DE LA SALLE SCHOOL LIVERPOOL – MISSING BOY

This was a post from a Survivor of a De La School in Liverpool in the 1980s.

Presumably it’s now the DLS Academy in Carr Lane East, Liverpool which is still being run by the DLS.

I felt it should have a separate post for two reasons. Firstly, in case it helps to highlight or explain the disappearance of a missing boy the author mentions: Mark Garvey.

Secondly, because it highlights how there is so much more to come out yet where Catholic abuse is concerned. Thus there were two missing children from my era connected with the Catholic community. (Not the De La Salles) I don’t have enough hard information (yet) to go into details and I don’t want to distract from this important post.

But my premise is that ‘brutal sadistic paedophiles’ of whom there were plenty at St Joseph’s College, Ipswich, don’t necessarily know when or how to stop at ‘just’ abuse. So there are some potentially awful implications.

For this reason, the De La Salle Order when in Ipswich, the Knights of St Columba in Ipswich who backed the DLS,  St Joseph’s lay teachers from the 60s to the 80s (one of whom used a cat o’ nine whip on a child – see my summary) all need properly investigating.

It’s all on my SUMMARY THREE PAGES ready for investigators to look at.

Hello, i just want to mention i too went to a De La Salle school in Liverpool although it was not a boarding school their were Brothers, of worst sort you could imagine. They were brutal sadistic pedophiles in which One of them was convicted twice of sexual assault named brother Paul. In no way im i exaggerating when i say i was strapped easily Fifty times for the slightest infractions, they would get off on it. There was also a brother who would try to proposition you by sidling up next to you an sing under his breath the Pet Shop Boys i got the brains you got the looks lets make lots of money ?. This took place for me in the 1980s. One thing all ways comes to my mind and that is the disappearance of a young man called Mark Garvey who apparently would frequent the brothers house that was attached to the school i dont know if that was looked into it should be.

BROTHER LAWRENCE HUGHES – NEW THOUGHTS & NAZIR AFZAL

Here’s a new post from Old Boy Michael, who I would assume went to Beulah Hill.

‘I went to a De La Salle school in London and experienced violent behaviour throughout my time at the school. In Northern Ireland they are having a Truth and Reconciliation Commission as part of letting go of the troubles and they asked that we report any violence or other misdemeanour. I emailed the Diocese Office in London and was put in contact with the current head of the De La Salle order in England, a brother named Lawrence Hughes. I then saw that your article named a Brother Lawrence Hughes as a violent teacher. Needless to say I have had a less than satisfactory dialogue with him and I wondered if the current head of the order is the same man that you mentioned.

I cannot remember any teacher who did not cane, strap, beat or punish me. I would appreciate your thoughts.

Regards’

As I’ve replied to Michael, it is indeed the same man: Hughes.

Here’s my current thoughts on the De La Salle order which Hughes is head of.

The problem many survivors face is similar to Michael’s: the Catholic Church and the De La Salle Order passes the buck endlessly and this is what’s happened here.

However, there is a small ray of hope.  A very small ray.

There’s the NEW Catholic Safeguarding Organisation now known as The Catholic Standards Safeguarding Agency CSSA which replaces two earlier systems. 

It happened just this month.

https://www.thetablet.co.uk/news/14149/nazir-afzal-pledges-hostile-church-for-abusers

Its head is Nazir Afzal who is an excellent choice – a Muslim who pursued the Rochdale paedophile rings and he is clearly an honourable and genuine man.

I’m sure the Church’s reason for appointing him is pure window dressing to make them look good and they must have factored in that they can still carry on as before: sweeping everything under the carpet.

I think it may be different with Nazir, even though there is no current mandatory reporting of abuse.

I’ve listened to an excellent audio podcast of Cardinal Nichols’ safeguarding officer a few weeks ago and whilst the lady concerned is clearly genuine it was so obvious her hands were tied.

Nazir is not a Catholic and he has a reputation to uphold, so I’m not sure how far they can restrict him.

Even so, the terms of his remit and the likelihood that endless survivors will come forward means that more buckpassing is likely.  And the Clergy are experts at this. They’ve been doing it for centuries and they’re not stupid. They will have thought about this long and hard before appointing Nazir.

However, I think there’s a case that could be made to the CSSA that the De La Salle Order UK is suspect with a man like Hughes at its head with three testimonies of violence against him. See a past post.

Given that the DLS still run UK schools that does not seem appropriate.

Hughes should resign.

Furthermore, that historic cases against the DLS which have been ignored – such as Michael’s and the endless DLS abuse cases on this blog – should be investigated in order to ensure the DLS is now safe.

It’s no good saying that’s all in the past. It’s still relevant to today.

It’s surely the CSSA’s responsibility to do this, especially given that the DLS have fobbed off survivors as Michael’s post also suggests.

That could be a way forward, Michael. Feel free to use anything on this site, including this post.

Be prepared for the CSSA  to buck pass. To say it’s another department or refer it to the safeguarding at Diocese level. But they just might respond, given that they know their boss is Nazir and they must be scared of more bad publicity.

Nazir is also on Twitter, so if you get screwed around (which I bet you will) you could always approach him direct. Go over their heads.

It’s something I plan to do myself at some point, but my first stage is to do a summary page of the crimes of the DLS for quick reference. Currently there’s far too much for an investigator to read. This includes an example of  DLS serious organized crime which may be transgenerational and thus especially relevant today. (‘The Shocking Truth About St Joseph’s’). In that example, a child nearly died. If he had, it would have been manslaughter. At least.

Summarising will take a while and I need to have the patience to deal with buck passing that will follow.  Plus I’m also pursuing Catholic abusers from a different direction.

But the DLS are still on my radar and I will deal with them soon. Not least because children today in DLS UK schools could still be at risk if a physical abuser like Hughes is still in charge.

Good luck, Michael.

VOICES OF AWARENESS PODCAST PART 2

Andy Taylor recently interviewed me for his Voices of Awareness podcast. Previous guests on his podcast include lawyer Richard Scorer, author of Betrayed, about the English Catholic Church, Jonathan West who presented evidence to IICSA about Ampleforth College, and Carol Lawrence, the Catholic Church’s leading safeguard officer.

My interview is over three parts and is about St Joseph’s College, Ipswich and the De La Salle Brothers and how they – inadvertently – inspired my writing career. Hence the title of the interview: The Dredd-ful violence of the De La Salle Brothers. Judge Dredd is a character I developed and wrote when I created the British science fiction comic 2000AD. The interview also covers the stories of other Survivors from the school.

You can listen to Part One here.

Here is Part Two.

Pat Mills exposes the violence of the De la Salle brothers of St Joseph’s college, Ipswich that inspired the plots & character traits of Judge Dredd and 2000AD. He covers the catholic tumors of shame & guilt, coming out as a survivor, blowing the whistle, trauma memories surfacing in middle age, revenge ideation, the catharsis of lampooning abusers & the testimonies of assault by Brother Lawrence Hughes.   

NB: The Podcast about the De La Salle Brothers is currently listed SECOND in the list below – click on the title to play.

The N word (Narcicism) Voices of Awareness

Stephen Parsons from Survivingchurch.org discusses charisma, narcisism, grooming, deference and the vulnerability of believers to corruption and abuse. 
  1. The N word (Narcicism)
  2. Cardinal Nichols & The Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse
  3. The Kindly Ones by Cliff James
  4. How survivors feel about IICSA
  5. Blood Legacy with Alex Renton

VOICES OF AWARENESS PODCAST PART 1

Andy Taylor recently interviewed me for his Voices of Awareness podcast. Previous guests on his podcast include lawyer Richard Scorer, author of Betrayed, about the English Catholic Church, Jonathan West who presented evidence to IICSA about Ampleforth College, and Carol Lawrence, the Catholic Church’s leading safeguard officer.

My interview is over three parts and is about St Joseph’s College, Ipswich and the De La Salle Brothers and how they – inadvertently – inspired my writing career. Hence the title of the interview: The Dredd-ful violence of the De La Salle Brothers. Judge Dredd is a character I developed and wrote when I created the British science fiction comic 2000AD. The interview also covers the stories of other Survivors from the school.

Below is Part One.

Part Two is here.

Pat Mills exposes the violence of the De la Salle brothers of St Joseph’s college, Ipswich that inspired the plots & character traits of Judge Dredd and 2000AD. He covers the catholic tumors of shame & guilt, coming out as a survivor, blowing the whistle, trauma memories surfacing in middle age, revenge ideation, the catharsis of lampooning abusers & the testimonies of assault by Brother Lawrence Hughes.   

NB: The Podcast about the De La Salle Brothers is currently listed second in the list below – click on the title to play.

The UK is a Sex Offender Friendly Society Voices of Awareness's Podcast

A *Sex Offender friendly* United Kingdom (part 1) Richard Scorer discusses rape culture, EveryonesInvited.uk, Javid’s new CSA wider implications report, The Ampleforth Debacle & the contempt of the establishment exemplified by Boris Johnson’s spaff comment!
  1. The UK is a Sex Offender Friendly Society
  2. The Dredd-ful Violence of the De La Salle Brothers (UK) part 1/3
  3. Children of the *Rape Culture* Revolution
  4. Ampleforth: A crisis of faith (part 3)
  5. The Roman Catholic Safeguarding Project

DE LA SALLE COVER-UPS

I think all of us are aware that there were cover-ups amongst the De La Salle Brothers. I remember how Brother Solomon suddenly – according to the playground grapevine at the time – went to Jersey, then onto Beulah Hill which he was thrown out from, subsequently possibly spending some time at Homan’s Boy Town (a disturbing location for this ‘Jimmy Savile of the De La Salle Order’) before returning to St Joseph’s as lay teacher Mike Mercado and then being thrown out again for sexual abuse.

I recall, as a boy, Brother James writing in the school magazine what a great asset Solomon was to the college and what a spiritual person he was. He clearly knew otherwise. It never rang true to me at the time.

Later, James himself got moved to Beulah Hill where his behavior was equally criminal. His obituary described him as a shy and timid man, not the violent rapist he really was. Once again, whoever wrote that obituary – almost certainly a DLS brother – must have known the truth and was lying through his teeth.

Similarly, when a startled Knight of St Columba (the Eminence Gris of St J’s) discovered the shocking evidence of violent abuse by James, he proclaimed ‘Oxford shall hear of this!’ I understand Oxford was and is the DLS centre of operations.

All these and many other references on this blog and elsewhere indicate a high level of collusion and cover-ups within the De La Salle Order. But it’s never been as clear cut and revealing a central control as the account below just in from Guy Lavender, an Old Boy of DLS school St Peter’s.

He refers to “an administrative organization” being responsible.

It could therefore be valuable in the days to come. Many thanks to Guy for this account and for allowing me to use his name.

                                       …………………………………

FROM GUY LAVENDER

Just read your latest post regarding the abuse at St J’s. It is a reminder to me and a stark jolt to put pen to paper and add my account. As you quite rightly quote “If you are able to speak up, but remain silent then we are implicitly condoning the wrongdoing of others” something along those lines.

As I mentioned before, I did not attend St Joseph’s school. I was a boarder at St Peter’s school, Bournemouth (1975-1982) This was also a Catholic School run by the De La Salle teaching order as you know. After reading all the blogs, accounts i draw striking similarities to what happened at St Peter’s during my time as a border there.

But there is more than that. Before I attended St. Peter’s, I had 2 older brothers who attended another school, St John’s college, Southsea, also run by the De La Salle order. They were borders from 1970 to 1977. Their accounts of going’s on and wrongful abuse of boys during that time is equally harrowing.

Now then. Because of my brothers accounts of the behaviour of certain individuals at St John’s (namely Br Cyril) my experiences at St Peter’s (at the hands of Brother Kevin literally) together with reading all the stories, posts and blogs on your website, I am in a unique position to add an interesting perspective on all this scandalous abuse. This is what I have pieced together.

Let’s start with Brother Kevin. After reading the accounts by borders at St Joseph’s there was quite obviously some woeful wrongdoings involving Brother Kevin during the mid to late 1960’s. Then he was suddenly moved overseas and conveniently out of the way to France for 1 to 2 years. Long enough for the scandal to blow away and all be forgotten about no doubt. After which he was again re-appointed in a position of ultimate trust over young boys as junior housemaster at St Peter’s School, Bournemouth at around 1969-1970. There he was given a free hand to recommence his sinister and evil operations ie the abuse of young boys under the pious illusion and disguise of a religious white dog collar. I, as a border at St Peter’s from September 1975, was witness to much of his immoral behaviour.

Then there was the case of Brother Cyril. The notorious, weird and known homosexual housemaster at St John’s college, Southsea. According to my brothers there were several incidents involving improper conduct involving young boys at the hands of Brother Cyril during his time as housemaster of junior division there at St John’s. This was approximately from 1972 up until his untimely and abrupt transfer to St Peter’s school at around 1978. Now then, I do recall remarking to him that I had 2 brothers who were, at the time, still boarders at St John’s college.  I strongly remember the frosty and uncomfortable response that I received on even mentioning this. With hindsight, it was probably because I had been privy to his previous behaviour at St John’s that he then wanted and thought he could bury.

So it seems like we have a clear pattern of similar events here in just two accounts. Whenever the bubble is about to burst and some unsavoury individual is about to be exposed and held account for his actions, then he is conveniently moved or re assigned somewhere else.

What is abundantly clear to me is that it was not just one individual who was responsible for moving these monsters around to avoid detection, but an administrative organisation. Someone somewhere knew exactly what kind of person Brother Kevin was/is and actively appointed him in a position of trust and authority over young boys, some as young as 6 or 7 years old. Even as 11 year old boys we were very aware of the pedophile nature of Brother Kevin. Indeed, the jokes and sniggering comments transcended through every corridor and classroom in the school. Yet not one teacher knew anything about his despicable tendencies?? Impossible. Of course they knew and were fully aware. Every single one of them. But this was the 1970’s and pedophilia behaviour and activities were a taboo subject. It simply did not exist. Sadly it did.

I hope that my account and perspective on events helps to explain things at the time. Ie coverups. I will later on send you my account at the hands of Brother Kevin. I’m working on it. I’m not shy. I will be in touch again soon

DE LA SALLE BROTHERS LIFESTYLE

My older brother told me how the DLS at St Joseph’s Birkfield had a wine cellar and enjoyed fine wines. How he knew that he never explained! I always thought they lived grim lives of penance, wearing sackcloth and ashes in their spare time, with the odd bit of self-flagellation thrown in. But seems I am wrong. I guess I got them confused with the Trappists. Here another St Joseph’s Old Boy from my era vividly describes the reality. It’s a side of the De La Salle Brothers we rarely hear about:

‘The Black Monks and fine wine. Oh, I believe that one! You’ll recall that the furthest of the wooden dining halls from the school block had its entrance next to original building and, to be precise, right next to the large window of the Black Monk’s dining room. In the morning, one could see such a wide variety of cereals on display that it made your head spin. At best we got bog standard Corn Flakes but usually there was a vat of grey porridge. Actually, since you mention everyone remembering where they were when they got the news, it was while we were waiting to go into exactly that same dining hall for supper one evening that we first heard of the death of JFK. Good food and fine wine was not the only extravagance for the Brethren. It was all reminiscent of the exotic lifestyle embraced by the pigs in ‘Animal Farm’. In the writing I did during my post grad studies, I note that a number of the Black Monks (I say half of them, but I could not know that) belonged to Ipswich Golf Club and owned four or five sets of clubs. In time, the community acquired a Morris 1100 and a Ford Transit minibus. The Transit van made its debut on the light commercial vehicle market in 1965, so I think these vehicles probably came to Birkfield after you left. The vehicles were almost exclusively for use by the de la Salle bods who went off to the golf course in them and had first formers in tow to be slave caddies, or so I wrote but I have to confess that I don’t recall that now. I saw them using a hired MG Midget to play with during one half term, though, and the community owned five shotguns. There were two .410 guns and three twelve bores, as recorded in my writing, two of the twelve bores being expensive West German guns. There was a sort of ill-tempered and decrepit ‘Father Jack’ character called Brother Celsius who was retired and spent his time waving a walking stick round his head in permanently unsuppressed rage. I can’t remember much else about him apart from the fact that he had to be given a wide berth because of that flailing cane. The perception was that he constantly demanded to be taken on long rides in the Morris 1100 through the Suffolk countryside and I think his wish was always granted. These twats, you need to remind yourself, made a big thing of this vow of poverty, chastity and obedience that they all signed up to when they took the Pope’s shilling and became Black Monks.’

BROTHER LAURENCE HUGHES

HEAD OF THE DE LA SALLE BROTHERS IN THE UK AND IRELAND

https://www.delasalle.org.au/blog/district-of-ireland—appointment-of-visitor
Bro Laurence Hughes pictured front row, far right, from a photo of St Joseph’s College teaching staff in the 1980s

I recently posted a school photo of St Joseph’s College Ipswich, from the 1980s. As I’ve said previously, three Old Boys (myself and two others) have identified a total of five abusers in the photo above. 

In fact there were six abusers in this era if one includes the infamous Mike Mercado (not present).

This seems a considerable number of abusers for any one group of teachers and has disturbing implications which I have previously written about.

An Old Boy then advised me as follows:

‘Brother Laurence Hughes (on the extreme right of the photo) is now head of the De La Salle Brothers in the UK and has made statements at various abuse enquiries. He must have at the very least been aware of abuse at St Joseph’s.’

So I looked Brother Laurence up and saw that he has spoken out strongly against child abuse.

Here are two examples. The second quote refers to the notorious Brother James Carragher, surely one of the most evil men to have ever joined the De La Salle Order.

EXAMPLE ONE (from The Scotsman)

‘Brother Laurence Hughes, head of the De La Salle Brothers in Great Britain and Ireland, told the Scottish Child Abuse Inquiry he would have expected other members of staff to have known what was going on.

‘Br Hughes said he had already met with survivors abused by the congregation in Northern Ireland and was prepared to do so in Scotland.’

EXAMPLE TWO (from an ITV News report)

‘Carragher is a former member of the De La Salle Brotherhood.

The group released the following statement.

“We totally condemn, without reservation, any action or behaviour which harms young people. The behaviour of James Carragher was a deep betrayal of the Order’s mission to the young and of the trust that was placed in him as a De La Salle Brother. He was dismissed from the Order following previous conviction.

Brother Laurence Hughes, De La Salle Brothers

……………………………………….

A different Old Boy from St Joseph’s in the mid-1980s recognised Brother Laurence in the school photo and had this to say:

‘Brother Laurence. An absolute psycho who assaulted a couple of boys in my second form dorm. He asked to see me once after lights out so I combated it by turning into an objectionable little bastard and he then kept away.’

I asked this Old Boy for permission to quote him anonymously which he gave me.

He then added:

‘This is the dude who would invite 11 year olds into his study after lights out. He bandaged my foot once after a rugby injury and was creepy as fuck.’

Other Old Boys from St Joseph’s may wish to share their recollections of Brother Laurence Hughes in the comments here. Or you can email me in the strictest confidence at pat@millsverse.com.

As you can see from the foregoing, anything you wish to say will be kept strictly anonymous and your privacy respected.

It’s also worth adding that the current St Joseph’s College, Ipswich, has had nothing to say on the huge number of testimonies on this site of child abuse at St Joseph’s in past eras.

The crimes took place before their time but the current school still maintains many proud links with its past, whilst ignoring the endless cases of past abuse. This is certainly a cause of pain for me as a survivor and doubtless many other survivors. 

The testimonies prove beyond any reasonable doubt that serious offences took place in the 1960s to 1980s. Often they are related by different Old Boys in different eras yet describing recognizable modus operandi of the same clerical abusers.