A leading Roman Catholic school has been stripped of its pupil welfare responsibilities due to concerns over its handling of child sex abuse allegations.
Ampleforth College, which counts Julian Fellowes, sculptor Antony Gormley and Lawrence Dallaglio among its alumni, will have its ‘safeguarding’ issues controlled by an external specialist, the Charity Commission announced yesterday.
The charities regulator launched an inquiry in November 2016 that revealed multiple allegations had been made against 40 monks and teachers who lived or worked at the £34,000-a-year Benedictine institution over the past 60 years.
And in the past two decades three monks and two lay teachers have been convicted of sex crimes against more than 30 students between the 1960s and 2010.
A leading Roman Catholic school has been stripped of its pupil welfare responsibilities due to concerns over its handling of child sex abuse allegations
The Charity Commission is yet to conclude its inquiry but its head of investigations and enforcement Harvey Grenville said: ‘We are not satisfied that the trustees of these charities have made enough progress in improving the safeguarding environment for pupils in the schools connected to the charities.
‘For this reason, we have appointed an interim manager to expedite changes in the safeguarding arrangements at the schools.’
Former music teacher Dara de Cogan, 58, was jailed for 28 months in March last year after admitting ten counts of sexual activity with a female pupil from 2007 to 2010
Convicted predators at the main college and its prep school include David Lowe, who was jailed for ten years in 2015 for 15 indecent assaults on boys aged under 14.
Former music teacher Dara de Cogan, 58, was jailed for 28 months in March last year after admitting ten counts of sexual activity with a female pupil from 2007 to 2010.
The school’s abbot, the Right Rev Cuthbert Madden, stepped down from his role in 2016 after he was questioned by police over accusations of indecent assaults on four young boys in the 1990s.
Ampleforth Abbey runs a 200-year-old religious community on the same site its school in Yorkshire, which is run by the St Laurence Education Trust. Its prep school, St Martin’s Ampleforth, announced it will close at the end of the academic year.
Charity governance specialist Emma Moody, a partner at business law firm Womble Bond Dickinson, has been appointed to both schools in place of the trustees.
The school said in a statement that it welcomed the new interim manager, adding: ‘We would like to take this opportunity to repeat our sincere and heartfelt apologies to anyone who has suffered harm whilst in Ampleforth’s care.’