Keith Laverack Child Abuser and Cambridgeshire Review of Childrens Safeguards March 1997

Cambridgeshire County Council earlier this year released a Review of Safeguards for Children in Cambridgeshire by Christine Walby March 1997  [2] in response to a Freedom of Information Request [1].

1996 November the Director of Social Services in Cambridge commissioned Christine Walby to carry out a review to ensure that all necessary steps were being taken to safeguard children in residential care. This was after paedophile Keith Laverack had been found to be abusing children in Cambridges care. Essentially this review  was into policy, practices and procedures.[2] Also released is some supporting documentation.

The documentation released is

1. 1996 July 3 Terms of Reference of the Internal Review of Investigations aka “Management Review”

2. 1996 July 3 Ted Unsworth Director of Social Services to Gordon Lister Memo re Laverack Review

3. 1997 < 4 March Draft Terms of Reference of Independent Review of Management Arrangements for Keith Laverack by Christine Walby. 3 pages

4. 1997 March 4 Letter from Christine Walby accompanying Review of Safeguards Report and stating she can attend Committee on Wed 2 April

5. 1997 March. 16 page, 5 day, Review of Safeguards for Children in Cambridgeshire Report

6. 1997 Apr 7 Letter from Ted Unsworth Director of Social Services to members re “Management Review” arrangements

7. 1997 Apr 22 notes of meeting discussing how the Council External Inquiry would work with the Police “Operation Advie” and that Terms of Reference would be discussed with Harold Llewelyn

8.1997 Apr 2  Agenda Item No.3 from Director of Social Services to Social Services Committee summarising the Review of Safeguarding Children with Appendix 2 and actions to be taken on recommendations.

All are available on the same link [2]

Cambridgeshire then commissioned Christine Walby to conduct another review  “post KL” ie after Keith Laverack . This second review into the management for Laverack is not included in the documents sent.

I think there are only two reports, the second one into the management for Laverack confusingly also being referred to as an “internal” and “external” report. I hope I have these “labelled” correctly. Please advise if not.

I have not read the report sufficiently to comment on it.

Keith Laverack went to work at Greystone Heath age 21 as a student teacher. He appears to have started all the child abuse at Greystone Heath School and embarked on a campaign of buggery and indecent assault. Over the ensuing four years, he raped at least 16 boys, three of whom he shared with his colleague, Brian Percival, the clerk and storeman at the home.[3]

keith-laverack1                                                                                     Keith Laverack

1997 March 7 Keith Laverack was convicted at Chester Crown Court of 15 serious sexual offences against children in care from 19 [2]. The offences ranged from 1965-1984 [9]. Judge Hew Daniels [9] sentenced him to 18 years [20], the harshest sentence there had been for child sexual abuse. The offences were committed at Greystone Heath- an approved school for boys in Cheshire and subsequently in Cambridgeshire. In Cambridgeshire he was employed at Kneesworth House School and Midfield Observation and Assessment Centre between 1970 and 1996 [2]. He lived in Wilburton, near Ely, and between 1975 and 1987 he was warden at the Midfield Observation and Assessment Centre in Oakington [9].

Locally, the Greystone Heath Inquiry, Operation Granite resulted in investigations at other homes in Cheshire and Merseyside, in particular Danesford, in Congleton, run by NCH Action for Children, the Catholic-run St Aidan’s in Widnes and St Vincent’s in Southport, and Dyson Hall in Liverpool. The Cheshire investigation led to inquiries in at least 14 other forces including Operation Care in Merseyside. [4]

In 2003 Cambridgeshire Council decided to admit liability for Midfield Observation and Assessment Centre and has paid compensation to some victims. However it has denied liability for Kneesworth House [19]. By 2006 it had paid out £2million to over 85 victims [9].  It is not known whether the Council helped directly with any healing or therapy for the victims.

Jailed in 1997 for 18 years would mean release without parole in 2015 for Laverack. However it was reported in 2006 that he was seeking parole. [9] It is not known whether he achieved that early release.

Any further details on this are welcome, especially if you can do a summary of the report and its significance.

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 and Hyperlinks and Bibiliography

[1] FOI to Cambridgeshire County Council Laverack

[2]  Download of Review of Safeguards for Children in Cambridgeshire Christine Walby March 1997

[3] 1998 April The Guardian Sheer Scale of Abuse in Britain

[4] Wolmar, Christian (2013-07-01). Forgotten Children: The secret abuse scandal in children’s homes (Kindle Locations 275-277). Kemsing Publishing Limited. Kindle Edition

[5] 1999 Dec 29 Guardian Anne Garvey 4 survivors stories of abuse by Laverack

[6] 1997 Mar 10 Transmitted Panorama script Hear No evil script

[7] Andrew GroveTestimonials against Laverack


[9] 2006 Jan 6 Cambridge News Laverack applies for parole

[10] Local Government Chronicle Cambridgeshire defends payments to paedophile (limited free access)

[11] Needleblog Operation Greenlight Keith Laverack

[12] Needleblog Operation Greenlight Greystone Heath

[13] Needleblog Operation Greenlight Kneesworth

[14] Needleblog Operation Greenlight Midfield

[15] Needleblog

[16] Spotlight Category Kneesworth House

[17] Spotlight category Greystone Heath

[18] Spotlight Category Cambridgeshire

[19] 2004 June BBC Compensation for Abuse Victims

[20] 1997 Mar 8 Daily Mirror Frank Corless re Keith Laverack and



[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

The truth will out, the truth will shout, the truth will set us free. cathy fox

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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6 Responses to Keith Laverack Child Abuser and Cambridgeshire Review of Childrens Safeguards March 1997

  1. Cj aka Elderofzyklons Blog says:

    Reblogged this on ElderofZyklon's Blog!.

  2. Pingback: Dennis Grain 4 April 2016 Court of Appeal | cathy fox blog on child abuse

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  4. Anonymous says:

    Lavrack was not the only predator at Kneesworth …it’s been too many years so I can no longer recall the other guys’ name.
    Brick learned about Lavrack via graffiti in the main toilet and reacted by threatening the writer and anyone who repeated the accusation about Lavarack.
    I don’t know if these two facts were ever revealed previously.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Kneesworth was full of abusers. Nothing will ever be done about it because the head , Brick, covered it up. That place ruined my life!

    • Anonymous says:

      Was Brick there until the end? That seems a bit of a travesty, and I cannot agree more about there being cover ups. But every kids home I was in had it’s own fair share of criminals, and the kids weren’t much better.

      I’m nearly sixty (lucky to have made it this far) and still getting therapy, on and off prescription drugs for nearly forty years now and I’m getting a little bored with it.

      It wasn’t Kneesworth that screwed me up, it didn’t help, the care system in general done me up. I never had any contact with anyone after I was unceremoniously kicked out, but often wonder how they did. I hope it was better than me anyway.

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