A Journey of Fear – Bernie Gadd’s Story

A Journey of Fear – Bernie Gadds Story

Part 1

Chapter 1 – Why?

I have no idea why they went, maybe we were naughty who knows? The fact is my parents did leave us and set about starting new families. I’ve often wondered why we were abandoned but to date the answers are still left open.

My older brother Tony was further farmed out to a children’s home and it wasn’t until I was 15 that I actually got to really meet him, my younger brother stayed with me and we went to live with nan and grandad. A no nonsense couple if ever there were one but I loved them. Funnily I called nan, mum for many years not actually knowing that she wasn’t my mum but this was the 1960s and things really were quite different back then.

I love my family and my early years were great. They really were. I had a wonderful childhood and never really thought anything was wrong in my family, until I found out that my mum was in fact my nan and I had other brothers and sisters.

I’m glad I found out and was able to have a relationship with them especially my sister Jill who has been a big part of my life and has turned into an amazing mum and grandmother. That is something none of us can say about our mother but I’m getting away from the point.

You see, unlike most stories of abuse I can’t say that I was abused. In fact I wouldn’t change my childhood in any way. I had wonderful uncles and aunties who looked after us as though we were little brothers and loved doing things with them on the occasions when they didn’t work, which wasn’t often.

I was the little skinny kid with the funny name so it was almost written that I would be bullied at school. Bullied I was on a daily basis, but if you get beat up enough you ain’t scared anymore. It just become a bit of a nuisance to be honest and you begin to toughen up a bit.

This never became more apparent than when I went to secondary school. It really was a scary place coming up from primary school with no friends. I must have had an arrow above my head, cos 5 minutes after I walked through the gates my dinner money was gone and I was humiliated once more. My cool school bag, brand new, was scattered all over the playground. I just wanted to curl up and die. Unfortunately it was something I would have to endure for ages because I was weak and couldn’t fight back.

But my life was about to change in such a big way, cos I had a friend who was watching me and he was going to save me and change me, unfortunately not the way I was hoping for.
Welcome to my life Bobby.

Chapter 2 – Innocence Destroyed

Getting slapped (beat up, in them days) was something I got used to at Henry Thornton Secondary School. So much so, I started bunking school to escape it. I got quite good at it in fact and travelled all over the place. I bought a “red rover” and the world was mine.
I loved the West End, especially because of the big shops and amusements and there were loads of them.

It was while I was on one of these escapades that I discovered Playland in Piccadilly – an 11 year olds dream. There was so much to do for a young boy to do there. I came here alot playing slots sometimes, meeting kids like myself who would show me how to make money. (You’d be surprised how easily a lost 11 year old can make money asking for the fare to get home). It was a place I was to remember years later and reminisce about how lucky I was to have good memories but I’ll come back to that later.

Of course there were consequences for bunking school in them days and it was usually quite painful too. My year head, Mr Spinks, must have thought I was part of his day, as he saw me on a daily basis sometimes and I always remember his words to me – “hand out Gadd”. Whack whack, 2 on each hand with the cane, standard punishment for bunking school. Like getting slapped you got used to it (bloody hurt though).

Needless to say I always ended up back at school until it got too much again. I hated the thought of the cane but rules are rules. Unfortunately Mr Spinks added his own colourful definition to the mix. On one occasion he lost the plot entirely and slapped me across the face repeatedly. I was spinning and almost collapse. I was so dizzy.

He seemed to take it personally that I never went to school. On another occasion he made me bend over the desk and I knew what was coming. 6 of the best we jokingly called it (but my god it hurt).  As I tensed my cheeks ready for the inevitable pain I was ripped back into the real world by the most incredible pain I’d ever felt in my short life.

Instead of feeling the cane on my prepared backside, the bastard brought it down on the backs of my legs not once or twice but I got the whole half dozen. I was crying my eyes out it hurt so much and he was so angry as well. I remember him trying to justify his actions, saying I was bad and had brought it on myself and he hoped he wouldn’t have to see me in his office again.

Needless to say I couldn’t sit down all day. Nan went ballistic, and trust me she was fair but strict in many ways. When she saw my legs she wanted to go straight up there and sort it but calmed down enough to leave it till the morning. I had 12 welts, some open on my legs and they took weeks to go down.

It was after one of my many liaisons with Mr Spinks that something happened that would change my entire life and shape me into the person I have become today. Having left the office after a particularly painful disciplinary, I had to go to the library. Needless to say I was getting jip off the kids in school as I’d just had the cane and my hands were stinging a bit.

My memory of the moment is somewhat vague but I was walking past the library door when someone pushed me and I went flying. It was a good push and I ended up unceremoniously on the floor with two lads stood over me.  I, of course, was used to this and normally it would have ended there and nothing but laughter would have been heard.

Not this time. All of a sudden I felt an immense pain in my ribs, so immediately took the foetal position (a favourite of the bullied). As I waited for the next kick I was surprised to realise, albeit pleasantly, that it never arrived. Looking up I saw a big boy grabbing this lad who I guess had kicked me. I heard the words “say sorry now”.  I was gobsmacked cos nobody saved me from a slap, not ever.

This huge hand helped me up and I recognised him straight away as Bobby who lived around the corner from me. Although not a mate, I had seen him about. He was a proper jack the lad, smart and a bit of a tough nut. He said to meet him at the gate and he’d walk me home that night.

At 4.15 he was as good as his word and was waiting outside, fag in mouth, looking cool. With hindsight I probably shouldn’t have met him, but my life had now changed and there was no coming back from it. I’d sealed my fate that day, I’d never be bullied again but something more sinister was about to happen to me that I was powerless to stop.

Chapter 3 – An Unnatural Lesson

We live and learn. It’s a saying I learnt early on in life and in fairness has proved to be very true. Of course we all have choices in life but sometimes those choices are made for us and I’m no different to anyone else.

Of course I was happy that I had a new mate who protected me from my aggressors. Wwho wouldn’t be? He was 15 I was 11. He was tough I wasn’t. Things were gonna be different now. Bobby was tough, he looked it and people left him alone. More than that he had charisma, if he wanted anything he got it. He always had money which is something I never had.  My pocket money amounted to 10p every Saturday which equated to a mixture of 40 black jacks, fruit sales and mojos.

I’d known Bobby as my friend about 2 days when he asked, (no told), me to go to the shop and get him twenty No 6, which were fags. I remember feeling tough asking Ernie in the shop for them. He asked me who they were for and I said my uncle. He passed them to me, I felt empowered handing them to Bobby and even better when he gave 10p for going. I’d already doubled my pocket money for the week.

Things were great – sweets, fags and money definitely something I wasn’t used to. I trusted Bobby, he was my friend and he always gave me stuff. It got to the stage were I wanted to be around him all the time and lied to get out of the house so I could be with him.

It was while I was at school that it was more noticeable though, because suddenly I wasn’t being beat up anymore, as if by magic it had stopped. I found out very quickly that there’s no such thing as a free lunch and I learned that no matter how much you trust people they aint always what they seem. But what happened next I could never have anticipated.

It was breaktime at school and I went to the library to meet Bobby and as usual he was there. The guy was a legend and just did what he wanted. He beckoned me over to sit with him and we just chilled. Suddenly he turned to me and said “Do you wanna play a game?” Well of course, why not, couldn’t harm could it? “Yeah go on then” I said.

“Truth or dare” he said. Ok I thought. What harm can there be with that, so said ok to it. He explained the rules to me but said that if I chose dare I would have to see it through to the end. Although I was nervous I was also excited. Well we played it for a while and I chose truth but ended telling him whatever he asked, and the questions were becoming too hard for me to answer.

Things like – did I touch myself etc,  very embarrassing to an 11 year old. He said one last round and we would bunk off for the afternoon. “Truth or dare” he said smiling. I didn’t like the questions anymore so I said dare. This was a decision I was to regret for the next 40 years.

He told me to follow him and we left school through the back gate. He took me to an abandoned building just behind school and he forced me to do things to him that I still remember even now. Disgusting things that I had never even thought of.

I was scared and wanted to go home and see nan. I’d never needed to see her so much, After a short while he had finished and without saying a word he gave me a pound note.  I just stared at it cos I’d never had a quid before.

I arrived home and went straight to my room and laid on my bed. I didn’t want to go down the stairs again. I was confused cos I knew what had happened was wrong but he told me that if I said anything he’d hurt my family and I believed him.

This happened again on two occasions, once in his house and again in a concrete climbing area known locally to us as “the boxes”. This structure was completely solid and out of site of prying eyes, standing proudly next to Bedford House where hundreds of people lived totally unaware of my predicament.

In all he abused me three times and although he had other chances he never tried again, which was a relief to me. I must say at this point that apart from the initial threat to hurt my family he never did hurt me and for that alone I am thankful.

On one occasion he took me to a big house on Clapham Common. He seemed to gain access quite easily. I was half expecting him to do something but luckily he didn’t show an interest again. I was glad it was over or at least I hoped it was.  I know I should have stayed away from him or told someone, but I was 11 and he had power over me.

One day he took me to what I thought was his mates house. I was allowed in there as I pleased, but just down stairs while Bobby was with him. He was a big bloke, quite scary looking I thought, but he wasn’t nasty. He wore some kind of uniform but I’ll be honest I couldn’t really place it then.

I knew where it was because I had friends in the next street so was always playing around there anyway. I had some great times around there, it was a terraced street. All houses with an off licence and a chemist at the end.  I knew the off licence cos I had to get stuff for my grandad from there regularly. The address was Branksome Road, Brixton SW2 and I had been introduced to Roger Gleaves.

Chapter 4 – Journey of Fear

It was a Sunday as I remember, not particularly outstanding which is where the confusion is, but I definitely wasn’t at school so it could been a Saturday as well. I was meeting Bobby that day and he told me to meet him at the boxes. I turned up and there he was waiting for me, we really wasn’t there very long before he motioned me to go with him.

We crossed the bridge at Bedford House and headed to Morris House. I did notice that he didn’t talk much just kept positioning me with his hand as you would a small child, although I guess I wasn’t a great deal more than that at the time. I was heading towards his house but again he guided me to turn down by Morris House which was just yards from my actual house.

Indeed I did look as we passed my street to see if nan was out on the front in her housecoat and slippers which she pretty much lived in. Of course she wasn’t there and as we reached the corner of Morris House he directed me behind the sheds which I thought strange but I went along anyway.

Bobby seemed to lag behind a little as we walked down the alley between the sheds and as I got to the corner my world went black. Everything moved very quickly and quietly. I protested in some way, although after all these years I cannot remember what I did say.

I was picked up and carried. My skinny frame no match for the strong arms that were carrying me. I was placed in some form of vehicle and made to lay down. The floor was very cold but hard and I’m guessing it was a van I was in at that moment.

Fear is a funny thing and can make us behave in strange ways and I was no different. I actually thought I knew what it was like to be scared, but I’d I’d just encountered a whole new level of it and actually knew what it’s like to be terrified.

The journey couldn’t have taken more than 2 or 3 minutes. My recollections are vague as I was battling the terror I was feeling inside, wondering why this was happening. The short journey ended almost as quickly as it had begun and I was manhandled out and almost immediately was climbing stairs. I was put in a bare room and the door was shut, a bolt snapped shut, a noise I was to hear countless times over the next 2 days.

My prison (as that’s exactly what it was) was bare, with just a mattress on the floor. The smell was musty like damp, but worse. The mattress was very smelly, a smell that’s stayed with me all these years. Sweat and filth. Horrible smells I had to get use to.

I could hear noises all the time. Doors opening and closing and stairs being climbed. It seemed very busy, but the one thing I remember more than anything else was the fear. I was in the room for an unknown amount of time. It could have been as short as 30 mins or as long as 2 hours. I have no idea but eventually I heard the bolt snap back and the door was pushed open. The sight of 3 figures stood there with Guy Fawkes masks on was something I’ll never forget for as long as I live.

The fear at the thought of what was happening to me was soon replaced by searing pain as I was held down and mercilessly violated in the worst way I could ever have imagined possible. Why was this happening? What was happening? Am I going to die? All these things went through my mind. I have no idea how long this onslaught lasted but I was battered and bruised.

I was shocked by the violence of the situation, almost numb with fear but my other senses were racing. Not even the screams or tears of a little boy frightened for his very life had any effect on these people. I think someone was laughing but again my recollections are vague now.

Afterwards I heard the bolt snap shut again and I just sobbed my heart out, praying it was all over. Alas it was not and I was brutalised on many more occasions, although I eventually switched off to the abuse that was happening to me and slipped into a happier place where I wasn’t hurt.

It’s strange but at the height of it I actually cannot remember what happened to me as I seemed to leave my body while it was going on. I’ve been asked if I was drugged, but I was 11 how would I know if I was or not? Drugs were not part of my life. I was a tree climbing young boy. I was a good boy, not particularly naughty.

My life was different now and I knew it. How could I ever speak of this? Would I ever get the chance to tell anyone about this? Would I ever leave this hell? Would the masks keep me here forever? These and others questions more sinister went through my mind and I really did think I would be murdered.

If only I’d told Nan or Uncle Tony I know this would not be happening now. Uncle Tony was a Marine. He’d kill these people and I’d be safe. But no, I was on my own and facing the terror on a daily basis sometimes 4 or 5 times in one night.

It ended almost as quickly as it started. The bolt snapped back and I steeled myself ready to block out the inevitable assaul. Instead only one mask was standing there and they came straight to me, threw me into darkness again, and lifted me and carried me yet again. I felt a change in temperature and guessed I was in the open.

The roar of an engine told me I was in a car or van again. As before I was in there a short while when it stopped, and I was taken from there and carried a short way and forced to sit down. By this time I was absolutely petrified. I had no idea what was about to happen to me and I must have been there minutes before I dared to open my eyes. Of course I was expecting someone to be there but to my surprise I was on the steps by the sheds at Morris House alone and safe.

I ran the short distance to my house and banged on the door continuously, half expecting to be grabbed again, but my nan appeared at the door. My lovely Nan I was safe now I knew that and tears running down my face I walked in.

Of course it wasn’t that easy and after Nans initial anger at me for not being home for two days I was able to explain what had happened the firt and last time for over 40 years, until I told my friend Sarah, without whom this would still be a dirty secret.

Nan didn’t say much but she gave a look that was angry yet distant and when I’d finished she gave me a massive Nan cuddle I now knew I was safe.

Chapter 5 – The Aftermath

Uncle Tony was a big man and the eldest of my Uncles. He’d been out searching for me as they all would have been. (I wonder if any of them walked past my prison unaware of what was happening to me).

As soon as he entered the house he was angry and went for me, for putting my family through the pain and worry of the past 2 days. My Nan stopped him in his tracks just by saying no leave it. I still don’t know what was said to this day. Who knew or didn’t know? I was told it would be sorted and I was never to talk of it again.

Of course that wasn’t the end of it, how could it be? I’d been violated in the most horrible way a person could be and I was hurt and humiliated into the bargain. I think I’d have killed myself if I’d had the guts but I didn’t.

Nan was brilliant. I can’t really say much else. She changed that day, even I could tell that. Of course there was much discussion about what had happened to me, but one thing that did change was that she always made sure where I was, and I had to let her know who I was with and what time I’d be in.

43 years has passed since I was raped and of course Nan’s been gone many years now but I still miss her very much. She raised me as her own and did her very best to make my life as happy as could be and I’ll miss her till the day I die.

I learnt to live with the atrocities I had been subjected to. Of course I never ever forgot and never really trusted many people again. I guess what happened to me probably affected me far more than I thought at the time, especially when it came to relationships. My 1st proper girlfriend for instance, didn’t come along until after my 18th birthday and when it came to intimacy I must confess that I had no idea what was expected of me.

I was never the same nice boy after that and had many run ins with the law. I never forgot what happened (how could you?). It was always there in my mind. I’ve relived and wished I could go back and stop it, but of course I can’t so I just got on with life and hardened up. I had to.

I know who my first abuser is. I know his name, where he lived and his school. He knew I wouldn’t talk back then. He took me to Gleaves and showed me off like a piece of meat, window shopping .

I know in many ways compared to people like Jason Swift and Martin Allen I was very lucky and those 2 boys have been a very big part of my recent life. Although they’re not here they’ve inspired me to research paedophiles from all walks of life.

Politicians of whom there are so many, or the clergy who in my opinion are the biggest abusers of all and it doesn’t matter what religion they belong to either. Rings were allowed to pop up at will, especially in London. It was the heart of the paedophile scene.

Playland amusement arcade near Piccadilly was a main hive of activity back in the 70s. Charles Hornby, Malcolm Raywood, Abraham Jacobs and of course Gleaves were at these places, giving the kids money to play machines and getting them food. The consequences were always extreme and how many of those kids disappeared? Never to be seen again, maybe we will never know.

I’m a grown man now and I’ve seen the devastating consequences of not only child abuse, but domestic abuse both physical and mental and the effects it has, not only on the victim but their children and their lives.

If a small child grows up from a young age witnessing or being a victim of abuse then they are going to see it as being normal, so should we be so shocked at how many paedophiles and abusers there are in the world?

You never forget your abuse and in lots of cases relive it. I live my life on the edge these days. I don’t know from one day to the next if I’m going to be a strong activist trying to support other survivors or a complete train wreck not leaving my sofa cos I’m a frightened child still.

On my good days I’m a warrior and I’ll travel the country to support my friends. Friends talk to me on the phone for hours at a time to give me some peace in my crazy mind. I am sure I’d be dead now if it wasn’t for some of them.

If I could give advice to anyone it would be this.

Firstly to victims of abuse, never keep this secret because you won’t forget what happened and sharing with someone you trust will make you feel a floodgate has opened.

Secondly this is for people who have been trusted with this information please believe what you are told as it has taken a lot for this person to confide in you. As hard as it may be to hear it, you could be this persons first and last chance to confide so you could be their lifeline.

Part 2

Chapter 6 – Gleaves a Modern Day Fagin

Imagine the dark days of old London town. Children picking pockets, stealing to survive. All the time someone is manipulating them, ensuring they do his bidding, making him rich and building his empire.

This was Fagins role in Oliver Twist. A weasel of a man who used and abused children by offering them a roof over their head. But that was Dickensian London, the law was lax, murder was rife on the streets and child abuse was commonplace. It couldn’t happen now with laws in place to protect children could it? Surely the likes of Fagin would never be allowed to exist again would he?

Forward to 20th century England and Roger Gleaves paedophile, conman, clergyman and self styled bishop. Meet the modern day Fagin.

Roger Charles Augustin Gleaves was born in 1933 in Leeds. He first came to the attention of the police whilst still in the army. He was arrested on his wedding day for buggery of a young lad. He was responsible for training and developing to become a soldier, but instead committed sexual acts on this child.

This saw him at Winchester assizes on a charge of buggering the young cadet who was a child of 14 years of age and his first conviction for sexual offences against children and young people. He was sentenced to 3 years in Maidstone prison, considerably less than the life sentence the poor boy was to be condemned to.

Gleaves had a fetish for uniforms and was regularly seen in his Bishops attire or Salvation Army uniforms. He used these to gain the trust of the young men he regularly picked up at Victoria coach station as well as Euston train station.

Gleaves well and truly took local councils to the cleaners with an estimated 20 hostels housing upwards of 60 homeless or runaways and being paid the equivalent of housing benefit for them (a very tidy income back in the 70s I’m sure).It didn’t end there as he had numerous companies like Mephistopheles debt collection agency and GB security services who employed these unfortunates on slave wages if at all.

Mephistopheles was jointly run with James Shackleton, a very colourful character from Shepherds Bush who was also an undertaker and went by the title the Earl of Kensington. Whether legitimate or not I can’t say.

Shackleton has been arrested on 4 occasions for separate murders. the most notable being the murder of Jill Dando who was executed on her doorstep in Fulham. He was identified as a sweating man stood at a bus stop. the problem with his alibi is first that he says he was out looking for scrap wood to make coffins and second why was he waiting at a bus stop, when he was out in his own vehicle on the day?

Jill was about to whistle blow about what was going on within the BBC including the Jimmy Savile abuse scandal as well as other less prominent abuses. Jill Dando isn’t the first person to die after making it known about what she knew either. Bulic Forsythe, a senior housing officer had his head bashed in and his home burnt to the ground after letting it be known he was aware of abuse and corruption within Lambeth Council.

Others who have died suspiciously include Paula Yates, Michael Hutchence, Paula’s daughter Peaches Geldof as well as Mark Spreight and Rik Mayall, all of whom were aware of what was going on inside Broadcasting House.

Getting back to Roger Gleaves (it’s so easy to go off on a tangent when talking about him because of his links to other people and places). He set up a sect called the Old Catholic Church in the early 60s. He used this as a front to earn respectability and give credence to the numerous charities he set up in local communities in London, which did appear to be his stamping ground.

Several local councils in London were duped into giving the Bishop (his given title in the Old Catholic Church), large houses in run down areas where he could house runaways and homeless men. Local councils, the probation service and even social services sent young men to Gleave, seemingly unaware that they were going to be used, abused or both.

The very fact that no checks were done on him is in itself remarkable considering many of his charges were vulnerable and the responsibility of social services to take care of. Instead authorities sent most of them to be sexually abused and put to work as so called rent boys again making Roger Gleaves a vast amount of money.

As to whether making money or abusing boys was his main goal is difficult to ascertain as he had many buisness ventures with people such as Shackleton and a conman in the property field called Terence Ewing. Ewing at one point was a McKenzie Friend helping people in court who couldn’t afford to go down the usual solicitor route.

Of course his business association with convicted paedophile Gleaves and paedophile care home boss Keith Hammerton must have been of the utmost embarrassment to his bosses at McKenzie Friends, for whom the majority of work undertaken is custody work and children being the commodity they deal with most.

Children and young people have always been exploited for whatever reason, yet the modern day world has seen children become sexualised much younger than ever before. There are people ready to exploit them, from individuals to gangs. Paedophiles have a strange knack of finding each other and indulging in their vile activities.

Groups have sprouted up trying to change legislation to lower the age of consent to 3 years of age. One of the most sinister groups in living memory were a group known as the Paedophile Information Exchange or PIE. Grown adults with a sick and twisted attraction to children.

They were even supported by the National Council for Civil Liberties (NCCL), run by Henry Hodge (husband of Children’s Secretary and disgraced former leader of Islington Council Margaret Hodge).

Fellow NCCL members of the time included Harriet Harman MP and husband Jack Dromey, another MP, along with Patricia Hewitt MP. All were leading lights within the Labour Party.

Sir Henry Hodge was a High Court judge who you’d have thought would have put a stop to this nonsense, but by their very acceptance of these vile animals, were they not in fact facilitating the grooming and abuse of our most vulnerable? At what level of society did it go to because reading the list of members belonging to this heinous group are Lords, MPs and one of the countrys’ foremost experts on children’s welfare, the head of the security services.

A name that does pop up at No. 39 on the PIE list is none other than Roger Charles Augustin Gleaves which shouldn’t be a surprise as he has links to almost every single paedophile ring in London and beyond.

From social workers to teachers, scout leaders to doctors, legal professionals and ice cream sellers the pederast is everywhere. They hunt down and find a victim, then they befriend them or their family and make them feel special. They take an interest in the lives of the family and everyday activities.

Whether there is a cure is anyone’s guess but for most sex offenders it seems to be the power they yield over their chosen victim is the main objective, the sexual act a mere desert in their beastly meal.

Chapter 7 – A Lifetime of Cover Ups

From Angel Road and Elm Guest House to Bryn Estyn to Nottingham’s allegations of abuse have been met with derision and denial. VIP’s always appear to be cleaner than fresh laundry. Why are they allowed to not only break the law but are protected into the bargain?

Leon Brittan for instance, is alleged to have abused children on many occasions but was never formally arrested for any crimes and he’s not the only one. Lord Janner yet another high ranking official who seemed to be saved by death. It does appear that death is the only thing that saves VIP’s from facing the music.

What are the links between children’s homes and the VIP paedophile rings operating around them? Well first off you have the carers, the people charged with looking after these vulnerable children, people like Michael John Carroll from Angel Road children’s home in Lambeth. Having already being convicted of sex offences against children he was given the job of house warden and although it came to light that he was a paedophile.

He wasn’t dismissed as you would imagine, but allowed to carry on abusing young children in his charge untill finally being sacked, not for abusing kids, but for filling expenses. Who was protecting Carroll? We don’t know but he applied to adopt with Southwark council and was rightly knocked back once his conviction came to light. A senior labour dignitary rang Southwark and tried to pressure them into allowing him to adopt 2 children. Luckily Southwark stuck to there guns and were not intimidated and Carroll never got the boys.

Carroll was arrested and charged with 35 counts of abuse from 1966 up to 1986 and when he appeared at Liverpool Crown Court he was sentenced to 10 years imprisonment.
Another person sent to prison for child abuse was John Allen from Southvale Children’s home in Norwood (yet another Lambeth run home) and later of North Wales in a home called Bryn Alyn.

Unlike Carroll, Allen was acquitted because the judge felt he wouldn’t get a fair trial. Rumours were that Allen supplied children to VIP paedophiles including Sir Peter Morrison, an aide to Margaret Thatcher and also to the Dolphin Square complex in Pimlico. This is where children were allegedly raped and murdered during parties set up for MPs and dignitaries.

Lots of names have been associated with children’s homes, Dolphin Square and of course the Elm Guest House in Barnes in South West London. These include MPs like Leon Brittan, Cyril Smith, Lord Janner and even Edward Heath the former Prime Minister as well as Cliff Richard.

Also paedophiles were Intelligence Chief Sir Peter Hayman and the spy Anthony Blunt, but probably most shockingly are the rumours of Lord Mountbatten of Burma and his not so secret visit along with Ted Heath and Jimmy Savile to Kincora boys home in Belfast. It appears children were shipped all over the place, many being held in transit at other homes awaiting delivery to Elm Guest House and Dolphin Square.

None of the big names ever seem to get to court due to disappearing files or evidence, witnesses dying prior to court cases or accused dying before justice can be served.
Rumours abound about the deviant Jimmy Savile who could go down as the most prolific serial paedophile of all time. There is even evidence to suggest a beating heart wasn’t a prerequisite for abuse from this foul excuse of a man.

Savile appears to have been involved in every aspect of abuse and has links to most of the biggest scandals including the BBC scandal, Kincora, as well as childrens hospitals, Broadmoor secure unit. He also has links to many showbiz personalities and politicians but maybe his links to royalty could be the reason why he went for so long without being prosecuted, seemingly invincible and immune to prosecution.

A very successful DJ and TV personality Savile was in great demand and seemed to be motivated by children and young people. His show Jim’ll Fix It, was a huge success and brought him into contact with children all the time allegedly taking advantage of alot of them on the process.

His charity work also brought him into contact with many vulnerable and sick children at Stoke Mandeville hospital where he had free rein to go where he wanted, regardless of the fact that the staff within the hospital were well aware of his abuse and often told the children to pretend to be asleep when Savile was around such was his reputation as a child abuser.

Against all advice from her peers Margaret Thatcher got her way and he got not only his OBE  but was also Knighted for his charitable work, although there were probably more sinister reasons for receiving them.

He took a great many secrets to his grave but many more have become public knowledge after many victims have come forward with allegations of historical abuse in some cases going back 40+ years.

His brother Jonny Savile was investigated for an alleged sexual assault on a female patient while working at Tooting Bec mental hospital in South West London. He was dismissed from the job but an amazing coincidence seems to have popped it’s head up. The security company in charge at Tooting Bec at the time was none other than GB security company run by old fagin himself Roger Gleaves the notorious Bishop of Medway.

Of course there’s no proof they even knew each other but the fact they were from Leeds  and working at the same institution, as well as living in very close proximity to each other would have warranted further investigation one would think. Alas no. Gleave’s immunity knew no bounds and again he disappeared into the woodwork and probably would have carried on with total protection and disregard if Yorkshire television had not been making a documentary about runaways heading to London. What they discovered was evil on a biblical scale.

Chapter 8 – A Fallen Kingdom

Billy (two tone) McPhee was murdered in 1975. He had been tortured and stabbed multiple times and suffered horrendously before he died. He was murdered because his killers wanted to know the whereabouts of a hostel worker (employed by Roger Gleaves).

His brutalised body was found in a lay by in Crawley in Sussex. The pathologist likened his murder to that of a gangland killing. It was alleged that not only did Gleaves order the murder of Billy but also was present and actively involved in Billy’s demise.

Homeless and alone in London Billy was easy pickings for Gleaves when he arrive penniless from Bannockburn in Scotland. During filming of a documentary called Johnny Go Home the crew became aware that something sinister was being played out before their eyes.

They continued to film what was transpiring and in turn being major players in the bringing down of the Gleaves empire and gathering evidence against Billy’s murderers.
At the Old Bailey in London David Johnson, Phillip Holland and Michael Woodlands were sentenced to life imprisonment.

Gleaves himself received 4 years for sexual offences against children and actual bodily harm. He wasn’t charged with Billy’s death even though the wife of one of the accused gave evidence that Gleaves was in fact present during the attack on Billy, further proof maybe that Gleaves was beyond the law.

Because of the damning evidence gathered by the TV crew and the Metropolitan Police the Bishops empire started to crumble. All of his hostels were closed down and questions were asked about his relationship with Lambeth as well as other local councils in London.

How did Gleaves manage to hoodwink people? Was he protected by a higher power? Protecting the reputation of council members or higher ranking politicians?

As I have touched on before Gleaves used the Old Catholic Church to camouflage his criminal and evil activities. To gain some respectability in the community, he renovated a disused railway station waiting room at Crystal Palace in South East London into the church of St Bonaventure which not surprisingly was next door to a scout hut.

Gleaves does seem to have a passion for railways and does seem to have a very strong relationships with British Rail as well as the British Railway police. The fact that he was able to wander around Euston Station with immunity picking up young boys on a regular basis would give weight to this assumption especially when you consider that CCTV was in operation in 1972 at Euston station.

Gleaves isn’t the only paedophile with fondness for the railway either. Russell Howard Tricker was a paedophile who was involved with the Bluebell Railway as well as a coach driver. He used his driving job to traffic kids from London to Amsterdam where the likes of Welsh witch Alan Williams and the infamous Warwick Spinks took them into their sex clubs to perform for other paedophiles as well as themselves.

Williams’s club was called Boys Club 21 which was at 21 Spruistraat, while Spinks’s was in residence at the Hay Palace at 44 Spruistraat just across the road. Both put on sex shows involving young boys.

Williams, Spinks and Tricker were known to be involved in child trafficking across Europe as far as Prague. Spinks has links to the Elm Guest House and snuff movies involving children. These are movies where people are actually murdered.

What Spinks is more infamous for though, are his visits to the child brothel at the Elm Guest House. Other alleged visitors include Leon Brittan MP, Cyril Smith MP, Cliff Richard, diplomat Peter Hayman, spy Anthony Blunt and Tory MP Sir Nicholas Fairbanks as well as other politicians from all parties some of which have been made public by the press.

Spinks was known as the pied piper of paedophiles. It’s alleged he told one police officer that he could arrange sex with boys in Prague, Amsterdam and Poland for as little as 10p. The sheer volume of children involved must have been immense to maintain the luxurious lifestyle he was accustomed to.

He arranged package tours for other paedophiles using gay magazine Spartacus to advertise his services to other paedophiles and used the services of Tricker to transport children across to the European union.

Others linked to child sexual abuse and trafficking to Amsterdam include John Rowe who was linked to Elm Guest House and Sir Charles Fairbairn MP for Cheltenham (now deceased) an advisor to Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher.

The iron lady herself is alleged to have covered up as many cases of child abuse even going against advice from her cabinet not to give Jimmy Savile his award on the honours list. Many members of her government were suspected of offences against children some of whom are sir Peter Morrison, Leon Brittan as well as paedophile diplomat Peter Hayman who it’s alleged had been abusing children since 1966 when he was a minister in the foreign office.

Many of the names mentioned were also members of the Paedophile Information Exchange which beggars the question how protected was the establishment and was there a second secret PIE list of VIP’s that had to be protected for reasons of national security?

Chapter 9 – It’s a Sin

Every religion from Judaism to Islam has been touched by the evil of paedophilia within it confines but the Roman Catholic Church and branches seem to appear more often than most. The Vatican has even apologised to victims and paid out unknown amounts to survivors of abuse both at churches as well as children’s homes and orphanages.

The Pope himself admitted that 2% of the priests within the church were in fact paedophiles and if you include facilitators it’s fair to say it could be much more. In 2004 the John Jay report tabulated 4,329 priests in the USA alone had allegations against them.

The Church has a shocking record when it comes to paedophile priests including Gerald Ridsdale, Ronald McKiernan and George Pell. Paedophilia within the Catholic Church has reached epidemic proportions and again there seems to be a belief that they are protected.

Yet again the name Roger Gleaves rears its extremely ugly head. The Bishop of Medway, his religious title was from different parts of obscure church orders, namely the old Catholic Church to which he was ordained in 1960 along with Geoffrey Paget King,the Archbishop of Walsingham.

In 1962 he changed to the Old Catholic Church (English rite) which was headed by the Archbishop of Veralim Wilfred Barrington Evans. (Gleaves used the nickname Barry Evans years later to set up G.B security). He seemed to have a knack of finding fellow paedophiles within the church including John Harding, John Collins along with Harold Bralee. All priests convicted of sexually assaulting children.

Paget King and Barrington Evans joined together and pushed Gleaves out with Evans obtaining an injunction against Gleaves, but in 1966 he created the old Catholic Church of great Britain and was ordained as the Bishop of Medway and so the evil legend had been born. Along with Harold Bralee they transformed the disused Methodist Church in Rainham into St Joseph the Workman.

In 1971 Gleaves also founded the Western Orthodox Church aided by an American Archbishop Brown of Milwaukee. He set up many charities under the auspices of the Old Catholic Church which was the main centre for his activities. He was often seen in his Bishops regalia at places like Euston railway station and Victoria coach station .

He searching for runaways and homeless youngsters, taking them back to his hostels claiming £9 a week for each child or young adult claiming for as many as 54 people in one week a decent wage even by today’s standards but back then it was a fortune.

The regime within the hostels was one of fear and brutality with nowhere to hide if you crossed the Bishop or his heavies. Residents at the hostels were employed to run Gleaves security company, which operated at the likes of sporting events including a world heavyweight title fight, concerts, Tooting Bec Hospital and Thames Television. Gleaves must have had some contacts to be able to get these gigs without being checked out in the first place.

Slave labour was in fact the order of the day for Gleaves and brutality was rife if anybody defied the Bishop or his brutal regime and as was seen with the murder of Billy McPhee punishment knew no boundaries.

It came crashing down after Billy was murdered but what was his punishment for the years of fraud against the local councils and the bogus charity donations? The lifetime of harm and heartache he caused children and young adults and his role in the abduction and subsequent murder of Billy McPhee?

Life imprisonment? Made to repay the thousands of pounds he stole? No nothing at all, in fact to this day his accountability to Billy and his family remains at zero and there is no doubt that this paedophile priest was involved if not in complete control of what happened on that day.

Chapter 10 Damned if I Do, Damned if I Dont

What to do ? Easy question I guess but as most survivors will know it’s the hardest thing in the world to report it, as the questions you need to answer are not always answerable and sometime fear of consequences can dictate your next move.

In my case I left it up to my Nan to sort it and carried on with life as best I could, but it was always there and always came back to haunt me. Where they gonna come back for me? This thought was the most terrifyingly real thing to me because I don’t believe I’d have survived a second ordeal, I believe that if they hadn’t been wearing masks I wouldn’t be writing this now.

I’ve not recovered or forgotten what happened to me and I know I never will, my innocent childhood was not only taken from me it was destroyed in the most evil of ways and my trust of people has never really returned.

There’s only a handful of people in my life who I could say I trust and only because they did things above the call of duty and proved themselves to me. This is normal practice I believe for people who have suffered childhood trauma of this kind some seem to deal with the aftermath better than others but are still haunted by their ordeal.

I am in the process of trying to bring my abusers to court and as I write this the joint operation is in motion. The Police are travelling the country taking statements from the Isle of Wight to Nuneaton and Yorkshire trying to gather enough evidence so that I might get justice before its too late.

I want my day in court to face my abuser and to prove him to be the liar that he is and also to shame him for what he did to me. To let his family and everyone who knows him know what he did to me and probably others on numerous occasions.

How many of these others survived their ordeal at the time or became victims later on in life, maybe taking their own lives in the process? It is something that does enter your mind I promise you.

There have been many people who have endured and survived but what of the ones who didn’t? There have been many terrible stories that have become legend in our time and the poor parents and families who have had to live and die not knowing what really happened to their child.

I have met many people along the way who have become very important to me because of the help they’ve given me and also how there stories have moved me to want to highlight their stories and all those people from Jo and Birdie to my friend Kev whose brother just vanished off the face of the earth have been in part responsible for me telling my dark story.

So what does the future hold for survivors of child abuse, the cold hard truth is that as a nation the majority of people do not want to acknowledge what is a profoundly disturbing subject. As soon as the subject arises it causes unease and the subject is quickly changed.

The reality of it is that most people will be touched by abuse in some form whether personal or through knowledge of someone close. One day it will maybe be closer to home than anyone realises. With 1 in 4 children being sexually abused it is fair to say an awful lot of people will have been touched by it and it will have affected their lives.

As I’ve mentioned previously the long overdue child sexual  inquiry has been focusing on historic child abuse, but has been beset with controversy since day one. Most recently the resignation of Justice Goddard resigning the chair for personal reasons, which do not appear to be very public at the time of writing, so as a consequence a 4th person has been installed to lead it and piece together the many complex issues which constitute the evil which has taken place over the years.

Whether justice will come on the huge scale that most people want is anyone’s guess but there have been small successes like the conviction of former chief constable Gordon Anglesey and what that means to survivors of the North Wales children’s home abuse. The previous botched inquiry was shut down by former Welsh Secretary and Tory leader William Hague. Hague himself has been linked to scandal within the government not least his alleged friendship and subsequent denial of Sir Peter Morrisons vile misdemeanours.

But I digress yet again, as I have so often in my writings and as will the inquiry because there is no straight cut way in which incidents can be investigated without others being discovered and another alley being investigated.

The links between cases of abuse, perpetrators, officials, victims and survivors as well as institutions and local authorities is so far beyond coincidence that the whole saga has become almost laughable from a justice point of view. Throw into the mix the fact that suspects of paedophilia and protectors of these vile people are in a position to halt investigations and use the courts to silence witnesses and survivors with injunctions then you can see the huge almost impossible task which lies ahead.

Whether or not survivors get justice or not does not take away the pain and ongoing trauma that most survivors will face and in the long term more must be done to help them in the long term, so that they can come to term with the horror they have suffered. Until this is forthcoming many will not be able to come to terms and move on, and must rely on friends, families and support groups, many of whom have sprung up on social media in recent years and there are so many that offer anything from support to research and more direct action.

Chapter 11 – An Inspiration from Tragedy

I have been asked many times what my inspiration is to put pen to paper and although my intense hatred of the likes of Gleaves and Cooke etc have indeed been instrumental it’s something more tragic and heartbreaking to me.

Martin Allen went missing on November 5th 1979. He was seen getting on the London underground at King’s Cross, in the company of a blonde man and has never been seen or heard of since. The case is still strong in many people’s memory and one of the most infamous child disappearances in modern history.

But but what happened on that day back in 1979? Rumours are numerous, but facts are very few. But for the tenacity of Martin’s brother Kevin, then I’m sure this case would have been swept under the carpet along with the many other missing child reports .

Kevin was also warned to shut up by the police when he made allegations of a top level cover up. Martin was a 15 year old school boy on his way to visit his brother at the time of his disappearance. His father Tom was the chauffeur at the Australian High Commission and lived in the grounds.

37 years have passed since that terrible day when Tom and Eileen Allen last saw their son.

Sadly both of them have passed away without ever knowing just what happened that day .
Of course there are many rumours as to what happened, from VIP paedophile rings to the Sidney Cooke gang. But the truth is that whatever did happen was swathed in secrecy, with very little witness testimony or sightings apart from him being seen in the company of a man with blonde hair who had his hand on Martins neck and allegedly telling Martin not to run.

The description of blonde man – White male 6 ft in height aged between 30 and 40 years of age and wearing a casual denim type jacket.

Surprisingly no CCTV footage is available with Martin, although British Rail police did have this available as was proven in the 1970s when Gleaves was wandering around Kings Cross and Euston picking up young boys .

There he is again and also Kings Cross Station. I must confess I have long held the belief that the Bishop was involved in Martin’s disappearance. With rumours of uniforms and Gleaves m.o operating at mainline stations it beggars belief why someone like him would not be questioned about Martin vanishing.

I pray that one day Martins disappearance is solved and Kevin and his family get some closure. Martins abduction (and I truly believe he was taken) is not the only case from this era. Vishal Mehotra, Daniel Handley and Jason Swift were also abducted and sadly later murdered by a paedophile gang.

Vishal was taken on the day of Prince Charles and Diana Spencer’s wedding and again just disappeared while heading home with his family in Putney in South West London in 1981. His partial remains were later found at a place called Rogate in Sussex 48 miles away.
Vishals father, Vishambar Mehotra like Kevin Allen accused the police of a cover up and just as in Martin’s case, nobody was brought to justice although rumours abound that both boys may have been taken to the Elm Guest House in Barnes, South West London. This is where a VIP paedophile ring is strongly alleged to have been operating and the police raided looking for evidence of crime against children.

Coincidentally Vishal, Daniel Handley and Jason Swift were all abducted and their remains were found in remote places, miles from their home. Is this coincidence or could the same person or people be responsible?

This was not the first time the brothel was visited by plod either. A young boy reported to passing officer that he had been abused there and when Police took the child to the address in Barnes Lane, he is alleged to have pointed out former Tory bigwig Leon Brittan as his assailant. No charges were ever brought against him. Indeed this does appear to be the norm when it comes to VIP rings or individuals.

Cyril Smith was an alleged regular visitor to the known gay brothel of Elm Guest House and was allegedly stopped outside where a vast quantity of child abuse material was found in his car. A simple phone call and he was on his way, as seemed to be the way most of the time back then. Who was protecting who then is anyone’s guess but whoever it was can only be someone with both political and judicial muscle.

It’s a well known fact that many alleged (and I do apologise for my continual use of this word) paedophiles within the Westminster VIP ring were people with judicial pedigree and high court experience so would no doubt have known each other and been in discussion, with client confidentiality no doubt.

Obviously if justice is served then there is going to be so much scandal and household names tarnished at the least, but be prepared to hear names of people that will not only shock but will rock the very pillars and foundations of our society.

Why so many Knights of the realm, (sirs to us), and Lords are accused of heinous crimes against children is beyond my thinking, and most others I would guess.

The secret service must be aware of what’s going on especially as former official of military intelligence, SIR (ahem) Peter Hayman was himself convicted of crimes against children and sent to prison as well as being a member of the Paedophile Information Exchange.

Chapter 12 – No Smoke without Fire

Thank you for getting this far without throwing me away on a dusty shelf. I am not a well educated man,  just a survivor of a horrific episode in anyone’s life who just wants to put the truth out there. To show the world the horror which exists in this hell we call home. I have as much as is humanly possible kept to publicly identifiable facts or public domain information.

I trust that I have made you all feel angry and disgusted by the filth that has invaded our country, but most of all I’d like to think I’ve opened your eyes to the horror that is normal in our society today and shows no sign of disappearing anytime soon.

Only your vigilance and love of your children will keep them from the horrors I have written about here.

I will say this before I end this horror story, and that is that every street in this country potentially has a paedophile living there, and they maybe the most amazing people you know. I wouldn’t expect you to be going out hunting them down.

The cold hard fact of the matter is they don’t all wear dirty old macs and look like perverts. They are in government and run councils as well as work in shops and tea rooms they uphold the law and treat our kids in hospital and teach them in school, they are everywhere in all societies and jobs.

So I have reached my end here, a long journey – My Journey of Fear.

Please note that victims of abuse may be triggered by reading this information. These links are generally UK based.

  • 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.
  • Hwaairfan blog An Indigenous Australian Approach to Healing Trauma  [J]
  • Survivors UK for victims and survivors of male rape or the sexual abuse of men [K]
  • Voicing CSA group [L] helps arrange survivors meetings in your area
  • A Prescription for me blog Various emotional support links [M]
  • ShatterBoys -“Male Survivors Of Childhood Sexual Abuse Inspiring change, Through Shared Experience Whilst Building Connections…Together We Can Heal” [N]

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

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 cathyfoxblog, Child Abuse, Child sexual abuse, Lambeth, London, South East and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to A Journey of Fear – Bernie Gadd’s Story

  1. Pingback: three from the Fox | HOLLIE GREIG JUSTICE

  2. Pingback: three from the Fox – holliegreigjustice

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.