Pindown, Operation Thor and the cover up of Child Sexual Abuse in Staffordshire’s Childrens Homes

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Download a pdf copy of the Report [1b]

Staffordshires “Pindown” scandal was a milestone in public perception about child abuse and what happened in childrens homes.  It was exposed in June 1990 on World In Action with about 18 million viewers and shocked the nation.

An Inquiry was commissioned by the County Council to look into the controversial method of keeping children in rooms for days on end, with no communication with other children, having to knock on the door to use the toilet and with few clothes – the Pindown technique.

The Inquiry covered the time period Nov 1983 – Oct 1989. It was held in private, but with a public report [1.13]. The reason for the dates is not clear.

42 days into the inquiry, on Oct 5 1990 [1.12] the terms of reference were widened to include an investigation of child sexual abuse. These concerns had been around for at least 2 years [15] and it is not known exactly why they were inserted at this time. The terms of reference on this issue appear incredibly narrowly defined.

In 1989 about 15 paedophiles, in what was called then a “sex circle” in Staffordshire [14.3], went to Court. Some went to court in Worcester Crown Court in July and some in Staffordshire Crown Court in November.

It is not known yet who was involved, what the charges or sentences were at this stage apart from a Peter Moore, who was convicted of 4 cases of gross indecency and 4 cases of indecent assault in connection with the “sex circle” and sentenced to 8 years jail.

In his report Levy examined some evidence surrounding “X” having almost free run of the 245 Hartshill Home for a time [which is believed by me at this stage to be David Prichard] and another sex offender, said to be not connected to the “circle”. This latter person, with previous convictions, was chosen as a landlord for a child in care, and buggered the child within 2 months of him moving in [16.1].

Levy concluded that the likely motive of X was finding burgling companions not sexual victims. On what evidence this was based on was not made clear in his report.

gaycircleThis conclusion does not accord with the childrens stories at the time, nor since.

Nor does it accord with this  statement from Mr Justice Silber [37] who said in a summing up in one trial

“In June 1999 police officers began an investigation into allegations of sexual and physical abuse by former residents of Riverside, against members of the staff who had worked there.  The investigation revealed that a sadistic and perverted regime was in operation at the Riverside Children’s Home during the 1980s. Many members of the staff were involved in criminal acts, and many were subsequently prosecuted.”

Staffordshire County Council have a history of being obstructive to victims and researchers over Pindown.

A search for “Pindown” on the very useful site WhatDoTheyKnow [51], which is a mine of information, reveals many Pindown related questions and information. I have not had time to properly research all these yet but Staffordshire Police have helpfully released 3 documents which are included in the timeline. [16]

1. One is a letter in 1991, from the Chief Constable CH Kelly, to the Council Chief Clerk BA Price, in which he refers to a letter from the CPS in which it was stated that the DPP said that there was no evidence to warrant proceedings against anyone. The DPP at the time was Sir Allan Green QC (1987–1992). Download pdf [16b]

2. The second is from much later, in 2006. It is a report generated by a member of the Operation THOR team in response to a request for information from solicitors representing Staffordshire County Council. The solicitors were dealing with complaints
from residents of a particular local authority home called Heron Cross
House. Heron Cross House was investigated as an offshoot of the Thor inquiry which at first was primarily into Riverside. Download pdf [16c]

The Report is redacted of the names but gives investigation outcomes of alleged
perpetrators subject of police enquiries. There were about 30 of these alleged perpetrators all of which were not proceeded with, but it does not mention any that were.

3.  The third document was about Operation Thor. Download pdf [16a] or see Appendix 1 below

It explains that there was another Police investigation, after Pindown, into abuse at Staffordshire Childrens Homes which commenced in June 1999 and the closed in March 2005.

This reflects well on the Police that they were prepared to invesitigate and charge perpetrators of child sexual abuse, despite the erroneous findings of the Levy Report.

Operation Thor commenced as a result of complaints received from ex residents from Riverside Children’s Home in Rocester, Staffordshire, prior to its closure in 1989, of physical and sexual abuse by members of staff at the Home. Operation Thor also took on a further investigation called Operation Thor2. Operation Thor2 was commenced on the 9th October 2000 as a separate enquiry to be carried out by officers engaged within the Operation Thor Incident Room. It was set up to investigate complaints of mismanagement, neglect and child abuse. Detective Chief Inspector Dunning was in charge of the Operation. At its height 17 members of staff were employed on Operation Thor. Detective Inspector Pete Wyatt [28] also worked on the investigation, as did Acting Det Inspector Mark Hurst [42]

14 suspects were charged, 8 suspects were convicted of the following offences:

(A) Physical and sexual abuse
(B) Sexual assault
(C) Physical assault
(D) Physical and sexual abuse
(E) Sexual offences
(F) Sexual offences
(G) Physical abuse
(H) Sexual abuse

2 people were convicted of physical charges (C) and (G). There are 3 candidates it is likely to be Deputy Headmaster of Riverside, Thomas Watson who was found guilty of illegal caning [23] [46], Graham Thornelow Housemaster at Riverside jailed for 3 years for violent abuse of pupils [42] [46]  or  David Michael Kendrick [43] residential care officer at Riverside unless one had sexual convictions as well.

It appears that at least 6 people were convicted of child sexual offences from Op Thor, which maybe was Staffordshire Councils Childrens establishments. Some of these are thought to be:

1. Joseph Hopkins of Riverside who appealed successfully against some charges but was finally sentenced to 10 years [39] [40] [41]

2. Timothy O’Farrell [37] [46] who was a victim at Riverside but turned perpetrator on other residents;

3. Colin Jeneson [45] Eight years jail.  Jeneson also links with Tennal Assessment Centre Birmingham and known to be highly abusive place, as well as Druids Heath, Aldridge. Can anyone confirm Jeneson taught in Staffordshire?

4. George Selway [46]  was given a two-year suspended prison sentence in January 2002 for subjecting two boys to ‘humiliating and degrading’ sex assaults at Loxley Hall School near Uttoxeter. He also has previous 8 counts of buggery on 7 boys  from 1980 to 1987 at unknown boarding school but possibly the same one [47]

Thor 2 – Mismanagement, Neglect and Child Abuse

2006 Oct 9 EWCA [21] Callum Thomas Craig [24] Klondyke Traction Club in Draycott in the Clay and 89th Sea Scouts in Stoke-on-Trent. Pleaded guilty to 18 counts of Indecent Assault and Gross Indecency [24]

This investigation supports the view that there was a paedophile network operating in the childrens homes. This shows that Levy report did not get to the truth of Child Sexual Abuse in childrens homes.

This raises a number of very serious questions. No doubt there are many more, as this cover up begins to unravel.

Levy and Kahan held the Inquiry in secret. How many children were interviewed? How were the interviews conducted? It appears unlikely that children would not mention the sexual abuse? What happened? Did Levy stick rigidly to the terms of reference which just referred to sexual abuse by the men convicted in 1989? Was sexual abuse mentioned but ignored if it did not fit the terms of reference? How was the sexual abuse missed by Levy and Kahan?

Staffordshire County Council. Was the Council management so incompetent that they did not know sexual abuse on a large scale was happening or were they complicit? How many council staff were involved in child abuse, child sexual abuse? Were there any whistleblowers and if so how did the council treat them? What was the Council response to the 1989 convictions linked to the childrens homes? What was the Councils response to Levy Report? What was the Councils response to the trials arising from which Operation Thor which unequivocally proved that sexual abuse had been happening on a wide scale in the County’s childrens homes.

Police and Chief Constable Kelly Was the 5 month Pindown Police investigation competent and “fit for purpose” as regards physical abuse and child sexual abuse? What did it find? How many children were interviewed? How many Council staff had allegations made against them and  allegations of what nature? The investigation found enough to send a file to the DPP but did the Police “pull” the investigation so that the DPP would not find enough evidence to prosecute? Why did further investigation not take place when the DPP said there was not enough evidence?

CPS  and DPP Allan Green The Police submitted a file to the Police on Pindown but the DPP chose not to prosecute? Why exactly? What did this file contain? What evidence was there of abuse and child sexual abuse and why were no charges brought when abuse and sexual abuse was going on?

Goddard Overarching Child Abuse Inquiry.

Has the Inquiry looked yet at this case? It appears a prime candidate for inclusion. If it is excluded then the Inquiry needs to publish very good reasons as to why not.

Other Child Abuser links 

John Clarke worked at “The Parkway” unit in Hanley, Staffs c 1987 /88. He was convicted later of abuse at Danesford, Cheshire [48] . This raises questions about his time in Staffordshire. More is information needed on him. Was he part of the child abuse network at Staffordshire? Had he been offending for 15 years before he was caught? Shouldn’t the authorities paid to find this out be finding this out?

.
Further Research Needed

1989 “sex circle” Who were the people charged and on what charges and what convictions? Has anyone got copies of local or national papers from this time?

c 2000 Trials arising from Operation Thor. Who was charged, on what charges, and what convictions?

Links between paedophiles above.

How many were council employees?

Ex Childrens Homes residents stories

Whistleblowers

What did actually happened in Staffordshire Childrens homes in terms of abuse and child sexual abuse in 1970 -2000?

What was the Council response to the 1989 convictions, the Levy Kahan Report and the Operation Thor revelations?

Police

CPS

Analysis of Levy Kahan Pindown Report

Copy of the World In Action Pindown Programme needed

1990 Oct 4 BBC R4 programme about Pindown Details and Copy Needed

Timeline

1988 Dec 12 EWCA [47] George Anthony Selway Appeal against sentence on 8 counts of buggery over 8 years at boarding school where he was child care officer.

1989 July Some of paedophile network associated with Staffordshire childrens homes tried at Worcester Crown Court. [14.3] [15]

1989 Oct 2 Kevin Williams, a Stoke solicitor rang John Spurr, Deputy Director of Staffordshire County Council’s Social Services concerned about a 15 year old girls treatment by a childrens home.

1989 Oct 3 Barry O’Neill Director of Social Services ordered “Pindown” to cease at 245 Hartshill Rd Childrens Home

1989 Oct 13 High Court granted injunction prohibiting the use of “Pindown”

1989 November Second batch of child abuser network associated with Staffordshire childrens homes tried, this time at Staffordshire Crown Court. [14.3] [15]

1990 Jun 11 Granada TV World in Action Programme Shown [50] [50b] [I suspect regionally]

1990 Jun 25  Granada TV “World in Action” Programme entitled “Pindown” shown nationally [1.5] with about 18m viewers. [If anyone has a copy please get in touch!] Katy Jones was a primary researcher and at the time of this article has recently died [49] , and Editor was Nick Hayes [49] Steve Boulton and Sarah Manwaring-White were producers [50b] . Debbie Christie also worked on the programme [49] .

1990 Jun >25 Police investigation started, some say on word from the Home Office

1990 Jun 29 The “Pindown” Inquiry was commissioned on by Staffordshire County Council. Allan Levy and Babara Kahan appointed.

1990 Jul 23 Inquiry sat for 75 days until 29 Nov 1990

1990 Oct 5 Terms of Reference extended on Day 42 of inquiry to include Child sexual abuse [1.12]

To consider whether children and young persons resident in Staffordshire child care establishments were appropriately protected, as may have been required, from any individuals who were subsequently convicted in the summer and autumn of  1989 of sexual offences against children and young persons.

To make any appropriate recommendations.

1990 Nov 29 Inquiry finished with witnesses

1990 Oct 4 BBC R4 programme about Pindown [details not known]

1990 Oct 11 Community Care [15] Pin-down – child abuse link is investigated

cc111090lge

1990 Dec 17 Daily Mail [9] Child sex suspect was allowed to take boys in care to his home

mail171290

1991 Jan 25 News of the World [6] I’m the Pindown Kid

pindown kid 1 notw090691a pindown kid 2 notw090691b

1991 Feb 25 Kelly Letter pdf download [16b]

cps

1991 Mar 7 Social Work Today [13]  DPP Drops Staffs Sex Abuse Case

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1991 Apr 18 Social Work Today [12] Peers back Pin Down Therapy

Social Services set up Review of those children involved in sex ring. Social workers thought more than 200, the department maintained there were only 40. peers called for therapy for those involved

peers swt180491

1991 May 26 The Independent [8] Tim Kelsey County Where Care Became Captivity

County independent260591a

1991 May 30 Social Work Today [10] Pin down workers slammed

workers swt3005911991 Jun 3 Hansard [34] [not examined yet]

1991 Jun 6 Social Work Today [11] Escape from a numbing regime

escape1 swt060691escape 2 swt060691a

1991 Jun 6 Social Work Today [7] Paedophiles Had Access to Homes

paedophiles swt0606911

1991 Jun 6 Social Work Today [5] Pindown: Countdown to Exposure via Spotlight

countdown swt060691a1

1992 Aug 27 Social Work Today [14] Punishment of the Innocent

pun 1 swt270892a

pun 2 swt270892b

pun 3 swt270892c1998 Feb 16 Joseph Peter Hopkins [39] EWCA

1999 Jun 21 Staffs Police [16]  ‘CPS contacted re original Pindown Enquiry. They do not have any records from 1990. Det Sgt Noden (now deceased) contacted. Message left for him re the outcome of Pindown’ The action concludes ‘Spoke with Det Sgt Noden on
21.06.1999, he states that an advice file was sent to the DPP in London
and the recommendation came back no further action on any of the charges’

2001 Dec 17 BBC [44] Woman awarded abuse damages

2002 Mar 26 Uttoxeter Advertiser [23] Deputy head found guilty of illegal caning

2002 Oct 12 Burton Mail [42] Master Jailed – Graham Thornelow

2003 Jun 11 Ashbourne News  Telegraph [46]  George Selway

2003 Jun 16 EWCA [40] Joseph Peter Hopkins appeal

2003 Nov 12 BBC [43]  Care worker assaulted two boys – David Michael Kendrick Riverside

2003 Oct 7 Uttoxeter Advertiser [24] Perv Scout master gets six years

2003 Nov 12 BBC [43] Care worker assaulted two boys. A 66 year old man has admitted assualting two boys in his care at Staffordshire Homes. David Michael Kendrick, from Lichfield, pleaded guilty at Staffordshire Crown Court on Wednesday to causing actual bodily harm to two children during the 1980s.The assaults happened when Kendrick was working as a residential child care officer in Stafford and at the former Riverside Children’s Home in Rocester, near Uttoxeter. His offences came to light during an investigation into several allegations of abuse at children’s homes in the county, some of them stretching back decades. Kendrick’s is the seventh conviction that has come about since the inquiry into claims of physical and sexual abuse began. The case was adjourned for pre-sentence reports until 12 December.

2003 Nov  21 EWCA  [37] Timothy John O’Farrell appeal

2004 Jan 23 EWCA [41] Joseph Peter Hopkins appeal

2004 Mar 30 Uttoxeter Advertiser [25]  Child abuse probe nearing the end One social worker jailed was Joseph Hopkins, who committed offences against children in care at Riverside between 1981 and 1985. Hopkins was jailed for 12 years in November, 2001, after he was found guilty at a trial of one rape, nine indecent assaults and two counts of assault occasioning actual bodily harm.

2004 Nov 25 BBC [45] Eight years jail for ex-teacher Colin Jeneson

2006 Apr 13 [16] Download [16c] Report R34R was a report generated by a member of the Operation THOR team in response to a request for information from solicitors representing Staffordshire County Council The solicitors were dealing with complaints
from residents of a particular local authority home called Heron Cross
House. R34R gives the names and investigation outcomes of alleged
perpetrators subject of police enquiries. Letter from DC 3323 Tallent to Griffiths Force Solicitor re civil actions from investigations during Operation Thor and Heron Cross House Stoke.

sol1 sol2 sol32006 Oct 9 EWCA [38] Callum Thomas Craig appeal

2015 May 12 Guardian Letter [49] : Katy Jones helped expose brutal pindown regime at children’s homes . Tribute to Katy after her death

Appendix 1 [16] [16a]

A public authority which, in relation to any request for information, is to any extent relying on a claim that any provision in part II relating to the duty to confirm or deny is relevant to the request or on a claim that information is exempt information must, within the time for complying with section 1(1), give the applicant a notice which-
(a) states the fact,
(b) specifies the exemption in question, and
(c) states (if that would not otherwise be apparent) why the exemption applies.

I can confirm that Staffordshire Police hold the requested data, as follows.

1. What was the purpose, remit and terms of reference of the operation

Operation Thor commenced as a result of complaints received from ex –residents from Riverside Children’s Home in Rocester, Staffordshire, prior to its closure in 1989, of physical and sexual abuse by members of staff at the Home.
2. What dates it ran

The investigation commenced in June 1999 and the Operation closed in March 2005.
3. What results it achieved in terms of number of arrests, number charged, number of convictions and for what offences for each if the information is held

The results achieved in terms of numbers of persons arrested/charged/convicted and for what offences are as follows:

37 people were interviewed. This number included a number of persons who were
interviewed voluntarily and those who were arrested
14 suspects were charged
8 suspects were convicted of the following offences:

(A) Physical and sexual abuse
(B) Sexual assault
(C) Physical assault
(D) Physical and sexual abuse
(E) Sexual offences
(F) Sexual offences
(G) Physical abuse
(H) Sexual abuse

.
4. Who the Police officer was in charge and how many officers were on the operation

Detective Chief Inspector Dunning was in charge of the Operation. The numbers of officers varied as the enquiry grew and reduced as it came to a close. At its height 17 members of staff were employed on Operation Thor.

Typically with complex major enquiries of this nature there is a gradual winding down of the centrally based enquiry team although some work may continue to be undertaken by individual officers and the result filed with Operation Thor material. This often happens over a period of time when the enquiry involves a number of complainants and offenders, prosecutions are brought and concluded at different times, appeals and any Criminal Cases Review Commission can resurface over the following years.

5. Why the operation was instigated

Initially, four complaints of sexual abuse at Riverside Children’s Home were received during the latter part of 1998/early 1999.

6. Where the operation was run from and what area did it cover

The enquiry was originally run at Burton Police Station then later from what is now Staffordshire Police Headquarters, Weston Road, Stafford, to investigate abuse at children’s homes in Staffordshire, principally Riverside Home involving residents and carers.

7. Why was the name chosen and whether it had always had that name or whether there were connected operations

Originally, the name of the operation was Operation Thorpe. Thorpe was chosen because a ‘thorpe’ is a word that means a small village or hamlet which is what the Riverside Home appeared to be. This was changed to Operation Thor simply because it was deemed inappropriate to have a name that could be someone’s family name.

Operation Thor also took on a further investigation called Operation Thor2. Operation Thor2 was commenced on the 9th October 2000 as a separate enquiry to be carried out by officers engaged within the Operation Thor Incident Room. It was set up to investigate complaints of mismanagement, neglect and child abuse.

8. Where this information is now kept, and in what form -physical or electronic.

Any remaining paper material generated during the investigation is archived outside the force area with a company who have the contract to archive material for Staffordshire Police. Other material is archived electronically on the HOLMES2 database.

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. Jim Hoppers pages on Mindfulness [G]  and Meditation [H] may be useful.

Links

[Update 26 Feb 2017 It appears that many local papers links are being changed or taken down. From now on I archive everything but past links may not have been.  Articles affected are Uttoxeter Advertiser. Possibly they have been taken over by Burton Mail and urls changed.

All csa articles need archiving, some are here is people have time http://web.archive.org/web/20170226201606/http://www.burtonmail.co.uk/search/search.html?searchType=&searchPhrase=paedophile&where=  ]

Numbers with decimal points eg [14.3] refer to the Levy Kahan Pindown Report in [1b]

[1a] 1991 The Pindown Experience and the Protection of Children The Report of the Staffordshire Child Care Inquiry 1990 by Allan Levy QC and Barbara Kahan Published by Staffordshire County Council 1991 http://www.staffordshire.gov.uk/yourcouncil/dataprotectionandfreedomofinformation/publicationsscheme/The-Pindown-Experience-and-the-Protection-of-Children.pdf

[1b] 1991 The Pindown Experience and the Protection of Children The Report of the Staffordshire Child Care Inquiry 1990 by Allan Levy QC and Barbara Kahan Published by Staffordshire County Council 1991 https://cathyfox.files.wordpress.com/2013/11/the-pindown-experience-and-the-protection-of-children.pdf

[2] 2013 Apr 22 Cathy Fox  Freedom of Information Request https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/allan_levy_qc_report_into_pindow#outgoing-276843

[3] Cathy Fox blog The “Pindown” Report Published online https://cathyfox.wordpress.com/2013/11/16/the-pindown-report-released-online/

[4] Childrens Webmag Pindown Report summary http://www.childrenwebmag.com/articles/key-child-care-texts/the-pindown-reportby-allan-levy-and-barbara-kahan

[5] 1991 Jun 6 Social Work Today Pindown: Countdown to Exposure via Spotlight https://spotlightonabuse.wordpress.com/2013/11/23/pindown-countdown-to-exposure-06-06-91/

[6] 1991 Jan 25 News of the World I’m the pindown kid https://spotlightonabuse.wordpress.com/2014/01/25/im-the-pindown-kid-09-06-91/

[7] 1991 Jun 6 Social Work Today Paedophiles had access to homes https://spotlightonabuse.wordpress.com/2013/11/23/paedophiles-had-access-to-homes-06-06-91/

[8] 1991 May 26 The Independent Tim Kelsey County where care became captivity https://spotlightonabuse.wordpress.com/2014/01/25/county-where-care-became-captivity-26-05-91/

[9] 1990 Dec 17 Daily Mail Child sex suspect was allowed to take boys in care to his home https://spotlightonabuse.wordpress.com/2014/01/25/child-sex-suspect-was-allowed-to-take-boys-in-care-to-his-home-17-12-90/

[10] 1991 May 30 Social Work Today Pin down workers slammed  https://spotlightonabuse.wordpress.com/2013/11/23/pin-down-workers-slammed-30-05-91/

[11] 1991 Jun 6 Social Work Today Escape from a numbing regime https://spotlightonabuse.wordpress.com/2013/11/22/escape-from-a-numbing-regime-06-06-91/

[12] 1991 Apr 18 Social Work Today Peers back pin down therapy https://spotlightonabuse.wordpress.com/2013/11/22/peers-back-pin-down-therapy-18-04-91/

[13] 1991 Mar 7 Social Work Today DPP drops Staffs sex abuse case https://spotlightonabuse.wordpress.com/2013/11/22/dpp-drops-staffs-sex-abuse-case-07-03-91/ John Allen NALGO -staffs- not THE North wales John Allen?

[14] 1992 Aug 27 Social Work Today Punishment of the Innocent https://spotlightonabuse.wordpress.com/2013/11/09/punishment-of-the-innocent-27-08-92/

[15] 1990 Oct 11 Community Care Pin-down – child abuse link is investigated  https://spotlightonabuse.wordpress.com/2013/07/19/pin-down-child-abuse-link-is-investigated-11-10-90/

[16] 2014 Jan 25 FOI Helmsley re police investigation https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/police_report_into_child_abuse_a#incoming-480256

[16a] Operation Thor Information https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/194618/response/480704/attach/3/FoI%20Re%20Op%20Thor.doc

[16b] Kelly Letter re CPS https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/194618/response/486558/attach/3/CC%20Staffs%20letter%20re%20Pindown%20No%20further%20action.pdf

[16c] Tallents Report https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/194618/response/557950/attach/3/Thor%20R34R%20redacted%20FoI4599.doc

[17] WDTK FOI request download  https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/194618/response/486558/attach/3/CC%20Staffs%20letter%20re%20Pindown%20No%20further%20action.pdf

[18]

[19] 2013 Oct 10 Councils response https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/council_response_to_pindown_inqu Reply to FOI.  The authority does not hold information pertaining to a response to the Pindown Report. We simply hold a copy of the investigation report which is published within our publication scheme. However, we can confirm that the lessons to be learned were taken very seriously and have influenced positive changes to the delivery of associated services. Since this report was published there has been considerable change to the legislation and inspection frameworks in relation to children’s services and we would note that this enquiry is now 20 years old. The relevant learning from this enquiry is however carried forward into current service provision.

[20] 2015 May 13 accessed. Wikipedia Pindown http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pindown Pindown was a method of punishment used in children’s homes in Staffordshire, England in the 1980s. It involved locking children in rooms called “pindown rooms”, sometimes for periods of weeks or months, similar to a lockdown in prisons. The children were kept in solitary confinement with little furniture, no conversation and repetitive occupations.[1] A total of at least 132 children, aged nine and upwards, experienced what came to be called ‘pindown’ between 1983 and 1989. It varied in length but did last, in one instance, up to 84 continuous days. It was punishment for such activities as running away from care or school, petty theft, bullying and threats of violence.[2][3] An inquiry into the practice, “The Pindown Inquiry”, held in 1990/1991 was chaired by Allan Levy QC. It took 75 days of evidence from 153 witnesses, and examined approximately 150,000 pages of documents including 400 log books of events in children’s homes. A 300-page report was produced after almost a year.[4] The report’s findings were that the practice was decisively outside anything that could properly be considered as good childcare practice. In the view of the inquiry it was an unethical, unprofessional and unacceptable practice, and unlawful.

[21] see [16b]

[22] see [16c]

[23] 2002 Mar 26 Uttoxeter Advertiser Deputy head found guilty of illegal caning Thomas Watson http://www.uttoxeteradvertiser.co.uk/Deputy-head-guilty-illegal-caning/story-21598283-detail/story.html

[24] 2003 Oct 7 Uttoxeter Advertiser Perv Scout master gets six years Calum Craig http://www.uttoxeteradvertiser.co.uk/Perv-Scout-master-gets-years/story-21607154-detail/story.html

[25] 2004 Mar 30 Uttoxeter Advertiser Child abuse probe nearing the end (Joseph Hopkins) http://www.uttoxeteradvertiser.co.uk/Child-abuse-probe-nearing-end/story-21608978-detail/story.html

[26] 2005 Oct 12 Uttoxeter Advertiser Paedophile victim of hate campaign John Laing http://www.uttoxeteradvertiser.co.uk/Paedophile-victimbrof-hate-campaign/story-21606614-detail/story.html

[27] 2010 Aug 11 Stoke Sentinel Long-running investigation led to criminal convictions http://www.stokesentinel.co.uk/Long-running-investigation-led-criminal-convictions/story-12528122-detail/story.html

[28] 2009 May 8 Express and Star Officers Award for lifetimes work-  Op Thor  Detective Inspector Pete Wyatt http://www.expressandstar.com/news/2009/05/18/officers-award-for-lifetimes-work/

[29] 2005 Aug 25 Community care Making History – Op Thor info http://www.communitycare.co.uk/2005/08/25/making-history/

[30] Needleblog https://theneedleblog.wordpress.com/operation-greenlight/west-midlands/staffordshire/riverside-childrens-home/

[31] 2004 Jan 26 Burton Mail Sex Attackers Jail term Reduced re Joseph Hopkins http://www.burtonmail.co.uk/Sex-attackersbrjail-term-reduced/story-21473828-detail/story.html

[32] 2003 Jun 7 Burton Mail FOUR YEARS FOR PERVERT re Timothy O’Farrell http://www.burtonmail.co.uk/YEARS-PERVERT/story-21478357-detail/story.html

[33] Chadswell Assessment Centre which was also called Riverside and The Wissage Zoompad comment on Spotlight website

[34] 1991 Jun 3 Hansard  http://hansard.millbanksystems.com/lords/1991/jun/03/staffordshire-childrens-homes-report

[35] Needleblog Riverside  https://theneedleblog.wordpress.com/operation-greenlight/west-midlands/staffordshire/riverside-childrens-home/

[36] Check needleblog and Brain ++

[37] 2003 Nov  21 EWCA  Timothy John O’Farrell https://cathyfox.wordpress.com/2015/05/15/court-of-appeal-21-november-2003-timothy-john-ofarrell/

[38] 2006 Oct 9 EWCA Callum Thomas Craig  See also [24] https://cathyfox.wordpress.com/2015/05/15/court-of-appeal-9th-october-2006-callum-thomas-craig/

[39] 1998 Feb 16 EWCA Joseph Peter Hopkins https://cathyfox.wordpress.com/2015/05/15/court-of-appeal-16th-february-1998-joseph-peter-hopkins/

[40] 2003 Jun 16 EWCA Joseph Peter Hopkins https://cathyfox.wordpress.com/2015/05/15/court-of-appeal-16th-june-2003-joseph-peter-hopkins/

[41] 2004 Jan 23 EWCA Joseph Peter Hopkins https://cathyfox.wordpress.com/2015/05/15/court-of-appeal-23rd-january-2004-joseph-peter-hopkins/

[42] 2002 Oct 12 Burton Mail Master Jailed – Graham Thornelow http://www.burtonmail.co.uk/Master-jailed-abuse/story-21475325-detail/story.html

[43] 2003 Nov 12 BBC  Care worker assaulted two boys David Michael Kendrick Riverside http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/staffordshire/3265321.stm

[44] 2001 Dec 17 BBC Woman awarded abuse damages http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/1715227.stm

[45] 2004 Nov 25 BBC Eight years jail for ex-teacher Colin Jeneson http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/staffordshire/4043249.stm

[46] 2003 Jun 11 Ashbourne News Telegraph George Selway, Thomas Watson,  Graham Thornelow, Joseph Hopkins http://www.ashbournenewstelegraph.co.uk/Child-sex-pervert-caught-caged/story-20864042-detail/story.html

[47] 1988 Dec 12 EWCA George Anthony Selway Loxley Hall https://cathyfox.wordpress.com/2015/05/15/court-of-appeal-12th-december-1988-george-anthony-selway/

[48] 1997 Mar 8 Daily Mirror Captain Hook jailed for 20-yr child sex terror https://spotlightonabuse.wordpress.com/2014/02/18/captain-hook-jailed-for-20-yr-child-sex-terror-08-03-97/

[49] 2015 May 12 Guardian Letter: Katy Jones helped expose brutal pindown regime at children’s homes http://www.theguardian.com/media/2015/may/12/katy-jones-obituary-letter

[50] IMDB World In Action Pindown http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2316159/?ref_=ttrel_rel_tt

[50a] IMDB World In Action Pindown Full Cast and Crew http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2316159/fullcredits?ref_=ttrel_sa_1

[50b] IMDB World In Action Pindown Release Date http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2316159/releaseinfo?ref_=ttfc_ql_2

[51] WhatDoTheyKnow Freedom of Information website https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/

[A] Sanctuary for the Abused http://abusesanctuary.blogspot.co.uk/2006/07/for-survivors-coping-with-triggers-if.html

[B] NAPAC http://www.napac.org.uk/

[C] One in Four http://www.oneinfour.org.uk/

[D] Havoca http://www.havoca.org/HAVOCA_home.htm

[E] SurvivorsJustice Triggers post http://survivorsjustice.com/2014/02/26/triggers-what-are-they-and-how-do-we-work-through-them/

[F] SurvivorsJustice Blog http://survivorsjustice.com/

[G] Jim Hopper Mindfulness http://www.jimhopper.com/mindfulness/

[H] Jim Hopper Meditation http://www.jimhopper.com/mindfulness/#cultivate

This is all written in good faith but if there is anything that needs to be corrected please email cathyfox@bigfoot.com which seems to have stopped working so try staffs@cathyfox.33mail.com

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

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About cathy fox blog on Child Abuse

the truth will out, the truth will shout, the truth will set us free...
This entry was posted in #OpPaedoHunt, cathy fox blog, Child Abuse, Child sexual abuse, Childrens home, Freedom of Information Request, IICSA Independent panel inquiry into child sexual abuse, Staffordshire and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

15 Responses to Pindown, Operation Thor and the cover up of Child Sexual Abuse in Staffordshire’s Childrens Homes

  1. artmanjosephgrech says:

    This is one the most important posts since the Home Secretary restricted the Government sponsored inquiry to sexual abuse. Significantly the relationship between physical and sexual violence at the Medomsley Short Sharp Shock centre County Durham has been recognised by the investigating police and media. It was the mixing of delinquent and disturbed children with those deprived of biological family life following the 1969 Children’s Act followed by the ignorance and incompetence of the majority of the new Directors of Social Services in 1971 and after reorganisation of Local Government in England an Wales in 1974 which significantly contributed to the level of failure in child care and protection after 1971 although it is a myth that standards in Local Authority Children’s Departments and provided by non statutory child care organisations is was something which those involved can now be proud.

  2. Pingback: COURT OF APPEAL 12th December 1988 George Anthony Selway | cathyfox blog

  3. Pingback: COURT OF APPEAL 16th February 1998 Joseph Peter Hopkins | cathyfox blog

  4. Pingback: COURT OF APPEAL 16th June 2003 Joseph Peter Hopkins | cathyfox blog

  5. Pingback: COURT OF APPEAL 23rd January 2004 Joseph Peter Hopkins | cathyfox blog

  6. Pingback: COURT OF APPEAL 9th October 2006 Callum Thomas Craig | cathyfox blog

  7. Pingback: COURT OF APPEAL 21 November 2003 Timothy John O’Farrell | cathyfox blog

  8. Pingback: An Index and Timeline of Court & Court of Appeal, EWCA Documents on Cathy Fox Blog | cathyfox blog

  9. Pingback: My Story -Esther | cathyfox blog

  10. Pingback: Pindown: Initial Response and Draft Action Plan by Staffordshire Council to Pindown Report 14 Jun 1991 | cathy fox blog

  11. Pingback: Pindown: Staffordshire Council Progress Report Jan 1992 | cathy fox blog

  12. Pingback: Pindown: List of documents released by Staffordshire Council Oct 2015 | cathy fox blog

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