TRIBUNALS OF INQUIRY (EVIDENCE) ACT
TRANSCRIPT OF PROCEEDINGS
AT THE PUBLIC INQUIRY
INCIDENT AT DUNBLANE PRIMARY SCHOOL
on 13th MARCH, l996
THE HON LORD CULLEN
FRIDAY, 31st MAY, 1996
THE ALBERT HALLS,
DUMBARTON ROAD, STIRLING
(Shorthand Notes by Wm Hodge & Pollock Ltd Glasgow).
GRACE JONES OGILVIE (63). Sworn.
EXAMINED BY MR. BONOMY: Are you a retired shop
assistant? - Yes.
And I think that you live at 11 Kent Road in Stirling?
Now, that would make you a neighbour of Thomas
Hamilton? - Yes.
Can you tell us the relationship between the two
houses, how close they were? - 1, 2, 3 and 4 and that is me and
that was Mr. Hamilton.
So he was bottom left and you are top right? -
When did he first move to that address roughly?
- I think it may be seven or eight years ago. I'm not
But you were already there? - I was there, yes.
And at that time were what you would understand
to be his mother and father also in the house? - Yes.
The lady who was known as his sister but was actually
his mother, was she there as well? - No, she didn't stay there.
Did you ever see her? - Yes, I did see her.
How frequently was she a visitor initially? - I
would have said maybe once a week.
When did you find out the true relationship of
the members of the family? - After this incident happened.
Now, I think Mrs. Hamilton, senior died about a
couple of years after the family moved to 7 Kent Road? - I think
And were you then aware of Mr. Hamilton, senior
moving out? - No, I didn't know he had moved out but I was told
And were you aware then that Thomas Hamilton was
living in the house on his own? - Well, when I had been told, yes.
Roughly when was that? When did you
know that? - Well, I would say maybe about five or six years ago.
Now, during the intervening period until now, or
until the 13th of March, were there many visitors to the house?
Can you tell me something of who these visitors
were? - Well, mostly STV.
That is an STV van or car? - Yes, a car.
A car with STV on it? - Yes.
And this is
a private visitor as you would understand it who happened to have
such a car? - Yes. The police.
How frequently were the police there? - Well, maybe
once or twice a month but quite often the police car was down.
Anyone else? - There was a landscape gardener came.
What was his name? - James Gillespie.
Did you know him? - No.
How did you learn his name? - It was on his van.
At any stage while Mr. Hamilton lived there did
you know anything of what he did for a living? - Well, I did know
that he did boys' camps.
Is that all you ever knew of what he had actually
done for a living? - Well, that's all I knew about, yes.
How did you know about the boys' camps? - He told
How frequently did you have talks, conversations,
with him? - Not a lot but one or two conversations I had with him.
Out the back in the garden or on the road.
If you met in the street would you acknowledge
each other? - If I was on the same side as him, yes, but if I was
on the other side, no.
Would you stop in the street or would it be very
rarely you would actually have occasion to stop and speak to him?
- No, I wouldn't stop and speak to him.
So that on the occasions when there was some conversation
between you, who was it that started the conversaton off? - It was
him and I nearly jumped out of my skin.
Can you remember the first time that happened?
- Well, if I was maybe out the back hanging out my washing, he was
there. I never heard him coming but he was there and he would
speak and I just got a fright and I would talk but then I just left
Did he ever do anything that you saw that either
upset you or caused you any anxiety? - Well, he didn't really upset
me but he asked me into his house and I was caught unawares and
I went into his house but I was most uneasy. That sort of
Was it just one occasion you were inside the house?
- One occasion, yes.
Apart from that, and I will come back to that in
a minute, there was not anything else you were aware of going on
in the area which caused you any concern? - Just the way he went
about. He was a sort of odd character. The way he walked
Tell me something about the way he walked? - He
sort of crept. He was very head down and sort of crept along.
What about the way he spoke? - He was very proper
and soft spoken.
He has been described as a slow, deliberate speaker?
Was there any sign in the activity around his house
that he had an interest in boys' clubs? - Oh, yes.
were the signs? - Well, he used to get a van from Central Region
and he told me it was for camps on Loch Lomondside or at Queen Victoria
and he used to have big boards and he would take them down the back
and paint them white. That was for flooring at the camps for
the boys to sleep on.
Did you learn anything about whether he charged
very much for these camps? - Yes.
Did you learn that from him? - Yes, I did.
What did he tell you about that? - £70 or
£80 per week.
When you saw a van around the house, did you see
boys there as well? - Once.
What age were they? - Well, I would have said between
maybe six and 10 years of age.
What were they doing? - Well, they were in the
van and he would put in big rolls, bales, of toilet rolls and washing
up liquid but the boys would be in the van or running round the
van. They were never in his house.
Tell me about the circumstances in which he invited
you into the house? - Well, I was coming home one night round about
9 and he was at his front door looking up towards Annfield and he
had a sort of telescopic thing in his hand and he was look at Annfield
through it and he saw me coming and he just said "Mrs. Ogilvie,
can I have a word?" and I said "Well, what is it, Tommy?". "Just
a minute" he said and his front door was open and he didn't
go to shut it. He walked in in front of me and I walked in
behind him and into his sitting room and he asked me to sit down. Well,
I did sit down.
Roughly when was this? - Well, it was the summer
time. I can't remember if it was last summer or the summer
before. It wasn't any earlier than that.
When you sat down what happened? - He asked me
to look at a video.
What was on the
video? - Small boys.
How long did it last? - Well, he fast-forwarded
it and stopped it and let it go for a bit and then he would fast-forward
it again and let it go for a good bit. That is what he did
all the time and he was very proud because he said "These are
my boys". That is what he said. I sort of
had my back to him and I was looking out the window more often than
I was looking at the video.
How long do you reckon it lasted, showing you this
video? - The bit that he showed me, well, I think about 40 minutes.
And can you tell me what you saw on the video?
- Just small boys.
Doing what? - Well, they were walking along or
maybe running. I can't remember if they were jumping over
a wooden horse. I can't remember that but I think there was
one bit that there was that on it but I'm not too sure. But
they just seemed to be marching in lines, the boys.
Did they approach the camera at any stage? - Well,
they turned their head towards the camera.
As they walked past the camera? - Yes.
So they would come right up to it more or less
and look at it and walk past? - No, they were walking to the camera,
the video, they were walking but they were never looking straight
singly. It was just as if they were in a line and they were
photographed as they were walking up. They didn't look straight
into the video.
Were there close-ups of their faces? - No, I would
have said maybe from the waist up.
Did you actually see the boys from the top? - In
one or two parts, yes.
How were they dressed? - They had very small shiny
bathing pants on.
Colour? - Black.
All of them? - Yes.
Were they all dressed the same way? - Yes.
Throughout the whole video? - Yes.
Could you tell whether there was only one occasion
that was being filmed or there was more than one occasion on the
video? - I would have just said one occasion.
And so far as these boys were concerned, can you
help me about their ages? - Again I would have said seven to ten
years of age.
Apart from the video did Mr. Hamilton show you
something else? - He did.
What was that? - He didn't take it out and show
me. It was a box that was more or less at my feet.
It was like a box on a ship, an old box with rope handles.
He opened it and there was a lot of frames in it, picture frames.
There was no pictures I don't think but he just opened it and he
took out one picture of one boy and said he was his favourite or
his star pupil or something to that effect but I just glanced at
it because I was uneasy.
What was that boy wearing? - He was just from
here up -- bare skin.
No clothing on his upper body? - No.
What was it that you felt uneasy about? - I didn't
think I should have been looking at that video. I wasn't
really interested in the video.
Apart from that, can you say whether there was
anything improper, apparently improper or indecent about it? - I
wouldn't say it was indecent, but I didn't like it. I was
Was there any what may be described as strange
activities you observed out in the back garden? - Beg pardon?
Did you observe any strange activities on Mr. Hamilton's
part out in your back garden area? - Yes, fires.
How frequently? - Maybe twice a month.
During what period? - About six months.
When was that? - Prior to this incident.
About six months ago? - Yes.
How many times did you observe fires? - Altogether
I think I saw about a dozen.
Did you see what Mr. Hamilton was burning? - No,
I didn't. I smelt it.
What did you smell? - Well, when I lived at home
with my mother she had a knife -- well, it was a sort of spatula
-- and it was in the frying pan, and the handle of the teapot was
the same, and the gas was on, and sometimes it would burn and you
would smell it. Well, it was that smell -- like Bakelite,
because I came through from my living room and I could smell it
in the hall and I would say, "That's him at that fire again".
I banged the windows to let him know I knew because he was sitting
in full view because there was these security lights at the back
and when someone walks past they light. Well, he sat on a
chair and fuelled these fires.
Can you say anything about what was being burned?
- No, I only saw boxes.
Were they cardboard boxes? - Yes, it was egg boxes,
that size of box.
Could you tell whether there was anything in the
box? - Oh, yes, there was stuff in it, yes.
You are clear about that? - Yes.
When you were in the house did you see any photographs
on the walls of his house? - Well, the first time I saw photographs
on his walls was his living room when I went past the house and
he put the light on, and I saw them on the back wall, but when I
went into his house they had been taken off the living room and
they were in the front bedroom. The door was slightly ajar
when I went in and I saw them on the wall of the front bedroom.
What were they pictures of? - Boys, small boys.
What were they wearing? - Bathing pants.
The same as the video? - The same as the video.
When was the last time you saw Mr. Hamilton? -
The Friday before this incident.
That would be the 8th March? - Yes.
About what time? - 8 o'clock at night.
Whereabouts did you see him? - Coming down my path
to go and visit a neighbour when he spoke -- I didn't see him, but
he was coming along the side of the hedge on the main part of the
road, and I said to him -- I got a fright again because the hedge
is quite high -- I said, "Could you not whistle when you come?"
and he says, "Did I give you a fright?" and I said "Yes".
Well, I walked along the road with him and he was talking about
Was he talking about where he had, talking about
a particular place when he was talking about ghosts? - Yes.
Whereabouts? - Upper Bridge Street, the big house,
his mother and father had a big house when he was small.
Was he carrying anything? - Carrying anything,
What was he carrying? - Letters. He told me what
he was carrying.
Did he tell you what the letters were for? - No.
Did you see how many he had? - Well, I didn't actually
look at them. I saw them, there was quite a few, but
I mean, it could have been a book in an envelope. I didn't really
pay particular attention.
What size of envelopes were they? - (Indicates
A square shape? - No, like that.
6 inches long, about 3 or 4 inches deep? - 4 or
Apart from talking about ghosts, which you have
told us about, was there anything about his manner or his appearance
that appeared unusual on that last occasion? - No, he was just the
Anything unusual for him? - No, just his usual
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