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Glenn Harrison

POLICE have launched a new investigation into the shocking claims that a VIP paedophile ring operated at a top military boarding school.

The probe represented a major development in a 25-year campaign for justice by a retired teacher who risked his career to expose the alleged abuse.

Glenn Harrison was a housemaster at Queen Victoria School in Dunblane when he began to suspect pupils were being preyed upon, claimimg boys were often taken away for unofficial overnight trips with dignatories, while sexual abuse and bullying in the dormitories was ignored.

Some pupils appeared badly traumatised, yet when he tried to speak to them or discuss his fears with fellow teachers he was told that certain aspects of school life must remain "secret".

In December 1991, he made a report to the old Central Scotland Police and officers responded by breaking down the door to his flat and seizing his journal, computer files and other paperwork.  [Ed. ~ Do they think that by changing the "old" name from Central Scotland Police to the now collective name "Police Scotland" it will reduce their culpability?  It is as meaningful as rearranging the deckchairs on the Titanic before it sank.]

Mr Harrison, who had handed in his notice, was escorted from the school's premises and interviewed by detectives.

He moved to Shetland and resumed teaching, although he continued to campaign for a proper investigation into his allegations.  After police concluded there was "no cause for further action on their part", the only inquiry was carried out by the old Scottish Schools Inspectorate [Ed. ~ Again, changing the name from Scottish Schools Inspectorate to "Education Scotland" does not reduce the responsibility its members have to conduct a thorough inquiry.]

Last year, details of the case were passed to the Scottish Government's historic child abuse inquiry and Mr Harrison made another official statement to the police in Lerwick.

He has also been pursuing a complaint with the Police Investigations and Review Commissioner, which concluded officers could have done more to check his allegations.  Now, in a move which has delighted Mr Harrison and supporters, the force confirmed detectives have opened a new investigation into claims of abuse at Queen Victoria School.

Sources indicate it is part of a wider probe into historic abuse allegations in Scotland, involving more than 45 institutions and 110 suspects - 37 of whom are "persons of public prominence".

Mr Harrison said: "Why would there be such a panic to get me out of the school when I was to leave officially three days later after working six months' notice?  Why break down the door of my home when there was a spare key in the porter's lodge hardly 100 metres away?  The confidential files were very important because they contained a whole 20 months' record of letters and complaints to the school management, social services and child protection agencies and more than all else daily records of complaints of boys, incidents, dates and times which led me to have deep suspicions that boys were being abuseed emotionally, physically and sexually, not just while I was there but decades before."

The school, which has Prince Philp as its patron and has links to other royals including the Duke of York, is funded by the Ministry of Defence for children of Scottish armed forces personnel.

11    SUNDAY EXPRESS  February 16, 2005                                   NEWS


Police to probe claims of
abuse at military school


QUEST: Mr Harrison, right, has been campaigning for an investigation of Queen Victoria School for 25 years
Dunblane Massacre
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The stained glass window in St Blane's Church, Dunblane, which commemorates the victims of the 1996 massacre
Emma Crozier
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