Danny Kearney’s Attempt To Right A Wrong

The article below was brought to my attention by St Bede’s veteran, Michael Lawlor, now a resident of the state of Ontario in Canada, but part of the 1947 intake at Bede’s making him one of my oldest correspondents.  The article appeared in this week’s Tablet newspaper and shows Kearney to be the bumbling obfuscating academic that we all know and love.

Read it, understand it if you can and I will comment on it, in my own very wanting fashion afterwards.  Myself and academe do not fit too well together because I was educated at St Bede’s College in Manchester, where only the worthy were allowed into academic obscurity.

Abuse is neither ‘historic’ nor just the Church’s problem

03 February 2014 by Daniel Kearney, St Bede’s College

The phrase “historic abuse” troubles me on many levels. I hear it repeatedly and annoyingly used to refer to the unspeakable wrongness of depraved acts perpetrated in the past by “trusted” adults against the innocent and vulnerable children in their care.

As a headmaster at a school where abuse has taken place in the past – and has been, thankfully, in some cases, rightly and legally addressed – I offer my apologies. For those who continue to suffer and to campaign to seek redress I pray and continually hope that you will find peace of mind and some sense of closure in your endeavours.

In my view the term “historic” is wholly inappropriate because it fails, catastrophically, to acknowledge the present reality of the daily debilitating consequences of such abuse in the chaotic unfulfilled lives of those who have suffered and, more importantly, continue to suffer the corrosive effects of such ordeals. The adjective, in my mind, might be used, legally, to locate such abuse to a particular time and place but, unfortunately, it is sometimes used to distance the pain and suffering to another time, another world.

But the past is now; it is a present memory. It is not ameliorated or lessened by the passage of time.

I know, all too well, it is irrelevant and of no consequence whatsoever to see perpetrators imprisoned or for victims to receive arbitrary amounts of compensations from the courts. Such pain and suffering are not so easily assuaged.

There is, however, a deeper and a more disturbing reality here; a stinging nettle to grasp. Paedophiles, abusers, rapists and recidivists are all products and symptoms of society; they are not born and bred in a vacuum or some Frankenstein laboratory.

Too many lives have been blighted by unrestrained and self-serving appetites. Legislation and stringent popular policies might tick boxes but will reams of paper really prevent the recondite practices of the few who seek to manipulate and to abuse? It is easier to vilify and to lock up the individual but much more difficult and revealing to dig deeper, expose the root cause and eradicate it. Such action requires honesty and wholesale change in the very structures of our society. It demands truth, authenticity and maturity. Perhaps it is easier, after all, to focus on the disordered and depraved few.

But then, the sins of the past continue to weigh heavily on the present – perhaps it was, and will be, ever thus! As the poet Philip Larkin wrote: “Man hands on misery to man, it deepens like a coastal shelf.”

Daniel Kearney is the headmaster of St Bede’s College, a Catholic private school in Manchester

Now Danny would not have written this article unless St Bede’s was under the cosh.  Danny is not interested in the world wide application of sexual abuse of children, no, he is only interested in the sexual abuse of children when it affects him and it affects him at St Bede’s.  So let us approach his words from that standpoint and not try to widen the argument like he seems to want to and blame abuse on the society as a whole.  The abuse we are talking about at Bede’s stems from the immature emotional development of priests in schools and seminaries of the Catholic Church from the age of 11 through to 24.

He says abuse at St Bede’s “in some cases has been rightly and legally addressed” but that is not the case.  In only one case, the Green case, has the perpertrator been brought to justice, with a lot more to come out in that case yet.  And that only came to court because a victim complained to Scottish police.  The school obviously knew about Green’s transgressions when Byrne and Kelly the then Bishop of Salford swept him under the carpet in I think, 1991 never dreaming he would come back to haunt them a decade later.  With one sweep of the broom Green was gone but with the backward sweep Dodgeon, Byrne and Moynihan were flicked aside and to compensate Byrne got a papal ear tag.  All this skullduggery might have been new to Byrne but Kelly was a man well known for waving brown envelopes under victims noses and nailing it down with a gagging notice.

In all the other cases at Bede’s from 1950 onwards, 63 years of abuse, no other case has been rightfully and legally addressed and I doubt if a lot of them will be.  Sp please Daniel get off your high horse about how decent Bede’s is.  They have behaved appallingly ever since Bishop Marshall in 1951 took Duggan’s side and shooed away the complaining parent and they have been doing it up to the present when they have accepted that abuse took place but damn well prove it in court was the back answer.

The rest of the article is just clap-trap where he throws the problem at the world at large but I suggest to him that he keeps his eyes on the little things close to him, get your bit of the puzzle sorted and not allow your input into safeguarding of children get classed as appalling by the ISI in its recent report.

Before I go there has been a massive piece of breaking news, old Florid has jumped ship and about time to or to jump out of the vernacular, Monsignor Michael Quinlan, chairman of the board of governors of St Bede’s College in Manchester has resigned with effect from the 3rd February.  So that leaves the school with no head, no chair of governors and, I understand, no bursar.  Rats and sinking ships is what immediately come to mind.  If these people had anything more than their overwhelming sense of their own importance they would have stuck with it but no and probably is a good thing to.  They fucked it up, therefore they go.  I do think that Quinlan’s departure is bigger than Kearney’s vamoose, the bloody school is shagged.

Look it up on the school website, Flash Moynihan has taken on the job of acting chair and sent a letter to all parents.  The letter itself is full of crucifying shite to let us know how hard Florid worked for the College.  The parents should ask the council for a discount, their volume of rubbish is increasing by the week through no fault of their own.

 

 

 

 

 

30 thoughts on “Danny Kearney’s Attempt To Right A Wrong

  1. To all, regarding the above mealy-mouthed article

    It’s nice to be able to see exposed the mind-set of Mr Daniel Kearney, bared for all, full of self-serving apologia and total avoidance of any blame. Hands up, who knew what the word ‘Recondite’ meant? No, me neither. I’d question using such a word in that context anyway, as it has (according to the dictionary) several slightly different meanings, which could result in the phrase having somewhat opposed or varied meanings. I would argue his article exposes the real problem that Bede’s and the Catholic Church have with problems of child abuse, it’s there for all to see.

    The man has condemned himself, by his own words, to self-inflicted damage. I doubt very much if a dozen postings from Mr Malpas could better explain in the intransigent actions of the College. It would appear only by seeking legal redress will the College and Church be made to pay for its actions, over 60 years after the initial offences were committed. At that, he can hardly complain, since he was Head Honcho at the time Bede’s decided on its policy of non-admission of any wrongdoing. It has shifted ground slightly over the last three years, but only grudgingly, and I’d argue, with little or no sincerity.

    No doubt three years ago, someone in the legal profession advised the College to tough it out, deny everything, and it would all go away. A strategy about as well thought out as the Hoover ‘Free Flights’ debacle of the early 90’s. I fear, like Hoover, this may be something from which Bede’s will never truly recover, its reputation is now in tatters.

    It seems to be best summed up thus – We’re very sorry for those who were abused, but we didn’t know about it until recently, and there’s now absolutely nothing we intend to do to offer restitution.

    After reading the above article, anyone now questioning the need for the abused to effect any recompense via the courts should go and seek psychiatric help.

    Finally, to really clarify matters, only yesterday a body as august as the UN criticised the Catholic Church regarding its handling of child abuse cases. Not surprisingly, the Vatican dismissed the criticism out of hand, admitting no failings.

    At this rate, the ever-shrinking number of Catholics in the UK will shrink even further. Its archaic treatment of women, contraception matters and many other issues have relegated it as an irrelevance to a point when the 400,000 who last registered themselves as Jedi Warriors at the last UK Census might begin to outnumber those of the bona-fide Left Footers Club.

    Along with Betamax video players, 8-track tape players, Telex and Fax machines, the Catholic Church in the UK is in danger of consigning itself to the dustbin of history.

    There are many people who will not mourn its passing. I, of course, couldn’t possibly comment.

  2. A very perceptive man was Larkin Mr Kearney. We do indeed appreciate the role that socialisation plays in the development of us all – especially when taken on board by those who fulfil the role of absent parents. “They fuck you up your mum and dad, they may not mean to but they do. They fill you with the faults they had and add some extra just for you”(Larkin).I wonder how many immortal souls have been lost over the years due to the sexual abuse of those in the protective care of our trusted priests? David Andrew

  3. To David Andrew

    Point taken, and if the Catholic Church have anything to do with it, we’ll never be told. I’d guess into the thousands, maybe tens of thousands, based on what happened at Bede’s and, let’s not forget, several other establishments too numerous to mention. What a disgrace.

    I’m afraid I disowned the Catholic faith a long time ago, as a result I simply regard myself as a Christian, and try to uphold the better tenets of the faith. I’m sorry to say going to Church once a week and shafting everyone else for the other six days of the week isn’t my idea of Christianity – I follow the path of relative sincerity, as stated above, I’m certainly no angel.

    Such an idea of Christian behaviour i.e. behaving like one, with no necessary need for Church worship, was mooted as a more preferable course by none other than an ex-Bedian priest, who, as far as I can remember, taught me Religion as part of my 6th form General Studies. He came along a few years after the departure of Tommy Duggan. This priest had the right idea and left Bede’s (as far as I know, of his own accord) after only 2 years or so. I don’t think we shouldn’t tar him with the same brush as the abusers. He’s still, as far as I know, a parish priest.

    Remember not all the priests there were bad guys, it would unfair to accuse them en masse of wrongdoings.

  4. To Paul Malpas:-

    What do you think? Please don’t tell me that there’s another one with feet of clay, or I’d begin to despair completely.

    I always found him to be the most rational priest I’d ever come across in 60 years on the planet. Over 40 years after those wise words, I’ve seen first hand many people subscribe to the church-going ethos, but miss out on the Christian bit. In my opinion it was sound advice in 1970 and it’s still sound advice as I approach retirement.

    1. No Paul, only the finest reports on Fr Williams. The pity is that he did not stay long or else there would be thousands of testimonies as it is, the few he taught always seem to have come away stronger.

  5. Interesting times; Outside St. Bedes did anyone else acquire the belief that Catholicism is a belief system with a drect line to God, mediated only by the priest? God, through the priest is the final arbiter of what is good and what is bad. There is a history of a protestant England penalising Catholics for this belief and in childhood, I can recall hearing tales about how Russian oppression in Poland focussed on the priests and the sacrament of confession. The Catholic faith has always had secular enemies and Catholics need to be strong …etc etc.
    By contrast, inside St. Bedes, the first time I experienced sustained, systemic anti-Catholic oppression was when I met the staff. In one of your Posts, somebody writes in about being bullied by the teacher Bill Heaton. The writer later explains that Heaton behaved aggressively because he was scared of his students. The incident raises the question about the quality of induction that St. Bedes offered Heaton to fulfil his teaching responsibilities. During my time, the staff were a contemptible crew.
    The task of changing the school would have been monumental. Short of sacking the entire lot and starting again with a committed cohort of professionals then a St.Bedes education would always be tainted..

  6. Hello Paul Taylor. I am very similarly situated to yourself with regard to my spiritual life today. We await whatever in the ethereal palace! I was at Bedes ’52-’59 as a boarder and met many men who taught me much. Most were priests. I have no problem with their teaching roles.But what of their priestly roles. Kearney seems to be using the argument that socialisation is to blame for paedophiles etc…Somewhat to blame perhaps but in the case of priests as paedophiles there is the added dimension which is fundamental to the Catholic church’s teaching and which was drummed into me from an early age – the sacramental role of the priest given directly from God. All Catholic priests have been entrusted with this and as such cannot just walk away from the actions of their fellows. If souls have been lost then everyone must share the blame. We are all tarred with Duggan’s brush. David Andrew

  7. I liked Fr. Williams. In the Lower Sixth he made a point of making homosexuality the subject for several lessons – apparently despite a lot of opposition from the Staff Room. Though he never knew it, he helped me a lot with that.

  8. I started Bede’s in 1983. The same time as John Byrne took over as Headmaster. Comparing the school from the day I started to the day I left there was a definite transformation. The teaching, the buildings, the results were better even the schools we played at sports had gone from the local comprehensives to the more upmarket Stoneyhurst and Eton.

    I don’t think anyone can argue that John Byrne didn’t improve the school in terms of results and its general standing in the world of Academia. However reading the blog about the abuse that went on pre Byrne one thing had never changed, and even to the present day still hasn’t changed. It’s poor performance on safeguarding.

    Bill Green happened under the earlier part of Byrne’s reign and reading the recent ISI report the schools safeguarding was deemed unsatisfactory.

    The accounts of the 50’s and 60’s I have read and the violence meted out by teachers certainly went on whilst I was there, especially in PE. If you were on the same side as the teacher and the teacher was losing then somebody on his team would be given a kicking. It could be five a side football, volleyball or even Badminton. Not all the PE teachers were like this but there were a few.

    I knew of numerous people who’d been up to Bill Green’s room for a smoke. They just walked past the Masters Library up the stairs to the living quarters. When the Bill Green abuse came out in the media I was at first shocked but then on reflection it wasn’t surprising as I always found it odd that a priest would let boys into his room at break times. I also find it odd now that it was allowed to happen.

    I find it interesting that none of my friends who live in Manchester have put their children into St Bede’s. Going by the latest attendance figures not many former pupils can be sending their children there.

    I hope that the abused get the justice they deserve and a sincere overdue apology from the Salford diocese and St Bede’s. The continual lack of safeguarding shown from the school and the diocese from the 50’s to the present day makes a mockery of the “before our time” argument.

  9. To: John O’Connor

    An interesting perspective, you started at Bede’s a full 12 years after I left (I served the full sentence, 7 years, no remission), I’d suggest by then there were very few teachers left from my era, especially priests. There seemed to be a massive clear out of dog collars in the late 60’s to mid-70’s.

    In my era there were Tommy Duggan , Tojo Groake, Terry Dodgeon, Geoff Burke, Ego Riley, Brian (Batman) Taylor, Gus Dearman, Francis Austin, Slim Kerrigan, Tony Grimshaw, Robert Livesey, Ike Williams, Tony Lawton, Bernard McGarry, Jack Rigby, Michael le Morvan, Fr Haley and, very briefly, Mike Collins. By the time I left (1971) the number of priests had halved, and by the mid-70s was down to probably only 3 or 4, plus any new arrivals (such as the unlamented Bill Green).

    By 1976 it became fee-paying, under the headship of Rector Terry Dodgeon and Headmaster Vinny (Prune) Ganley. I’d image Bede’s of 1983-1990 (if you did the full sentence) was a completely different place to my era, when it was only in the last few years of my time there did Bede’s attempt to get out of some sort of 1930/40s style time-warp.

    As regards Ike Willliams, all people who have spoken to me about him (and there are several, from many walks of life) have nothing but good to say about him. He seemed to have enough sense there not to outstay his welcome.

  10. To Andrew Cathcart

    if you read the posting re Bill Heaton, he was later man enough to admit he’d probably over-reacted, as he was new to the job, but your point about inadequate training is well-made. I had him for a few Chemistry lessons and by that time (1967) he certainly was no aggresive bully, indeed I’d argue he was one of the better teachers there at the time.

    There were a number who overdid the discipline during my time – I was in the receiving end of a few punishments myself, nearly all of which I would admit were justified – but I can only think there were one or two teachers in my era I would class as bullies and they were in my first year, when I was a somewhat timid 11 year old from Higher Blackley, more easily intimidated than in later years.

    A perfect example of an unsuitable person who was a teacher during my time there would be ‘Wild Bill’ Hockenhull, who at times lived up to his nickname. He once launched, javelin-like, a 50 ml glass burette at a pupil for not paying attention. When he lost his temper, which was admittedly only occasionally, he would go bright red in the face and randomly pick a boy out for punishment, usually by whacking him on the hands using wrapped up thick rubber vacuum tubing as the weapon of choice. The strange thing is that for the vast majority of time he was as nice as pie, but when he lost his temper, God help the class.

    Nowadays he’d be on an assault charge as a minimum, but I’d argue he was completely unsuited temperamentally to being a teacher, he’d now be sent to Anger Management classes for starters. I don’t know if his behaviour improved later on, I guess it must have or he wouldn’t have lasted so long at Bede’s. One benefit of his actions though – the lad who was nearly on the receiving end of the burette made sure he paid attention next time. And before you ask, I was not the said pupil.

  11. Paul,

    Glad to hear regarding Bill Heaton, not everyone may agree with me (they seldom do), but above all, he was a decent human being as well as being a good teacher, which proves it’s possible to combine both attributes, as they’re not mutually exclusive.

    Billy Hock passed away around the turn of the century, Ganley likewise. I’d argue Billy was a loose cannon, a flawed human being, having said that, he was, for the most part, a likeable person. Just, during my time, he was not temperamentally suited to be a teacher.

    I can’t comment how he shaped up in later years, he always seemed to be put in charge of the first and second years during my time, which would tend to indicate the management weren’t that confident of his actual teaching abilities. During my time there (7 years), he was still teaching the lower forms when I left, indicating there was a question mark as to his abilities, that they were limited. But, as Clint Eastwood once said, a good man knows his limitations.

    Sadly that can’t be said of the current management of Bede’s. Bringing back a pensioner to act as Head of the Board of Governors (Flash) doesn’t indicate much forward thinking, more in the nature of fire-fighting. a vain attempt to control the various conflagrations the Alma Mater is having to face. It looks like Bede’s have run out of appliances to fight the fires, it’s time to let the place be subsumed by an overwhelming force of extreme heat and accept the inevitable.

    It won’t be long before the property developers and estate agents turn up with their tape measures, sizing up both school and playing fields. Let no-one doubt there’s money to be made enacting this nuclear option, it’s a fool who thinks otherwise.

    It’s about time someone switched off the life-support machine which Bede’s is currently on. At the moment the one paying a large fraction of the bill for this is Sheik Mansour, but for how much longer?

  12. Do the two Pauls ever tire of the overblown metaphors? Honestly, I’ve never come across such a pair of poisonous, negative and spiteful people in my life.

    1. The last thrust by a dying soldier. I am only poisonous, negative and spiteful because there are people like you in the world. I have told you, I think, twice before that that is your last call. This most definitely is. Goodbye James.

  13. It’s a shame that you don’t see your own hypocrisy. You criticise the ST Bede’s for covering things up, being draconian and not allowing any open dialogue and you do exactly the same thing. Why do you ban people who disagree with you? Why do you ban people who insult you, when you rudely insult others?

    Despite disagreeing with most of what you say, I have not been overtly rude or unfair. I merely want my say on a sensitive issue, on which I disagree with you.

    1. Talk away James but you are hiding behind anonymity and that is my main reason to be cross. You say you want your say but you never, ever say your say.

  14. I can’t speak from a position of authority on the sexual abuse at the school, so don’t. Moreover, I keep my opinions and thoughts on the present-day St Bede’s to what I actually know and understand, through conversations with people who can confirm the goings on. You can’t speak from a position of authority on the inner-workings of the present-day school, but do so anyway. You deal in supposition, rumour and outright offensive opinions. You hint, riddle, or outright accuse people of abusing, covering up abuse, or committing other crimes and indecencies – most with little or no evidence.

    And you know you have a sizable readership. Yet, you continue with your poorly researched, often libelous and, above all, damaging blog posts. I don’t particularly mind that you write them. However, I take object strongly to the carelessness with which you accuse people of underhand and morally reprehensible acts. And, just to be perfectly clear, I am not referring to Duggan or Green.

    I am talking about: Monsignor Quinlan, Bishop Brain, Terry Dodgeon, Tony Dearman, John Byrne, as well as others. If they have any sense they will sue you for defamation – and believe me, there is so much evidence on here that the decision, were such a scenario to present itself, is almost ludicrously predictable.

    Your blog is a disgrace, your lack of research and reliance on fact is a disgrace, your outright campaign against the school – present and future, rather than past – is a disgrace and your outrageous and historically baffling denial of the Holocaust is a disgrace.

    A frustration for me is that I can’t say exactly what I want. Why? Because as soon as anybody says something which you really don’t like, you ban them. You are judge, jury and executioner. And if you ban me because of this you destroy any last vestige of credibility you have and confirm yourself as a hypocrite.

    And above all, I HATE your terrible metaphors.

    But that’s just me. Everybody else commenting on here seems to agree with absolutely everything you say. It’s almost as if the dissenting voices have been quietened somehow…oh, hang on…

  15. Also, how does my anonymity affect anything that I say. I don’t cast unverifiable aspersions on other people like you. Also, as I have said on many occasions, I have given you details about who I am and you have my first name, Surely an investigative blogger like you can do the rest.

    I have no desire to give out my full name, even privately to you, as I don’t trust you, it would make absolutely no difference to what I say and the big reveal would be very inconsequential.

  16. Well,

    Anonymous James is back with us, never mentioning once the current car-crash which Bede’s has become, now (unlike previously) not even trying to defend the indefensible.

    So you can now also add to your list of spiteful, negative people the following:

    Mark Easton , Home Correspondent of the BBC 10 o’clock News, who broke the story on 31 January 2014.
    The Editor of the Sunday Times, on whose front page the Bede’s story appeared on Sunday 12 January 2014.

    You can manage to add to your list of positive supporters the following sole contributor:-

    The MEN. Then again, perhaps not, since until recently they’ve managed to print several negative things about the Alma Mater, which unfortunately are true. Their current silence is deafening, but when you see the amount of ex-Bedians on the payroll, people with no intention of rocking their feather-bedded boats, you shouldn’t be too surprised. I’m not.

    Write a letter to MEN postbag and for once ask a honest question. Why have they failed to report any recent news of the goings on at Bede’s? Even you can’t be that stupid that you don’t know the answer. Or perhaps you’re another one of the Old Boys on the MEN payroll. I’m afraid there’s a nasty smell beginning to emanate from Hollinwood, and it sure don’t smell of roses.

    I’m afraid it’s not hasta luego, James. It’s hasta la vista. Goodbye Mr Anonymous. Anonymous by name, anonymous by nature.

  17. To the shameless fool who refers to himself as James J

    “and your outrageous and historically baffling denial of the Holocaust is a disgrace.”

    If i salvaged one positive thing from St Bede’s it was to learn how to read and i used to be a thicko. So i am confused why so many ex pupils came away without this basic skill.

    Ask yourself, “why do i think this event existed?” and then ask yourself, “where is the evidence?” It then becomes a question of sources.

    The only people naive enough to think that the holocaust was a real event are those who refuse to read books or do any form of research by themselves. Read the books by the filthy lying Jews themselves (there isn’t many), they are so bad that you will hang your head in utter disgrace, mortified in the knowledge that you bought this crap in the first place.

    The psychology behind the success of these pathetic lies is to do with looking for any kind of justification for committing genocidal acts against the Germans. We had none so we lied to ourselves to make us feel better. We are in fact a nation of idiots. I think it is high time we admitted it! Only then can we move forward and fix this broken world.

    If you do nothing you will have chosen your side!

    Good luck to you, comrade

  18. Also James J,

    Anonymity is another version of lying. You may have an operational need to lie to people but i fucking doubt it. If you do not have a justification to lie, then you are a spineless snake. If the man we are fighting shoulder to shoulder with turns out to be a wretched liar, then we are doomed, unless we leech the bastard out. By hiding, you paint a target on yourself.

    Wise up mate, sharpish!!!

  19. With reference to ‘Wild’ Bill Hochkenhull…

    I remember him teaching me science for a couple of years – I was there from about ’64 t0 ’71. Most of the time he was OK. He did try and get an after school science club srted, but only a handful of us ever turned up.

    The only time I remember him losing his temper, he smashed a metre rule against a bench, nearly taking someone’s eye out (a guy named Abbott, if I remember correctly). It was straightened out without recourse to the law. Not sure how, but it did include a public apology.

    However, my main point: by a series of coincidences, I found out that he was at University (Durham, I think) with my uncle and had to drop out due to a fairly major breakdown. Which possibly explains his behaviour and may suggest he had problems that should have stopped him being a teacher.

  20. Steve, I have no recollection of that – and it sounds like the sort of thing I would remember if I had been involved in any way. Are you sure it was me?

    I can well believe that Bill Hockenhull might do something crazy like that. (I’ll just add it to the list of his crazy escapades.) But I’m fairly sure that this one had nothing to do with me.

    Actually, I have more fond memories of Bill H than bad ones. Admittedly, on a zero to ten scale of eccentricity he scored about a hundred, but he was basically a decent guy. He often took the younger kids out walking in the Peak District, and sometimes further afield.

  21. Perhaps we should introduce an S.I. unit of eccentricity, and call it the Hockenhull, in memory of Wild Bill. Like the Helen, the S.I. unit of beauty, it would be an inconveniently large unit for everyday use. For most people milliHockenhulls and milliHelens are all you need. (As you may know, the milliHelen is defined as the precise amount of beauty needed to launch a single ship.)

    1. I think if you added up all the eccentrics at Bede’s over the years you would eventually make one Hockenhull. Whilst the S.I. unit for child abuse called the Duggan would be overpluralized.

  22. Paul,

    I suspect if Steve H was a contemporary of mine, he probably was a classmate of mine in the 6th form.

    My old classmate Pete Mackey, last heard of in Japan, one, along with Linda and a few others, were the stellar performers of the Semi-Classicals (I limped in around slightly above mid-table) reminded me about a decade ago of an incident when Bill Hockenhull took a lump out of Peter O’Donnell’s (POD’s) head with a ruler when he was a first year pupil.

    Blood ensued from the wound, Peter ran from the room, closely chased by Wild Bill. I’d suspect this happened in the first year, when Pete and POD were in Upper 3rd C, so I didn’t know anything about it. It merely confirms the fact that it wasn’t only Upper 3rd B that suffered Bill’s loss of temper. Pete left around the 3rd year when his parents moved back to the Midlands, where he was originally from.

    Someone also mentioned on Friends Reunited some time back that, of all things, Bill was training to be a doctor but failed to finish the course. No mention was made of mental problems. It could be argued had he been successful, he might have been able to inflict more grievous injuries to an unsuspecting victim as a doctor than was possible as a teacher.

    It looks like my psychological analysis of the man’s unsuitability to become a teacher was spot on. Even at the age of 12 I’d come to a correct conclusion, pity the management of the college hadn’t.

  23. Elementary, my dear Paul. Unlike our Bedian toady John J, Mr H has made it a bit more easier to be identified by giving his years of incarceration.

    Nonetheless, he merely confirms my original findings that I, as a 12 year old, could see Billy Hock was temperamentally unsuited to be a teacher.

    Any budding amateur psychoanalyst care to argue otherwise? Hold on a minute though. Before putting finger to keyboard, remember the javelin-like throwing incident of a 50 ml burette in the Chemistry lab. Then there was another incident involving a certain Upper 3rd C student receiving a head wound having being hit by said teacher with a ruler. A rather obvious pattern emerges here.

    Still defending the indefensible? I thought not. It’s not too difficult to see if this sort of behaviour in the classroom by a member of staff went unpunished, just imagine what sort of misbehaviour, far worse, went on in private…..

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