Sir Keith Joseph

Dec 1974: Antony Grey’s ‘successful negotiations’ with Tony Hart at the Home Office Voluntary Services Unit


In 1974 Albany Trust was in the middle of moving offices. Since returning to the Trust in July 1971 (following Peter Righton and spooky Robert Chartham/Ronald Seth almost gaining control of the counselling files, especially Doreen Cordell’s work with various interested clergy into ritual/religious ceremonial abuse) Grey and the Trustees had relinquished the Piccadilly/Shaftesbury Avenue lease (at the end of 1972?) and become itinerant with Grey holding the fort at two different addresses in Highbury Grove and Kilburn until a permanent location in Clapham was found.

It soon became clear that the Trust must be placed on a firmer footing, or else wind up. Once again Raymond Clarke came to the rescue. Now head of the national organisations division of the National Council for Social Service, he approached Miss (later Dame) Geraldine M. Aves CBE who had recently retired as Chief Welfare Officer of the Ministry of Health, and she agreed to chair a small working party to examine the Trust’s future. Miss Aves was a formidable personage who was widely held in considerable awe – although she was never anything but extremely charming to me. She quickly perceived that the Trust was a pioneer in an increasingly visible field of unmet need. Largely thanks to her guiding hand and influence a three year development grant, initially of £10,000 a year, was obtained from the Voluntary Services Unit of the Home Office late in 1973 [sic – date must have been 1974 see below], conditional upon the Trust giving an undertaking ‘that these public funds will not be used to exert pressure on the Government for any change in the law on homosexuality.’

I was sitting along in the small house in Highbury which was the trust’s temporary home when I received the anxiously awaited phone call telling me that our application had been successful. My feeling of relief was profound.” [Loc 3608/6001 Grey’s Quest for Justice: Towards Homosexual Emancipation]

In 1969 Raymond Clarke had organised the Social Study Project with Peter Righton, Ian Greer, Rev. Michael Butler and Antony Grey [ see further blog post here ] and in 1970 organised the Social Needs Conference at York University. £10,000 in 1974/1975 would be worth approx. £93,000 in today’s money so this was a very substantial cash injection from the Home Office to the Trust and as will become clear, the Trust was to have virtually no office overheads at this time due to a generous offer.

In December 1974, partially due to not having fixed offices but also because Albany Trustee Lil Butler, aged 33, was heavily pregnant with twins (who would arrive on 29 December her fifth and sixth children in 15 years of marriage to Samuel Butler, Lord Butler’s son) the Albany Trust met at her house at 11 St Alban’s Grove, off of Kensington High Street. In July Lucilla had hosted a networking/fundraising event for Albany Trust as mentioned in the minutes. Sadly, shortly after the twins’ birth on 6 January 1975 both of Lucilla Butler’s parents would die in a motor accident in a gale. The Edith Borthwick school in Essex near Braintree is named for her mother.

Six Albany Trustees were in attendance: Rev. Michael Butler, Antony Grey, Dr John Robinson (former Bishop of Woolwich, currently then Dean of Trinity College Cambridge with Lucilla’s father-in-law Lord Butler as Master), Dr Charlotte Wolff along with David Barnard (formerly of the NCCL) who at the meeting was officially appointed Organising Secretary to the Trust.

Following abandoning the lease on 32 Shaftesbury Avenue at Piccadilly (over which there was dispute) the Trust being itinerant had held sporadic meetings during the period 1973-1974, first in Kilburn and then in Highbury at 18 Corsica Street, N5 – opposite Dr Rhodes Boyson’s school Highbury Grove he’d founded in 1967, where he’d implemented a caning policy, leaving in 1974 to become a Conservative MP and later an Education Minister under Thatcher.

Thatcher’s bodyguard says he warned her about underage sex rumours about close aide amid claims senior ministers were named in dossier [Daily Mail 27 July 2014]

In 1989 Anthony Gilberthorpe has said he gave Thatcher a 40 page dossier and later met with William Hague to put forward his allegations

Tory child abuse whistleblower: ‘Margaret Thatcher knew all about underage sex ring among ministers’[Mirror, 13 July 2014]

“I underlined the names of Keith Joseph, Rhodes Boyson and one MP still serving today. I also said I had seen Michael Havers at a party in Blackpool held at the hotel pool in 1983.”

In autumn 1974, introduced by Mrs Sara Morrison, Peter’s sister-in-law, Grey had lunched with Keith Joseph about which she’d been delighted to have introduced them.

David Barnard reported some good news regarding permanent premises being offered to the Trust for 2 years virtually free of charge which they were scheduled to move to from March 1975:

“David Barnard reported that the Trust had generously been offered offices by Miss Betty Shortt of Henri Dorot Ltd at their premises at 31/33 Clapham Road, London SW9. The offices comprised nine rooms and a warehouse on three floors, all of which had been recently carpeted, decorated, rewired, centrally heated, etc. The proposal was that the Trust occupied the offices on Licence for a period of two years, during which the Trust would have no liability for rent or rates, but would pay a proportion of the cost of lighting, heating and office cleaning. The Trustees’ expressed their appreciation of Miss Shortt’s offer and confirmed its acceptance by the Managing Trustee.”

The nine offices would allow for Albany Trust to step up the counselling services offered to sexual minorities. The use to which the warehouse space could be put would shortly become the subject of discussions between Albany Trust and PIE/ Nucleus’s Charles Napier as providing a Youth Centre for young homosexuals although ultimately it was thought Earl’s Court would be a better location.

Youth Service Provision for Young Homosexuals in Earl's Court, Submission of Evidence & Proposals - A Working Party instigated by Sir Harold Haywood OBE, Appendix IV 'The Earl's Court Gay Help Service by Nucleus'

Youth Service Provision for Young Homosexuals in Earl’s Court, Submission of Evidence & Proposals – A Working Party instigated by Sir Harold Haywood OBE, Final paragraphs of Appendix IV ‘The Earl’s Court Gay Help Service by Nucleus’

Grey also had good news and announced ‘successful negotiations’ with Tony Hart of the Home Office Voluntary Services Unit at the meeting at Lucilla Butler’s house in December 1974

Home Office Grant

“Antony Grey reported on his successful negotiations with Tony Hart at the Voluntary Services Unit of the Home Office. The letter from Mr Hart offering a grant to the Trust had already been circulated. The Trustees noted with appreciation the grant received, and the help given in this matter by Miss Geraldine Aves and her colleagues of the ad hoc Advisory Group. The Trustees’ agreed that a letter of thanks should be sent to Miss Aves.”

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Harold Wilson had just been re-elected with a majority of 3 (10.10.74) and 22nd October 1974 when Tony Hart wrote his letter above to Antony Grey was when the House first re-assembled after the election.   The Home Secretary at the time was Roy Jenkins ( who had been in the post since March 74)
Tony Hart wrote:

“I am writing in reply to the application for a grant which you sent us on 18 July. I am sorry I have not been able to let you have a decision on this before now, but as I think you know we have had to consult a number of interested Departments.

I am glad to be able to tell you that the Minister of State, Lord Harris, has agreed that we should make a grant to the Albany trust of £10,000 for this financial year. We would be willing to consider a figure of a similar order in 1975/76, subject to further discussion next March and to Parliament agreeing the necessary funds. The grant is a contribution towards the administrative costs of your Headquarters as set out in your application and so far as possible the expenditure should be allocated in the manner you proposed. We should wish to be consulted on any significant variation in the proposed expenditure or the purposes to which the funds will be allocated. The grant is offered on the understanding that the Trust will give an undertaking that these public funds will not be used to exert pressure on the Government for any change in the Law on homosexuality.

The grant for this financial year will be paid in two instalments, the first at once and the second in January 1975. I should be grateful if you could let us have regular reports at six monthly intervals on the progress of the work. We should also like to see an audited account of the expenduture within four months of the end of each financial year, ie 31 March. Any balance of the grant unpsent at the end of each year must be returned. Could you please let me know as soon as possible to whom the cheques should be made payable.

I should be grateful if you could confirm that these arrangements and conditions are acceptable to your Trustees.”

[ Letter from T.A.A. Hart, Head of VSU to Antony Grey, Managing Trustee of Albany Trust dated 22 October 1974 / Ref: VSU 271/01]
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On the small working party drafting the Albany Trust’s 3 year development programme the Home Office were being asked to fund sat David Jones O.B.E. at the National Institute of Social Work (who had previously been Peter Righton’s boss until Righton had moved to the National Children’s Bureau in 1972) and Raymond Clarke. Clarke, a Methodist and later a member of the United Reformed Church had started his social services career by studying at Nottingham University during the 1950s having left the Indian Army. He’d gone on to become Warden of University Settlement in Liverpool between 1957 – 1963 before moving to Yorkshire, (where Sir Keith Joseph had been MP in Leeds North East – Jimmy Savile’s constituency – since 1956) where he was appointed as Secretary of the Yorkshire Council of Social Service, becoming Joseph’s Social Services protege.
Grey, Quest for Justice, p.158

Grey, Quest for Justice, p.158

The recent report by the Methodists, especially concerning the prevalence of abuse in Nottingham and Derby, is food for thought due to two prominent individuals whose unstinting support for the Albany Trust’s support of PIE.
Both Methodists, both who started their careers in social services and youth work in Nottingham and Derby, a more detailed look at the careers of Raymond Clarke OBE and Sir Harold Haywood OBE’s perhaps provide an answer as to why Michael De La Noy in 1970 would have kept 20% of fundraising letters from Lord Beaumont to send to one relatively small city – Nottingham
Abuse reports in Methodist Church highest in Nottingham and Derby, says new research (Nottingham Post, 28 May 2015)
http://www.nottinghampost.com/Abuse-reports-Methodist-Church-highest-Nottingham/story-26590064-detail/story.html#ixzz3c6LvigXf

Methodist abuse figures may only be the tip of the iceberg (Nottingham Post, 29 May 2015)
Tony Hart’s full name is Thomas Antony Alfred Hart (T.A.A Hart) (b. 1940) becoming the only Headmaster of Cranleigh School who’d never been a Headmaster of a school previously.
  • President of the Oxford University Union 1963 [ http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Presidents_of_the_Oxford_Union ]
  • Principal in Ministry of Transport
  • Transport adviser to Malawi Government
  • Ran VSU [1974? duration?]
  • 1978: Assistant Secretary in Civil Service Dept for controlling annual expenditure on public service pensions
  • Moved to Treasury – Under Secretary to Cabinet Office
  • Headmaster of Cranleigh School, Surrey
  • Retires to Cyprus, Pissouri becomes Chairman of Residents’ Association

Before retiring to Cyprus Tony was the Headmaster of Cranleigh School in Surrey. In his university days he was President of the Oxford University Union. Thereafter he pursued a career in the Civil Service where he became a Principal in the Ministry of Transport. Later he was the Transport Adviser to the Malawi Government and then ran HM Government’s Voluntary Services Unit. In 1978 he was an Assistant Secretary in the Civil Service Department for controlling annual expenditure on public service pensions. On moving to the Treasury he was offered promotion to Under Secretary to the Cabinet Office.

With such a varied experience of government and administration Tony’s address on how his Residents’ Association liaise with the Pissouri Mukhtar and the Pissouri council was of great interest. He told Shipmates how the Association was set up, how they found Club premises and how cross cultural issues were handled. Bingo seems to be a good vehicle for meeting on common ground!

After his presentation a question time led to a good discussion of issues common to all ex-pats and hopefully an increased understanding of our host country.

http://www.rnacyprus.org/archives.htm

Julian Gibbs – ‘A leading insurance broker of the time’ had hosted a fundraising/networking event for the Trust on 22 october 1974

A Head of My Time  By George Stephen

A Head of My Time
By George Stephen

Julian Gibbs, in his mid-forties had recently struck out on his own setting up Julian Gibbs Associates Ltd at 9 Manchester Square, breaking away from the family merchant bank Antony Gibbs which would later be subsumed into HSBC. He’d  been on the livery of the Grocer’s Company since 1961 (aged 29) (shortly to offer the Albany Trust a grant for their Field Officer/Youth Officer), becoming Vice-Chairman of the London Federation of Boys Clubs in 1971 (aged 39) and the Vice-President of the Insurance Institute of London in 1972 (although name is missing from the IIL website). On 22 October 1974 Gibbs had hosted a fundraising and networking evening for Albany Trust, attended by Rev. Michael Butler, David Barnard and Antony Grey.

photo 1-52 photo 2-51 photo 3-33 photo 4-25

Future Chairman and Additional Trustees: It was agreed that a new Chairman for the Trustees should not be sought for the time being. It was agreed that it was desirable to have additional Trustees and that the following be invited in due course to become Trustees: –

Susan Barnett (Family Planning Association Grapevine)

Harold Haywood (ex-Director NAYC)

Tony Smythe (Director, MIND)

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1978: PIE raids, William Blake and Lord Margadale’s estate at Fonthill Wiltshire

Screen Shot 2015-03-06 at 13.11.23Children of the future age

Reading this indignant page

Know that in a former time

Love! Sweet Love! was thought a crime

(A Little Girl Lost – William Blake from Songs of Innocence & Experience)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

On 7 December 1977 Cyril Townsend MP had introduced his private member’s bill aimed at ‘preventing the exploitation of children by their use in the production of films or photographic material of an obscene of pornographic character’

HC Deb 07 December 1977 vol 940 c1404

Mr. Cyril D. Townsend, supported by Mr. Nigel Forman, Mr. Kenneth Baker, Mr. Peter Bottomley, Mr. Nicholas Scott, Mr. Hugh Dykes, Mr. Michael Alison, Mr. Richard Luce, Mr. A. J. Beith, Mr. George Rodgers, Mr. Ken Weetch and Mr. John Cartwright, presented a Bill to prevent the exploitation of children by their use in the production of films or photographic material of an obscene or pornographic character: And the same was read the First time; and ordered to be read a Second time upon Friday 10th February and to be printed [Bill 16].

Following PIE’s June 1978 AGM, on 13 June PIE had sent out an emergency bulletin to its members informing them PIE had been  infiltrated by the News of the World and that police raids had taken place at Executive Committee Member’s houses. All of the material for the July issue of Magpie had been seized.

The emergency bulletin of 13 June is most likely the document below (although undated). Reportedly the police had seized a large number of PIE’s files “and we feel that they are determined and that it will only be a matter of time before they obtain a list.”

“It may be that people in positions of power and influence are using the possibility of a charge under the Obscenity Laws as a excuse for a witch-hunt against PIE and its members.”

If the above were true surely it would have been much more advisable for the police to hold tight to wait and raid during August 1978 once the Child Protection Act had come into force? Using the antiquated Obscenity Laws, ripe for reform and much criticised already, when the Act had been specifically drafted to create offences for which PIE members could have been charged with was, with hindsight, a strange decision and led to articles like Alan Rusbridger’s on ‘Why the DPP resurrected an ancient law to deal with pedophiles’ [Guardian, 14 March 1981]

Despite PIE and NCCL’s combined and best lobbying efforts to dilute or better still, derail the Bill’s passage through parliament, (one tactic being to publish to each MP the booklet drafted by the Albany Trust under Sir Harold Haywood’s chairmanship in April 1978) on 20th July 1978 the Child Protection Bill received royal assent, coming into force a month later.

 

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The June bulletin signed off with the the first stanza of A Little Girl Lost by Blake.

In August PIE circulated the news bulletin below to advise members the act was in force and which kind of photos of children might be deemed ‘indecent’. The bulletin suggests a potential legitimate reason under the act for showing, possessing or distributing indecent photos of children would be psychiatrists showing patients images of child abuse as a form of aversion therapy.

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And what of the significance of the Blake quote?

Blake had long been a friend and pupil of Richard ‘Dicky’ Cosway, who had been appointed Painter to the Prince Regent in 1785 – the only time this royal appointment was ever made. Cosway had created a craze for secret lovers to give presents to one another – borne of the Prince Regent’s secret marriage to Maria Fitzherbert [read more here] – miniature eye portraits.Screen Shot 2015-03-06 at 13.55.07

“Cosway was not only a famous and fashionable painter; he was also a mesmerist and magician who practised arcana related to alchemical and cabbalistic teaching. There are reports of erotic ceremonies, the imbibing of drugs or ‘elixirs’, and ritual nudity. Blake was no stranger to the symbols or beliefs of a man such as Cosway – the manuscript of the poem he was now writing contains many drawings of bizarre sexual imagery, including women sporting giant phalli and children engaged in erotic practices with adults.” [Blake, Peter Ackroyd, p.210]

“When William Blake died in 1827, his widow Catherine appointed Frederick Tatham his literary and artistic executor. No sooner had Tatham accepted the position than he was, in the words of William Michael Rossetti, brother of Dante Gabriel Rossetti, “beset” by “Swedenborgians, Irvingites, or other extreme sectaries”, and compelled to thrust “a gag into the piteous mouth of Blake’s corpse”. What these timid souls feared was that Blake’s remains would disclose his intense, frequently obsessive and occasionally pornographic interest in sex. Tatham’s job amounted to a full-scale expurgation of what Blake’s less unbuttoned followers considered obscene. Blake had left many drawings and manuscripts containing his most explicit sexual, religious and political expressions – all three were linked for him – and Tatham felt obliged to destroy these. The loss was irreparable, but some of the cover-up – literally – was less extreme. Joined by Blake’s friend John Linnell, on some works Tatham only erased the offending words or images. When this proved impracticable they resorted to a fig leaf. Blake’s original nude self-portrait for his Milton exhibited an erect and oddly blackened penis. One of Blake’s prudish descendants mitigated the shock caused by the poet’s proud member by drawing knickers over it. Thankfully, modern technology has restored much of this censored material, and what emerges is a vivid recognition that for Blake, sex was at the centre of his spiritual and domestic life.” [Why Mrs Blake cried by Marsha Keith Schuchard, Gary Lachman, The Independent, 12 March 2006]

What is little mentioned in connection with Blake is that he and Richard Cosway, along with others such as the landscape painter Loutherbourg (set designer at Drury Lane Theatre) were together conducting ‘magick’ rituals involving sex with children and much of what Tatham and Linell were trying to delete or obscure were Blake’s depictions of children engaged in sexual acts with adults.

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William Blake and the Cultures of Radical Christianity By Robert Rix, published 2007

 

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Why Mrs Blake Cried: William Blake and the Erotic Imagination By Marsha Keith Schuchard, published May 2013

In 1770 the child who Lord Byron called “England’s wealthiest son”, William Beckford, aged 10, inherited Fonthill on the death of his father Alderman William Beckford, Lord Mayor of London. In 1881 to celebrate his 21st birthday William threw a 3 day ‘ritualistic and magical celebration’ at Fonthill which sounds not dissimilar to a son et lumiere show combined with the sexual abuse of children, noted as he was for his pederasty as much as his aesthetic appreciation of art and his collections.

“In the autumn of 1781, shortly after being elected to the British Academy of Art as a landscape painter, Alsatian-born artist Philippe Jacques de Loutherbourg was hired by the wealthy young aesthete William Beckford to prepare a private birthday spectacle at his mansion in Wiltshire. De Loutherbourg, who was also chief scenographer at Drury Lane theatre and the inventor of a recent commercial “moving picture” entertainment called theEidophusikon, promised to produce “a mysterious something that the eye has not seen nor the heart conceived.” Beckford wanted an Oriental spectacle that would completely ravish the senses of his guests, not least so that he could enjoy a sexual tryst with a thirteen year old boy, William Courtenay, and Louisa Beckford, his own cousin’s wife.

The resulting three day party and spectacle staged over Christmas 1781 became one of the scandals of the day, and ultimately forced William Beckford into decades of exile in Europe to escape accusations of sodomy. However, this Oriental spectacle also had a special significance for the history of Romantic aesthetics and modern-day cinema. Loutherbourg and Beckford’s collaboration provided the inspiration for William to write his scintillating Gothic novel, Vathek, and impelled Philippe himself into revising his moving-picture program in dramatically new ways. Ultimately this saturnalian party of Christmas 1781 constituted a pioneering experiment in applying the aesthetic of the sublime to virtual reality technology. It also led Loutherbourg to anticipate the famous nineteenth-century “Phantasmagoria” of French showman, Gaspard Robertson, by producing in 1782 a miniature Gothic movie scene based on the Pandemonium episode in Milton’s Paradise Lost.” [The Virtual Infernal: Philippe de Loutherbourg, William Beckford and the Spectacle of the Sublime, Ian McMalman, Romanticism on the net, 2007]

While at Trinity College Cambridge, (according to Robin Bryans in the The Dust has never settled (1992)) a 22 year old Antony Blunt had started the ‘vogue for the work and life-style of William Beckford’ [p.576] forming a ‘Beckford cult.’ In the February 1929 edition of The Venture (published at Cambridge for 6 issues until June 1930) Blunt heaped praise on ‘the dazzling architectural ensemble’ of Beckford’s Fonthill estate, calling it ‘artistically the best production of the Gothic revival’ while Bryans refers to it as ‘a vast neo-Gothic country house with a megalomaniac tower”. In 1934 Blunt started lecturing on art history at the Courtauld Institute, 20 Portman Square, where Queen Mary of Teck (the current Queen’s paternal grandmother) would attend to listen. Robin Bryans had this to say on Queen Mary and Blunt’s relationship:

“It was almost as if a conspiracy existed between the Russian spy and the dowager Queen, because they both knew perfectly well the homosexual history of newcastle men going up the white marble staircase at Clumber. Silently, they were aware of William Beckford’s escape to the Continent after buggering his schoolboy cousin, and the resemblance that incident bore to Queen Mary’s own husband who died with the famous words ‘Bugger Bognor’ for he, as the King of England, had been obliged to flaunt the authority of his own Attorney General by getting another bugger out of the country.” [p.199]

Clumber Park was the home of the Pelham-Clintons, Dukes of Newcastle (bearing in mind Peter Righton also had the name Pelham). Who had King George V broken the law for and assisted to flee the country to avoid prosecution by “his own” Attorney-General?

 

The Dust has never settled, p.148

The Dust has never settled, p.148

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p.576

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p.397

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p.199

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p.476

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p.149

 

 

 

Inspired by his birthday celebrations the following year he wrote “Vathek” and built Fonthill Abbey on the grounds of the estate, creating an ‘Arcadian idyll’ according to the sale particulars of 1829.

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Fonthill History website http://www.fonthill.co.uk

James Morrison, MP for Ipswich Suffolk and a Victorian haberdasher called the ‘Napoleon of Shopkeepers’ (ever since he’d made a fortune stockpiling black crepe in time for William IV’s death),  eventually bought the Fonthill estate in 1830 despite the decayed state of the Abbey. He restored and extended the grounds and passed the estate down the Morrison family until it reached Lord Margadale, the father of Sir Peter Morrison MP (Con: Chester 1974 – 1992).

Screen Shot 2015-03-06 at 11.10.59

A man who grew up in Hindon Wiltshire living near the Fonthill estate gives an account of seeing Lord Johnnie Morrison at the hunt one New Year’s Day in 1952-1953 and also has this to say about his son Peter:

“Morrison was father to Charles Morrison  tory mp for Devizes and Peter Morrison tory mp for Chester. Johnnie himself was given the hereditary peerage of Margadale now passed to his grandson. Peter Morrison – who had no experience of life outside of the Fonthill estate, Eton and Tory party somehow managed to develop extreme right wing views on morality while flouting them in his personal life. Is it any wonder that a man from such a background would see his ‘droit de seigneur’ as young working class boys in care homes as an alternative to scullery maids?” [Sir Peter Morrison of Fonthill – I knew your family, Ian Bone, 8 November 2012 – with thanks to @LordBonkers for signposting]

Despite Barry Strevens, Thatcher’s former bodyguard informing her Morrison was holding ‘sex parties’ with under-age boys (presumably not at Fonthill with accompanying theatrical displays as tradition might have dictated), she decided to promoted him to Deputy Chairman of the Conservatives.

Sir Peter Morrison has also been implicated in the North Wales child abuse scandal by Rod Richards (former MP and ex-leader of the Welsh Conservatives) and in January 2015 allegations surfaced that he had raped a boy at Elm Guest House

Murder link to Thatcher aide accused of raping teenage boy [Telegraph 5 June 2015]

Former Minister says Thatcher aide pedophile preyed on boys’ home  – and Hague should have known [Daily Mail 27 October 2012]

Thatcher’s bodyguard says he warned her about underage sex rumours about close aide amid claims senior ministers were named in dossier [Daily Mail 27 July 2014] which also named Rhodes Boyson and Sir Keith Joseph [more to post on Albany Trust’s financial requests to Neville Vincent in 1973/4 – Joseph’s cousin and from the family that Bovis was co-owned with]

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Keith Joseph By Andrew Denham, Mark Garnett, Senior Lecturer in Politics and International Relations Mark Garnett p.234

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ibid, p.233

 

 

 

 

 

 

1968-1970: Albany Trust, Peter Righton, Antony Grey and Ian Greer

It was during the summer of 1968, that Antony Grey notes “a weekend study conference of about thirty people, mostly from the caring professions, met to review the social situation following law reform” and the Trust began to be steered towards ‘youth sexuality’. Hosted at Wychcroft, Surrey, the home of the Church of England’s Southwark Diocese Ordination course for new incoming priests, the July weekend’s focus according to Grey, was on the homosexual ‘image’, the need for more supportive social frameworks, more realistic public education concerning teenage sexuality ‘and the often extensive sexual experience of young people, both heterosexual and homosexual, and the social folly of treating them as criminals on the pretext of ‘protecting’ them, was stressed.’[i]

 

To that end the group requested the Trust to put in place a research and practical help project for those aged under twenty-one – as Grey pinpoints “the beginning of the Trust’s special concern for this very vulnerable age group.”[ii] The plans of the thirty people gathering together in July 1968 were to serve as a ‘significant precursor’ to the 1970 Social Needs Conference in York and the Trust’s ensuing development programme.

 

Rev. Malcolm Johnson in his recently published autobiography ‘Diary of a gay priest: The Tightrope Walker, who was at the time a chaplain to Queen Mary’s College, resident at St Benet’s on the Mile End Road, gives a first-hand account of attending the weekend:

 

Picture 18

Ken Plummer the sociologist, one of the attendees mentioned above, is currently Emeritus Professor of sociology at Essex University [‘Paedophilia is natural and normal for males’ The Telegraph, 5 July 2014]

By June 1969, the informal group at Wychcroft had begun to take on a more formal structure at the inaugural meeting of the Albany Trust Social Projects Study Group. Peter Righton, who was then currently M.A. Lecturer in Social Work Training at the National Institute of Social Work and ever the keen public speaker, was by November 1969 very much involved with the Trust’s counselling work and presented the Albany Trust’s Winter Talk on ‘The Concept of Counselling.[iii]

With Righton at the helm as Chair, and Antony Grey, Managing Trustee of the Albany Trust as Secretary, and one other attendee, Rev. Michael Butler who would later become Counselling Trustee for Albany, the Study Group’s stated objectives, to be achieved over the course of an intense 12 month period meeting fortnightly, were to cover:

 

  • the comparative assessment of the history, mode of operation and achievements of homophile groups in other countries (notably US Holland France and Scandinavia ) as well as development in Britain to date
  • unmet needs in this country
  • proposals for action

 

photo 1-10

photo 2-9

 

“It was felt that the research should be of sufficient depth to influence opinion in the Churches, Parliamentary, Government and legal circles as well as the Press; and that in order to be useful, it should provoke general discussion of a nature calculated to remove the legal obstacle which remain in the way of non-hazardous social contact between homosexual people. It would be necessary to delineate the defects of the present situation, social as well as legal, and the contents should include the broader questions of public policy and education.”

 

It was agreed that the research should be carried out under the auspices of Albany Trust and that Peter Righton would work with Antony Grey on compiling UK organisations and with the Dutch Economist Leo Perk on Continental Organisations. Leo Perk Vlaanderen, resident in England for most of his life, had an interest in the re-education of ex-prisoners and financing the British education of children from developing countries, which had led to him establishing a charitable foundation in his mother’s name.

While Perk was unable to make it to the inaugural meeting, Ian Greer, Allan Campbell, Keith Lye, and Brian Parkinson were all in attendance.

At the time Greer, who thirty years later would achieve notoriety in the Cash for Questions scandal involving the House of Fraser’s Mohammed Al-Fayed, (exposed by Exaro’s (then Guardian) journalist David Hencke and the Observer’s David Leigh), was also working for the Mental Health Trust. In 1966 in a surprising detour from his political aspirations, Greer’s name had been passed to Lord Butler and Sir Evelyn Rothschild and he had accepted an appointment as National Director. [iv]

Greer’s 13 years at Conservative Central Office and then as a campaign manager in Billericay meant that by his mid-thirties he’d built a wealth of political experience and contacts. During his time at the Mental Health Trust, and a year before joining forces with Righton and Grey on the Study Project, he and his partner John Russell went into business together, establishing Russell Greer Associates, a political PR lobbying firm – a concept very much ahead of its time, although already well established in Washington.

“Mr Greer became the party’s youngest ever agent (a full-time party post then and reasonably paid) working the Billericay beat. There followed a three-year spell as national director of the Mental Health Trust before he returned to the political world. In 1970 he set up a consultancy with a friend, John Russell, a venture which, after only modest success, ended when the two fell out in 1980.” [http://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/rise-and-fall-of-the-greed-generations-lobbyist-1356986.html ]

By May 1969 the Rt. Hon. Jo Grimond, MP, otherwise known as ‘the man who saved the Liberals’ had launched a national campaign on behalf of the Mental Health Trust to raise £250,000 to establish a network of rehabilitation centres, and other projects.

Mental Health Trust advert 1969: I’m still trying to wipe away the tears of my childhood: The private trauma behind the star of the shocking ad campaign [Daily Mail, 29 June 2012]

In his June 1995 statement to the Parliamentary Select Committee on Standards & Privileges Greer gave a more detailed account of his invitation to head up the Mental Health Trust, hand-picked by Lord Butler (former Home Secretary at the time Sir Ian Horobin MP’s prosecution for abuse of boys, promoted to Deputy Prime Minister in Macmillan’s Night of the Long Knives during) and Sir Evelyn De Rothschild.

 

 

WITNESS STATEMENTS BY MR IAN GREER [62]

 

Ian Bramwell Greer of 19 Catherine Place, London, SW1E 6DX will say:

 

  1. I am 62 years of age, having been born in 1933. After leaving school at 17, I went on to further education at a business college before, in 1953, commencing work for Conservative Central Office as a Constituency Campaign Organiser. I later became the then youngest Conservative Party agent in the country.

 

  1. I have always, throughout my adult life, taken a great interest in politics, probably through the influence of my parents, who were both Salvation Army Officers and deeply committed Christians who devoted a great deal of their time to social work. I can recall at the age of about 12 or so delivering leaflets in support of the late Winston Churchill’s election campaign. I recall that at the time I started work for Conservative Central Office I was paid £6.00 per week which, even those days, represented little more than a subsistence allowance. My work involved establishing the structure of Conservative Party organisations in the various constituencies where I was sent, raising funds and seeking to introduce new members to the Conservative Party. I thought a great deal about the possibility of standing for Parliament myself but, since I do not come from a wealthy background, and knowing how insecure an MP’s position can be, after 13 years I decided to concentrate on developing my own professional career, outside the Conservative Party.

 

  1. My first thought was to seek employment with a public relations company, but my name was passed to the then Lord Butler, better known as RAB Butler, the former Deputy Prime Minister and Secretary of State for Education, and Sir Evelyn De Rothschild, a member of the famous banking family, who were involved in establishing the Mental Health Trust. I left the employment of the Conservative Party in 1966 to become National Director of the Trust, which was an organisation pledged to a campaign to raise money and to change the attitude of both the public and government towards the mentally ill. At the time, there remained a great deal of ignorance about mental illness not only amongst the public but also amongst politicians; the attitude still at that time was to lock the mentally ill away from other members of the community in huge, Victorian institutions. I recall our campaign slogan at the time was “Hurt Minds Can Be Healed” and I believe that a great deal of the work which I, and others connected with the Trust, carried out, helped to enlighten both the public and the legislators to have a greater understanding of the problems of mental illness. I held the position for two years, working as a lobbyist on behalf of the mentally ill, their families and dependents.
  2. My experience at the Mental Health Trust demonstrated to me the contribution an effective lobbying campaign can make. I was already aware, from my time at Conservative Central Office, where I had always taken a keen interest in American as well as British politics, of the far greater developed lobbying system which had grown up in the US and the more effective way in which campaigns were mounted, by both professional and non professional lobbyists in the US, in order to ensure that legislators had a better understanding of particular social or business concerns. I was also aware of the very wide feeling amongst industrialists that Members of Parliament and Government Ministers had no real understanding of their needs, and the widespread feeling of MPs and Government Ministers that industrialists did not understand the process of government. I accordingly decided, with a colleague, to start a political public relations company, Russell Greer Associates, which was set up in 1968. With the benefit of hindsight, I can see that the concept was ahead of its time. I found it very frequently to be the case, when approaching potential clients, that the attitude tended to be that the directors of a company felt they would be able to follow what was going on in Parliament from reading the Financial Timesor, quite frequently, I would be told that one of the directors had been close personal friends of an MP for many years and was quite sure that the MP would keep the company informed of anything it needed to know. Many of the people I met at this time seemed to have great confidence in the traditional “old boy” network and, although my intention had been for Russell Greer Associates to be involved mainly in political matters, it became largely a financial and general public relations company. The years from 1968 until 1982 were a time of great struggle for me financially, trying to develop the business.

 

From July 1969, a month after his inauguration as Secretary of the Social Study Projects Group alongside Righton, Doreen Cordell, a counselling employee of the Trust had sensed that Antony was completely withdrawn, ‘in absentia’ in mind mostly but also physically as she would later write to Peter Righton[v], unaware he and Grey were deeply involved in extra-curricular projects, with far grander plans for power and influence in lobbying than through counselling provision or the Trust as the sole medium. His overall lack of interest in the counselling and the affairs of the Trust had begun during the final debates and the coming into force of the Sexual Offences Act 1967.

Later the same year the Study Group had been established, Raymond Clarke (who was later to smooth the path for the Trust’s government funding) chaired one of the first provincial social work conferences at York University bringing together people representing most of the homophile groups in Britain, alongside delegates from churches, education, social work and counselling. Arising out of this first York Conference a major decision arose which Grey describes as:

“to convene a working party to produce a report on the particular problems involved and skills required in counselling homosexuals. The resulting document, Counselling homosexuals: a study of personal needs and public attitudes, compiled by Peter Righton and published by the National Council for Social Services Square Press in 1973, still merits attention. In his Introduction, Raymond Clarke referred to the growing openness of society, with less stigma than formerly attaching to certain areas of social need, but commented that ‘when one member of the conference referred to the ‘hell of alienation felt by many homosexuals’ there was a general agreement that this was all too common.”[vi]

On Grey’s return from York the temperature in the Trust’s offices cooled considerably. Doreen Cordell and Grey were locked in a bitter battle over Grey’s wish for Cordell to support the new Social Needs group work administratively. “You must know” – she wrote to Peter Righton almost two years later, “ in case you are not aware of this already – that because of my unwillingness to machinate for Antony in his private affairs, he turned extremely vicious during the latter part of 1969 and early 1970.” [vii]

“With help from Michael Schofield and other sociologists a questionnaire on social needs of homosexual men and women was compiled and over 5,000 copies of this were widely distributed between December 1969 and February 1970. 2672 anonymously completed replies were received – from 2082 men, 588 women and two people who did not specify their sex.”[viii]

During the spring and summer of 1970 analysis of the responses was undertaken. A weekend residential conference entitled ‘Social Needs’ and sponsored by the Albany Trust and the Yorkshire Council of Social Service took place at York University in July 1970 to discuss the results of the survey and implications for future work.

“Another good friend who appeared around this time, and played a powerful supporting role for the Trust for many years, was Raymond Clark, who was at the time Secretary of the Yorkshire Council of Social Service. Raymond, who came from a Methodist background and was a magistrate, had a very distinguished career in social service. When he left Yorkshire he came for some years head of the national organisations division of the National Council of Social Service in London, where I continued to work closely with him. Later, Sir Keith Joseph, asked him to become Director of the Personal Social Services Council and he finished his career as chief executive of the National Council of Voluntary Child Care Organisations. When we first came into contact with Raymond in Leeds he was already well aware of the mental loneliness and physical isolation experienced by homosexuals, especially those living away from large towns. We referred some of our Northern cases to him, and instead of going home to his wife and family after a long day’s work he would sometimes spend his evenings travelling out into the country by bus to counsel some desperately lonely person who had contacted the Albany Trust; a generous and selfless gesture which typifies his attitude to social service. We soon realised that in Raymond Clarke we had a sympathetic and highly professional ear for our plans, and he set up and jointly sponsored with the Albany Trust one of the first provincial social work conferences we took part in at York University in 1969. This was so successful that it led to the important residential ‘Social Needs’ conference at York in 1970, chaired by Raymond.”[ix]

Soon after the York Meeting, Grey handed in his resignation to the Trustees and departed at the end of September 1970, making way for Michael De La Noy, the planned coup of Albany Trust’s counselling files by Peter Righton and Doreen Cordell and the arrival of Dr Robert Chartham.

January 1973: Peter Righton compiles Doreen Cordell’s observations into a report

In January 1973 Righton would finally publish a report presenting the views of the Working Party set up at the York Conference, a jointly sponsored event by the Albany Trust and Yorkshire Council of Social Service, headed by Raymond T Clarke who also writes the Preface. Under Sir Keith Joseph’s Ministerial responsibility for Social Services in Ted heath’s Cabinet, Clarke had been promoted to the Head of the National Organisation Division within the National Council of Social Service. 2. 5 years previously he had been Secretary to Yorkshire Council Social Services.

Another Albany Trust member of the Working Party is Rev. Michael Butler, Deputy Director of The Samaritans over at Chad Varah’s church in the city – the Grocer’s Company St Stephen’s Walbrook.

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January 1973, National Council of Social Services

 

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Members of the Working Party

 

 

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Raymond Clarke’s preface

 

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Raymond Clarke’s preface

 

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Peter Righton’s wish to conflate terminology

 

Published while Peter Righton is listed as Head of the Children’s Centre, National Children’s Bureau, this A5 booklet he sets out a proposal for a training framework for educating counsellors and befrienders in catering to homosexual clients having identified a specific issue with terminology. Righton is most concerned to conflate the definition of homosexuality with pederasty by pointing out it can be conflated, followed by what now might be discerned as a description of his own predatory behaviour.

The observations are based on the experience of one worker – most likely to be Doreen Cordell – over four years [April 1967 – spring 1971] at the Albany Trust, without reference or further analysis of the case material, because presumably the Trust’s counselling case files were never transferred to ACCESS. Specifically focuses on Doreen’s clients, male and female aged 15-69 during 1970-1971, some of whom may have moved with her when she was forced to leave the Trust in spring 1971 by Michael De La Noy, the Trust’s new Director. In terminology, Righton as the compiler observes:

“It is decidedly unfortunate that pederasty has two distinct sense, the second much more perjorative than the first, and that there is no agreement on the age-range covered by the term pederasty in the first sense. In practice, the few who use the term neutrally tend to mean ‘adolescent boy, the many who use the term with a condemnatory intention tend to mean ‘prepubertal boy’. There is no term corresponding to pederasty used in the first sense which can be used to refer to a woman’s attraction to an adolescent girl. Further misconceptions arise from the common public belief that most male homosexuals are ‘plotting and scheming’ to commit pederasty (in the second sense) whenever they get the chance.’

Righton’s tactic in publicly pre-empting any slips he might make or news of any previous close shaves he’d already had with the law as homophobic slurs also tells us what he knows to be the truth about himself: a man intent on ‘plotting and scheming’ to commit sexual assaults on post (and pre?) pubertal boys; a child rapist obsessed by opportunity and access to children, exploiting his power and influence in ever-ascending social circles every inch of the way.

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‘plotting and scheming’

 

 

[i] Quest for Justice: Towards homosexual emancipation (1992) Antony Grey Loc 3264/6001

[ii] Grey Loc 3275/6001

[iii] New Society, 20 November 1969

[iv] Greer’s Witness Statement to the Privilege & Standards Committee http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm199798/cmselect/cmstnprv/030ii/sp01108.htm

[v] PSY/WOL/4/1 Letter Jul 1971 Doreen Cordell to Peter Righton

[vi] Grey Loc 3319/6001

[vii] Ibid p.6 5th July 1971 Doreen Cordell to Peter Righton

[viii] Grey Loc 3291/6001

[ix] Grey Loc 3052/6001