Yesterday morning dawned brightly around 6.30am but by that time I had been up and at it for a couple of hours, answering e-mails from Canada, America and the Antipodes and generally filling myself in with what was going on around this lecherous perverted world of ours. The untidy goings on in Rotherham were still making the news with fresh victims of abuse still coming forward and as ever the people with the power in this benighted United Kingdom, the lords and ladies, the judges and the lawyers, the politicians and officers of the state, the Royal Family and all its friends and the dignitaries of the Church were all getting a verbal and expatiational bashing from anybody who could think outside of the box that we have now nearly all been put into so that these holy’s nefarious deeds cannot be chronicled.
Well nothing new there then, when all of a sudden at around 8.15am an irate comment came onto my blog posting, The Tip Of The Iceberg from an Old Ambrosian. The writer referring to the scandal that had hit St Ambrose College in Altrincham recently but was in fact historic dating all the way back to the early 1970s and proceeding until the early 1990s, where a lay teacher and later a Church official, Alan Morris, an admitted homosexual, had been grossly abusing boys at the school and where until very recently he had been teaching religion to prep school children in his new role of Deacon in the Catholic Church in the Diocese Of Shrewsbury’s parish of Holy Angels which was adjacent to the school. The commentator wanted to know why those who hid Morris from the authorities had not been rooted out? Who had given him the safe passage to be edged out of Ambrose and into the vestry (was that sanctuary?). Who allowed him back to give a talk on ecumenism in 2011? Why was the first complaint in 2001 dropped like a hot spud? Who persuaded the complainant to drop the case against Alan Morris all those years ago as it would “damage the Catholic Church”? Someone helped him. Who and when, we need answers? They aided and abetted his crimes, accessory after the fact, joint enterprise, call it what you will, same crime, same sentence.
Well that was all stirring and intriguing stuff and I answered him to the best of my abilities, went to press the publish button and the word error flashed across the screen. Fearing outside activity, I wrote my answer out again in different form but with the same result. This happened a couple of more times and then my blog went down.
I am used to this third party interference and relying on Louis Van Gaal’s mantra of the last line of defence needing only three, I got my defensive wall onto the problem. These three guys I rely on for my every transmission. Many times have they fought this war against belligerent third parties and they always win. These three trusty souls set to work on the problem caused by a tricky right winger and his industrious mid-field partner. It took them about seven and a half hours and I was back up and running by 4.00pm but by then other things had crossed my path, so I determined to write what I thought in longer fashion in a new posting giving it the importance I knew it deserved. That is why I am here now writing the piece at 4.30am the following day.
I have to say that I know nothing about St Ambrose College although my school, St Bede’s College is only a few miles away. When I was a pupil there in the 1950s and 60s my cohort consisted of the sweepings of the back streets of Manchester, whereas Ambrosians were the scrapings of the bags, the pride of the Cheshire nouveau riche, who had had an easy war in the leafy lanes of Northern Cheshire. However intellectually Ambrosians were not a patch on us street wise scum and it shows to this day.
I wrote this blog posting The Tip Of The Iceberg in December 2012 just after Morris had been arrested and I compared the sexual abuse of the Ambrosians with what my generation suffered at Bede’s and it became the most sought after article I had ever written with over 300 comments emanating from it, many from Ambrosians expressing their disgust at Morris’s abuse. It wasn’t a particularly well written article, I have produced far better but it became a vehicle, Ambrosians had no other way of expressing themselves and they were certainly very careful in what they said which made me wonder.
Anyway the story I am about to relate started in May this year, I was over in Manchester for a court case that never came off. The two litigants had accused the Salford Diocese of a lack of duty of care when they were sexually abused by Monsignor Thomas Duggan, the then Rector of St Bede’s College in Manchester in the 1950s. The Diocese offered them a few quid and they cut and ran as soon as it appeared on the table, obviously advised by their lawyers, Slater and Gordon, that that was the best they could do. Because of the out of court settlement the case did not appear in the papers, the Salford Diocese escaped virtually unscathed, the lawyers got their money, everybody was a winner. Except of course the thousands of victims of clerical abuse in the Salford Diocese who will never get their day in court.
Whilst in Manchester a man contacted me, I knew of him but did not know him, he had been a friend of my brother’s and he had been a year or two below me in school. His brother had been a priest in the Salford Diocese but had succumbed a few years ago with cirrhosis. We arranged to meet at a cafe in Chorlton and for three and a half hours I listened as he told me this amazing and incredible story of an Irish Catholic multi-millionaire from Manchester, who in search of a knighthood or even lordship had supposedly given millions to various charities and who always mixed with the great and supposedly good and in particular with the likes of those I mentioned in the first paragraph above. He had already received a CBE from the Queen and had become a queen’s lieutenant and he had a free pass into Westminster and was on committee after committee deciding the fate of country. This man had left Ireland in the middle 195os with little or no education and here he was consorting with those we thought were the great and the good but now we know to be the scum of the earth. However he had two gifts, he could mimic the sound of musical instruments and he was cunning, both of which stood him in great stead when dealing with the select few of the population of this shit hole that calls itself the UK.
I remember shortly after myself and Helen were married in 1973 going round to a house he owned in Chorlton to meet his parents who had retired there from their pub in Maygo and while Helen’s relatives chatted to the old folk, this man was playing an orchestra full of instruments in the corner. Of course there was no flutes or fiddles just wind issuing from one of his orifices, talented indeed. For my sins I have played golf with him on a couple of occasions and he turned out to be the slowest, most spaced out individual I had ever come across.
However As we sat and drank coffee in this Chorlton cafe my interviewee was telling me a story I at first found hard to comprehend, although even before this meeting I had read stories of him on the internet. In spite of him being an icon of the Catholic Church, he sits on the Council of Bishops of England and Wales, he is on first name terms with Vincent Nicholls, Archbishop of Westminster and Cormac Murphy-O’Connor, Cardinal and chief cleric in England, who some say is a satanist, but my Irishman has a mistress, Roberta McGirl, who he openly flaunts, having taken her on a pilgrimage to the Holy Land. Was he taking her for an Islamic blessing on his union? A truly unique piece of ecumenism. He installed her in a house in Cheadle Hulme in Cheshire although nominally living with his wife. He had made a mockery of the Mahon Tribunal, a state Inquiry into the financial double dealings of the once Minister of Finance and then Prime Minister of Ireland, Bertie Ahern. In fact for his sins he had been made a governor of Liverpool University by another pal Lord David Alton, He had been knighted by the Pope and lauded by Cardinals and Archbishops and by all the high and mighty of the day. Yet there was another side. I thought who does this remind me of. A rags to riches story mixing with the finest of the land having come from the bogs of County Maygo, as I call that land bordering the counties Sligo and Mayo in North Western Ireland. Saville immediately came to mind, limited education, from a dance hall manager to honoured guest of the Royal Family and Prime Ministers. They seemed alike in projection.
It seems my man in the cafe rode shotgun for this buccaneering Irish man for some years, fending off the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune which I suppose you get when you tread this type of path. He spent years at the great man’s side ensuring any problem was quickly dealt with and covered up. Before he came along Alan Morris, our vulnerable Deacon and erstwhile teacher at Ambrose did the same job until the clerical life seemed far more attractive. He had left Ambrose under a slight cloud in about 1994,
From what I was told sometime after the turn of the 21st century money had been used and plenty of it to settle a particularly nasty inconvenience concerning an ex-pupil and Morris. So when my commentator came on my blog yesterday morning asking who this Morris protector was, I eventually contacted him by e-mail. I said you could start by investigating my Irish contractor. He exploded “I know exactly who this man is…. He runs the SAOBA, Saint Ambrose Old Boys Association and has unsurprisingly blocked all my comments on SAC”. Now I did not know of this role in my contractors life but when I heard it, it felt like QED.
Could I introduce you all to John Kennedy CBE, KSG, KHS, KMCO, DL, FIHT. A man who has God and the Catholic Church on his side but as I have always said Charity begins at home Mr Kennedy and, some of the boys would like to ask you a few questions Here are two links and long ones try to read it all, see who the friends of this great man are.
I have just found out that the information I received off an Ambrosian is wrong and I have to apologise to our John Kennedy for that. He is not the chair of the SAOBA. A case of same name but different man. but I do stand by the story of monies being used to ease the early inconvenience case against Morris who at the time came pleading and weeping at JK’s door, not knowing what to do to get out of the pickle his unnatural urges had got him into. I added this at 4.40pm on 16th September 2014. Fifty minutes after publishing.