Past Lives and Present Misgivings – Part Seven.

by Anna Raccoon on October 31, 2012

wald-collect-dunfold10.JPGEvening all; pull up a chair and pin your ears back.

I have, this evening, had a long talk with Miss Margaret Jones, headmistress of Duncroft for many years. It was almost 50 years since we had spoken directly to each other, and it was riveting. She was as corruscatingly honest and direct as I remember. Anybody who is under the impression that because she is 91, she might be slightly short on the marbles is in for a shock. Her power of recall is exceptional – and will prove to be devastating. As sharp as a box of scalpels – I can’t say that I am surprised; if anybody was going to stay on the ball, she was always a good candidate.

Until this evening, only a couple of old girls had her phone number. I was not one of them. She sent word to me this evening that she would like me to phone her because things had happened today – and because she has also been following my blog for the past week. I am still not in a position to prove that I have told the truth, and the whole truth, but I now have the private satisfaction of knowing that she has told me that she asked me to phone her because she knew I was speaking the truth and applauded me for having done so. I have taken a lot of schtick over the past week for speaking out – a lot of it from people who have never met me, but imagine that they know all about me. This statement will do nothing to change their mind, and frankly I couldn’t care less; their opinion of me is meaningless, Internet chatter. What my husband thinks of me – and Miss Jones – is what counts to me. I wouldn’t have had the life that I have, and by extension, wouldn’t have the husband that I have, were it not for her.

I am saying this now, for, as my regular readers are well aware, I also have cancer. I have just undergone a six month revolutionary treatment, and in the next couple of weeks have to decide whether I am going to have more treatment in the future. That is a major decision that my husband and I must make together in peace and quiet. Sadly, as a result of events today, he has been forced to divulge a secret that he had been hugging to himself for some days. Last week was our 20th wedding anniversary, and on Friday he had booked a rather wonderful hotel in Paris for us, planning to whisk me away to some peace and quiet, to talk of the future and get away from all this. He only told me because he thought that with the seriousness of what is happening and the amount of press enquiries that I am fielding, I might prefer to stay here. Not a bit of it – my husband and my health are more important than a squalid little press story. We will be leaving here early on Friday morning, and I will be turning moderation on at that time which means no ones comments will be released until I return. I am making a point of saying this now, so that those who know me and trust me will understand – those who only wish to denigrate my attempts to get at the truth will no doubt have a field day saying that I have ‘run off’.

So what has happened today? As I said, only two girls had her phone number, and only her family – including Meirion – and the Panorama team knew her address, despite many claims to the contrary. Somebody, one of those people, gave that information to the Daily Mail, and thus Claire Ellicott of the Daily Mail, she of the totally erroneous report detailing Bebe Roberts’ claim to have been assaulted on Duncroft premises 9 years before Jimmy Savile ever set foot in the school, turned up on Miss Jones’ doorstep. Armed with a concealed tape recorder.

The only other person from the press who has ever approached her was Emily Plowden from Panorama, who approached her two days before transmission of the ITV programme – and almost a year after her nephew Meirion first tried to put together his Newsnight programme. Until Emily turned up, Miss Jones had no inkling whatsoever of claims of illegal behaviour. She and her nephew had not been in communication for many years.

She has not been contacted by any police officers in respect of allegations made of assaults that may have happened to girls in her charge. Ever.

That is not to say that she has had no inkling of what has been going on though – with her ex-girls, not with Savile, I hasten to add.  Merely that she had no idea that a television programme was being made about it – or at least about the version of events it attempted to portray. She is totally aware of who is who behind all the false identifies; who has obtained confidential information from girl’s pasts that should never have been in any ‘civilian’ hands, what pressure has been put on people to speak in a particular way – or that information would be revealed. She knows precisely who has a relationship with each television company and with which newspapers – I have laughed and cried with her for over an hour.

I wish I could share it with you, it is an extraordinary tale – but I have given my word that I won’t. For good reason. She is still a canny old bird, a tad deaf, but the marbles swirling with the efficiency of Colossus 11.  She is waiting to see who hangs themselves with which piece of rope. Then she will strike.

It won’t be to the media. She has talked at length to her legal advisors – not to protect herself, but in view of her age… She has no faith whatsoever in the honour or ethics of any of the media. ‘They don’t check their sources’ is what she said. My sentiments exactly. She is happy to co-operate with the police. (As is the other ex-staff member I have spoken to at length this week).

She has given no interview to the media. She was presented by Claire Ellicott with a list of nine christian names, no surnames, of girls who claim to have reported assaults by Savile on themselves to her at Duncroft. She told her that she had no comment to make. She did answer a couple of questions. Then she spotted the concealed tape recorder. Now she waits to see what the Mail version of this encounter proves to be.

God help anyone who doesn’t stick strictly to the truth.

She is, she told me, 91 years old, she doesn’t know how much longer she will live. She has no family left that she is close to, or whose reputation she cares to protect.  I can understand that frame of mind, unfortunately I share it myself at the moment. It gives you a strength that would not be understood by those who seek their five minutes of fame and fortune. Photographs sold, confidences broken, for a few bucks.

Blimey, I could write a book after that phone call – damn shame I’ve given my word to keep quiet. I’ve just had the interview the media would die for.

Comments will be on until the early hours of Friday. Don’t know when I shall be back – Mr G won’t tell me. I knew something was up – its the first time in 20 years he hasn’t asked me at least three times by a Wednesday – what I was cooking for Sunday lunch!

*Edited to add: Two items of interest that are not breaking any confidences. Both concern cigarettes.

One, I said earlier that we were given cigarettes each week. I had not appreciated, or had forgotten, that the school leaving age was 15 in 1964. Hence when I arrived, I was past school leaving age and no longer entitled to a full time education. (I did say that education was limited and afternoons only). We were free to go out to work legally – except that we couldn’t, we were locked up. Hence the requirement that we spent our mornings cleaning the buildings, working in the kitchens and the laundry. For this we were allocated a minimal pocket money which was never actually handed to us. It could have been saved up, but if we wanted cigarettes or sweets, the staff would buy them for us. In other words, we were buying our own cigarettes rather than being bribed for good behaviour in the way I may have implied.  Obviously the more ‘work’ we did, as opposed to misbehaving, the more money we had for more cigarettes. The Home Office generosity certainly didn’t extend to supplying cigarettes for us. Bang goes my claim for my 20 a day habit! Ah well….

Two – Miss Jones was considerably amused at my powers of recollection as to the various brands of cigarettes smoked by the staff, vis a vis our obsession with collecting dog ends….seems my memory is damn near as good as hers. Bridie Keenan did smoke Piccadilly No 6 unfiltered, and Miss Jones did smoke Craven ‘A’. Neither brand is still available I believe, but I can describe the packets perfectly – and even though I have such a clear memory of the packet design, I have ever smoked either brand. So much for the ‘plain packs’ campaign. 50 years later.


 Daphne Wayne-Bough November 12, 2012 at 19:38

Anna, I have been on this site every day since I discovered you via Indigo Jo Bloggs. I am an incorrigible conspiracy theorist but even I couldn’t have thought up one as tortuous as this. Everything you say makes sense, and I admire your courage in debunking all the sensationalist crap that the meedja are churning out – and sadly the BBC too. Living abroad, I have a touching (no pun intended) faith in the Beeb, and am saddened to see that they are resorting to “la nostalgie de la boue” along with the Mail, Sun etc. When this story first broke, my first questions were “Where were News International when we needed them?” and “The headmistress must have known – why is this guy putting a member of his own family in the frame?” Your blog, and others that you have linked to, have helped to answer those questions and others that have cropped up since, so many thanks for your brave stand.

Character assassination is the oldest trick in the book. After the gruesome paedophile murders in Belgium (where I live) back in the 1990s, a raft of unsavoury rumours started circulating about various members of Belgian high society and clergy, including the King himself (!), and the progressive head of the Belgian Catholic church was (wrongly) vilified by an English-language paper here. I did a bit of research and lo and behold the trail led back to the extreme right-wing and racist Flemish separatist party Vlaams Belang who are famous for their hatred of the Belgian royals and support of conservative Catholicism. The editor of the English paper they duped (but who never apologized) is now working with UKIP. Surprise, surprise. A qui profite le crime?

My flatmate – who is even more of a conspiracy theorist than me – has been muttering about Murdoch and his legendary hatred of the BBC …. I initially thought he was over reacting, but the way things are going, I’m not so sure now.

Keep up the good work Anna!

 Gadjo Dilo November 12, 2012 at 06:19

Hello Anna – a fascinating piece. I was directed to your blog by the estimable Daphne Wayne-Bough. I live a loooong way away (in Transylvania to be precise) but a scandal story (which I didn’t quite understand) about the BBC actually made it (in Romanian) onto our local radio station this morning – is there much sense being shown or is it turning into quite a witch-hunt??

 Mewsical November 11, 2012 at 15:55

Ex Duncroft 72 said: “Mewsical, I have watched you change sides several times during the past few months and bully anyone who does not follow your self appointed lead, as you strive to dominate any discussion of Duncroft that you can find.

I do not believe this is acceptable behaviour.”

Hi ho. Here’s what I don’t do, I don’t change identities, I don’t lie, and I don’t care what you think. Some of you Duncroft women think that this entire Savile matter is all about you, when it isn’t. You think it’s okay to misrepresent facts, forge documents, bullshit people about who you really are, lie to the press, put people’s addresses on this site to make sure the press knows where to find them, harass former staff members, steal a database that belongs to Duncroft and bother people on it without their permission, and on and on??? Come on, you’ve got to be kidding!! Is THAT acceptable behavior? Er – not even close. So, trot along and tell the ‘acceptable behavior’ police about it. I’m sure they’ll be absolutely FASCINATED.

 Ex Duncroft ’72 November 13, 2012 at 01:11

Never mind what “other people” do, you do not control other people’s choices and behaviour ( though, I suspect, not for want of trying) you only control your own choices and behaviour.

You *choose* to bully anyone who doesn’t agree with you. You *choose* to dominate any discussion. You *choose* to stir things up behind the scenes, changing sides and contradicting yourself whenever it suits you, you *choose* to consistently reinvent reality to suit yourself…and whatever anyne else does, or does not do, does not make *your* behaviours and choices any less unacceptable.

 Mewsical November 13, 2012 at 01:51


 Anna Raccoon November 13, 2012 at 06:40

Right, that is enough, the pair of you.

You are welcome here to debate the issues illustrated in my posts, but this is not a Facebook or Friendsreunited forum, you are not welcome to abuse other commentators. It’s boring, it’s childish, and it’s time you grew out of it.

So tuck your hankies into your blue serge knickers ladies and get on with living with the grown ups.

 Wigner’s Friend November 13, 2012 at 08:38

Reaches for axe handle under bar just in case!

 Mewsical November 10, 2012 at 19:30

Tracie said: “Mewsical thank you for maintaining her privacy, which is more than the Duncroft facebook did . No i never saw him at duncroft, which was just as well as my relatives abuse pre dated my stay at Duncroft, If I had seen him, it wouldnt have been a blow job that I would have given him, it would have included a very sharp instrument and I proberly would have ended up in Holloway. I cannot remember when I arrived but should be getting my notes soon so will have a better idea then.”

The Duncroft file can be quite an eye-opener, btw! I’ve had mine for a couple of weeks now.

What I wasn’t liking about places like the Duncroft FB page, and CLR, was that some people would do or say anything to prove their point, even going to the extent of saying who your relative was, although she had said she was not going to go public, along with other dubious activities such as giving out the whereabouts of former staff, who had been kind to them. When you have this sort of thing going on, the whole business becomes suspect, you must admit.

So, sounds like Savile had taken himself off by the end of 1976, which is when Barnardo’s took over. Were they the administrators when you were there?

 Tracie November 10, 2012 at 19:32

Yes it was all Barnardos while I was there

 Mewsical November 10, 2012 at 19:34

Did you stay on after 1980? I think that was when MJ and her staff left, right? And something about a fire in Queen Anne, a short closing of the school, etc.?

 Mewsical November 10, 2012 at 18:32

Tracie said: “Mewsical the investigation involved another 14 year old who had no contact with duncroft herself but itvwas bought to light during the duncroft complaint. Her abuse did not take place at duncroft . It was made very clear in news reports that there were two historic complaints made to the surrey police . I have seen the letter from the cps that she recieved and it stated that no further investigation due to lack of evidence. Child abuse is so difficult as by its very nature there are no witnesses.”

When you say “another 14 year old,” I assume you mean a woman now in her 50s? Could you perhaps provide a newslink to buttress your claim about two historic complaints? And when you say “I have seen the letter from the CPS that she received …” could you let us know under what circumstances that occurred? If this additional victim was revealed during the Duncroft complaint, doesn’t that confirm that the initial complaint was made solely by a Duncroft woman? And why would a completely unrelated victim come forward, i.e. “brought to light,” as a result of what I assume was a confidential police investigation. How did this “come to light” exactly?

 Tracie November 10, 2012 at 18:42

Mewsical i am not going to provide a newslink, im sure that you can dig around and find that yourself, the fact that she refused to be interviewd by mwt or the newspapers tells you that she doesnt want the limelight on her. The surrey police sent letters to the girls who were at Duncroft in the 70s asking them to contact them ref a hisorical complaint. I knew who they were talking about before I even called them. I also knew of the abuse that my relative had inflicted on her from JS, maybe not as serious as some that I have read but still abuse. I spoke to her before I called the police and she gave me permission to give the police woman her name and address, from there the police took her statement. You sound Suprised that you didnt know all this, but really there was no reason for you to know, your interest was in girls from Duncroft.

 Mewsical November 10, 2012 at 18:53

Hm, yes, well MWT says there were two, but nobody confirms it, so I’ll take that with a large pinch of salt. The police don’t mention two, either.

Oh, so you weren’t AT Duncroft!! A RELATIVE of yours was at Duncroft, the police sent letters to girls who were at Duncroft, but somehow YOU got a letter from the police (why exactly if you weren’t there?), you have READ about abuse, and so on, and so on.

Tracie, everything you say has a lot of smoke and mirrors going on. Since when was my interest in ‘girls from Duncroft’? I’m interested only in this entire tangled web.

At the bottom of this heap of horseshit there may be a pony, but I seriously doubt it.

 Mewsical November 10, 2012 at 18:56

I wanted to add that if this ‘second’ victim didn’t want to talk to MWT or the papers, she’s to be congratulated. But why exactly? If she didn’t talk to MWT, how does he know that there was ever a second victim? Because someone told him there was? He and Meirion are two peas in a pod. Shoot first, ask questions later.

 Tracie November 10, 2012 at 19:03

Mewsical I was at duncroft I left in April 1978 . My relative who was abused by Js wasn’t at duncroft, sorry i thought i had made that clear. How would i have got a letter from the police if I hadn’t been at Duncroft. Where did I say that I had Read about abuse. The only reason i replied to you was because you told Lisa that nobody believed her about the police investigation. The investigation was very real and the complaints made during his lifetime not after his death. Your interest seemed to be just in the Duncroft girls as I haven’t seen you mention any other victims, not even from the documentary, maybe I have that wrong, apologies if i have.

 Mewsical November 10, 2012 at 19:11

I think I know who your relative is, as she has been mentioned in this last year, but of course if she didn’t want to speak to the press or MWT, then we probably need to continue to protect her privacy. I’ve actually talked about the other women, i.e. Coleen Nolan, but as this series of blog posts began as a result of the Bebe Roberts fiasco, I’ve tried to limit it to Duncroft just to stay on topic. Btw, did you ever see Savile while you were there? I can’t quite figure out when he stopped coming around with any frequency. I know he was there to assist at some sort of fete in 1979, and another woman has said she saw him there but never heard anything about him behaving badly. It seems as if it was just for a couple of years, 74-76, and then it was very infrequently indeed. Do you remember?

 Tracie November 10, 2012 at 19:19

Mewsical thank you for maintaining her privacy, which is more than the Duncroft facebook did . No i never saw him at duncroft, which was just as well as my relatives abuse pre dated my stay at Duncroft, If I had seen him, it wouldnt have been a blow job that I would have given him, it would have included a very sharp instrument and I proberly would have ended up in Holloway. I cannot remember when I arrived but should be getting my notes soon so will have a better idea then.

 peter November 10, 2012 at 09:37

Not a comment, a bit of sixties ciggie nostalgia . There was a brand called Piccadilly no. 7 but No. 6 was Players.

 Vlad the lad November 10, 2012 at 02:41

I have years of indirect exposure with the social working world. One of my brother’s work mates hung himself after false allegations. (Here, an allegation gets people suspended immediately until proven innocent). Quite a few ineffectual accusers like this power they have over their carers. In this case it was a step father and she was well known to be mentally ill and a long police record of false rape allegations. But claims have to be treated seriously.

My anecdote is about not being realistic with a story. I am writing this because the Saville claims read as over the top. People are claiming he molested them in plain view of others. Everybody in TV would have to be guilty for this to be true. As one TV personality stated, everyone heard the rumours, but no one claims to know.

My brother was a social worker ~15 years ago and showed me a professional book they were reading about street kids having multiple personalities induced by “secretive groups”. A few kids always had stories revolving around 1: alien abduction, 2: sex, murder and satanic rituals, 3: secret survivalist training armies in the NSW forests, 4: sexually abusive groups of rich men, and various others. But all similar enough that a researcher took it seriously. It was thought that the children had multiple personalities deliberately induced to hide which was the true story. If they remembered too many different things no one would believe them. So, which one was the true story?

We personally concluded that 1: abused and confused children, 2: very likely comes from a family with a history of mental illness (who else treats children so bad they have to run away that young), 3: like taking drugs at every opportunity during their brain’s formative growth period, 4: neglected and so will do anything for attention. They most likely have mental illness.

We (finally) had a proper commission into state abuse of children over here. The commissioner recounted how Canada tried the same enquiry earlier, and mentioned compensation early on. By the end of it Canada had to pay as much money to families of falsely accused suicide victims as the abuse victims. So, none of that, ours just dealt with facts, found some criminals and but was surprisingly small in the numbers of victims.

 Ex Duncroft ’72 November 10, 2012 at 21:08

Vlad, could you give details of the research you read?

It just rings bells with me for a very different reason and I would love to get a look at it, thanks.

 Frankie November 9, 2012 at 18:29

With unerring regularity, it seems that ANOTHER alleged ‘victim’ of historical abuse has got his facts badly wrong… per the BBC.


A former resident of a north Wales care home has apologised after he made allegations of sexual abuse against a Thatcher-era senior Conservative politician, claiming it was a case of mistaken identity.

It comes as the solicitor for Tory peer Lord McAlpine threatened legal action against those who linked the peer to the historical child abuse.

Steve Messham, who appeared on Newsnight, said: “I want to offer my sincere and humble apologies to him and his family.”

“After seeing a picture in the past hour of the individual concerned, this not the person I identified by photograph presented to me by the police in the early 1990s, who told me the man in the photograph was Lord McAlpine.

Nice of Mr. Messham to lay the blame for his negligent statements at the door of some unnamed policeman. After all, its tradition. Its ALL the fault of the police. Everything. Unfortunately for Mr. Messham, the irate and innocent Lord McAlpine is very much alive and is presently sharpening his expensive legal team’s claws… “All the better to sue you with, my dear”.

 Anna Raccoon November 9, 2012 at 18:31

Jesus wept!

 Ex Duncroft ’72 November 10, 2012 at 21:10

I had a similar internal response to that Anna…

“Ooops – wrong ped…er…peer…er person…s-orry”

 Jonathan Mason November 10, 2012 at 00:08

This is getting ridiculous now. Those who think that people who complain of historical child sexual abuse must be listened to are getting hoist by their own petard when it turns out that those who make the complaints are fruitcakes. I’m not suggesting that sexual abuse in childhood didn’t happen, in fact I know for a fact that it did because Old Albert our school janitor used to have boys measure his penis with a ruler in the cellar, and the six-inch rulers were inadequate for the job, but one has to think about what kind of people would want to go public at such a late stage in the game and why. This guy Steve Messham now has ZERO credibility.

 Mewsical November 10, 2012 at 01:39

I was ‘sexually abused’ when I was about 13, by a man who came to view our house for sale. My mother was elsewhere at the time, I was there on my own. He was okay at first, but then we got to the top of the stairs, he tried to pin me against the wall by one of the bedroom doors. I kneed him where it counts and pushed him away with everything I had, and he nearly fell down the stairs, which would have been potentially fatal for him, like I cared. He ran. Did I complain to anyone? No. I dealt with it, and that was that. I knew that the police would probably yawn and snore anyway.

So, I understand your frustration, JM.

When it comes to Savile/Duncroft, Margaret Jones is likely right when she observes that to discontinue Savile’s visits would have meant the end of all the fun, dangerous though it may have been. So, the girls did not organize and complain in a group, which would have given the entire situation a lot more credence. There is a legend that a group of girls broke out, with the aid of a staff member, and went to the Staines police, who summarily drove them all back to Duncroft. I think that sort of goes along with the Largactyl myth, but I’ll be happy to learn more from anyone who was there at that time, and was in the group that reported to the Staines police. At one time, the police cadets used to attend the Duncroft Hallowe’en parties, and the brother of one of the staff was a detective with the Met.

I also have a problem with the group of girls going riding with him in the Rolls story as well. First, I’m not sure how long they were gone – they were tight on time, the Duncroft staff, and you had to be up and back, so to speak, in the time allotted. I’d love to know exactly how long they were gone. I think Kari’s book notes that the rest of the girls sat on picnic benches smoking, while Savile had his way with whoever in the back of the Rolls. So, we are expected to believe that this lot didn’t take an immediate opportunity to do a bunk??? Come on. But if any of the usual suspects have a rebuttal, happy to hear it.

 Moor Larkin November 10, 2012 at 09:18

Messham was undoubtedly a victim in that Welsh Home all those years ago. The Waterhouse Report left no doubt. The people who have zero credibility are the muppets who have now encouraged him into this invidious position. His sudden retraction startled me, but then I realsied that once the guy he was being persuaded to accuse became a “real person” and not some figure in a story, Messham’s own strong conscience has made him pull the “accusation”. He’s a victim once again; I feel terribly sorry for him. A “journalist” on Channel 4 last night was pretty much criticising Messham, as if the poor guy had somehow let “them” all down – inexplicably lying……

On the BBC last night they were berating themselves about getting it wrong when they dropped the Savile show, and now getting it wrong by running the Messham show. Their producer, Peter Rippon got it right for them by not running that original show but – because the Duncroft thing now is unchallenged FACT, he remains “wrong”. People on that show kept saying things like “unlike the Savile case”…. what case? There really is very little case. Miss Jones is probably beating herself up about Savile and probably NOTHING HAPPENED !!

What is most shocking about this latest fiasco is that the accused guy (whose name I don’t even want to take in vain in here) has produced no proof whatsover; he just made a rebuttal – and the whole thing collapsed like a pack of cards. Unfortunately for Savile, he’s in no position to make a rebuutal and nobody cares to make it for him. The “girls” who made the claims will never have the pang of conscince that Messham has suffered, because dead men tell no tales.

 Mewsical November 10, 2012 at 16:37

I wish there was a ‘like’ button on this blog, Moor. I just hope MJ is not beating herself up. Before Bebe Roberts was ‘outed’ for being a liar about her imaginary encounter with Savile in 1965, and I was protesting it, among others, I was sanctimoniously informed by one of the in-crowd that she had given the interview ‘in good faith.’ Wtf does THAT mean? She told a bunch of lies, nothing in good faith about that. No conscience at work there, obviously.

 Ex Duncroft ’72 November 10, 2012 at 21:14

Earlier this year I realised that I was probably sexually abused by a medical professional…BUT…

It was feck of a long time ago, I could be misinterpreting with hindsight, I know women of ALL AGES who would have crawled on broken glass for a hug from this guy…and…

He is long dead, he had descendents, and LIFE IS TOO SHORT…

End of story…

 Rocky Raccoon (no relation) November 8, 2012 at 17:07

This sounds like one of the people who went to the Mirror in 1994. She had nothing to do with Duncroft and says she was assualted aged 14 at his flat.

The reporter refers to her plucking up courage to go public 20 years later and then at the last moment deciding not to.

 m.barnes November 8, 2012 at 16:12

Catching up on my Racconage……. Please pass on my congratulations to MrG for having the terrific good sense to whisk you to Paris, well done that man! Won’t ask for the gory details

I have been following the Saville case and the public stoning of the BBC and anyone remotely connected to this sorry business with an increasing sense of incredulity. What is it about human mobs, that they can so quickly descend into swirling hysteria? A few centuries ago it was Witches these days it’s ‘Paedos’ but all must be burned at the stake! I’m pretty certain I have already said this on another story here: Millers Crucible is never, ever going to become irrelevant is it? It speaks of something fundamental to human nashadowy ture. There was a fabulous article by David Aaronovitch in todays Times about the hysteria surrounding the latest ‘Paedo Ring’: this time featuring the regular ‘powerful politicans/policeman who are beyond the law’. Tom Watson is on the case – ye gods – trying to replace the high from Murdoch with another darl consipracy. Watson has apparantly sent a letter to Downing Street saying anyone who argues against an inquiry is a ‘friend to the paedophile’. In his speech in the commons Watson talked of thousands and thousands and thousands of children abused by this shadowy paedo ring. Had everyone forgotten Cleveland and Orkney?

And the most dreadful part of all this fog and confusion is that those who have actually been assaulted, perhaps by unfamous, unpowerful, unknown abusers, probably a member of their family, are not listened to or helped.

‘I saw Goody Proctor with the Devil’

 Moor Larki November 9, 2012 at 09:45


Yes, it is strange to see the Hero of Hacking, Tom Watson, becoming as mad as a box of frogs now. However, he is hardly unique. In the last few days I have heard the BBC’s Nicky Campbell interviewing a guy who has historical abuse issues, and talking seriously about the Freemasons covering it all up. Then last night on the Channel 4 News they conducted a special programme, “The Past on Trial” pulling together “conspiracies” as diverse as Hillsborough, Savile and Bryn Estyn, and once again Freemasons entered the conversation. On ITV we have Gordon the Gopher’s ex-playmate presenting the Prime Minister of the country with a list of names, and the Prime Minister gibbers nervously about a gay witch-hunt.

I’m seriously coming to Anna Raccoon’s blog for a dose of sanity just now. The mainstream has lost it’s marbles. The most insidious thing in my mind, is that “the Savile case” is now talked of as a “fact”. Given the huge room for doubt about the Duncroft stories, and the complete lack of any substantive evidence about Savile, it’s hardly surprising that the media in Britain has lost the plot. If you predicate everything on what may actually have been false in the first place anyway, is it any wonder confusion reigns? Fior those not close to the UK, there are media calls for Savile’s body to be exhumed and cremated, and the sahes put in the sea, and now there seems a genuine push to implicate him in the Yorkshire Ripper murders as some kind of accomplice to Sutcliffe. It’s getting crazier, not calming down

 Jonathan Mason November 9, 2012 at 11:49

The Yorkshire Ripper thing is a bit silly. I lived in Leeds at the time and was also investigated, at least up to the point of checking my passport which showed I had been on holiday overseas at the time of at least one murder. However 50,000 men in the area were also investigated, as part of the methodology of the investigation was simply to narrow down the number of possible suspects by force of numbers. The public were encouraged to name anyone they could think of to the police as a possible suspect, so anyone who worked late hours, for example, was liable to be investigated. I did vaguely know one of the victims by sight as she had been a patient at the hospital where I worked, but that was all.

 Moor LarkiN November 9, 2012 at 12:31

On BBC2′s Newsnight they had Williams-Thomas (who remarkably said almost nothing), some guy from The Times, and a guy from NAPAC who made the astonishing claim that one in four children in the UK is a victim of abuse. He remained unchallenged by anyone, to eprhaps elucidate what on earth he was talking about.

One in four seems a handy shorthand for most everything. Googling the phrase “one in four children” gives you everything from one in four being overweight to one in four suffering from cyber-bullying.

 Robb November 9, 2012 at 15:41

Hi Moor

If it’s last night’s Newsnight, participants were David Aronovich of the Times (a skeptic), the guy from NAPAC, and Mark Lewis a media lawyer, famous from Leveson, etc. The NAPAC 1-in-4 claim comes he says via the NSPCC.

The ubiquitous 1-in-4 is indeed handy. I predicted, a while a go, it would soon be ‘one in three’–it is! Try Googling it. One site concerend with violence against women is so sure of the figure it has named itself after it.

Meanwhile, Newsnight seems to have made another cock-up. Perhaps to makes up for previous lapses, they interviewed Steven Messham, who fingered a prominent Tory politician. We internet savvy soon discovered this was proably Lord McAlpine. It took the Guard scarcely more time to compare Messham/Waterhouse with Messham/Newsnight–and conclude it wasn’t that McAlpine at all. Following the Guard’s findings, the good lord has stepped forward too.

Not only more egg on Newsnight’s face (and I am a great supporter of the BBC), but this: The new investigations announced by Cameron were initiated by Messham’s statements. Which turn out likely to be false! Now what?

 Wigner’s Friend November 9, 2012 at 16:00

Because of what Schofield did, this was discussed on Jeremy Vine today and the “Children’s Protector was Bea Campbell ( ( – do they never learn?

 m.barnes November 9, 2012 at 13:28

I’d missed the introduction of the freemasons – it was inevitable I suppose. Has anyone mentioned the illuminati yet? Oh no, I just have! Well THAT’s torn it

I completely agree the mainstream has just gone into a feeding frenzy. Every time it starts to die down someone comes along and squirts a bit more blood into the water to keep it going.

Have just read Lord McAlpine’s full statement – thorough, to the point and a damn sight more humane and sensitive towards the source of the allegations than any of Tom Watson’s pronouncements.

 Moor Larkin November 9, 2012 at 16:06


Ah! the wrong Mark. I beg everybody’s pardon. It’s easy to see how information can go wonky very quickly…. [blush]

That would explain why whoever he was didn’t say very much. What was a guy from Leveson doing there, talking about Savile and child abuse anyway I wonder? Best not go there, it’s far too complicated already.

Thanks for the correction.

 Robb November 9, 2012 at 16:19

Hi Moor

He was there because he is a media lawyer. Mind you, the whole segment was pretty flaccid. It noted that the Guard had named a ‘name’ as an innocent name. No acknowledgement that it itself had contributed to the frenzy. A bit early, perhaps.

 Mewsical November 9, 2012 at 19:30

A fair sprinkling of the commenters on Digital Spy have made reference to lizards, the Illuminati, old Uncle David Icke and all. It’s ridiculous.

 Ex Duncroft ’72 November 9, 2012 at 11:42

Because of the dates I cannot help wondering if the whole 5 ring circus was not at least in part inspired by dim memories of this movie which achieved cult status in the early 70s (with the “x” certificate that would make it irresistable to teens).

I am always suspicious about “celebrity abuse” at best, because in my experience, the perptetrators of most real abuse (sexual and otherwise) are people you never heard of, and sadly, never will.

 Brian November 7, 2012 at 22:53

Of course the Police might have known about Savile’s activities but allowed him a degree of freedom in order that intelligence on other notables could be collected for whatever purpose was seen fit by the powers that be, mainly vetting and blackmail. Please understand that intelligence work is amoral and that the interests of the State are quite different to the morality of the man or woman in the street. Sad but true.

 Thor2Hammer November 7, 2012 at 22:50

\The author of a shelved report into abuse at children’s homes in the 1970s and 1980s said public figures were not among names given by victims.

John Jillings said he did not recall allegations that children were taken from north Wales homes and abused.

One victim said an independent inquiry commissioned by Clwyd County Council, on which the report was based, would have been told of such abuse claims.

Steve Messham criticised Mr Jillings’ recollection about the names given.\

SO – will the NEW inquiry be told which ‘famous names’ people are expected to remember?

 Moor Larkin November 7, 2012 at 10:33

There’s a very interesting blog here that was written around the same time as the Newsnight programme was being dropped.

Nothing to do with Duncroft, but those world-wide readers of the raccoon blog who are unfamiliar with the recent UK history about these issues, might find it useful to help them put a context as to why the Savile story has proved such a heady brew here.

 Innocente November 6, 2012 at 18:31

With regard to ‘the girl who died at Duncroft’. I have already mentioned that I was a pupil there from 1971-1972 and know exactly who this refers to. I’ve seen this rumour before, probably around a year ago. I’m not going to mention this pupil’s full name here because her Church still mentions her in their prayers on the anniversary of her death, which indicates that she still has family. Her initials are TPC. She arrived at the school after I did, and she absconded in November 1971 with another girl whose initials are LB. They absconded by breaking the perspex window of the small common room (with the record player in it). I didn’t think it would break, it took 5 or 6 really hard whacks with the big, wicker chairs we had in there, but it finally shattered, and they were gone. A few months later, Mrs O’Sullivan walked into the same small common room and said “Your friend, xxxxxxx, she’s dead”. She then sneered, and walked out, leaving most of us there too stunned even to speak for several minutes. I thought about TPC and LB a lot over the years, and when I first saw this rumour, I did some searching of my own. I now have a copy of her death certificate right in front of me – I’ve had it for some time. Firstly, TPC could not have arrived back at Duncroft sometime after Easter – she died on January 19th, 1972. Secondly, she died in a hospital, in her home town, which is in Surrey. Media reports list Duncroft as Staines, Surrey, but in 1972 Staines was in Middlesex. Even Dee, the lovely lady currently residing at 15. Duncroft Manor lists her address as Staines, Middx. TPC’s cause of death is given as: 1a) Inhalation of vomit following intravenous injection of narcotic drug. B) Chronic drug addiction. Misadventure. The registrar is BW Sylvester, who dated the registration of her death on May 25th 1972. The Coroner for Greater London held 2 inquests, one on 26/01/72 (probably adjourned) and the second on 24/05/1972, at which point, the death certificate would have been issued. TPC would have turned 16 on December 20th 1971, while she was still on the run. “Following intravenous injection” would be at odds with the use of Largactil Linctus. And as has already been mentioned, even if a cover-up was attempted, how many different agencies would have needed to collaborate in order to facilitate such a cover-up? All of the Duncroft staff (that’s possible), the ambulance crew, the hospital staff, mortuary staff, the doctors who pronounced her dead, the Coroner, the Registrar, and her own family. The very fact that she died in her home town indicates that she had returned there, and was probably staying with people she already knew. It was sad enough that TPC died at all. She was just 15b years old when she arrived at Duncroft. If she absconded in November and died in January, that’s a window of just 2 months on the run. I don’t believe that she could have become chronically addicted to drugs in the space of 2 months. That would indicate that she was probably already a drug user when she arrived, in which case…. why was even there??? Duncroft was not a hospital. It wasn’t a clinic. It certainly wasn’t The Priory. It was an Approved School. If TPC had a chronic drug addiction, she should never been recommended for a placement at Duncroft, and she should not have been accepted there either. Some time after the arrival of the WWW, I saw a link to an old newspaper article which read “Who Killed T—— C—–? It wasn’t meant in the literal sense, but rather, who let her down, who failed to save her? I wasn’t the only person who saw that headline, but I cannot find any trace of it now. I’m busy working on that, and also on getting a copy of TPC’s inquest report. Yes, she died, and technically, while still a pupil at the school. But it is sad enough that she’s gone, and at such a tender age. Let’s please scotch this particular rumour. TPC died in a hospital in her hometown. If I can get a copy of her death certificate, so can anyone. It’s all there in black and white. It’s easy to see how rumours and myths begin, but I really felt very strongly about this. I wasn’t planning to post here again, but TPC deserves some dignity even if it is 41 years overdue. Nobody killed her in a squalid ICU cell and I hope that reading her inquest report will mean I can lay my own particular ghost to rest.

 Innocente November 6, 2012 at 18:36

*15 years old, not 15b – my apologies.

 Mewsical November 7, 2012 at 16:15

Thank you for clearing that up at last, and I’m sure this poor girl appreciates your kindness in doing so. However, I did want to say that a heroin addict can become addicted very rapidly. I’ve seen it myself with friends of mine. If she was out there on the run, she may have picked the habit up while she was out there, so I don’t know if we can impute any blame to Duncroft particularly. That was very insensitive of Mrs. O.

 Innocente November 7, 2012 at 18:51

Mewsical – your efforts to maintain the image of the school and its headmistress are indeed valiant, and I commend you on your resolute and dogged determination to ensure that the reputations of both Duncroft School and Margaret Jones remain untarnished. But…. the cause of TPC’s death would have been determined by somebody I assume is better medically qualified than both you and I. The cause of her death is listed as Chronic drug addiction. The medical definition of ‘chronic’ is: chron·ic (krnk)


1. Of long duration; continuing: chronic money problems.

2. Lasting for a long period of time or marked by frequent recurrence, as certain diseases: chronic colitis.

3. Subject to a habit or pattern of behavior for a long time: a chronic liar. The fact remains that a 15 year old girl was handed over to the care of Duncroft School, and a few months later she was dead. The school’s reputation and that of its headmistress are of little consequence here. TPC was somebody’s daughter, she came from a Catholic family so I would think it fair to at least presume that she was somebody’s granddaughter, sister, cousin, niece, possibly even an Auntie, I was at that age. She was, even at 16, still just a child, one who would never see adulthood. The system failed her and her death is incredibly sad. That is irrefutable. Where is your sadness? Where is your compassion?

 Mewsical November 9, 2012 at 20:23

I know what chronic means. Look, she ran away. Not a good idea. She o.d.’ed. This was yeeeeaaaaars ago. And why we’re discussing this is a bit beyond me, frankly. I’m not trying to protect anyone’s reputation, I’m simply getting tired of misrepresentations and downright lies. Duncroft wasn’t Butlins – girls kept running off and getting into big trouble out there, and this was NOT the responsibility of Duncroft. You smash windows and run off, how is that the fault of Duncroft? You stick a needle in your arm (and you apparently were sticking needles in your arm before coming to Duncroft, i.e. chronic drug addict) you assume a risk that has NOTHING to do with Duncroft. 16 is not a child, under law. Stop trying to use this girl’s unfortunate death as an excuse to bash me.

 Ex Duncroft November 7, 2012 at 17:20

Hi Innocente,

Thank you for that, and now you give details it sounds (as I have suspected before since I saw this mentioned elsewhere, which information has gone forward with all the other information) as if there may have been two seperate deaths, as the death I heard spoken of by staff and girls in 1972 was very little time before I arrived there (even days), and happened on the premises in my memory, all these years.

This isn’t evidence, but though (and perhaps even because) I did not know her, her name was constantly mentioned I would have known it well (until time erased it) and I would have THOUGHT a single initial would be enough to trip a memory…and “TPC” isn’t doing that. “Cat” is floating around in my head for some reason (I mention it because it is obviously a nickname not a real name), but I am not sure why.

I am only interested in the facts of what happened…not any particular agenda. Since the matter is now in the hands of the proper authorities it should all be dealt with.

I believed then, and I still believe now, that Duncroft was a nightmare of subtle mental and emotional abuse that should never have happened, but whether as part of a system that was all in the same mould, or standing alone, I have no idea.

I also wish to confirm that at least until the local authority shake up (and probably later) Staines was MOST DEFINATELY in Middlesex.

 Wendi November 7, 2012 at 18:53

Do me and others a favour and ‘leave it out’ and – move on all ex Duncroft gals! Enough already!

 Innocente November 7, 2012 at 19:01

The girl I knew was known by her name, not by a nickname. I didn’t know her middle name until I received her death certificate, so I only knew her as TC up until that point. But she was most definately not a ‘Cat’, nor anything even remotely like it.

 Ex Duncroft ’72 November 10, 2012 at 23:08

Innocente, “Cat” might mean absolutely noting, it was just a name that came back to me when I saw your post and was trying to recall the name that was said over and over again at the time…I mentioned it in case it rang any bells with you at all.

It may be two seperate people and two seperate deaths…regardless, the whole matter is in the hands of the proper authorities now and if subtantiated will become part of the overall picture.

Wendi…refresh my memory, *who* exactly approached me out of the blue to get me involved in this discussion, long after I had “moved on” – I forget?

John, I have *NEVER* suggested anyone was overdosed on largactyl…to the best of my knowledge, like valium, it has a ridiculously high overdose level. What I said was that she was forcibly medicated with it and did not wake up, and that, as I recall the death was ascribed to choking on her own vomit for which an overdose is never a prerequisite.

 Mewsical November 10, 2012 at 23:24

A couple of you have said that either the staff or Margaret Jones told you all about this death, so I hope you will accept that Margaret Jones very recently told someone that NO GIRL EVER DIED at Duncroft. For her to lie about such a thing, when there is some vague accusation of ‘proper authorities’ and ‘if substantiated’ going on, then she either has a lot to answer for (and just where was the body buried in the grounds, for example!), or someone is pumping up the ‘facts’ a bit. Or a lot.

I wouldn’t be surprised that the runaway girl died from a heroin overdose, that sounds plausible to me, but it really couldn’t have been the responsibility of the school that she chose to take off and continue to use drugs, which sounds like she had been possibly doing before she came to Duncroft to begin with.

 Jonathan Mason November 7, 2012 at 17:49

A rather different story from the allegation that a girl was dosed with Largactil, placed in the isolation room and never woke up again.

A woman I knew very well died about 10 years ago the second time she took heroin, from an overdose. She was in her early forties. She told me about the first time she did it and when I expressed horror, she said “it’s not really dangerous if you know what you are doing.” Her autopsy revealed that she had combined heroin with Xanax and Flexeril.

 Mewsical November 9, 2012 at 19:01

Have it on good authority that no girl ever died at Duncroft.

 Mewsical November 6, 2012 at 18:01

Just wanted to let everyone know that most of the eyeballs on this blog are coming in from Digital Spy – since I posted my last blog post a couple of days back, I noticed that the daily visitors were back to about normal, 40 or so. So, just out of interest, I posted the second installment link here yesterday. Now I have ten times the traffic, and of course I can see where the traffic is coming from. I’d say 85% is the Digital Spy forum. Otherwise, as far as Duncroft is concerned, I’d say the party is over, and even over there conversation is starting to turn in another direction.

 Mewsical November 6, 2012 at 01:37

@ Moor regarding the unsubstantiated reports of the death of a girl at Duncroft, after having thorazine administered and being put in the ICU, when she allegedly returned to the school under the influence of LSD. The thing of it is that not ONE girl who was there in 1972 has so far provided anything other than an accusation. If someone had died on the premises, it would be somewhat difficult to get their body out of the school without at least a few of the girls noticing something, i.e. ambulance arriving, police, etc. The dormitories faced out to the front of the school and any official vehicles would have pulled up in the front. I’ve heard nothing about that at all. Choked on her own vomit? Shades of Jimi Hendrix. Margaret Jones said herself that she wished that Meirion had at least consulted her when Newsnight was in pre-production, as she was well aware of the mental condition of some of the girls, and in my own experience, I’d say that might’ve been a good idea, Meirion, if you’re out there reading this. However, family problems are family problems. And that’s not our concern here.

I was hoping that psychiatrist Pamela Mason might grant an interview as well, and she came close, cancelling right before Margaret granted her second interview. May yet happen. May not be necessary.

I’ve done a second blog post, sort of a wrap up, in hopes this Duncroft angle has been played out, leaving the way clear for investigation of the other victims.

Once again, thanks to Anna Raccoon for her indefatigable search for the truth. This time, I think we might have found it, at least as it concerns Duncroft.

 Ex Duncroft ’72 November 6, 2012 at 19:55

Well it is very hard to understand why Margaret Jones would have referred to her death more than once in front of some or all the girls unless it had really happened?

Don’t be so melodramatic, no one has tried to claim that her death was completely concealed, like some kind of murder (or the fairly regular abortions in Chelsea), that would be idiotic, she has a death certificate and her body was legally disposed of, but it was never properly investigated and the procedures that caused it were never examined and revised to avoid it happening again…oh and as a trivial afterthought, it probably shouldn’t have happened in the first place?

Anyway that information is now in the hands of a formal investigative team on it’s way to the Police, and hopefully the proper examination of the facts that should have happened at the time will happen now, and the truth will finally become a matter of record.

 Mewsical November 7, 2012 at 17:23

Happily, we now have the story from someone who cared enough to look into the details and tell the truth. How refreshing! Here’s my thoughts on what happened to T. She went on the run, she did not die at Duncroft, but of what appears to be a heroin overdose, self-administered, and passed away at a local hospital. A thorough investigation was conducted, so no more need to exploit this poor girl’s death in pursuit of your need to vilify Duncroft for everything. If she’d stayed there, she’d be alive today in all likelihood. We make our own decisions and then we have to take the consequences of those decisions without constantly trying to shift the blame onto someone else.

 Ex Duncroft November 7, 2012 at 21:36

Tell me Mewsical…have you ever managed to find a corner of the world where everybody around you thinks what you tell them to think, remembers what you tell them to remember, says what you tell them to say, and does what you tell them to do?

 Mewsical November 9, 2012 at 20:13

Nope, and wouldn’t want to. Conversely, have you managed to find a corner of the world where everyone believes that anything said by former pupils of Duncroft from 1966-1974 is the truth? Of course not. This entire series of blog posts originated because of a lying former pupil by the name of Bebe Roberts who was there in 1965, as was I, as was Anna, as was Ellen. Margaret Jones has confirmed that Savile first started coming to the school in 1974. You have probably seen the entry in the visitors’ book, signed by Savile. Therefore, opinions from ex-Duncroft women who were not there in 1965 and not there in 1974 onwards are nothing but opinions.

 Ex Duncroft ’72 November 11, 2012 at 03:47

Mewsical, I have watched you change sides several times during the past few months and bully anyone who does not follow your self appointed lead, as you strive to dominate any discussion of Duncroft that you can find.

I do not believe this is acceptable behaviour.

 Rocky Raccoon (no relation) November 7, 2012 at 21:16

Hello Ex Duncroft ’72,

What is this formal investigative team you mention?

“Anyway that information is now in the hands of a formal investigative team on it’s way to the Police…”

 Ellen Coulson November 9, 2012 at 15:07

Spoke to Margaret Jones last night. She told me that no girl died in ICU or anywhere else in Duncroft for that matter.

 Mewsical November 9, 2012 at 20:14

More nonsense, Rocky.

 Mewsical November 9, 2012 at 20:15

And just what is a ‘formal investigative team’ anyway? Boy, what a load of cobblers.

 James November 6, 2012 at 00:48

Sincere thanks – a wonderful diary.

Hope you enjoy your holiday!

 Mewsical November 5, 2012 at 19:20

@ Richard de Lacy – the Sunday Mail is a separate paper from the Daily Mail, though obviously owned by the Mail. The reporter who covered this latest piece doesn’t know Claire Ellicot except by name. I think the Sunday Mail were pleased to be able to get a more measured and thoughtful interview, and were very professional in how they went about getting it. It would have been better if the Ellicot piece never ran, but it is what it is.

 Innocente November 4, 2012 at 19:15

Ellen – sorry, there is no ‘reply’ link under either of your comments. No, I was not christened at St. Mary’s – I was Christened in my local Methodist Church as a young child, and I was confirmed into my local Church of England before I ever went to Duncroft.

 Ellen Coulson November 4, 2012 at 20:30

Thank you. Obviously not who I thought you were.

 Mewsical November 7, 2012 at 18:03

I have a sneaking suspicion that “Anne” is the person you thought Innocente was!

 Mewsical November 8, 2012 at 15:46

Isn’t Bebe’s middle name Anne, come to think of it?

 Mewsical November 4, 2012 at 20:35

Same problem I had with trying to respond to your answer about how you got into the flats during your visit. That makes sense, that one of the residents gave you the grand tour!

 Ellen Coulson November 4, 2012 at 19:09

And before they get deleted lets have them on record . I believe they are on USA time on Voy:

Date Posted: 15:12:42 08/09/12 Thu

Author: Rochelle louise (Happy)

Subject: Re: duncroft approved school staines

In reply to: carole allen ‘s message, “Re: duncroft approved school staines” on 14:46:27 04/23/08 Wed

>hi carol i was searching duncroft because my mother went there between 1974 – 1976 ,her name is deborah cogger her nickname was dee , she remembers all the names that u speak of also yourself ,do u have any memory of her??

Date Posted: 14:16:40 08/09/12 Thu

Author: Deb Cogger

Subject: Re: Duncroft approved school stains

Hello r

Everyone . I just found this site .!been digging around trying to find you lot to talk about this jimmy business ,I was at duncroft 19 74 -1976 my dorm was queen Anne , my best mate was Caroline budd , I remember so many of you ! Ann timms Carole Allen ,Jill merando .deirdre who swapped me a Georgous navy coat .jacquie rollo ,carol Bonnington ,, omg ,so many girls so many memories theo the minibus , Carole talbot letting the gong off in the middle of the night to frighten Anne o Neil resident drunk,! I would love to here from any one who remembers me , what about Julie Saunders ? Janet brown ,Tonia Townsend , Anne Lawson do you remember when we put on the show ,dancing to the trammps ? I sang solo amazing grace ! love deb xx

 Mewsical November 4, 2012 at 20:33

Deb, I believe the CLR site will be back up this coming week, so probably you’ll have better luck getting back together with your old mates there. But, is Rochelle Sheperd your daughter?

 Mewsical November 4, 2012 at 20:37

Oops, sorry! I thought that Cogger had posted over here! Could Anna just delete my comment, please? I didn’t realize that Ellen had reproduced the Voy posts! Duh.

 Rocky Raccoon (no relation) November 5, 2012 at 12:52

There was a Rochelle Shepherd who was interviewed for the Newsnight that appeared in the Panorama programme, at no point is it said what her connection was to Duncroft. She looked in her 40′s Debbie Cooger’s daughter?

Debbie had google and found a ‘sell your story’ website.

 Mewsical November 5, 2012 at 18:49

Well, that shows the proper integrity, doesn’t it? (Insert eye roll icon.)

 Ellen Coulson November 6, 2012 at 13:58

Yes read the story. She says “went to live at Duncroft Approved School for Girls in Surrey. It was a boarding school”!

Says it all!

 Mewsical November 7, 2012 at 16:11

By Cogger’s time it was a ‘community home,’ not an approved school, and as I’ve said many times, you can put lipstick on a pig, but it’s still a pig. The term ‘approved school’ was changed in 1969 by general mandate, but it didn’t change what the school was.

 Ellen Coulson November 4, 2012 at 18:50

ith reference to Rochelle Shepherd, I have just re-watched relevant part of Panorama programme – she did not say she was at Duncroft – what he reiterated was the girls did this, the girls did that – but no attempt was made to explain who or what she was – WHY?? Her mother is believed to be Debbie Cogger (again appearing in the Daily Mail) who said Savile abused her. In fact from postings on Voy Forum it would appear highly suspicious and would indicate that both of them concoted this story!

 Moor Larkin November 5, 2012 at 12:21

Interesting to see Freddie Starr working at proving Savile gulity.

It doesn’t seem to have occurred to Freddie that if HE is innocent, so was Jimmy, because the Duncroft allegations wrap Starr, Gadd, the BBC and Savile in the same abuse package.

 Mewsical November 6, 2012 at 17:17

Yes, that Rochelle Shepherd business is very odd. She’s obviously Cogger’s kid, so who cares what she has to say? Another lying loser. The more this goes on, lie upon lie upon lie, any small kernel of truth from these women will be treated with extreme suspicion by the authorities at the very least and probably dismissed in the future. Thanks to Bebe, Fiona, Rochelle, etc., for ruining it for others, let alone the extreme hostility that any questioning of their stories is greeted with, along with open threats against Margaret Jones on this blog, and veiled threats that have gone on on sites like Careleavers is enough to cause any thinking person grave doubts about the veracity of any of their tales. And now, here comes “Anne” with her tarradiddles and inaccuracies. I feel sorry for women like Innocente, Ex Duncroft, etc., who have been respectful and polite, but they have NO idea what has been going on this last year, fortunately for them! November 9, 2012 at 07:41

I can assure you they are not even related. The only common denominator is they both went to Duncroft. Debbie in mid 70′s Rochelle towards the latter part of the 70′s. I am not sure where the notion of them being mother & daughter came from. November 9, 2012 at 08:11

Just seen the post below from Voy. The author of the post was Rochelle Louise. I can now see where the confusion may have come from. Didn’t anyone think that Debbie Cogger could have a daughter called ROCHELLE. I stand by my previous post regarding Debbie Cogger and Rochelle Shepherd NOT being mother & daughter.

 Rocky Raccoon (no relation) November 9, 2012 at 10:24

I guess you know Rochelle Shepherd and that’s how you know she was at Duncroft in 1979.

Panorama never stated what was Rochelle Shepherd’s connection with Duncroft, she didn’t seem to indicate she had been or had seen abuse, just that she accepted there had been abuse.

 Mewsical November 9, 2012 at 20:03

Rochelle would be about 47. Another former Duncroft woman, who was there in 1979 also, has said that she saw Savile at the school at the time, he didn’t come around much, and she heard no bad reports of him at any time from any of the girls.

 Wendi November 4, 2012 at 17:21

I read that blog article earlier and thought it a fair and reasonable take on the subject!

 Mewsical November 4, 2012 at 16:30

Try responding to the second interview Matthew.

 Matthew Smith November 4, 2012 at 10:09

Posted my response to this and to the ‘interview’ with Jones here: Jimmy Savile at Duncroft: Who to Believe?

 Moor Larkin November 4, 2012 at 18:09

@ matthew smith

Very interesting in relation to the way the case against Savile seems to be proven with almost zero factual substantiation. Left a reply there as this issue is not necessarily pertinent to Annaraccoon’s blog purpose.

@everyone else

I think the ‘friendliness’ of the Mail to Miss Jones is testament to the success of Annaracoon’s work. I hope that when I am 91 I have friends like the raccoon lady and her raccoonettes, especially Sally, whose blog made me know it was safe to take this one seriously. In the blogosphere we all need corroboration as well as collaboration sometimes.

 Mewsical November 4, 2012 at 19:17

Thank you, Moor. I was very glad to find Anna also at work to try and get at the truth. Complete coincidence that both she and I started blogging within a day or so of each other.

The Mail has been suspicious about the veracity of some of the accusers since the discovery of the forged letter, and in person interviews they conducted. That doesn’t include the dubious Ellicot, who first brought us Bebe Roberts and her pack of lies, and then hustles her bustle down to Wales to intrude on Miss Jones. Fortunately, Miss Jones agreed to grant today’s interview after a professional series of requests from the Sunday Mail, and so there it is.

I was interested in Matthew’s response to the first interview, so I hope he didn’t take it wrong when I asked for his opinion on the second interview.

 Bill Sticker November 4, 2012 at 07:01

Anna, with regard to the bad behaviour of your visitors from the lamestream. John Bunyan had them nailed way back in 1678:

“This done and after these things had been somewhat digested by Christiana and her company, the Interpreter takes them apart again, and has them first into a Room where was a Man that could look no way but downwards, with a Muck – rake in his hand. There stood also one over his head with a Celestial Crown in his hand, and proffered him that Crown for his Muck-rake; but the man did neither look up, nor regard, but raked to himself the straws, the small sticks and dust of the floor.”

It seems little changes.

BTW: Price of popcorn futures is way up. Hope you’re enjoying Paris.

 Jonathan Mason November 4, 2012 at 01:51

Here is the follow up interview with Margaret Jones in the Daily Mail. Here she is a bit less defensive and comes across as very genuine (in my opinion). She admits to making mistakes in giving Savile access, but reminds us that he was an OBE and that she had no idea of any kind of suspicions about him.

Given that she would have been born about 1921, that would make her a little older than my mother and while women of that generation weren’t all innocents and lived through World War II as young adults, they were still of a pre-pill (and of course pre-Internet) era and probably had little idea how men like Savile (a man of her generation) might behave.–fell-love–I-wonder-legal-20-wives-Saviles-comment-scandal-school-visitors-book-sickening-clue-abuse.html

 Mewsical November 4, 2012 at 00:40

A much better version from the Mail, than some doorstepping creature.–fell-love–I-wonder-legal-20-wives-Saviles-comment-scandal-school-visitors-book-sickening-clue-abuse.html

 Lisa November 10, 2012 at 11:54

Mwesical I tink you just proved my point with your reply,

 Lisa November 10, 2012 at 11:56

And three abuse victims at duncroft, you really have no idea do you

 Lisa November 10, 2012 at 12:13

Oh and as to the forged letter, yes she was silly to do that but unlike you i have an original so please do not tell me that there was no investigation

 Ellen Coulson November 10, 2012 at 15:33

Its a wonder you all didn’t try to sue for breach of contract.

 Mewsical November 10, 2012 at 16:44

Silly??? And, no you don’t have an original, so stop it, all of you. Nobody that I know of believes any of it, Lisa. You’re on a slippery slope, so I’d put the brakes on and step out of the car while you still can. And what Ellen said.

 Tracie November 10, 2012 at 17:23

Mewsical. Why do you feel so strongly that Lisa hasnt got a copy of the letter from the police. Just because one woman strangly forged a letter ( for whatever reason) oesnt mean to say that the investigation didn’t take place. Certainly by forging the letter she didnt help the case but please dont tar all the other people involved in the investigation with the same brush

 Rocky Raccoon (no relation) November 10, 2012 at 17:33


If she knew others had a letter why didn’t she just borrow one as proof?

I was reading on Digital Spy that Fiona kept a photo album in which there were photos of her and Jimmy Savile laughing and joking together. Why would anyone keep photos all these years of the person who had asked them to stick their finger up his anus and had sexually abused them?

 Tracie November 10, 2012 at 17:38

Rocky the investigation did not just involve complaints from Duncroft so doubtful that she would have known the other people involved. I have no idea why she forged a letter and forged it so badly at that or her reasons for keeping photos of Savile or even allowing herself to be filmed, one persons actions does not mean the police investigation didn’t happen .

 Mewsical November 10, 2012 at 18:07

Tracie said: “Rocky the investigation did not just involve complaints from Duncroft so doubtful that she would have known the other people involved. I have no idea why she forged a letter and forged it so badly at that or her reasons for keeping photos of Savile or even allowing herself to be filmed, one persons actions does not mean the police investigation didn’t happen.”

Since when did it involve anyone else, Tracie? Please provide evidence other than, “I heard,” “Someone told me,” etc. The Duncroft group were hopping up and down about this investigation for quite some time, as if just one woman was involved and she was ex-Duncroft. The same one who dispersed emails to ex-Duncroft women saying “this is our last chance.”? The same one who came over here and threatened Margaret Jones? The same one who appeared on television, surrounded by forged diplomas? The same one who claims to have a doctorate? The same one who keeps photos of themselves with Jimmy Savile (not the first time I’ve heard this)? Shall I go on?

Rocky said: “If she knew others had a letter why didn’t she just borrow one as proof? I was reading on Digital Spy that Fiona kept a photo album in which there were photos of her and Jimmy Savile laughing and joking together. Why would anyone keep photos all these years of the person who had asked them to stick their finger up his anus and had sexually abused them?”

Precisely. This sort of stuff is why Margaret Jones felt she should have spoken with Meirion before he launched into Duncroft as part of the Newnight investigation.

 Tracie November 10, 2012 at 18:14

Mewsical the investigation involved another 14 year old who had no contact with duncroft herself but itvwas bought to light during the duncroft complaint. Her abuse did not take place at duncroft . It was made very clear in news reports that there were two historic complaints made to the surrey police . I have seen the letter from the cps that she recieved and it stated that no further investigation due to lack of evidence. Child abuse is so difficult as by its very nature there are no witnesses.

 Rocky Raccoon (no relation) November 10, 2012 at 18:52

Hello Tracie,

If you have the letter sent in 2007?

Does it state the reason the case against Jimmy Savile was dropped was because of his age and health?

 Tracie November 10, 2012 at 18:54

Rocky, no it doesn’t say anything about his health , it says lack of evidence

 Rocky Raccoon (no relation) November 10, 2012 at 20:36

Tracie thank you for the reply,

I’m a wee bit confused, there were reports of a complaint by one individual to Surrey police in 2007 and as a consequence 22 former residents of the girls’ school and the children’s charity Barnado’s were spoken to by the police but not staff.

Then in 2009 Sussex police recieved a complaint of an assault by Savile in the 1970′s. As a result Surrey police passed details of three alleged victims to the CPS bringing the total to 4 but the CPS said that none of the alleged victims would support a prosecution. It was reported by The Guardian that Savile was interviewed by Surrey police in October 2009.

‘In a statement, the CPS said: “A file was submitted by Surrey police to the Crown Prosecution Service in 2009 after a complaint was made by a woman who said she had witnessed an indecent assault by Jimmy Savile in the 1970s. Police conducted further enquiries and as a result the file which was submitted to the CPS also referenced three further potential offences involving Jimmy Savile.

“The original allegation was that Savile had indecently assaulted a girl under 16 at Duncroft children’s home in the late 1970s. The three further potential offences were an alleged indecent assault on a girl under 16 at Stoke Mandeville hospital in or around 1973; an alleged incitement of a girl under 16 to engage in a sexual act at Duncroft children’s home in the late 1970s; and an alleged indecent assault on an adult in Sussex in 1970.’

 Rocky Raccoon (no relation) November 10, 2012 at 20:54

Take Two:

Tracie, sorry forgot to ask what is the date on the letter you have seen?


Re Fiona’s fake letter something that concerns me is that it was said to have been signed by Surrey woman police officer Angela Sullivan if you search that name a newspaper report of a woman with that name appears. This Angela Sullivan, aged 36 was on trial for alledgedly having sex with a 12 year old boy, coincidence or sick joke?

“Single mother had sex with boy, 12, almost 200 times… and marked each encounter with a star in her sordid diary.”

 Mewsical November 3, 2012 at 23:26

To Innocente – a tiny church down the lane? St. Mary’s? Not ‘ardly!,_Staines ; also, interested in your visit to ‘the house.’ The recent Panorama episode clearly shows a security phone mounted on the exterior gates. Don’t think the residents of these pretty expensive flats want a bunch of ‘old girls’ from Duncroft’s former life wandering around the grounds gawking. Did someone invite you to come in, or …?

 Eyeball November 5, 2012 at 22:41

You sound doubtful that innocente was really at Duncroft this summer ( July 21st) just to confirm this, I was the other party she referred to. Photos supplied if you wish!

I also have no axe to grind, just backing up a good friend!

 Mewsical November 6, 2012 at 17:04

Eyeball, we’ve experienced so many fake personalities in the last year since Savile died and the Newsnight piece did the same, that for the sake of accuracy we need to make sure that some of the new posters over here are not part of the coven who have been mostly lying to the media to get themselves some money and notoriety. The more they do that, the worse they look. Thanks for backing Innocente up, sure she appreciates it!

 Lisa November 9, 2012 at 23:23

Mewiscal do you know for certain that money is the reason that they have come forward now. I dont think money was the reason when the police were investigating in 2007 , in fact . i know for certain that money was not even on the agenda then and it certainly wouldnt be now. I find some of your comment towards these women cruel and unjust. There is no way that you can know what these people went through 10 years after you left the school. Any abuse victim reading your comments would certainly think long and hard before being brave enough to come forward knowing that this is the kind of response they can expect. Do you honestly think that ALL the Duncroft victims agreed to be in the media. I think if anything you have put many abuse victims back into the shadows and used Anna’s ( brilliantly written) blog to force your views of Duncroft ans Ms Jones onto everyone and tried to discredit anyone that disagreed with you. I thinki am even ashamed to say that I went to the same school as you

 Mewsical November 9, 2012 at 23:48

There is a forged letter in existence, in the hands of the press, that puts the lie to any investigation, on letterhead with a crest that has not been in use by the Surrey police for a long time, and says that the date of the complaint was 2006. That was the first big problem with the truthfulness of the Duncroft women. Money – hm, let’s see. Kari/Keri/Karen has a publishing deal and was selling her book beforehand. If ALL (and how many are actually proven true at this point) the Duncroft women didn’t want to speak to the media then all they had to do was say ‘no thanks.’ Dee Cogger just ran at the “sell your story” site. Sell implies money to me. I am unsure about Bebe Roberts’ reasons for lying the way she did, because the Mail obviously didn’t give her any money. She at one time claimed to be at Duncroft for seven years, which wasn’t legally possible, and that she used to see Savile coming to the school and hid by the tennis courts – none of us know anything about any tennis courts. Do you?

There appear to be perhaps three Duncroft victims, and you should probably be aware that most of the 70s women who were there at the time that Savile was visiting do not believe Kari’s story either – I have all this in writing from those concerned. If you are ashamed to say you went to the same school as me, you didn’t. We weren’t candidates for padded cells. In the 70s, it appears there were girls there who were disturbed enough to warrant such a thing. Miss Jones said in her second Mail interview that she wishes that Meirion had contacted her when he first thought to do the Newsnight segment, as she wanted him to be aware that SOME of the girls were quite seriously mentally disturbed. Not emotionally disturbed. Mentally. Big difference.

We’ve pretty much shot down the “a girl died at Duncroft after being injected with Largactyl and put in a padded cell,” story, and all we are left with is a story about a girl who ran away and died of a heroin overdose. Sad of course, but nothing to do with Duncroft, who did not break a window in the small common room (used to be the Senior Common Room) and push them outside.

All the insults in the world are very dull and repetitive, btw. I know you guys have had your playpen at CLR suspended for another three months at least, because of this ongoing nonsense. Good thing, too. I hope David never opens it again, personally. You can all go off and chat with each other in private, but I’m sure that’s not NEARLY as much fun as hair-pulling on a public forum, and proving Margaret Jones right again.

 Lisa November 3, 2012 at 15:31

Can i just point out that Duncroft in the 1970 s was a Community school , not an approved school and very different from the Duncroft of the 60s that has been portrayed. Most of the girls were placed there under a care order (not for any criminal activity) coming from dysfunctional families and removed from thier homes under a place of safety order. Margaret Jones was possibly the worst person to be left in charge of vunerable teenagers and seemed to take pleasure in making the girls feel very inferior especially in group meetings, not the ideal way to raise a girls confidence.

 Mewsical November 3, 2012 at 16:22

Lisa, I don’t know who you are, but I would be very cautious about what you put in writing at the moment. There are eyes on this blog right now. And, to be accurate, the term ‘approved school’ was dropped in or around 1969 on a general basis, but it did not change what the school was set up to do. I wasn’t there for any ‘criminal activity.’ None of the girls were.

 Lisa November 3, 2012 at 16:57

Mewsical, why should i be cautious about what i have written, its my opinion , your opinion of Margaret Jones is obviously very different and you are entitled to that. Maybe with the school changing so much within a decade she wasnt as devoted in the 70s as she was in the 60s . Just my opinion.

 Mewsical November 3, 2012 at 17:30

Last sentence duly noted.

 Ellen Coulson November 4, 2012 at 18:46

. Most of the girls were placed there under a care order (not for any criminal activity – I am assuming this sentence was meant to refer to the girls who were resident in the 60s because by the 70s there were a lot of criminals/drug offenders at Duncroft which is why the local authority had the ICU constructed – it was not needed in my time

 Eyeball November 6, 2012 at 21:08

That’s my opinion of Miss Jones too, Lisa. She seemed distant and disinterested in all but a couple of girls when I was there in the very early 70 s. I think she said a few sentences to me in all the time I was there. And, yes no one was there for any criminal activity, being ‘ out of parental control’ seemed to be the most common reason, a couple of girls were there for bunking off school, and a couple who should never have been there at all, they needed professional help, but never got it. I had family problems, but was never given ANY help whatsoever. The psychiatrist I saw was a sandwich short of a picnic, and the rest of the staff were like rejects from a St trinians film. I’ve had a good life despite that place, not because of it! On a positive note, I made a life long friend there (innocente) she was my saviour at Duncroft, we arrived within a day of each other, a little bit if sanity in a mental world!

 Mewsical November 8, 2012 at 15:42

I’ve asked a couple of times about these ‘groups’ that MJ held at Duncroft, and have gotten nothing but answers that don’t address the question I asked. So, let’s see if Eyeball or Innocente could answer. Eyeball notes that she had very little contact with MJ during her time there, so does that mean that there weren’t any ‘groups’ during their time there?

 Ex Duncroft November 3, 2012 at 22:03

Can I just confirm all that you have said Lisa? Not least the viciousness of those group meetings that really were no more than officially sanctioned bullying.

I have seen the mail article, and while I believe she told the truth, almost word for word as I would tell it, the callous pretentiousness of Maggie Jones makes chilling reading all these years on….WHAT WAS ANYBODY THINKING to give her near life and death power over vulnerable teenagers?

What could she teach but snobbery, bigoty, malice and spite (which would stand them in good stead while they drew their plans to milk the media for attation and the BBC for compensation)? There was no kindness, humour or humanity the good things you can learn to make life worth while, at Duncroft at all

 Lisa November 4, 2012 at 22:55

Ellen I really do not understand this constant battle that you seem to have going on many sites between the 60s and the 70s girls. So uneccessary , so nothing further to say on the subject. Anna while I may not agreed with the contents of your blog, i appreciate good writing and hope you are well rested after your weekend away

 Mewsical November 5, 2012 at 00:05

Can you shed more light on these ‘groups’? We didn’t have those in the 60s. What was the purpose?

 Anne November 6, 2012 at 05:05

Mewsical, you ask about groups. You and your counterparts took over all sites that had been posted on by any ex pupil who did not attend Duncroft in the same decade as you. You have stated that you “tollerated” me and others just as long as we had information for you. I have given my information to the Police who are aware of all of the contacts you have made with the press, claiming it was to protect anothers friend/relatives reputation. I have no wish to revisit the past. I and no one that I know of have claimed any compensation. I do not have a book to sell. You complained about copyright of a photograph. You now print that photograph and you call others hypocrites with secret agendas. You demanded to know information about the 1970′s. I gave you limited information as I believed you then. I and several others now post in a group, you have tried to infiltrate this group but you are not wanted. Yours is not the only view of Duncroft and I believe that it did change from the photographs that I have seen, over the decade since you left. Please leave me and others to remember the abuse and strict regime that we endured. You posted that Maggie Jones said that you should not have been at Duncroft and yet you were recalled? We may have been “delinquents” but you state that it was a mistake that you were sent to Duncroft. You have hounded others who have disagreed with your views and I am no longer interested in your attempts to show Duncroft as anything that it was. A locked place for ‘emotionally disturbed’ girls. many of which now have all of their care notes. Unlike yourself I need to work and I have a family who has supported me. You are bitter and twisted towards anyone who remembers things differently to yourself. I would like to express appreciation for Suzannes writing ability here even if I do not agree with all of the content as you so clearly do.

 Lisa November 6, 2012 at 11:01

Well said anne, long time coming Mewsical and i have to agree, you are not a debater , you are an outright bully and thats the reason that you keep being banned from each site you go on

 Rocky Raccoon (no relation) November 6, 2012 at 12:53

Hello Anne,

Don’t know if you took part in either of the television programmes but you may be able answer some things that have puzzled me.

The reported fake letter shown to The Mail by ‘Fiona’ seems bizarre, did anyone else get one?

There was a Rochelle Shepherd who was interviewed by Newsnight but it’s never said what her connection with Duncroft was, would know if she is the daughter of Debbie Cogger because at the moment she’s a mystery women and Panorama gave no indication how she is involved.

I understand the anger towards BeBe Roberts but I don’t undertand the very bitter dispute that appears to have been going on between others for more than a year and the extreme anger from both sides.

 Ellen Coulson November 6, 2012 at 13:45

Anne – please get things in the right perspective – we were attacked by you and your friends because we said that there was no abuse at Duncroft in the 60s when we were there – firstly on Friends Reunited, then Facebook and Careleavers. Bebe Roberts has been proven to be a liar which negates the claim of abuse in the 60s but we have been tendered no apologies from any of you. 10 of you are members of the Duncroft site on Careleavers headed by Fiona/Melling or whatever she is at present calling herself. Unfortunately since 3 of you have lied to the press it is more and more unlikely that any of you will be believed.

 Mewsical November 6, 2012 at 15:47

Actually, I was asking about ‘groups’ at Duncroft – someone mentioned those and I wanted to hear from them, not you, whoever you are. Trust some negative nelly to misunderstand that. Yes, it was a mistake that I was there and I was only recalled because my mother was beginning to deteriorate mentally and emotionally. Of course, if you knew me, which you don’t, you would also know that I lived partly at Duncroft and partly at home for over a year. I have no IDEA what you are talking about vis a vis the press. I have not tried to ‘infiltrate’ this group, I imagine the group on CLR. Not interested in being involved with Fiona/Sue Melling thank you.

I must say that finally revealing her dual identity was one of the best moments of this year! And then she comes over to this site and attempts to threaten Margaret Jones. I have my file, so? “Unlike yourself I need to work,” what exactly does that mean? I’ve worked all my adult life and still do. Anyway folks, this is exactly what has been going on on the various forums for over a year now. At this point, there’s nothing much more to say about Duncroft is there? Margaret Jones has given two interviews, and based on this sort of nonsense, you would have to admit she might be more than right about the mental state of some of the girls under her supervision in the 70s.

 Mewsical November 6, 2012 at 19:23

Oh, I remember that ‘tolerated’ thing. I’ve still got that message from you, Fiona.

 Mewsical November 7, 2012 at 16:07

Just to keep the record straight, I am not banned from anywhere – not Friends Reunited (where Fiona is banned, just fyi, for having numerous online identities, which is against their policies), Careleavers, or any other public site.

The coven had a FB page, administered by said coven, and I was not welcome there, but who cares? Fiona/Susan Melling had her own page at FB until very recently, when it was suddenly closed down, but I wasn’t banned from there. In fact, Fiona and I were getting on okay, but when, by one of those coincidences, I discovered that she had been lying about who she was. In a way, it was quite funny how we found out, but don’t want to bore other posters/readers with that.

The coven now has their own group over at CLR, which is NOT the group I was referring to, btw, and I have not even attempted to join it because Bebe The Liar is a member, as well as Fiona, who stops at nothing to inflict her nastiness, up to and including threats over here against Margaret Jones.

What I asked, btw, was more information about these ‘groups’ that Margaret Jones held at Duncroft, which we didn’t have in the 60s. I asked what was the purpose of the groups, etc., but because the agenda of some of you is so vicious, you can’t even read or comprehend a simple question, and turn it into your own personal hate-fest.

 Ex Duncroft November 7, 2012 at 16:56

Once again Lisa, I can only confirm what you have just said…and thank heavens you said it in clear and simple words.

 Mewsical November 9, 2012 at 21:41

” I have given my information to the Police who are aware of all of the contacts you have made with the press, claiming it was to protect anothers friend/relatives reputation.”

Could you please supply me with the name of the police officers you spoke with, as I would like to contact them myself. If you are wasting their time with false and misleading information, I would like to disabuse them of your rubbish. And what members of the press are you referring to? I think you’re being yanked, dear.

“You have stated that you “tollerated” me and others just as long as we had information for you. ”

I got a message from “Sue Melling” that she had received a message from someone else about this. What information do you think I was seeking exactly and what was I going to do with it? I wasn’t ‘tolerating’ anyone – that’s not the way I play. I either like you or I don’t. When I don’t, I don’t bother with you. When I found out that “Sue Melling” was in fact Fiona, then that was that for me. Same with the dreaded Bebe Roberts. I don’t bother with them any longer, nor any of their coven. Btw, it was “Sue Melling” who came up with the phrase “emotionally disturbed girls.” You keep banging on with that phrase as if you are proud of it.

 Elena ‘andcart November 3, 2012 at 15:03

Just what does Mewsical think she is up to? Schizophrenic seems to be in ascendence. Frightfully sorry if I have in some way misconstrued.

 Mewsical November 3, 2012 at 16:18

Anna, thank you for doing that. I think Fiona is going to have a very unpleasant surprise in a short while.

 Elena ‘andcart November 3, 2012 at 19:00

You, Mrs, are the fly in the ointment. And I can see that if no one else can. But A fly is only ever a fly.

At the moment you are doing absolutely nothing to help Miss Jones, who probably doesn’t need your help anyway, but then I doubt that she ever did.

I am really sorry that I think so badly of you. But how could you ever have believed that awful article in The Mail? How could you believe that Miss Jones would be so stupid as to say such things? How could you so despise someone who tried to help you?

 Mewsical November 4, 2012 at 16:26

I know a great deal more about what’s going on right now, but I have no intention of discussing it here. Fortunately, Miss Jones is aware of who her friends are, and I got a phone call yesterday, after the Myers interview had completed. I don’t care what you think of me, I care what Miss Jones thinks and about her welfare at this time. We got that sorted, after threats over here. Be aware that very hostile people are over here watching this blog, and your thoughtless remarks and baseless accusations only make things worse.

 Retired probation officer November 3, 2012 at 14:57

Sorry should have said ‘great disorder of any kind’

 Retired probation officer November 3, 2012 at 14:55

I did a short placement at Duncroft in the 70s partly because it had a good reputation. I have searched my memory but all I can remember is a relatively well run, orderly place. Young women smoked but they all did in those days in residential care. I cannot remember any celebrity visitors or great disorder or any kind just a calm atmosphere and dedicated staff. Most young women is those places tended to be quite angry and volatile but usually because of early abuse, family problems. I deplore the interviewing of a 91 year old or the posting of her address on this site or anywhere else.

 Schizophrenic November 3, 2012 at 14:24

Wonderful how you removed the address. I ressent your implications btw. If you do not have the courage to print it I shall ensure others are aware of it. Why should many old pupils be harrassed and yet this “91 yr old woman” is entitled to her privacy. She was the person who stated that she was “pawed” by Mr Savile and I wonder…did she report it?

Anna answers: Keep threatening Schizophrenic – I now have wi-fi acess again and have stopepd travelling in order to make a statement to the police. I shall have no hesitation whatsoever in handing your IP address to the police.

 Frankie November 3, 2012 at 19:29

@Schizophrenic: How is it that 99.9% of the contributors to this blog wish our host well and have realised that she is far from well… and then there is you, completely at odds with everyone. If the ex pupils of Dunscroft find themselves in the media spotlight then they only have some of their number to blame. Added to which, it is fairly self-evident that the account provided by some of those making allegations do not stand up to scrutiny. The media may sense a feeding frenzy here, such is their nature. Exposing an elderly lady to the same frenzy is beyond the pale.

Anna has ‘stuck her head above the parapet’ by making her disclosures. Very clearly, she is not at her best. If you have no sense of fellow feeling for another human being I suggest you try another hobby like hang gliding – over Afghanistan, rather than coming here and attempting to upset everyone else – most of us only have our host’s best interests at heart.


 Innocente November 3, 2012 at 13:23

Mewsical, I’m genuinely intrigued! May I please be so bold as to ask which members of staff, specifically, ever offered you a cigarette from their own pack? I ask because there really wasn’t much between your stay and mine, just a couple of years. During the 18 months that I was a pupil at both Duncroft School and Norman Lodge, there was absolutely never any question that the staff would give us anything – cigarettes, wages, pocket money, a nip from the sherry bottle, nothing. I never in all my time there saw Margaret Jones, Bridie Keenan, Anne O’Niall or any other staff member hand over a cigarette to any of the girls. Theo didn’t smoke, but I suspect if she had, she may have been inclined to do so, but we’ll never know now. The only person who ever slipped us a sly smoke was the wonderful Reverend Sam, one of the truly kindest and most Christian men I ever had the privilege of meeting, and I was a regular in his Church. Margaret Jones makes the comment: ‘And you didn’t go to an approved school unless you were pretty bad. I had to cope with that.’ Hopefully, we can all now admit that we weren’t at Bedales, and move on.

 Mewsical November 3, 2012 at 16:59

I think it was Mrs. O, on a couple of occasions, when I was working with her in the laundry. Generally they didn’t do that in full view of the other girls. Btw, it’s Anne O’Neill. Yes, Sam sounds like he was a riot. I sang in the choir, but didn’t have much contact with him, just the choirmaster. Do you remember his name, btw?

 Innocente November 3, 2012 at 17:56

Choirmaster? LOL – there was no choirmaster there in 1971 – it was a tiny Church down the lane. I also sang in the choir, as did at least one other of my contemporaries – our Choirmaster was Sam the vicar. We once sang at one of his weddings, and very beautiful it was too. Mrs O? Goodness, times really had changed then – she was just a sour old troll when I knew her. I feel sad for her now, she was clearly deeply unhappy herself. A friend and I were back at Duncroft this July, and having visited the house, we walked down the lane to the Church, stopping for light refreshments at The Bells while we were about it. We had hoped to go into the Church and find some mention of Sam. Sadly, the doors were locked, except a very small door at the rear or the church, which was apparently currently hosting an AA meeting.

 Mewsical November 3, 2012 at 19:54

Not sure how you could visit the ‘house,’ as it has security gates and one of the residents would have to admit you. The church of which Sam was the vicar was St. Mary’s wasn’t it? Not exactly a tiny church.,_Staines

 Ellen Coulson November 4, 2012 at 14:17

Were you christened at St Marys Innocente. I didn’t smoke whilst I was at Duncroft but Margaret Jones once gave me a glass of vodka but I may have been in Norman Lodge then.

 Innocente November 4, 2012 at 16:06

If you go to Duncroft Mansion via Moor Lane, you can park your car in a small car park, behind the new town houses, built where the education block and hostel stood. There is an archway there, I had been through it a few years before when I went there with my husband. The archway leads directly on to the lawn, and you are then free to wander – until, of course, you get stopped by one of the residents. The gates are on the other side of the lawn, in Vicarage Road. My friend and I were very lucky indeed. No. 15 Duncroft Manor was built where Mrs. Voysey’s kitchen once stood, and is the house furthest from what was the school itself. We were approached by No. 15′s owner. Her name is Dee, she is a little older than I am, and she gave up around an hour of her time to walk around the exterior of the house. She told us all about the renovation work, and how the house is now, and we told her about the layout of the house as it was in the ’70s. Before we left, she let us into the hallway, where my friend and I posed for photographs on the hallowed staircase, photos which Dee very kindly took herself. We then went to the top of the staircase for a couple more, and she also took photos of us at Queen Anne end of the house. Finally, she invited us in to her home, and lent me the Nicholas King brochure given to all the Duncroft residents, Nicholas King being the developer, and I assume, vendor. She also lent me a colour photo of the house while it was undergoing renovation – I seem to have seen that online already. I have since returned both the brochure and the photograph to her, and thanked her again for her kindness. She, in turn, informs me that she, along with the other residents, were tired of having the press at the gates. This is not an attack on anything that Anna has had to say. This is not an attack on Miss Jones. It is not an attack on Duncroft. It is not an attack on you either. It is simply an account of one of my many returns to Duncroft School, which, despite its very nature, I still remember with some affection. When I first found this blog I assumed it was a forum for objective debate. However, it appears to be becoming increasingly subjective. Pretty much anything that is posted here is met with suspicion. Why is that? I have already pointed out that I have nothing to gain from rubbishing anyone’s claims – I have never spoken to the press, I do not wish to speak to the press. I have no wish to file a compensation claim, and am thankful that that’s the case. I have no book to promote. But I was a Duncroft girl, and because I was there, I have a natural interest in what is happening now. That does not mean I am trying, in any way, to undermine anyone else’s accounts here.

 Ellen Coulson November 4, 2012 at 18:41

I note that you do not say whether or not you were christened at St Mary’s.

 Ex Duncroft November 7, 2012 at 17:33

…on a gentler note, those few of us (only 4 or 5) on punishment, who had no leave (I had absconded), in Summer 1972 (maybe August Bank Holiday?) were brought, one fine afternoon to Ann O’Neill’s house where, for some reason (perhaps she couldn’t find the teapot?) a bottle of Martini was produced…it was naughty, but I will always love Ann O’Neill for that afternoon…it is one of the few good warm memorries I have of childhood and youth…

Sitting in a sunny living room, chatting, giggling and getting a tiny bit tipsy.

So, I am very much afraid, that, on at least one occasion, the bottle most definately did come out. Sometimes, in some circumstances, on some days, sticking to the rules does not work half as well as ignoring them.

 Mewsical November 7, 2012 at 22:30

Everyone is so unkind about Ann O’Neill, I’m glad you found something kind to say about her. I never had much to do with her, except in passing. And I couldn’t agree more about your last thoughts. Might have been a little less running away if there had been more latitude.

 Schizophrenic November 3, 2012 at 12:41

oops sorry Sally Stevens AKA Mewsical That should read. No email given here or telephone number but if you persist they will be given to ALL of the UK press.

 john2g November 3, 2012 at 14:45

What a thoroughly nasty person you are Schizophrenic!

 Mewsical November 3, 2012 at 15:00

Persist in what? And who now cares where MJ lives? The Mail has the story. If YOU persist, I will contact the authorities and provide them with YOUR information for making internet threats against MJ. I promise you.

 Mewsical November 3, 2012 at 15:39

I’m not trying to conceal my identity, Fiona. That’s the log-in that goes with the email account I’m using. Unlike yourself, I have nothing to hide.

 Schizophrenic November 3, 2012 at 12:38

Enough of this. I am an individual and If Miss Margaret Jones states no one has her address then I wonder what this is….

Miss Margaret Jones (Headmistress of Duncroft School)

x xxxxx xxxxx

xxxxxx xxxxxx

xxxxx xxxxxx

Sorry did I read that NO ONE apart from her family and a certain few people had her address…well here it is. LOL

Edited by Anna (on her travels!)to add:This poster claims to be Susan Melling, may also be Fiona whatsit-Double-Barrelled, but whoever she/he is, I’m not having the name of a 91 year old woman living alone posted on here in order that she can be hassled. Utterly reprehensible.

Right, back to enjoying my break and out of this internet cafe!

 Mewsical November 3, 2012 at 14:56

Oh that’s Fiona all right. There is no Susan Melling. They are one and the same person. Or is that two and the same person?

 Mewsical November 3, 2012 at 14:58

I love how these fools just give themselves away. And then are angered when MJ calls them exactly what they are.

 Jonathan Mason November 3, 2012 at 11:06

Also The Guardian carries the story with a more objective headline, however this is just a rehash of the Daily Mail story and does not contain any original reporting.

 Anna November 3, 2012 at 10:30

One of your silent readers. Thank you for telling another side of this story. I have read most of your blog now and on the whole agree with most of your opinions (hills borough I think you missed the point on) but I applaud your courage to speak out and defend your right to do so.

Hoping you have a wonderful anniversary break.

Well done and keep doing what you’re doing.

 Richard de Lacy November 3, 2012 at 10:26

I would like to thank Ms Raccoon for an outstanding blog and wish her well at what must be a very difficult time; I’d also like to thank the others on here for their informative and entertaining comments.

I am no-one important – just someone who occasionally rants against bent journalism, and I would not miss the BBC one bit if this Savile episode led to the organisation’s downfall, but I admit that the story described above supports the decision to axe the Newsnight feature, and it certainly seems like a 91-year-old lady is having her name dragged through the mud in an appalling and cowardly fashion.

Just two things bother me – “Miss Jones on the record” I do not believe the Daily Mail quotes from Miss Jones. I will apologise on here if it turns out her words were quoted accurately and in full, but I think we should be very sceptical until the lady confirms this.

Secondly, whilst it is good to have dissenting voices in the comments section, I have to ask why some of them are anonymous, in particular the regular male contributor. I can fully understand why these girls from unfortunate backgrounds – now ladies, of course – would wish to remain anonymous later in life while making some point about this subject, especially now we have a full-on media feeding frenzy, but why would any male keep his identity hidden?

Anyway, thank you once again, Ms Raccoon, for your courage and tenacity, and I hope you turn pages one and two of this blog into a book – it is like John Buchan at his best.

 Mewsical November 3, 2012 at 14:55

Having spent three years in MJ’s company, this sounds like her. Besides the reporter (Claire Ellicot I assume) obviously taking notes, as you can see in the photo, she also armed herself with a tape recorder which MJ spotted shortly after Claire was invited into the house, and was then invited out of the house.

 Richard de Lacy November 4, 2012 at 02:43

Thank you, Mewsical

My suspicions were aroused by the lack of a clear denial about the two claims in the article that Savile committed crimes at the school in the period 1971-73, while this blog, if I recall, says Savile’s first visit to the school was in 1974. Having read the article again, however, I realise that it is not clear whether those specific claims were put to Margaret Jones.

 Mewsical November 4, 2012 at 16:59

In the second interview, she provides proof – irrefutable, in Savile’s own hand.

 Richard de Lacy November 5, 2012 at 09:41

She certainly has. Thank you, Mewsical, and it seems I owe the Daily Mail an apology – at least they’ve published the guest book entry, even though it pretty much refutes many of the paper’s more lurid claims.

 Wendi November 5, 2012 at 20:47

It’s quite possible that the ‘male’ contributor is in fact ‘female’!

 Elena ‘andcart November 3, 2012 at 08:46

I am taking that Daily Mail Interview with Miss Jones with a large bucket of Rock Salt for the time being. It doesn’t sound very plausible to me. Miss Jones might be old but I doubt she is a fool.

 Jonathan Mason November 3, 2012 at 14:45

I don’t get it. Which of her reported remarks come across as foolish?

She says:

1. A lot of the girls were willing to exchange sex for cigarettes or treats. (This is actually confirmed by Karin Ward’s book in which she agrees to give Savile a blow job in exchange for a visit to the TV studios.)

2. Delinquent types frequently have a knack of telling people what they want to hear. Having had some years of experience working with juveniles (both male and female), sex offenders (all male) and prisoners (all male), I would say that this is a very well known phenomenon, and anyone who works in that kind of environment will be well aware of it.

3. The former pupils who are now making claims via TV and print media are looking for money from the Savile estate. This seems entirely plausible.

4. The girls did not report sexual molestation by Savile to Duncroft staff at the time. This is disputed in one case, but in the case of Karin Ward it seems to be true, as per her book.

5. Placing a girl in isolation could only be done on the say-so of the psychiatrist. Based on my personal experience of working in mental health in the UK at that time, I would say this was probably accurate (although I have no personal experience of approved schools). A person in seclusion would have to be either under continuous observation, or at the least observed at regular intervals and paper records would be kept.

6. She didn’t care for Savile, but had no idea he was a pervert.

7. She doesn’t remember why he stayed overnight, but he was not in a room close to where the girls slept. She thinks he asked to stay overnight because he had appointments in the area the next day. Since Savile’s main residence was in Leeds and Duncroft was located in Staines, just outside West London where BBC TV studios were located, this seems reasonably plausible.

8. She allowed a group of girls to go out for a ride on two occasions in Savile’s Rolls Royce. At the time she had no suspicions of Savile and assumed that because the girls were in a group, there was safety in numbers.

 Dave November 3, 2012 at 00:19

Well your memory is not quite as sharp as you think it is – regarding cigarette brands there was no such brand as Piccadilly No 6 plain. There were Players No 6 plain or filtered and Piccadilly were a filter cigarette

 Jonathan Mason November 3, 2012 at 00:07

Well, well, well. Miss Jones did talk to the press after all and a lot of what she said makes sense too.

 Daily Mail Reporter November 3, 2012 at 13:17

“Well, well, well. Miss Jones did talk to the press after all”

I’ve worked for the Daily Mail and Mail Online in the past, never again.

Doorstepping someone with a hidden tape recorder isn’t an interview and doesn’t constitute talking to the press: Knock knock, the door opens, the photographer gets the shot from the footpath. The reporter says hello, my name is X Y and I’m from the Daily Mail, then they ask a question. Then another then another. “It’s better to talk to me so you can get your side of the story over before other reporters turn up” can I come in?

That’s not an interview. That’s not talking to the press, that’s doorstepping. Hijack a few quotes and selectively build those ‘quotes’ in to established ‘facts’ and you have a story. Get it right you get a byline. Get it wrong in the eyes of the news desk and the story gets attributed to Daily Mail Reporter.

 Mewsical November 3, 2012 at 16:55

She has granted a second interview, which was professionally requested and was not a doorstep job. The reporter was invited in, there was a photographer who shot several poses, and Miss Jones had a friend there with her. I understand everything went well, and Miss Jones is feeling better altogether. The reporter was extremely impressed with Miss Jones and rightfully so.

And to all the Duncroft women gathering round to spit venom, I say this to you. Get a life. Put this behind you. If you keep this up on the internet, there will be consequences. Talk to a counselor or psychologist at this point and resolve these issues with professional help.

 Ellen Coulson November 4, 2012 at 14:04

Unfortunately Miss Jones naively invited Ms Ellicott in. November 6, 2012 at 13:47

Miss Jones Naive? you do not give her credit for her perceptive demeanor.I am sure she doesn’t need or would appreciate anyone making excuses for her interview, she is a very capable woman, regardless of her age who is obviously happy with what she has said. Not sure everyone agrees with everything she has said but we all have our own opinions.

 Ellen Coulson November 7, 2012 at 16:26

She is not happy with what Claire Ellicott said.

 Mewsical November 2, 2012 at 23:50

Miss Jones on the record. Frankly, I don’t find her remarks ‘cruel’ myself.

 JuliaM November 3, 2012 at 06:12

Typical ‘Mail’ hatchet job…

 Jonathan Mason November 3, 2012 at 10:59

No, the interview itself is fair enough, but the Daily Mail copy editors tried to put a spin on it by using the word “cruel” in the headline, probably so as to cut off any suggestion that the Daily Mail itself was casting aspersions on “victims”. One has to read between the lines a bit.

The other point of note is that the Daily Mail disabled comments on this piece, probably to forestall a flood of support for Ms. Jones dismissal of her former charges as money-seeking ex-delinquents who are manipulative enough to tell the listener whatever the listener wants to hear.

On the other hand, all credit to the Daily Mail for publishing an alternative viewpoint at all

 Mewsical November 3, 2012 at 14:52

Sorry for the double post. The servers were crashing for a while there.

 Mewsical November 2, 2012 at 23:49

Miss Jones on the record. I don’t find any of her remarks “cruel” at all. But then I was at Duncroft, and, as usual, she speaks very plainly about the condition of some of the girls who were there. She was there for 30 years, not 20.

Anthony, very occasionally, the staff would offer you a cigarette from their own pack. Otherwise, as usual, you’re chasing a stuffed rabbit.

 Mewsical November 2, 2012 at 18:06

I would also like to add my best wishes for an enjoyable stay in Paris to Mr. and Mrs. G.

 Moor Larkin November 2, 2012 at 15:32

From the Met’s website

“As we have said from the outset, our work was never going to take us into a police investigation into Jimmy Savile. What we have established in the last two weeks is that there are lines of inquiry involving living people that require formal investigation.”

I think this can of worms will stay closed as far as the police are concerned. Jimmy was the only celebrity to visit Duncroft in relation to the allegations made by the itv Exposure show, and Jimmy is dead and beyond prosecution; so the police are not going to involve themselves in how accurate or not, all those initial allegations were. If they find someone else to prosecute in realtion to all the other 200 allegations, they may take action.

If it’s just a contradiction between what someone says happened thirty/forty years ago and what Jimmy may or may not have done – the matter will go no further. All this may have some relevance to Civil Claims in the pipeline, but I suspect all the bodies that may need to defend themselves would rather pay an out-of-court settlement and be done with it. Why should they pay lawyers to effectively defend Jimmy Savile? There’s no profit in that for anyone now.

Give it ten years though, and someone can write a book.

 Mewsical November 2, 2012 at 16:46

All very good points, Moor. I saw in the Mirror that some of the women involved in the Duncroft situation are apparently getting ready to launch themselves legally at the Home Office, but I don’t think the Home Office was involved any longer by the time Savile showed up. They were certainly in charge in my day, but Savile wasn’t there then. When he was coming around, in 1974, it was the NAMH, local authority and MIND. If anyone is stupid enough to try and sue the Home Office over something that never happened in 1965, I will be happy to provide an affidavit to the defense!

 Roy Fernley November 2, 2012 at 02:37

A fascinating 7 part series which was a great read.

Enjoy your time in Paris and best wishes for your health.

 Mewsical November 2, 2012 at 01:21

To Innocente, when you went to Duncroft you were expected to behave yourself as much as possible – and if you screwed up, you were punished. Or didn’t you get the memo? LOL!

If we’d had responsible and caring parents and we misbehaved, some sort of punishment would have been meted out by them as well. I do want to note, again, that I have received my Barnardo’s file with all my records from Duncroft, and there are several notations that my mother was concerned about how much I was smoking. Ironic, as she smoked like a chim-chim-chimenee herself. I used to pinch her cigs, Kensitas. My grandmother smoked Craven A – I blame their packaging for my continued fondness for black cats!

Smoking was considered to be so glamorous and grown up in those days. However, in 1979, I stopped smoking simply because I didn’t want to end up looking awful – nicotine takes all the collagen from your facial tissues at the very least, what else it does is well-documented. In my case, vanity saved the day, I guess.

What Sue started this discussion for was to question the account of Bebe Roberts, who lied like a rug to the Daily Mail, regarding Mr. Savile’s presence at Duncroft in the 60s, so I’ll veer back in that direction, because it’s also a discussion of the mores of the times.

In the late 60s and early 70s, it was Liberty Hall when it came to sex, drugs and rock ‘n’ roll. I’ve worked in the music business for most of my adult life, so I think I’m qualified to comment. In the UK, Savile was front and center with Top of the Pops, which featured all the top rock artists of the day and wielded considerable influence in their careers. As a result, a bucketload of pretty girls show up in Savile’s life. Somehow, he is supposed to turn into a saint, lecturing them on their morals and checking their birth certificates, etc? In the raffish rock music world, he would’ve lasted ten minutes. And, if the girls at Duncroft had complained loud and long enough, what would have been their fate? No more fun at the White City, no more ciggies, no more rides in the Rolls. Just think about it, please.

Did Savile take advantage of the emotional condition of the Duncroft women? More than likely.

Power is a tremendous aphrodisiac, though. I live in Hollywood, have done for 40-odd years. It’s always been the way of it here, and it still goes on.

What really concerns me is that Savile appears to have taken advantage of truly helpless people – at Stoke, at Leeds, at Broadmoor, and elsewhere. And as a friend of mine recently pointed out, if the actions taken by the Duncroft women have helped to assist these real victims, then whatever their motivations, this has been a good result.

I’m of the impression that the burning question is “Why did they wait until he died?” Bebe Roberts would have been laid to waste by Savile’s defense, at the very least.

Here in America, Jerry Sandusky was brought to justice for his crimes against young boys. He had the entire Penn State legal machine behind him, but it couldn’t save him from a dreadful fate for his crimes.

 Jonathan Mason November 2, 2012 at 15:47

Reasonable points, but by the mid 70′s Savile was a man of about 50 years of age and would have had lots of opportunities to meet attractive young women and have sex with them, however he seemed to make a point of seeking out the very young and the vulnerable–or girls like the Duncroft residents, some of whom may have had past records of juvenile prostitution. In retrospect the mobile home (or caravan) that Savile used was probably deliberately acquired as a prop for illicit sex to avoid having to register at hotels or enter his own homes with underage girls–likewise the rooms to which he had access at hospitals.

I don’t think there was a need to check birth certificates as few people carry them (does anyone), but to ask girls their ages before having sex with them– yes. that is a basic precaution if there is any doubt at all. I was a teenager in the 60′s and we were certainly well aware of the age of consent of 16 at the time.

Jerry Sandusky didn’t have the whole Penn State legal machine behind him. Sandusky was defended by a rather hapless single lawyer called Joe Amendola, who himself got a 16-year-old client pregnant in the 1990′s and later married her. The defense was very weak, underfunded, and did little to attack the credibility of the witnesses.

 Mewsical November 2, 2012 at 16:41

I stand corrected on Sandusky’s defense. I thought the University would have provided him with at least someone adequate, but apparently they were disgusted enough to let him twist in the wind. I didn’t follow the trial very closely, as it just looked as if the prosecutors were going to prevail, and the enormous boatload of witnesses must have been overwhelming for any sole practitioner without the benefit of the big law firm machine behind him. Hi ho.

Good point on the “caravan.” However, if Savile had wanted to engage in shenanigans at Duncroft he was allegedly ‘staying in an upstairs flat,’ according to Toni, while a member of the staff has him staying once and it was in an area not accessible to where the girls dormitories were. I am not familiar with the lay-out of Duncroft once Miss Jones was moved to her own residence and the education building and the hostel were in full use. But the remainder of the school was the same, and I am pretty darn sure that he didn’t stay in the upstairs flat, Miss Jones’ old quarters, because my guess is that, given the need for room, that was already utilized as quarters for other members of the staff, at the very least – two bedrooms and a sitting room. Can’t image that this ‘flat’ remained empty after MJ moved to her own house on the grounds. The recounting of the staff member has more credence for me. But once again, I wasn’t there.

Yes, Savile did have access to real women, but his preference appears to be for those who were underage. Should he have asked for proof of age – well, yes, but was he going to, er no. Did these girls look 14, not a bit of it. They looked 16. I have a photo on my blog, and I was only 14. Did I look it. No. Did I want to look it. No. And did any of the girls say, “Hey, I’m only 14 you daft bugger. Leave me alone or I’m going to the police.” Er, no, apparently not, and they complained only to the staff. One woman I’ve communicated with on line told me that she said something to her social worker, and the social worker simply said to tell the staff. That seems a little odd to me.

 Phil Edwards November 4, 2012 at 12:37

Remember Savile’s reply on HIGNFY when Paul Merton (I think) expressed puzzlement about his living arrangements:

What do you do in your caravan?

“Anyone I can get my hands on.”

It’s a bizarre remark – it’s playing up to the image as a serial sexual predator which he didn’t officially have.

But yes, the caravan would have been a much safer & more discreet base than a borrowed flat. In that respect the original Duncroft allegations have a kind of “double or quits” quality to them – the only way they could be entirely true is if Miss Jones was in it up to her neck, so you reel in a corrupt public institution along with your corrupt dead celebrity. All good fun, unless of course they’re not entirely true and an innocent elderly woman is being defamed.

Mewsical – surely “tell the staff” would be the first and most obvious thing for a social worker to say, given that the staff were in a position of responsibility (at least morally – and legally for under-age girls, I guess). When a kid goes back to her social worker repeatedly and says “I told the staff, nothing happened and it’s still happening/I’m still worried about it/I still think something needs to be done”, then they might set the wheels in motion. But that second or third approach probably never happened. I think one of the things we’re more aware of now about vulnerable young people is that they’re quite easily discouraged from seeking help, and need careful listening to when they do.

 Rocky Raccoon (no relation) November 4, 2012 at 14:11

Regarding Savile’s response on HIGNFY, it got a huge laugh and applause from the audience.

PS. It was Ian Hislop who asked the question. Diane Abbot (on the opposite team) despite raising her eyebrows, smiled at the comment.

 Mewsical November 4, 2012 at 16:39

I disagree that ‘tell the staff’ was the most obvious thing to say. “Have you told the staff?” would be my question, and then when the girl responds “Yes, but they don’t care,” then what you said. However, you can see in the photo of the girls and some staff with Savile that one of the girls is scratching his horrible head. They liked him coming around, imo, Phil. Much more than Miss Jones liked him coming around. She has distanced herself about as far away from him as she could in the photo. The fact that her mother reacted with strong dislike may have tipped her off, but though Mrs. Jones obviously realized what sort of person he was, it was her daughter’s school to run. And I do believe that if the girls had presented a united front and gone to Miss Jones as a group, asking that he not come to the school anymore (which would have meant no more treats, no more trips to the BBC, no more ciggies, records, money), I can assure you – and I was at Duncroft with Miss Jones – she would have asked him to stop coming by, especially in that cavalier, arrogant way, just showing up when he felt like it. She was probably looking for an excuse to show him the door, but because the girls liked him, she showed more forbearance.

 a curious yellow November 1, 2012 at 22:34

thanks, Anna for your many lucid posts I suppose I’ve been guilty of being one of the “silent ones” in the past, but I do want you to know you are appreciated have a great anniversary break and dont let the buggers get you down!!!!!!!

 Dick the Prick November 1, 2012 at 21:00

This is all very well and good, nice bit of research debunking both the BBC and the meeja in general but I think the most serious part of this chronology has been left behind, ignored, forgotten almost – what is Mr G having for Sunday lunch? All the best you 2, hope you have a lovely time.

 Brandon November 1, 2012 at 20:57

Thank you for the latest instalment. Chapeau. Fare thee well in Paris with Mr G, Anna. You deserve a break from all this. By the way, I think it’s Eleanor, not Emily Plowden. I believe I went to school with her, as it happens.

 Innocente November 1, 2012 at 20:07

I am a former Duncroft girl – I arrived somewhere between Anna Raccoon and Jimmy Savile. Whilst on remand, I was informed that on my arrival at Duncroft, I would be allocated 10 cigarettes a day. I wasn’t. I was put into Grade 3, and that allowed me 10 cigarettes a week. After a few months, I was promoted to Grade 2. Rather than give us 15 cigarettes a week, we got 10 one week and 20 the next – I can only assume this was because it would have been too much like hard work for the staff to split the packs. Finally, I arrived in Grade 1, and was allocated a full 20 cigarettes a week. Serious misdemeanours saw girls downgraded to Grade 4, punishment level, with a loss of pretty much all privileges – cigarettes, outings in the mini-bus, home leave, etc. Instances of violence, or absconding resulted in a trip to the ICU where you were removed from the rest of the girls and kept in isolation. Far from discouraging under-age smoking, cigarettes, combined with medication (often the dreaded Largactyl), was considered a valuable method of keeping us under control.

 Jonathan Mason November 1, 2012 at 21:03

Interesting again. Administration of Largactil (as chlorpromazine was known in the UK) would seem to have been inappropriate (at least seen from present day perspectives) due to the fact that it may cause irreversible side effects such as tardive dyskinesia, cause weight gain, not to mention symptoms similar to Parkinson’s disease. It can also cause Neuroleptic malignant syndrome, a potentially fatal complication, and interfere with the menstrual cycle. It is SO not recommended for administration to minors to control behaviour.

In any case it is really only suitable for treatment of psychosis such as schizophrenia. Ativan (lorazepam) might have been a better choice if it was available at that time.

Against the horrors of cigarette and chlorpromazine administration, having to provide a bit of sexual entertainment to a middle aged BBC performer was probably a minor concern, and actually Karin Ward states in her book that the Savile episode seemed like no big deal at the time.

 Mewsical November 4, 2012 at 17:32

Thanks for pointing that out about thorazine for minors, Jonathan. I’ve always seriously doubted that Dr. Mason would recommend such a solution. Of course, to capitalize (literally) on the Savile accusations, the accusers have to make things as dramatic as possible, i.e. padded cells, thorazine, etc. I’d like to hear from someone who was there at the time who didn’t have any encounter with Savile, never were locked in padded cells, never were sedated with thorazine. Not holding my breath of course, as there is this small core group who are up to no good and persist and persist, and if you so much as disagree with them, they make threats against Miss Jones and put her whereabouts on a publicly-viewed blog. What’s the motive? Attention? Money?

I don’t think anyone ‘had’ to provide sexual entertainment. Nor did they ‘have’ to smoke. November 6, 2012 at 13:14

1. I was there in the time frame you talk about

2. I was not abused by Saville

3. There was a padded cell, never personally was put in there.

4. I was given Largactyl on 3 occasions, have written confirmation from my 2 files

5. I am not for or against Miss Jones

6. I do not make threats to anyone if my opinion differs from others

7. I didn’t have to smoke, it was my choice

8. I never provided sexual entertainment to anyone whilst I was at Duncroft, nor after I left.


 Anthony November 2, 2012 at 01:10

So it appears cigarettes were indeed given out at Duncroft as rewards for good behaviour, contrary to Anna indicating they were only ever bought with pupils’ own money.

 Jonathan Mason November 2, 2012 at 11:32

Either that or there was a radical change of policy in between the approved school under the Home Office in the 60′s and the Community School in the 70′s. Also note that Karin Ward describes being given cigarettes on arrival at the age of 14, so she would still have been in full time education.

 Jonathan Mason November 2, 2012 at 11:40

Of course, since it seems the staff where themselves smokers, it must be entirely possible that they were milking the cigarette distribution system to their own advantage too, particularly since the financial aspect of funding the smoking it does not seem to have been transparent to the girls, or possibly to the higher authorities.

 Innocente November 2, 2012 at 18:13

I think there was at least one system being milked financially. Our routine was to be woken at 7am, and we then worked, for an hour, until breakfast at 8am, followed by education in the school block. There were probably around 25 girls there during my time, which was the early ’70s. Every girl, regardless of age, and some were as young as 14, cleaned the house. It’s a very large mansion, and beautiful too in its day. So you had approx 25 girls all cleaning for an hour – between us we kept the house clean and tidy. We were not ‘paid’ for this… there was no financial sum set aside as payment for work, we worked because we had no choice. The cigarette allowance was not a return for our cleaning services. The Home Office were still in charge while I was there, and it would be interesting to know if Duncroft ever claimed for the services of professional cleaners, because none were employed – we did that. Imagine… the shrewd Miss Jones fiddling her expenses, long before it was ever fashionable! Of course, that’s not an accusation, merely a supposition on my part

 Observor November 3, 2012 at 12:41

I see. One poster pops in and claims to be from Duncroft and you write off Anna’s claims which she says she can back up with evidence.

Why do I get this funny feeling your intention is to sow doubt in an ever so polite and friendly way?. For that is what you seem to eb doing.

 Innocente November 3, 2012 at 17:03

Firstly, I should like to point out that I have absolutely no agenda. I did not meet Jimmy Savile. I have no blog, and I am not trying to publish a book. I do not wish for 15 seconds, let alone 15 minutes of ‘fame’. I attended Duncroft School, while it was still an Approved School. I am not particularly proud of that fact, but neither am I especially ashamed of it – I couldn’t get in there today if I tried – I’d be hard pushed to get as ASBO for what landed me in Staines in 1971. I have not, at any point, attempted to discredit or write off any of Anna’s claims. I have no need, and certainly nothing to gain from doing such a thing. But… there have been a few inaccuracies, and I have simply posted my personal recollections from my time at the school. I stumbled across this blog by chance. I totally applaud anyone who is in search of the truth, as Anna appears to be. But if you find it, you must accept it all – the ugly truth along with all the saccharine-coated palatable sections of it which happen to suit you personally. And thank you for the compliment – I have never been anything but polite – I had a good education, you know

 Ex Duncroft ’72 November 3, 2012 at 14:07

I cannot remember the exact grades (I was one of two girls who did not smoke) but you were not “given” cigarettes, you were allowed to *BUY* the relevant amount of cigarettes with your allocated pocket money (cigarettes cost less than 25-30p for 20 then). 10 and 20 alternate weeks rings bells…and I know that, in the punishment grade you were not allowed to buy cigarettes at all. Cigarettes were used as a means of control in many approved school/community homes at that time, there was nothing unusual about it. Remember between 14 and 17 many of the girls were of a legal age to smoke.

As for Chloropromazine (Thorazine in the States), girls were regularly dosed with linctus (forcibly if needs be) if they returned in a state that suggested they had been taking drugs (usually LSD which was the drug of the day). One girl was returned some time after Easter, 1972 dosed with linctus, locked in ICU and never woke up again. The practice of dosing with Thorazine Linctus was not discontinued as a result.

I gave Mark Williams Thomas this and other “important background information about the girls and Savile.” of the kind he chides Margaret Jones for not providing, but everything I had to say was too boring to bother with, because being a first hand, eye witness, from a very slightly earlier time convinced me that, whatever Jimmy Saville did, or did not do elsewhere there was absolutely no chance of him being allowed to take out Duncroft girls unsupervised, if only because the staff would have been concerned for him, in case any of the girls abused the privilege in any way, and legal indemnity in the event of even a minor motor accident.

Mark Williams Thomas was only interested in doing a hatchet job on Jimmy Saville. He did not have one iota of interest in the truth, Duncroft, or even and ongoing pedophile issue I mentioned to him. I responded to him because I have nothing to lose in case he was genuine enough to address the real issues (he wasn’t). Margaret Jones would want to be off her rocker to say anything to him at all, because he would ignore anything he could not twist to suit him and I do not think any of the truth falls into that category.

Duncroft was a terrible place that bent young lives completely of of shape, often for good, but then so was the entire care system, (and my spies tell me that, at adolescent institutional level it has not improved to this day…) the only thing that distinguished Duncroft was the relative intelligence and sophistication of all involved – Duncroft girls got bent out of shape in more complex ways.

In the past two days I have watched a real live human being utterly broken at the age of 69, beyond recovery…the same human being I saw ex- Duncroft girls apparently conspiring to “feed to the Sun” as a means of upgrading the image of the school. (I have screenshots and I went straight to the police). I have a feeling that all it would take to save him is for Karin Ward to find a conscience and tell the truth.

I wasn’t there, I have no way of knowing for sure what happened in 1974, but what I do know for sure is that Duncroft either inadvertantly fed precocious teenage girls to celebrities, or fecked their heads up so badly that a few of them are prepared to spend years ruthlessly conspiring to create the illusion that had happened, for attention and compensation. There is no third possibility.

If we go with the former, then all we have to do is lynch a few scapegoats and pay off a few victims (with or without paranthesis), and everyone can go back to convincing themselves everything is fine and that some ephemeral “they” will always take best possible care of or disadvantaged/delinquent teens, and we don’t need to think about it, if we go with the latter, then it opens a whole can of worms on what really *DOES* happen to young people when they cannot and/or will not, fit in, or are not issued with a “good enough” family at birth in the usual way.

I am not sure society can handle the truth of the latter.

…and the snowball rolls through battalions of people who can make a case that they once spent a few minutes alone with a celebrity as a golden ticket to a chance of compensation, who’s lives are otherwise about to be ruthlessly pushed off a cliff by Tory austerity and/or Atos origin…I can’t even blame them…I am only surprised there are not more.

I am not sure society can handle the truth of *THAT* either.

 Jonathan Mason November 3, 2012 at 21:47

Interesting post, particularly how you mention that one girl was killed in isolation by a dose of chlorpromazine (possibly due to complications or interactions with other drugs, of course). As I mentioned in my post above, that was a risky practice. Today that would be a MASSIVE scandal on its own, never mind Savile’s sex games.

 Mewsical November 4, 2012 at 21:14

I think the dead girl is the Duncroft equivalent of an urban legend at this point. Nobody has ever been able to corroborate it, provide a name to this girl, or do anything more than repeat it over and over, as if somehow that makes it a fact. I do want to thank Duncroft 72 for an otherwise thoughtful post.

 Ex Duncroft ’72 November 4, 2012 at 21:45

We were told she inhaled her own vomit. I do not know how true it is. I have mentioned it to several members of the press as well as Mark Williams Thomas. So far, nobody has even bothered to dig up the death certificate. Not glamourous enough, obviously

 Ex Duncroft ’72 November 5, 2012 at 09:43

No Mewsical, that girl really died…there should be a death cert to prove it, there should also have been an inquest but I very much doubt if there was, it is long overdue that somebody dig out the facts and find out what really happened.

 Jonathan Mason November 4, 2012 at 00:00

“In the past two days I have watched a real live human being utterly broken at the age of 69, beyond recovery…the same human being I saw ex- Duncroft girls apparently conspiring to “feed to the Sun” as a means of upgrading the image of the school. (I have screenshots and I went straight to the police).”

Who are you referring to? Freddie Starr or someone else? And these screenshots of a conspiracy to feed him (whoever you are referring to) to The Sun are from where? Since the police are usually working on behalf of the prosecution, this evidence of a conspiracy might be of much greater interest to the defence side, for example the executors of the Savile estate, than to the police.

 Ex Duncroft ’72 November 4, 2012 at 21:50

It is very simple, I have no way of knowing the general innocence, or guilt, of the person in question, so that I did not want to formally align myself with anyone.

I also felt that these, potentially horrifying discussions needed to be viewed with a totally objective perspective.

The Police are trained, and employed to find as much of the truth as possible, not take sides, it seemed to me they were to only appropriate place to go with this.

 Amfortas November 5, 2012 at 09:06

@ExD72: “”The Police are trained, and employed to find as much of the truth as possible, not take sides””

And the sun is green, Voltaire wrote for the News of the World and my waist is less than 100cms.

 Mewsical November 5, 2012 at 19:16

I have to agree with Amfortas in this case. Savile had many friends on the police force, let’s not forget!

 Mudplugger November 5, 2012 at 20:21

As an aside, in the 1960s and 70s the Leeds City Police (then a city force, not the wider West Yorkshire Constabulary) were notoriously corrupt and corruptible (I write from experience having been wrongly arrested by them in 1970 and, as a result, suffered/observed some of their ‘creative crime resolution’ tactics from a tad too close a viewpoint).

Savile started out around that time, in that place. When that is your model, you follow what you’ve learned. Straight-forward cash payments or generous donations to their favoured charities usually did the trick – why change a winning formula ?

 Brandon November 6, 2012 at 12:28

I recall seeing it noted somewhere that Savile’s ‘Friday Morning Club’ included as many as 20 former and current police officers over the years. The only one I have seen named is one Mick Starkey, who did stints chauffeuring him around in his Rolls. Seems fairly clear that Savile’s MO involved cultivating close relations with the boys in blue from a fairly early stage, based on various anecdotal evidence, including his own!

 Observor November 6, 2012 at 03:35

Yes the coppers can be as star-struck as the next person and many have been as corrupt as sin.

However I doubt that Savile (despite apparently being the Most Powerful Person in Britain) could really influence cops to stop an investigation unless he paid bribes.

The flip side is that cops love a big name bust no matter who the person and would relish a take-down of someone like Savile.and Fleet Street would have only been too happy to join the party. Not forgiving Savile if allegations are proved.

 Brian November 8, 2012 at 10:44

The is the possibility that the Police knew about Savile’s activities but did not prosecute in order to find out about others engaged in the same. Intelligence gathering of this sort has been the bread and butter of Special Branch and Security Service work for ages, as it is useful in vetting and blackmail. Sometimes intelligence is gathered simply because it always has been. The interests of the State, ie its self-preservation, are amoral and should not be compared with ordinary morality.

 Brian November 9, 2012 at 15:05

Apologies for duplicate posting of my #208 comment.

 Smoking Hot November 6, 2012 at 09:15

lnteresting … would you say Savile was bigger than the Stones? Jagger and Richards were convicted of drugs and got 3 and 12 months (later turned over on appeal). The 60′s culture did not have a good relationship with the ‘establishment’ at all.

 Mewsical November 7, 2012 at 16:38

No, not really. I remember the Stones trials well. Keith did some time, if I recall rightly, but Mick didn’t. And no, we didn’t have a good relationship with the establishment, they hated us. Constantly trying to frame rock stars was the name of the game with the cops.

 Ex Duncroft November 5, 2012 at 22:21

Well unfortunately the Police are the closest thing to impartial available, so that is where I took this.

 Robb November 5, 2012 at 19:12

This for Mewsical and Ex Duncroft ’72

“that girl really died…”

A question, surely, for Miss Jones?

 Moor Larkin November 5, 2012 at 20:19

The death will surely be in that Duncroft Archive that Annaraccoon first blogged about – the archive that none of these current “forensic investigators” have even attempted to refer to in the last several years (apparently – the 2009 police reports are now being requested by the UK government)

It’s perhaps not surprising that a ten year age gap leaves big differences in the perception of Miss Jones, but the ‘security’ at Duncroft that served to protect the vulnerable seems backed up by both opinions – whatever the perceived motive of the school.

 Anon November 22, 2012 at 20:29

Wow . . . that is so true.

 lleweton November 1, 2012 at 19:14

Amen to all the good wishes you have received on this thread.

 Brian November 1, 2012 at 18:08

Mrs Raccoon, I hope you and Mr G have a great time in Paris, and look forward to your return to the Raccoon Arms in your good time. Would you have any objections to being nominated for the 2013 Orwell Prize for this series of posts, which is clearly head and shoulders above the work of so-called professional journalists?

 Magwitch November 1, 2012 at 16:49

Anna, hope you & Mr G have a wonderful time in Paris.

I’m usually sitting quietly in the corner at the Racoon Arms but I’d just like to say thank you for all your wonderful posts. I’ve found the recent series particularly riveting. Come back relaxed, refreshed and ready to tackle the next installment.

 Richard November 1, 2012 at 14:37


Firstly – thank you for continuing to reassure me that there are still decent people in the world. You gave your word and you’re sticking with it. Bravo!

Secondly – I hope your Paris trip is as much fun as it sounds it’s going to be – 20 years is worth celebrating and this story should rightly remain tucked away, forgotten until your return.

Thirdly – wishing you 20 and more years ahead to celebrate.



 Jonathan Mason November 1, 2012 at 12:28

Thanks for clarification about the cigarettes. This seems to contradict what Karin Ward says in her book, but is much more in line with what I would have thought. In Karin’s book it is quite clearly stated she arrives at Duncroft at the age of 14, is taken to seen Miss Jones and told she will be put on “level 3″ and will be allocated 20 cigarettes per week. She is then told (on the same day) by another girl that if she does not act right she will be downgraded to “level 4″ and will get 10 cigarettes per week.” Of course this is at a different time and not under the Home Office regime. I am inclined to think that Karin Ward’s memory is faulty here, which of course also calls into question a lot of the rest of her memoir.

Marianne shrugged.  “They’re used to that.  They’ll search while we’re having supper.  If they find anything not listed, you’ll be in trouble and get down-graded.  So will I.” “Down-graded?” “Yeah.  If you go down Grade 4, you only get ten fags a week … and hardly any time outside at all.” Inexplicably, I felt tears pricking

Ward, Kat (2012-10-13). KERI KARIN: the SHOCKING true story of a child abused, CONTINUED (child abuse true stories) (Kindle Locations 184-187). Child Abuse True Stories. Kindle Edition.

 Amfortas November 1, 2012 at 12:11

Talking and not talking to the Police.

A Lawyer and a cop tell their side.

OK, it is the American experience but the principles ramain the same.

Basically, DON’T.

Whatever information or expression occurs, it will not be for your benefit.

 JuliaM November 1, 2012 at 11:46

Here’s hoping you have the break you deserve in Paris, Anna – and I’ve no doubt the Savile bandwagon will, sadly, be trundling on when you return!

 Robert Edwards November 1, 2012 at 11:42

Have a wonderful time in Paris – it really is the most civilized place. After this epic series of posts, I’m sure you deserve to recharge the batteries.

And let others quake for a while, which I am sure they will…

 Engineer November 1, 2012 at 11:02

Anna – give ‘Withers’ hell. Fight all the way -the thoughts, support and prayers of many are with you.

(For those who don’t understand this comment – and it not about a person – you’ll have to read the archive.)

 Ian B November 1, 2012 at 10:34

Anna/Suzanne, so sorry to hear about your illness. My thoughts are with you.

Regarding the issue itself, this is purely my personal opinion here, but I feel a little nonplussed at this stage. I am not entirely convinced as to the wisdom of staying away from the media. This thing is a media phenomenon. The authorities- police, etc- are not going to be rushing to find evidence debunking the claims made so far, not with Operation Yewtree under the NSPCC auspices in full swing. As such, just about every vested interest in this will be primarily interested in burying, or ignoring, anything contrary. By the time what you have written and discovered “comes out” it will all be too late if you are passive.

Dick Puddlecote on the previous thread said he was surprised that this hasn’t gone viral. I think part of the reason for that is that most people would be reluctant to be seen to defending pantomime villains like Savile- let alone Glitter, the country’s most hated pervert- without something solid to base it on. Nobody wants to be stuck out on a limb if it turns out that the allegations are all, or mainly, or even partially, true. And if the media and Plod start to get wind that the initial Duncroft allegations are dubious, they will as a matter of strategy want to rapidly move on to finding some others that are more solid and forget about them. So if this contrary position doesn’t “get legs” now, I don’t think it ever will.

I am no expert on the media. I had in my younger days considerable experience in the entertainment industry and thus know that there are no doubt many old skeletons lurking in cupboards, some probably of an illegal nature. Indeed, talking about this with somebody close (from the same industry) the other day, I got confirmation of one rumour from the past which, while not in the least illegal, would cause a firestorm in the media if it went public since it would confirm the past homosexual activities of somebody constitutionally significant. But then, you’d only have my word for that.

Which is the problem we’re all left with really. We only have your word for this, and so it is hard for anyone else to come out in definite support. We can say we believe you, and what you say Margaret Jones said, and so on. But that’s all. If I were sitting on this, I’d be looking to find somebody media-connected who could “get the story out”, and as quickly as possible, before it’s too late.

As I said, that’s just my opinion. But it seems to me that if you sit on your hands waiting for Yewtree to come looking for information that will undermine the very existence of Yewtree, your hands are likely to be pretty numb by that time…

 Anna Raccoon November 1, 2012 at 10:53

I do understand that Ianb.

However, I have given my word, and that is that, whatever the outcome.

I would just point out for the final and last time – that I have never been about defending Jimmy Savile, I have no way of knowing whether most of the later allegations are true or not.

I have been about pointing out that some of the initial ‘Duncroft’ stories printed in the papers in the early days, were untrue and could not be true from my personal knowledge. If they were untrue, then the Newsnight investigations was rightly pulled because the stories could not be substantiated.

The original story, if you remember, was that the Newsnight story had been pulled because Savile was being ‘protected’ by those high up. That fact seems to be forgotten in the current welter of ’300 victims have come forward’.

I could sell what Miss Jones told me last night a 100 times over – but I won’t, for the same reason I wrote this series in the first place – because truth and honesty do matter to me. ‘Tis hard being a Quaker sometimes, but I am, and that is that.

Now my husband has got fed up with the phone ringing, and is whisking me off several hours early – so moderation is going on now; apologies to all my regular readers.

 Lastman Jack November 1, 2012 at 10:25

Have a wonderful time in Paris. I hope it is a lovely long break. You deserve it!

We will wait patiently for Part 8!

 Gloria Smudd November 1, 2012 at 10:11

These last seven posts of yours have indeed been riveting, wonderfully-written stuff. Despite your initial reluctance to tackle this story, you have seen it through from beginning to end with dedicated attention to detail and more than a little dogged sleuthing along the way, to bring us this important latest installment. A challenging job, very well done and very much appreciated. Three cheers!

Now, step away from the keyboard, start packing your most cosmopolitan outfits and don’t forget a slinky little number suitable for dinner (at Maxim’s maybe?). Buzz off and have a wonderful time in Paris, Mr & Mrs G, and don’t give us or the interweb another thought!

 Dave November 1, 2012 at 09:58

I assume that you won’t be reading this until after your return. I do hope that the break did you good.

I may now be changing my theory.

I originally thought that we should look at who stood to gain most from the BBC’s behaviour.

Perhaps it should now be a case of self destruction?

“Those whom the gods wish to destroy they first make mad.”

The BBC was set up by Reith as a broadcaster of Christian values. Since they have long abandoned Christianity, perhaps god is exacting his revenge?

 Wendy November 1, 2012 at 09:31

Absolutely enthralling. Bon chance in Paris.

 bilbaoboy November 1, 2012 at 09:10

A coffee with fresh croissant

Quay D’Orsay (if you like impressionists)

Hand-holding (if that’s your thing) along the river bank

And I’m keeping fingers crossed for sunshine



Both of you

 Wigner’s Friend November 1, 2012 at 08:47

Hope that you can put this sordid stuff behind you in Paris and concentrate on what is important – your future.

 Woman on a Raft November 1, 2012 at 08:27

Have a lovely time in Paris and then write us all about it.

 Observor November 1, 2012 at 07:50

Again..the passion of your writing almost brings me to tears!

The is a very important matter hear and I suspect Ms Raccoon & Jones think likewise- that age is a wonderful defense against lies and you get to a point where you will scream from the rooftops what is the truth because you are protected by your (old) age.

Have a wonderful time in Paris !!!

 John November 1, 2012 at 03:46


What an astounding series of blog posts – I genuinely applaud you for making such an effort, which has no doubt been a drain on you.

While I have never met you, I have followed your blog for several years – there is no doubt to my mind that you are a woman of integrity and honesty.

Best of luck, and have a fantastic break.

 Single Acts of Tyranny November 1, 2012 at 19:00


 Frankie November 2, 2012 at 19:01


Profiter de vos vacances en Paris… la Ville de l’amour!!

 Mewsical November 1, 2012 at 01:47

Those seeking closure might find it here in Part 7.

 Londonexplorer November 1, 2012 at 01:15

Paris awaits you – have a wonderful time

Thanks for all the hard work and for updating us on latest developments

 Amfortas November 1, 2012 at 00:51

Enjoy the sights, sounds and smells of Paris, Dear Lady. Recuperate. Celebrate. You will need to schedule quite a few hours on your return just to clear the backlog of posts in the moderation file. It takes me half an hour every morning and that is just from what has been posted overnight here.

 Jonathan Mason November 1, 2012 at 00:38

“She has talked at length to her legal advisors – not to protect herself, but in view of her age.”

Sorry to be a bit thick. Are you saying that she has deposited sworn affidavits with her lawyers to be released to police in the event of her death?

 Den November 1, 2012 at 08:45

“Sorry to be a bit thick”: Don’t be so hard on yourself, people die in strange circumstances nowadays, cf Dr David Kelly. Though not sure about release to police – perhaps to alternative media?

 Hysteria November 1, 2012 at 00:20

Have a lovely time in Paris – hope the weather is kind to you.

 Lysistrata November 1, 2012 at 00:20

Have a wonderful anniversary trip, and the odd Calvados from me.

Oh, and thank you for your pure journalism. I trust what you say.

 cascadian November 1, 2012 at 00:13

Very sensible man-MrG, considerate too. I should stick with him for another twenty years if I were you my dear.

I wish you both continued good health and happiness together, enjoy Paris.

As for the Savile fooforah, I understand and support your insistence on facts. Given the source of the stories I will recycle my cynical comment from the Megan Stammers story that had all the same nonsensical elements-” I’m trying to understand this latest newspaper-induced outrage” Mostly misplaced feminist-of-a-certain-age dogma in an effort to promote a third-grade fiction book.

 Zaphod October 31, 2012 at 23:23

I’m a bit nonplussed by the LACK of links, pointing to this saga, from other blogs that I read.

I’ve been busy lately, so I’m not up to date everywhere. Apologies to the exceptions.

Many might use the excuse that it’s not in their readers’ field of interest?

No. I’m not convinced.

Consequences? Is that the problem?

 Smoking Hot November 1, 2012 at 00:01

Ah but we linked mate. We got abusive e-mails and comments but it was a small price to pay.

Enjoy Paris Anna. Reminds me of years ago when we had French students visiting our establishment. A member of our staff got into conversation with one of the female students and asked her where she was from. She said “Paris” but in French it obviously came out as “Paree”, our member of staff replied “Never heard of it”

 dak November 1, 2012 at 08:49

My readers here in The Republic must be a bit more genteel. It’s been top post on my blog since part 1 and no-one has complained.

 Smoking Hot November 1, 2012 at 10:10

Maybe that’s because many here miss the days of burning witches and anyone who defends them.

 Demelza October 31, 2012 at 23:19

Many thanks for this series of articles, Anna, it has been fascinating yet depressing reading.

Hope you have a good break.

 Chalmers October 31, 2012 at 23:13

Have a great weekend, you both deserve it!

 Carol42 October 31, 2012 at 23:04

Thank you for doing this Anna, it has been very enlightening indeed. I am so very sorry to hear you are still unwell, I had thought after your last report of a clean scan some time ago that you were doing ok. You have made me realise just how lucky I am to have survived two years after surgery without problems so far, well at least until the next scan in January! Have a wonderful time in Paris, I have very happy memories of my last visit with my late husband of 30 years. I will look forward to reading your wonderful blog when you return. Take care. Carol

 Dick Puddlecote October 31, 2012 at 23:03

Why this hasn’t gone viral yet is anyone’s guess, perhaps the hive mind of not wanting to be seen to have been gulled. There’s a lot of it about.

Enjoy your break, Anna.

 Danny October 31, 2012 at 23:27

Can’t see any links from your blog, old boy?

 Moor Larkin October 31, 2012 at 22:43

Williams-Thomas is turning the screw on the police already – as reported by the BBC

Seeking to fault the police for what they did not do five years ago – without mention that he didn’t do it either this year – and Meirion didn’t do it last year.

Perception Management is everything. I hope the police can use your Blogs to take some of the pressure off themselves by knowing there is more to this than has been made apparent to them by the interested parties. I too trust the police, but they can only do their job if they are given all the information.

Bon Voyage and rest easy.

 Anna Raccoon October 31, 2012 at 22:54

I’m losing count – are the number of alleged victims now surpassed by the number of people who could have said something but didn’t?

 Paul November 1, 2012 at 08:52

This is the nature of the beast. Because there are so many claims (and by the time it’s finished the numbers will be astronomical), the idea that no-one ever saw, heard or was told anything is unlikely.

Therefore it ‘logically’ follows that people must have been told and ignored it or kept quiet.

Or more accurately that at least 90% of them are making it up for money.

Interesting article in the news about Savile’s Estate being frozen so that the fraudsters can claim from it (probably more than half of it will go to lawyers). Of the £4.3 million only about £600k is actually going to friends/relatives ; the remainder is held for charity via his trust.

So these people are stealing from charity.

 Rocky Raccoon (no relation) October 31, 2012 at 23:52

Mark Williams-Thomas said…

“She [Ms Jones] could have provided important background information about the girls and Savile.”

Can’t that be taken two ways?

Apart from telling him she had not been spoken to by police, I assume Ms Jones said nothing else to him or he is saving that for the ITV follow up programme.

 Observor November 1, 2012 at 07:57

that is an example of a “when did you stop beating your wife” question.

 WM October 31, 2012 at 22:41

Yes, I, too, am sorry to hear about your condition – all the very best with that.

Please enjoy Paris, both of you.


 Den October 31, 2012 at 22:35

Have a great time in Paris. Give my regards to the Orsay.

 Engineer October 31, 2012 at 22:32

Anna – you are absolutely right to allow Mr G to whisk you away to Paris, where I hope both of you savour every moment!

 Fred Thrung October 31, 2012 at 22:22

I trust you will both have a lovely time in Paris, Anna – the second (equal) nicest city in the world. Thank you for this series of posts. Look forward to your thoughts after you return.

 GildasTheMonk October 31, 2012 at 22:22

In the words of Lord of the Rings – at least the fllm – You have my sword.


 JuliaM November 1, 2012 at 11:45


 Joe Public October 31, 2012 at 22:22

Still riveting.

Thank you Anna.

Your readership awaits part 8 …………………..

 Chris Barratt October 31, 2012 at 22:19

Sounds very promising! Hope you have great and therapeutic break away from being in the centre of this ‘Media Storm’ (well, a media storm with a media that don’t want to hear what you’ve got to say). Going by Twatter it looks like Mark Williams-Tosspot (ably assisted by Mr Tubb) will be padding their second sensational volume of “Exposed” with their analysis of JS’s ‘Desert Island Discs’ from 1985 and a 1986 Radio 1 documentary about his career – real fresh ‘cutting edge’ stuff I’m sure. In the meantime, you may force a chuckle from this spoof:

 Anna Raccoon October 31, 2012 at 22:42

Prat by name, prat by nature, another allegation bites the dust….

Ex-hospital porter Terry Pratt said Savile would arrive at Leeds General Infirmary in the early hours and take the girls to the nurses’ accommodation.

But Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust said it believed Mr Pratt was “mistaken in his comments”.

Police are investigating allegations of sexual abuse by Savile over many years.

In a statement, the trust said: “We have investigated his claims today with other staff who were around at Leeds General Infirmary at the time and we believe he is mistaken in his comments.

“Mr Pratt appears to have been talking about a period in the 1980s before he started work at the hospital in 1990 and not from first-hand knowledge.”

 Peter Principle October 31, 2012 at 23:24

But Anna, they were dressed to the nines, dressed to the nines with lipstick and everything I tell you !

 Observor November 1, 2012 at 07:55

who was? Mr Pratt ? were these gels being frog marched ?

 Bill Sticker October 31, 2012 at 22:15

I am investing in popcorn futures. Riveting stuff.

 Anna Raccoon October 31, 2012 at 22:28

Sorry about the price you had to pay – I had inside information and got in early! Forget gold – popcorn is the future.

 Bill Sticker November 1, 2012 at 04:42

You sneaky old Raccoon you, but I am already well stocked with my own popcorn machine. Will be watching avidly. Best wishes as always.

 Wendi October 31, 2012 at 22:09

Again – nicely done Anna! Leave the laptop/iPod/android phone behind, don’t buy UK newspapers and have a peaceful, relaxing time in Paris. Enjoy!

 Anna Raccoon October 31, 2012 at 22:18

I fully intend to leave them all behind! We only get the papers a day late here anyway.

 Backwoodsman November 2, 2012 at 08:17

Dear Anna, hope you and Mr. G have a wonderful time this wekend. I’m sure I speak for all your regulars on that. Stay strong and come back to us safe and well !

 Furor Teutonicus November 2, 2012 at 17:36

I would like to add my name to that sentimnt, if I may?  )

Go and enjoy yourself lass!

 Robb October 31, 2012 at 22:09

Anna — I hope the contents of your conversation, and of Miss Jones’ head, are recorded somewhere safe. And I hope–as I am sure most do here–that Paris is lovely.

 Paul October 31, 2012 at 22:04

Excellent work. Let us now see what transpires. A good idea to get away in any case and I urge you to be careful because this is big and who knows what forces are in play.

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