Child Sexual Abuse at Ashdene Children’s Home, Southampton 1977

Childrens Home Boss Harry Bunkers Convicted of Child Abuse at Ashdene

In response to a Freedom of Information Request [1] Hampshire County Council have released two brief redacted mentions of Ashdene [2] from the end of 1977 in the Special sub-committee of the Social Services Committee from their minute book 1977-1981.

They merely state that the Director of Social Services reported on the Ashdene’s Children Home Southampton on 28 November and 16 December 1977. Also included are the relevant retention schedules for documents [3].

This relates to the  fact that in November 1977 the Head of Ashdene children’s home, Southampton, Harry Bunker was jailed for abusing five girls in his care between 1971 and 1976. The home had about 21 children aged from 5 to 16 [4].

Harry Bunker became Superintendent of the home in 1968 when it was a Dr Barnardos Home. It was taken over by Hampshire Social Services Department in 1973 . His wife who was matron at the home, said he had admitted to her of his indiscretions with girls in the cupboard but that they were over 16. Harry Bunker was a Magistrate for the County, and the Judge in his summing up asked the Jury to consider a conspiracy between the girls to frame the Magistrate. They did not accept this and found him Guilty but he was sentenced to only 30 months for indecently assaulting 5 girls, one of which was under 13.  [4]

Please note that victims of abuse may be triggered by reading this information. The Sanctuary for the Abused [A] has advice on how to prevent triggers.  National Association for People Abused in Childhood [B] has a freephone helpline and has links to local support groups. Other useful sites are One in Four [C] and Havoca [D]. Useful post on triggers [E] from SurvivorsJustice [F] blog.

Links, Hyperlinks and References

[1] FOI request

[2] Mentions of Ashdene

[3] Childrens Services Retention Schedules

[4]  Spotlight archive newspaper articles on Ashdene

[A] Sanctuary for the Abused


[C] One in Four

[D] Havoca

[E] SurvivorsJustice Triggers post

[F] SurvivorsJustice Blog

This is all written in good faith but if there is anything that needs to be corrected please email

cathyfox the truth will out, the truth will shout, the truth will set you free



About cathy fox blog on Child Abuse

the truth will out, the truth will shout, the truth will set us free...
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5 Responses to Child Sexual Abuse at Ashdene Children’s Home, Southampton 1977

  1. pippakin says:

    Reblogged this on Thinking Out Loud and commented:
    Its always a little shocking to read that a judge asked the jury to consider a conspiracy between the victims of abuse. I know child molesting is a very serious charge but such questions with which the jury disagreed make me wonder…..Why?


  2. Cj aka Elderofzyklons Blog says:

    Reblogged this on ElderofZyklon's Blog!.


  3. Paul RavenWolf Junior says:

    I used to live Ashdene children’s home.


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