambrook and Clare were sent to a lorry fire overnight.

A spooky procession through Christchurch Park before the start of the fireworks in 2014

There will be an army of ghouls and zombies filling Christchurch Park next month – but do not let that put you off watching Ipswich’s Halloween firework display.

Staff and volunteers at Ipswich Library with some of the top ten books in Suffolk 
Matt Shenton, Marion Harvey, Calum Holmes and Hannah Daly

A woman with dementia in a desperate bid to find her best friend, an internal fight to fill a parish council seat and dealing with conspiracy and sabotage to take control of the family business.

Fuel fraudster in court

A fuel fraudster has been given a community order after failing to pay garages for fuel on seven occasions.

Ipswich Academy.

The new sponsors of two Ipswich academies in special measures have outlined their vision to improve their schools.

Adele Bellis says her life has been changed forever by the attack

A beautician who lost an ear, was left partially bald and has permanent scarring after being attacked at a Lowestoft bus stop has spoken out.

Proposed housing site in Poplar Lane , behind the Holiday Inn ,Ipswich.

Almost 500 new homes could be built on the edge of Ipswich in a move which has prompted concern among local residents.

Most read

Most commented

Topic pages