Time and time again I get told stories of social services targeting those who have been abused and targeting their children. It is either by design in which case they should be disbanded and prosecuted or the Social Services are so utterly incompetent that they should be disbanded anyway.
The best way imho for help is to set up survivor groups and help each other.
This story is another of generational targeting of children.
As children are abused by the system when they are young, it makes it hard for them to ever escape the system, which grabs them more and more and so they do not achieve what they would have without the intervention.
It is also another story from Portsmouth, a hot bed of organised child abuse.
Sofie is a pseudonym.
Being born in 1958, I’m no spring chicken any more. Any naivety I had disappeared long ago after I was dragged through the care system. My choice of words today earmark me as slightly right-wing, but my values are truly old-fashioned in respect of children and how they should be protected.
With current access to media, the press is awash with horror stories where the perpetrators are Social Services (or Children’s Services as they like to call themselves nowadays) or Social Services must have had knowledge of what was occuring.
The prolific grooming of vulnerable children in the care system cannot go unnoticed by the so-called “professionals” that are supposed to look after them. Even more abhorrent is the needless loss of a child’s life that seems to be constantly in the press, with Social Services wheeling out the same response of “we have learnt from our mistakes and will do better next time”.
My firm opinion based on my experience is that Social Services are totally corrupt. They consider themselves and their ideals above the law. They constantly perjure themselves in Court and indeed the Family Court readily rubber-stamp anything they say. Even the police kowtow to them, readily discounting anything a loving parent might say.
Even to this day at my age, I am well known to Social Services who totally hate me. I stand my ground. They can’t exploit me sexually or physically, so they still try to impose emotional sanctions. It’s like a sick game to them where they’re not content until they gain the upper hand.
Not so many years ago I had this smarmy underling of a woman from Social Services climbing on her high horse telling me she had a degree in social work. She appeared very proud of that fact until I pointed out that what she had was actually a degree in child snatching.
I had a run in with the head of Portsmouth Social Services a number of years ago. Her name was Cherry Harnott (OBE). Typically obnoxious and obstructive, I appproached my local MP for assistance. He was one hell of a guy. He utilised the assistance of the then Parliamentary Under-Secretary for State Maria Eagle MP. Suddenly the obstruction was cleared with the result I got my entitlement as enshrined in Law.
Cherry Harnott was suddenly not in the employ of Portsmouth Social Services and I can only speculate as to why. That is well known to Social Services, so if I used my correct name I could expect a fresh barrage of abuse from their direction and I still have to tread carefully. I have young lads (not living with me), but there’s no way on this planet I’d give those ogres an excuse to use my children as pawns.
With the internet making research a little easier, I became curious and started looking for people that had gone through the care system along with me. I applied for my records which were a long time coming, so much so that I phoned the records office to enquire why. The person dealing with my request used the term “you poor person” when they spoke to me. They didn’t offer an explanation but it certainly registered in my mind. My records were heavily redacted offering no real insight into what had occurred.
At this point I stumbled across the story by Les Cummings and your work [ie this blog see relevant links after this article]. Now I understood. Peter Prosser was a paedophile. Not only that, he and his staff were guilty of multiple counts of physical assault against children ranging in age from 6 years old to 16 years old. I never witnessed any sexual assaults but I don’t doubt for a minute they occurred.
My particular story isn’t one of sexual abuse. It’s one of physical and emotional abuse. At age 15 and in a good old fashioned school, I aspired to join a technical branch of the armed services. The chance came to attend a military camp albeit during term time. A lot of my school friends were going but my mother vetoed it.
I should point out my mother was a single person, we were what you’d describe as slightly under-privileged and along with my younger brother we lived in a council high-rise. Well, not to be outdone, I waited for my mother to go to work and went back home to collect my belongings. I already had my train warrant and I was going.
So off we went. Arrival at the military base saw us having to sign in at the guard house. And that was when it all went pear-shaped. I was placed under gate arrest and confined to quarters without any explanation. Next morning saw me in front of the duty officer who informed me of my fate.
I was living with my mother when the trip was offered and she reported me missing. She worked part time as a nursing auxilliary so would have returned home just after lunchtime and probably noticed my clothing missing.
I had been listed as a missing person and signed into the clutches of Social Services. The poor chap looked apologetic but bless that man, he pressed some money into my hand and told me to repay him one day. I was put on a train back to Portsmouth, and being totally naïve I thought I’d be returned to my home.
Instead I was whisked off to what are known as Cosham Children’s Cottages and in my case it was Kerr House. The head was “”Uncle” Peter Prosser”” and what I was informed was his wife “Aunty Mary”. All members of staff had to be called Aunty or Uncle. Serving under Prosser were what I would assume were his deputies. There were two couples and referred to as house-parents. Both couples were in their twenties and with hindsight were what I would today call weak and inept. My assigned house-parents were David and Dianne Cooper.
At Kerr House of the other house-parents the woman’s was Anne and her husband was overly abusive but his name escapes me. There was also another member of staff called Richard (surname unknown) who was always prattling on about his Alfa Romeo. My assigned social worker was Andrew Harmer of Kent Road, Southsea.
It didn’t take long to work out the layout or modus operandi of the place. There were outbuildings there where you wouldn’t enter unless you had a pal with you. Friendships were forged even in those dark surroundings. Prosser’s forte (if you displeased him) was to place a thumb and forefinger into the nerve points on the back of a child’s neck and repeatedly bounce their head off a brick wall. This punishment was meted out even in front of other children probably as a deterrent.
Prosser’s wife Mary was demure and said very little. Both male house-parents were also abusive although not on the same scale as Prosser. Friday evening was boxing night when the staff would put gloves on the children. You would then be paired off to fight someone for the amusement of the staff. Failure to comply would see your head bounced off off a wall.
Finding a local police officer to raise a complaint saw the child frogmarched back to Kerr House where a smiling Prosser appeased the copper. No one in authority wants to believe what they deem an unruly child. Exit one copper and the child would yet again have their head bounced off the wall.
Time to abscond to escape the abuse. Usually accompanied by other children we would disappear sometimes for days on end. Anything for a semblance of normality. Of course we had to survive and to do that we were forced to steal. So down the slippery slope we went and no matter how much we complained, no one would listen to us.
There comes a point in everyone’s life known as the breaking point. I reached that point one day when kicking a football around in the grounds of Kerr house. One of the male house-parents was overly aggressive. I’d also had enough of the beatings. I picked up that football and drop-kicked it with some force directly into the face of my abuser.
My words that accompanied that act were to the effect to leave me alone. From that day forward I was never physically abused again and I ensured that extended to my closest friend at Kerr House. About a month after that I was repatriated into the care of my mother. I later learned that her mother (my grandmother) had badgered her until she relented and took me back.
Some of the other kids there were Patrick (Paddy) Simmonds and his brother Paul, David Seward, Cathy Grant, Trudi Ford, Mable Baker.
That was stage one of my association with Social Services. The abuse from that department continues even to this very day. I had my eldest son taken from me and adopted. Not because I was a bad person, but because I would have been a single father with no rights.
My son in turn had two children taken from him (my grandchildren) and forcefully adopted. My application to look after them was opposed.
Now at my age I have young children from a dissolved relationship. Social Services intervened in that and I lost everything. Again, not because I’m a bad person, but they wanted the whip-hand. I lost my house and currently have a Court Order against me prohibiting me from seeing my children. I couldn’t oppose it or attend Court as I’d had a series of heart attacks.
And that in a nutshell is about it. I’m anti-adoption and have worked in that field opposing what I call callous child snatching. It’s a darned sight cheaper to offer a failing family assistance where appropriate rather than use children as pawns to meet adoption targets which each location has.
One of the most hurtful things about the whole issue is the children were never believed. You’re probably aware that most social workers would be willing to perjure themselves. I’ve actually experienced it. It seems to me, back then and still today, any child in care is automatically labelled as someone with little or no rights and not to be believed. The whole regime needs a radical overhaul.
The links relevant to this story are others about Peter Prosser, Cosham, Portsmouth, Les Cummings and Steven George who have overlapping experiences.
- Portsmouth 1 – Forgotten by Les Cummings. A Portsmouth Child Sexual Abuse Network? 
- Portsmouth 2 – Paedophiles employed by Portsmouth Council 
- Portsmouth 3 – MP Hancocks Heinous Habits Part 1 
- Portsmouth 4 – Hancocks Heinous Habits Part 2 
- Steven George and Jason Packer – Framed by Corrupt Police and Judicial System 
- Steven George and Jason Packer 
- Heartless and Heartless Too by Janella aka Steven George 
- Child Sexual Abuse Campaigners and Whistleblowers targeted by state organisations 
 2015 Mar 10 cathyfoxblog Portsmouth 1 – Forgotten by Les Cummings. A Portsmouth Child Sexual Abuse Network? https://cathyfox.wordpress.com/2015/03/10/forgotten-les-cummings-a-portsmouth-child-sexual-abuse-network/
 2015 Jul 5 cathyfoxblog Portsmouth 2 – Paedophiles employed by Portsmouth Council https://cathyfox.wordpress.com/2015/07/05/portsmouth-2-paedophiles-employed-by-portsmouth-council/
 2015 Jul 5 cathyfoxblog Portsmouth 3 – MP Hancocks Heinous Habits Part 1 https://cathyfox.wordpress.com/2015/07/05/portsmouth-3-mp-hancocks-heinous-habits-part-1/
 2015 Jun 17 cathyfoxblog Portsmouth 4 – Hancocks Heinous Habits Part 2 https://cathyfox.wordpress.com/2015/07/17/portsmouth-4-hancocks-heinous-habits-part-2-2/
 2015 Jul 12 cathyfoxblog Child Sexual Abuse Campaigners and Whistleblowers targeted by state organisations https://cathyfox.wordpress.com/2015/07/12/child-sexual-abuse-campaigners-and-whistleblowers-targeted-by-state-organisations/
 2018 Mar 31 cathyfoxblog Steven George and Jason Packer – Framed by Corrupt Police and Judicial System https://cathyfox.wordpress.com/2018/03/31/steven-george-and-jason-packer-framed-by-corrupt-police-and-judicial-system/
 2017 Dec 30 cathyfoxblog Steven George and Jason Packer https://cathyfox.wordpress.com/2017/12/30/steven-george-and-jason-packer/
 2015 Mar 4 cathyfoxblog Heartless and Heartless Too by Janella aka Steven George https://cathyfox.wordpress.com/2015/03/04/heartless-and-heartless-too-by-janella-and-steven-george/
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