Dr David Kerr MP

1978: Tom O’Carroll writes to Antony Grey at Defence of Literature & Arts Society re ‘freedom of speech’

In 1978, during the passage of the Protection of Children bill through Parliament, and just as PIE were preparing to publish their Paedophilia: Some Questions & Answers and distribute the booklet to MPs pigeonholes in the House of Commons, Tom O’Carroll, Chairman of Paedophile Information Exchange and member of the NCCL Gay Rights Committee wrote to Antony Grey in his role on the Executive Committee of the Defence of Literature and Arts Society (‘DLAS’).

O’Carroll wanted to thank Grey for his support at the 1978 NCCL Annual General Meeting and “in Screen Shot 2015-03-14 at 10.22.43relation to” the National Union for Public Employees. The NCCL AGM had taken place on 1-2 April at City University, a fortnight prior to O’Carroll’s letter.

“Dear Antony, I was pleased to see you the other day, and only regret that I had to dash off without having a chance to talk to you after the meeting. Allow me, however, to thank you very much for your support at the NCCL AGM, and in relation to NUPE etc.”

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Motion. 39: Freedom of Discussion proposed by Nettie Pollard and Bill Forrester

At the 1978 AGM which O’Carroll and Grey had attended, PIE member Nettie Pollard had seconded a motion proposed by Bill Forrester to ask NCCL to condemn the protests against PIE’s meeting in September 1977:

“This AGM re-affirms the right of free discussion and freedom to hold meetings for all organisations and individuals doing so within the law.

In particular this AGM condemns the physical and other attacks on those who have discussed or attempted to discuss paedophilia and re-affirms NCCL’s condemnation of harassment and unlawful attacks on such persons.” [Bill Forrester and Nettie Pollard]

Tom O’Carroll was responding to an approach made by DLAS to David Grove, PIE’s Children Rights’ Campaign leader and keeper of the PIE mailing list.

In June/July 1976 edition of Understanding Paedophilia (PIE’s forerunner to Magpie) the ‘Magnificent Six’ had been announced, with the following people undertaking the following roles for PIE

‘It’s the Magnificent Six’, p. 7
New EC:
Keith Hose – re-elected to serve as National Chairperson for the coming year
Warren Middleton – re-elected as National Vice Chairperson/PIE Magazine Editor
Tom O’Carroll – elected as PIE General Secretary/responsible for the formation of local groups/PIE members’ contact service/Publicity [See further: Did NCCL’s trawl of List 99 radicalise PIE’s Tom O’Carroll? Palaver #6 October 1976]
David C Grove – elected as Director of PIE’s forthcoming children’s rights campaign/responsible for distribution of mail
Charles Napier – elected as Treasurer/responsible for recruitment of new members.
Peter Righton – elected as Organiser of prison-hospital visits/general correspondence and PIE befriending.
Want applicants for Legal adviser and Director of Research. [Ian Pace blog]

DLAS wanted an article from PIE on the ways in which their freedom of speech have been muzzled for the DLAS publication “Uncensored” Tom O’Carroll nominates Keith Hose to write this for Grey.

Three years later, in a letter to Tony Smythe, Grey wrote

“ The drubbing which free speech, civil rights and common sense have taken over the PIE case is appalling. I always feared that Tom O’Carroll was hellbent on opening this particular Pandora’s Box, and so it has proved.” [See further: With compliments from Ian Dunn, and while you were out Tony Smythe called March 1981 ]

Seemingly, a fear precipitated by Grey’s own invitation, adopting the role of a self-fulfilling prophet of doom while bearing in mind Grey’s ego couldn’t bear not to archive these writings publicly.

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The Defence of Literature and the Arts Society (1968 – 1983)

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The Defence of Literature and Arts Society attracted sponsors from “the great and good”:

Lords, charity directors, MPs, former MPs, lawyers and even doctors such as Dr David Stafford-Clark and Lords who were also Doctors such as Lord Winstanley (apparently a staunch supporter of everyone else’s freedom of speech bar Mary Whitehouse’s when he commanded Antony Grey to pursue her to the end of the road if not further! [Dec 1976: See further blog post here]

Francis Bennion, Parliamentary Counsel and Civil Liberties Barrister

One member of the Executive Committee who served alongside Antony Grey and Eric Thompson was Francis Bennion, Barrister and Parliamentary counsel, who had drafted the constitutions of Pakistan and Ghana, the Consumer Credit Act, the Sex Discrimination Act 1975, and the hugely successful reference book for lawyers on ‘Statutory Interpretation’. In 1968 he founded the Professional Association of Teachers.

On Francis Bennion‘s website : http://www.francisbennion.com/pdfs/non-fb/1983/1983-007-nfb-dlas-pamphlet.pdf

In 1979 Bennion wrote a review of G Parker Rossman’s book Sexual Experience between Men and Boys [Freethinker Vol.99 1979] [See further for Antony Grey’s meeting with Parker Rossman on his July 1979 trip to UK from the states and Rossman’s letter to Grey and more on George Parker Rossman’s 1971 arrest in the Long Island New York ring with Dr Morris Fraser ]

In 1983 Antony Grey and his partner Eric Thompson were still serving on the Executive Committee of the DLAS along with Michael Rubinstein (the solicitor who Sir Harold Haywood was dismayed at charging for his advice on suing Mary Whitehouse due to his “special interest in the Trust”).

Lord Beaumont of Whitley (former Albany Trust Chairman 1969-1972?) is also a sponsor.

 Ben Whitaker (former Lab: Hampstead MP 1966-1970)

Ben Whitaker was the Chairman of the DLAS and had been Labour MP for Hampstead 1966-1970 during Wilson’s first term, at the same time Dr David Kerr, a fellow DLAS sponsor, had been Labour MP for Wandsworth Central.

NCCL AGM Ballot Papers 1978: Biographies for candidates standing for NCCL Executive Committee

NCCL AGM Ballot Papers 1978: Biographies for candidates standing for NCCL Executive Committee

Brian Sedgemore MP (Lab: Hackney South)

Sponsors included Brian Sedgemore MP (Lab: Hackney South)

See further for Mark Trotter, the Hackney Labour agent whose abuse of children left some victims with AIDS with a history of abuse in Liverpool:

Ian Mikardo MP (Lab: East end, Bow, Poplar, Bethnal Green 1964-1987)

Ian Mikardo MP (Lab:  Reading 1945–50, Reading South 1950–55, Reading 1955–59, Poplar 1964–74, Bethnal Green and Bow 1974–83 and Bow and Poplar 1983–87)

“… the progress of the Child Protection bill was threatened by MP Ian Mikardo, who blocked it to protest against tactics being used by the Conservative party to block Edward Fletcher‘s bill on employment protection, the Prime Minister, James Callaghan, stepped in to ensure that the Bill received the time required to become law.[1]” [Wikipedia: Child Protection Act 1978]

On 12 May 1978 Auberon Waugh wrote ‘Save the Children’ for The Spectator  when Mikardo was MP for Bethnal Green and Bow:

“After all the recent hysteria about the Child Protection Bill, when Mr Ian Mikardo was practically accused of supporting the vile trade in child pornography, we have at last been given a chance to examine the Bill as it ambles its way through its second reading in the House of Lords. To judge from press reaction, and from statements by various opportunist MPs, one might have supposed that child pornography was a new and hideous development which somehow escaped existing legislation on obscene publication and protection of minors, while threatening to corrupt a whole generation of British schoolchildren for the unscrupulous gain of these merchants in human misery . . .”

 

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Spring 1969: Grey reviews Greek Love & receives a firm offer to co-write a book from Dr David Kerr MP

EZ Eglington, the author of the book Greek Love published in the US in 1964, was Walter Breen, a career abuser of young boys and celebrated pedophile author whose wife, science fiction write Marion Zimmer Bradley also abused boys and girls sexually, physically and emotionally. See further here

In 1969 the publishers Neville Spearman Ltd, and specifically Neville Armstrong publishes EZ Eglington’s Greek Love for the UK market – as task which Grey assists with, commenting on the draft and reflecting that Eglington’s view of human sexuality had made him re-think some of his own views in theory and counselling.

Dear Antony

Greek Love

As they say: “Faint heart never won fair boy”, and so I am going ahead with this books and to hell with all puritans. I think it is a really fine piece of scholarship.

We are definitely dropping the Albert Ellis portion and the rebuttal, and in place the author is going to write a fresh Introduction. On your advice given in your letter of 19 February I may cut a few of the poems.

In that letter you write a very telling last para:

“The author of this book is one of the most interesting and erudite writers on homosexuality that I have encountered and Greek Love has caused me to re-think some of my own basic attitudes to human sexuality, both in theory and in the practice of counselling.” Could I use this or something like it – should you wish to re-phrase it – on the dust jacket?”

 

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Five years earlier Neville’s mother had tragically committed suicide and he had become involved with Chad Varah’s Samaritans at St Stephen’s Walbrooks of London. Neville would possibly have known Rev. Michael Butler, Chad’s Deputy Director, who worked as a counsellor with the Albany Trust, another associate of Grey. Since 1955 Neville had been publishing as Neville Spearman, based in London and moving to Suffolk in the late 1970s.[ Guardian Obituary 26 September 2008]

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Antony Grey wanted to meet with Neville Armstrong fairly soon to discuss jointly writing a book with a Labour MP,

“As I think I mentioned to you, I have had a very definite offer of collaboration from Dr David Kerr MP who is very much on the ‘inside’ of the parliamentary manoeuvres.”

Dr David Kerr was then MP for Wandsworth Central from 1964-1970. In 1969 his marriage to his wife was dissolved although he had quickly remarried in 1970. It’s not clear what topic Antony Grey and David Kerr were contemplating but knowledge of inside parliament appears helpful. Kerr had been helping with the passage of the Sexual Offences Act 1967 through Parliament but that was now two years past and Grey was soon to be focused on the Albany Trust Project Study Group along with Peter Righton and Ian Greer. Kerr had spent his time in parliament as PPS to Joan Lestor at the Commonwealth Office [Tom Watson MP précis obituary for Dr David Kerr]

Independent Obituary 

Guardian Obituary

 

 

November 1972: Ian Dunn, PIE founder joins Albany Society Ltd Council of Management

One year prior to the formation of the Paedophile Information Exchange [Sept/Oct 1974] by Ian Dunn and Michael Hanson of the Scottish Minorities Group (SMG), Dunn is invited to be admitted as an Ordinary member at the Society’s third AGM.

Other familiar names are Albany Trustees –  Rev. Michael Butler (Deputy Director Samaritans), Dr John Robinson (Dean of Trinity College, Cam), Mr Rodney Bennett-England (future Director of the National Council for the Training of Journalists), Mr Michael Schofield and Dr Charlotte Wolff and the Trust’s Honorary Solicitor Ambrose Appelbe (who had guided Mandy Rice-Davis through the Profumo scandal, an odd coincidence considering it was Profumo as Warden who had secured Righton his premises for ACCESS at Toynbee Hall during his brief Chairmanship).

The Albany Society Ltd had first been established in 1968 as a fundraising arm and grant-making fund to keep finances separate from the Trust itself. This separation and use of an alternative legal entity also changed the nature of the duties the office holders have. Trustees have fiduciary duties to keep within Trust Deed and could not limit their liability whereas directors owe duties to shareholders and can limit liability. This decision of Antony Grey’s to revive the Albany Society Ltd as a vehicle of control over the Albany Trust would prove significant over the course of the next few years.

Following the difficulties over Michael De La Noy’s menacing Lord Beaumont and others for control of the counselling casework during 1971, Grey with Dr John Robinson seconding, swells the ranks of the Society’s ‘Council of Management’ with 21 or 22 new ‘Ordinary Members’.

Dr Charlotte Wolff proposed Dr David Kerr MP to be elected as Chairman of the Council of Management. Kerr had been Labour MP for Wandsworth Central 1964 – 1970, one of the surprise wins (from Conservative Deputy Chief Whip) for Labour allowing Harold Wilson a narrow majority. Antony Grey becomes Kerr’s Honorary Secretary.

Lord Beaumont resigns as do Martin Ennals, financier Mr Thomas Frankland, journalist Mr Hitti Malik, Master Baker Mr Kenneth Stoneley and (later to be QC) Keith Wedmore

Grey explained that the Albany Trustees felt it was appropriate to ‘activate Albany Society Ltd as the most effective vehicle for future work, and to appeal for all the Deeds of Covenant to be made with Albany Society Ltd.’ The immediate priority for the Society was to assist other counselling and befriending organisations in the National Federation of Homophile Organisations (NFHO) with education and training on counselling.

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