The story of child abuse in the North East has not come out anywhere near properly yet.
Operation Rose was one of the biggest child sexual abuse operations yet it remains largely unknown, and childrens homes and institutions which came under it have still not had the truth told in public. Indeed most of the childrens homes and institutions that were investigated by Op Rose are still unknown to the public.
For more newspaper cuttings not yet shown see 2014 Feb 8 Witherwack House Press Cuttings, Officer Code of Conduct, Document Retention Schedules 
“Operation Rose was launched in 1997 by Northumbria Police after complaints were made that care workers and teachers had abused children in the past.
The three-year investigation involving 40 detectives led to 32 people being charged with a total of 142 offences. In total, 260 residents and former residents of 61 children’s homes made 503 allegations against 197 care workers for alleged physical and sexual abuse. 
Of the 32 that were charged, six were found guilty and jailed for a total of 25 years and one other person pleaded guilty. Four suspects died prior to trial.” 
Sunderland Council, who must shoulder much of the blame for child abuse in homes run by them, has recently been exemplary in releasing information see Witherwack Category  and Sunderland Category 
Northumberland Police have much of the information are refusing to release any information so far because it would take them too long to look through it.
“There are over 18,000 documents in relation to Operation Rose, of which there are approximately 90 storage boxes of hard copy documents. This includes over 12,000 actions, over 3,000 statements, and over 4,000 questionnaires. There are also approximately 50 storage boxes of exhibits.”
Various requests are here. I have found them one of the most unhelpful authorities.
2013 Apr 22 Northumbria Police FOI Recommendations on investigating child abuse for Northumbria Police 
2013 Apr 23 Northumbria Police FOI Operation Rose information 
2013 Aug 8 Northumbria Police FOI Reports from the Rose Inquiry and Care Homes involved 
2013 Aug 8 Northumbria Police FOI Operation Rose and Catalogue of Inquiry documents 
2013 Oct 14 Northumbria Police FOI Holmes database 
Is this because they are incompetent and cannot file and retrieve documents efficiently or it is because they are covering up their part in the child abuse scandal in the North East?
Was there really no final report written? That is hard to believe.
This account was written by Brian Clare as far back as about 1992 on Dads Place Forum. Brian is one of the best known and longest serving and popular campaigners against child sexual abuse.
A Story of a Real Survivor of Institutional Abuse – ‘Survivor’ – Brian Clare
I was born on the 23rd January 1968. In 1977 at the age of nine years old I was taken into the care of the local authority by the then, Sunderland Borough Council’s, Social Services Department. As a child I was considered to be a ‘problem child’ and I lived with my mother who was a single parent.
During my early years my behaviour was such that my mother enlisted the support of Sunderland Social Services, and together, they decided that the care home system was the only way to control me. I understand that the reason I was taken into care was due to the fact that I had Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD).
On or about 25 January 1977 I was placed in a local authority assessment centre and I remained there for one a half years. Between 18 July 1977and 26 August 1977 I was placed in a childrens’ home in Northumberland.
I was returned to the assessment home between 26 August 1977 and 16 February 1978 before being transferred to another home in Sunderland, until September 1978, when again I was moved back to the assessment home. On 8 January 1979 I was moved to a very notorious home and I left care completely shortly before my 16th birthday.
Stannington Grove Hospital Before I was subjected to a care order, at the age of six I was admitted to Stannington Grove Hospital. I recall on a daily basis having been subjected to abuse. I was frequently being punched and hit by other children. The staff chose to do nothing about it.
Emsworth House Assessment Centre When I first entered Emsworth House I was eight years old. I recall clearly, being taken to a side room with my mother. I ran away from the home shortly after admission and the only reason was simply to be with my mam.
My punishment for running away was to regarded as a runaway risk and I was therefore treated like a prisoner. The secure unit was like a cell. I remember that there were no light switches or door handles on the inside of the room and there was one plastic light fitting in the centre of the ceiling.
In the door to the room there was a single square window which looked out onto the hall outside. The glass of course was reinforced. The bed was a rudimentary block with a mattress sat on it. The mattress and the pillows all had plastic covers on and there was no real bedding to speak of.
Anyway I had to be content with my surroundings as I was required to spend seventeen hours in the secure unit each day. I have horrible memories of long nights spent in that room and it would true to say that suicide crossed my mind on many occasions. I stole a knife from the class room, during the day, to cut my wrists.
I hid it under the mattress. I never did go through with it I was allowed out of the secure unit during the day to attend a class room. I have distinct memories of an old lady who clearly liked her job., who used to teach in the class. She regularly placed drawing pins on my chair and forced me to sit on them.
She was also very fond of the ruler as a means of corporal punishment and she would often strike my knuckles with it. Another feature of class was the dunce hat, it was a conical hat, like you see in the cartoons. We would be made to wear this hat at times when we were considered to have done something wrong or stupid.
My education was not furthered because of any of my time spent in that class room. In the secure unit I would be forced to go without clothes and had to go for periods of time, naked. Not only was this very cold but it was also degrading for an eight year old boy. Night times were especially bad at Emsworth.
I recall one male worker who would visit my room on a night and stand outside of my room looking through the glass at me. He would then switch the light on quickly for five to twenty minutes. This used to be make me very scared. I can see no other reason why he would do this at all, other than to make me frightened.
The same member of staff also abused me sexually. He had previously been a priest. He used to fondle my genitals and he would pull my pyjama bottoms down. At the time my hair was like Michael Jackson’s and my pyjama top had a picture of Michael Jackson on it. This man made me masturbate him. He also raped me which caused me intense pain. To this day it is extremely traumatic to talk about the sexual abuse I was subjected to.
Witherwack House the Most Notorious On 8 January 1979 I was transferred to Witherwack House, it was a couple of weeks before my eleventh birthday. As far as I know I was the very first resident in the home after it opened and I remained there until 1984. This was to be the worst five years of my live.
Almost immediately after moving to Witherwack House I was subjected to constant physical and psychological abuse by members of staff and ‘care’ workers. I was constantly picked on by members of staff who dragged me around by my neck; punched me, grabbed me by the testicles, gave me black eyes and a broken nose.
I was also forced into a bath of hot water and then cold water. When I was alone the staff beat me, punching me repeatedly with both fists in the stomach and my head, causing great pain. During one such instance I screamed and cried for them to stop but they just kept on beating me. I begged them and still it went on.
I was also sexually assaulted by a male member of staff who later became involved with child protection. He informed me that he would single me out for punishment The forms of punishment employed by the staff at Witherwack House included restraint techniques.
On one occasion my arm was held up my back so badly my shoulder blade needed medical treatment. My thumb would be bent backwards. until it touched my forearm. This was done at least daily and was extremely painful. I suffer from epilepsy and I believe this was caused by my head being hit of objects.
This was not reasonable punishment and force being used – this was eveil. I often heard screams of other residents being abused. Indeed I witnessed a rape of a girl who was eight or nine at the time – I tried to intervene but I was beaten senseless for my trouble – it was the best kicking of my life.
I was assaulted at least five or six times a day. On one occasion I was raped. Children were encouraged to have sex with each other and if we didn’t we would be kicked and beaten all over again. I was also bullied by other children at the home, by the order of the staff – I carry the scars on my head to prove it.
Even now I have flashbacks and nightmares about the abuse. My life has been spoiled as a result of the abuse I have suffered, I do not trust people and sit and study people to try and understand them because I still feel people want to hurt me.
I believe that the Director of Social Services was fully aware of the abuse that went on as was the Assistant Director of Social Services.
Today and Tomorrow……….. As a result of my experiences I have avidly campaigned against child abuse and spoken with local and national media on many occasions to spread the message and raise the awareness of child abuse amongst the public.
In a similar way to when I was in care when I felt it was my duty to absorb the abuse suffered by others, I continue to feel it is my responsibility as a survivor, to try and prevent it happening to others. I have canvassed my local MP and the Government for 15 years; I was awarded damages, but not Justice.
It is also unclear whether Medomsley, investigated by Durham Police was part of Operation Rose, although it could have been.
The abuse at Medomsley, Durham is finally receiving some way overdue attention thanks to some brave survivors and Operation Seabrook was opened in 2013. At present the CPS appear to be taking a long time to decide who goes to trial but hopefully a decision is imminent and favourable for survivors. See the Monsters of Medomsley blog for updates Operation Seabrook – Medomsley Detention Centre 
I have just completed another FOI 2017 Jan 30 Northumbria Police FOI Operation Rose  but feel free to send your own
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]
 2013 Nov 6 TheyWorkForYou Operation Rose https://www.theyworkforyou.com/whall/?id=2013-11-06a.97.0 archive http://archive.is/Vr4Bb
 2002 The Journal ‘Carers and teachers had their lives ruined’ via Needleblog Beaconhill Children’s Home https://theneedleblog.wordpress.com/operation-greenlight/north-west-england/northumberland/beaconhill-childrens-home/
 2013 Aug 8 Cathy Fox to Northumbria Police Operation Rose and Catalogue of Inquiry documents https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/operation_rose_and_catalogue_of#incoming-417460
 2017 Jan 16 Monsters of Medomsley blog Operation Seabrook – Medomsley Detention Centre http://themonsterofmedomsley.blogspot.co.uk/2017/01/operation-seabrook-medomsley-detention.html
 2007 May Brian Clares old blog Operation Rose “My Story” http://operationrose.blogspot.co.uk/2007/05/my-story.html
 2013 Apr 23 Northumbria Police FOI Operation Rose information https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/operation_rose_information#comment-39810
 2013 Apr 22 Northumbria Police FOI Recommendations on investigating child abuse for Northumbria Police https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/recommendations_on_investigating#outgoing-269231
 2013 Aug 8 Northumbria Police FOI Reports from the Rose Inquiry and Care Homes involved https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/reports_from_the_rose_inquiry_an#incoming-442040
 2013 Oct 14 Northumbria Police FOI Holmes database https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/holmes_database#incoming-439468
 2017 Jan 30 Northumbria Police FOI Operation Rose https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/operation_rose_2
 2014 Feb 8 Cathy Fox Blog Witherwack House Press Cuttings, Officer Code of Conduct, Document Retention Schedules https://cathyfox.wordpress.com/2014/02/08/witherack-press-cuttings-officer-code-of-conduct-document-retention-schedules/
[A] Sanctuary for the Abused http://abusesanctuary.blogspot.co.uk/2006/07/for-survivors-coping-with-triggers-if.html
Only the small secrets need to be protected, the large ones are kept secret by public incredulity – Marshall McLuhan