The second section is Tom Minogue's extensive letter to Lord Gill, the then Lord Justice-Clerk, making allegations, with supportive evidence, about the Masonic involvement in protecting Thomas Hamilton over a number of years, and Hamilton's involvement with Queen Victoria Military Boarding School, Dunblane - which included access to boys dormitories and the rifle range.

Thomas Minogue
94 Victoria Terrace
Thursday 24th April

Lord Gill
Lord Justice Clerk
Parliament House

Dear Sir,

Complaint regarding events at Queen Victoria School 1989-1992

With reference to your letter of 6th March I would accept your offer that I make known to you my concerns regarding matters relating to the Queen Victoria School.

I am aware that you are, by virtue of your office a Commissioner of the school, and though you were not a Commissioner at the time of the alleged matters of concern you are in a position to instigate an investigation into past matters. This may be necessary, as I have found a lack of willingness on the part of the current President of the Commissioners, the Past President, and most Commissioners of the school during the period 1998-1992 to treat seriously allegations that have been made to me by an ex-housemaster at QVS.LINK

Circumstances leading to my investigation of the ex-housemaster’s complaint.

In February 2003 as a petitioner to the Scottish Parliament I was asked by the Justice 2 Committee to provide evidence of specific instances where a Judges/Sheriffs membership of the Freemasons had caused problems.  As I am not alone in Scotland in perceiving the Dunblane Inquiry as a case where Masonic membership had played a part, both in the events leading up to the Inquiry and during the Inquiry I cited this as a case in point.

Many newspaper stories and Internet articles have dealt with the supposed Masonic influence of Thomas Hamilton having allowed him to obtain licences for firearms against police advice.  Another theory commonly broadcast is that Hamilton’s connections to prominent figures in public life had allowed him access to Queen Victoria School Dunblane and that these facts had been instrumental in Lord Cullen (a Mason) imposing an illegal 100-year ban on documents relating to Hamilton’s activities prior to the shootings. I decided to research these assertions.

I contacted an ex-housemaster [Ed ~ Glenn Harrison] at QVS who was reported to have made numerous complaints about bullying and abuse of pupils at QVS between 1989 and 1992.  A website carried a letter from the ex-housemaster which alleged that one regular and apparently influential visitor to the school between 1989 and 1992 was Thomas Hamilton the Dunblane killer.  The ex-housemaster confirmed this fact in a telephone conversation and also claimed that the MOD (HM Commissioners), Scottish Office, Procurator Fiscal, and Stirling Council would not act on his complaints.  The exhousemaster also believed that Freemasonry had been a factor in the unreported abuse of pupils at QVS and also had adversely influenced the investigation of his complaints.

I have been able to independently corroborate 3 of the 4 main allegations made by the housemaster, namely that:

  1. Thomas Hamilton was a frequent, and influential visitor to QVS.
  2. Numerous complaints about bullying and abuse were made by the housemaster to various authorities to no avail because of the lack of a thorough investigation by the authorities.
  3. H M Commissioners ignored or were in ignorance of the above two facts.

Allegation 1: Thomas Hamilton & Friends of QVS.

  1. Many visitors who the ex-housemaster [Glenn Harrison] described as “toffs” would arrive at the school and some of these visitors would take boys home for weekends.LINK
  2. Visitors to the school had access to the grounds and buildings within the school, which concerned him for fear that these apparently unauthorised visitors, might abduct a pupil.
  3. He had challenged visitors who were not known to him and had complained to the headmaster about the presence of these individuals only to be told that these people were “Friends of Queen Victoria School” and were to be left alone.
  4. Because of his concerns he suggested the issue of photographic passes for authorised personnel.
  5. Boys who had spent weekends with some of the “Friends” would come back in a disturbed state of mind.
  6. One pupil tried to hang himself after being buggered and this was hushed up.
  7. He later found out that one regular visitor who, frequented the firing range, had watched naked primary level boys in the shower area, on dress parade, and visited teachers in their quarters was Thomas Hamilton the Dunblane killer.
  8. Lord Cullen and George Robertson were mentioned by name as being [QVS] visitors.
  9. The ex-housemaster [Glenn Harrison] felt that if his complaints had been heeded and acted upon the massacre at Dunblane might not have happened given that Thomas Hamilton was well known to the police at this time.

Independent Corroboration

I had initially thought that the Queen Victoria School did not feature in the Dunblane Inquiry.  However it is a matter of record that substantive evidence regarding Thomas Hamilton’s association with Queen Victoria School was given by three separate and unconnected witnesses to the Inquiry.

In her unchallenged evidence on Day 3, Grace Jones Ogilvie Hamilton’s neighbour told of how Thomas Hamilton organised and carried out camping expeditions for his boys clubs at Loch Lomondside and Queen Victoria School.  Grace Jones Ogilvie also spoke of Hamilton showing her videos of what he described to her as “my boys”.LINK

In his unchallenged evidence on Day 14, Ian Steven Boal, an undergraduate sports student, told of how in 1995 Thomas Hamilton had used his influence at Queen Victoria School to obtain him (Boal) a part time teaching position at the school.LINK

In his unchallenged evidence on Day 18, Robert Mark Ure a neighbour of Hamilton told of how he wished to contact Stirling Rifle and Pistol Club as his wife who had been to the rifle range at Queen Victoria School with Thomas Hamilton, had embezzled money from the club.  Hamilton had said that the Stirling Rifle and Pistol Club was not a static building and its address might have been in his mail.LINK

None of the three independent witnesses to Hamilton’s involvement with, and influence at Queen Victoria School were cross-examined or questioned further by the legal representatives of any of the parties represented.   Lord Cullen did not ask any further questions of these three witnesses and there is no mention of Thomas Hamilton’s involvement with the Queen Victoria School in Lord Cullen’s Report.


I found the ex-housemaster's [Glenn Harrison's] allegations regarding the presence of Thomas Hamilton at Queen Victoria School Dunblane convincing.  In my opinion he was truthful and the evidence of the above three witnesses regarding Thomas Hamilton corroborates my impression of his veracity and suggests that he should have been heeded when he complained at the lack of proper procedures, and the climate of fear that pervaded the school.

That (between 1989 and 1996) an unemployed man known to the police of three forces (Central, Lothian & Borders, and Strathclyde) for numerous instances of unsavoury and threatening behaviour towards adults and children had the run of a Boarding School for young boys beggars belief.

That such a man, who was also known to the police for incidents involving firearms was allowed to bear arms within the school unbeknown to the school’s guardians is truly unbelievable.  It also begs the question as to what, or who Thomas Hamilton knew to allow him these extraordinary privileges?

Hamilton, while shooting on the range at Queen Victoria School obviously carried firearms and ammunition within the school.  The possibility of Thomas Hamilton running amok at QVS must have been real, but is something that the Cullen Report does not consider or mention.

Allegation No 2: Numerous complaints about bullying and abuse being made to various authorities to no avail because of the lack of a thorough investigation.

  1. The ex-housemaster [Glenn Harrison] told me of how he had made numerous complaints about bullying and abuse to: HM Commissioners of Queen Victoria School, The Educational Institute of Scotland, The Social Services Department of Stirling Council, and the children’s parents, whilst he was at the school.  These complaints were not thoroughly investigated .
  2. After leaving the school he complained to The Patron, The Press, Esther Rantzen, Roger Cook, etc, and when he moved to Shetland to workLINK he pursued his complaints through his local MP, Jim Wallace, and these complaints were not thoroughly investigated.LINK
  3. The housemaster felt sure that once his specific allegations of bullying and abuse were taken seriously, welfare staff with expertise in sexual abuse would identify such matters, which he had broadly categorised as abuse.  The housemaster said he was sure that his complaints would be taken seriously by someone if he persevered, and in all he complained to dozens of different sources to no avail.
  4. The ex-housemaster [Glenn Harrison] told of how his complaining eventually led him and his wife to protest by refusing to take their places at a dinner, which was attended by HRH Prince Andrew.LINK This in turn led to a showdown with the outcome being that the ex-housemaster gave notice that he was terminating his employment.
  5. During the notice period that the ex-housemaster worked he felt that his safety and the safety of his family was threatened and he sent his family away from the on-site flat accommodation provided by the school.  In this period while the ex-housemaster was in Stirling the police broke down the door of his flat with a sledgehammer and removed documents relating to his complaints some of which were never returned.  On his return to the school the ex-housemaster was taken by police to Stirling and held for questioning by detectives from Edinburgh.  Despite his repeated requests for an explanation of these events none has been provided to this day.

Independent corroboration of the ex-housemaster's allegation that he had made numerous complaints of allegations of bullying and abuse at Queen Victoria School Dunblane all to no avail due to the lack of a thorough investigation by the authorities.

The evidence of the ex-housemaster’s allegations of abuse and bullying at Queen Victoria School Dunblane can be seen in the appended supporting documentation. Within this documentation it can be seen that the then Minister of State for Education, Lord James Douglas-Hamilton confirms that the ex-housemaster [Glenn Harrison] was not consulted in any way regarding the complaints he had made.LINK  Nor were the parents of the pupils consulted. It therefore goes without saying that a thorough investigation did not take place.  The fact that almost all of the Commissioners to this day are unaware that any investigation had taken place is further evidence to suggest that whatever investigation did take place was not thorough.


I found the ex-housemaster's [Glenn Harrison's] evidence regarding his numerous complaints of abuse and bullying at Queen Victoria School Dunblane receiving no thorough investigation convincing.  I can understand why he was reluctant to clearly voice his concern regarding sexual abuse until he saw that professionals were involved.  He was in my opinion truthful and the content from some of the documentation retained by him together with reference to Hansard corroborates my impression of his veracity, to say nothing of his conscientiousness and professionalism.LINK  The fact that the ex-housemaster continued to complain up to 1994 and renewed his complaints in 1996 when Thomas Hamilton was identified to him also speaks volumes for his tenacity and integrity.

The fact that only four of the 16 Commissioners and staff contacted who were at the school at the time are even aware that complaints had been made and investigated confirms my view that the complaints the ex-housemaster made were not thoroughly investigated.

Allegation 3: The Commissioners Apathy/Ignorance.

The ex-housemaster [Glenn Harrison] told me of how despite his repeated complaints HM Commissioners (who are also the governing body of the school) ignored or were in denial of the fact that serious complaints had been made regarding the practice and procedures at Queen Victoria School Dunblane.  The ex-housemaster stated that HM Commissioners were available for any dinners or social events.  However, on the occasions when their presence was really required, such as when he had serious complaints to make, HM Commissioners made themselves scarce, or simply went through the motions.

Independent corroboration of the ex-housemasters complaints that HM Commissioners were ineffective.

Independent corroboration of the ex-housemasters [Glenn Harrison's] allegations in this regard would be impossible other than by analogy.  Therefore I would draw upon my own experiences with the Commissioners to test the ex-housemasters claims.

I have written approximately 50 e-mails and letters to Commissioners past and present in three separate mailings which are as follows:

  1. Letters and e-mails to my MP and the current Secretary of State for Scotland in her role as President of HM Commissioners regarding the ex-housemaster’s allegations.
  2. A letter to The Patron, HM Commissioners, The Commandant and the Headmaster of the school seeking to know if they knew of a group called the “Friends of QVS”.
  3. A reminder letter (as only 3 replied to my first letter) to the group at (2) above and a new letter which asked a further two questions regarding Thomas Hamilton’s presence and influence in the school and what if anything was known of the allegations of abuse and bullying.  This letter was also sent to Lord George Robertson who together with Lord Cullen has been named as visitors to the school.LINK


The response from the Secretary of State for Scotland, (Helen Liddell) and my MP (Rachel Squire) was bordering on hostile.  Liddell first claiming that she would not answer, as this was a question for my MSP - it being a devolved issue.  She subsequently had a change of heart and decided to answer.  However, her answer was to the effect that her role was “purely formal” and as such she could not answer questions.  She suggested that the current Headmaster would be the best person to answer questions.

Rachel Squire MP was equally unreceptive to my requests that she should even trouble the Secretary of State for Scotland on this matter.  Even though I had explained the background to my request i.e. Hamilton and VIP’s being visitors to the school, and abuse having taken place at the school, my MP was surprisingly unhelpful other than suggesting I write to the current Headmaster.

My first letter to the Patron, Commissioners, and others associated with the Queen Victoria School Dunblane asking one question regarding the existence of a group called the “Friends of QVS” received a poor response.  A letter from the Duke of Edinburgh’s P.S. Brigadier Miles Hunt-Davis who stated that he would be looking into the matter, and one from Lord Forsyth of Drumlean suggesting I write to the Scottish Executive were the sum total of responses.LINK

There were however several phone-calls from Commissioners which seemed to be aimed at finding out what I knew of the affairs of the school, rather than answering the questions that I had asked.

My second letter to the Commissioners, and others associated with the Queen Victoria School Dunblane asked two further questions regarding Thomas Hamilton’s presence and influence at the school, as well as asking about the complaints of bullying and abuse.  The response to this letter and my reminder to the first letter, were good.  However, the terms of the responses were disappointing and record that almost all of those trusted with the stewardship of the school know nothing of the matters I had raised.

Lord George Robertson who had been named by the ex-housemaster [Glenn Harrison] as a visitor to QVS wrote a very aggressive letter advising me that he had sent my letter to the Chief Constable of Central Scotland police!


As someone who has employed many hundreds of employees over a 25 year period in business I am well aware that the legal responsibility for the pupils safety lies squarely with the “Employer” in this case the Board of Management drawn from HM Commissioners and this much at least was clarified by Lord Cullen in Section 10 of his Inquiry Report as follows:

10.15 In Scotland the employer in regard to schools is the local authority, except in the case of self-governing schools where the employer is the board of management: and in the case of independent schools where it is the proprietor. In England and Wales the position in regard to legal responsibility is different.

Given their legal responsibilities it is astonishing that the current Commissioner and President of the Board of Management, Helen Liddell abdicates any personal responsibility and indeed initially attempted to devolve her responsibilities to my MSP.   When Helen Liddell did a U-turn on the devolution issue, she still maintained that she had no actual duties or responsibilities for Queen Victoria School, Dunblane.

A previous President, Ian Lang, states that he has no recollection of the matters I referred to.LINK  He thinks he was Honorary President, but states he had no role in the management of the school.  Although he may have appointed some of the Commissioners, he claims he was only at the school once in almost 5 years!

Another of HM Commissioners and past President of the Board of Management, Michael Forsyth, was the man who appointed Lord Cullen to head the Dunblane Inquiry, and set the terms of reference for the Inquiry.LINK  He referred my queries to the Scottish Office, who in turn passed the matter to the Scottish Executive, who claim that Mr Forsyth knows nothing of the matters I refer to, as he did not attend board meetings. [Ed ~ It was his DUTY to know.]

Lord RossLINK, the then Lord Justice Clerk, who after the Secretary of State and General Officer Commanding, Scotland, is the senior Commissioner, was annoyed that I should ask him about matters of public interest, stating he knew nothing of the matters I referred to and insisted that I stop writing to him.  [Ed ~ Again, it was also his DUTY to know.]  Lord Ross then passed the matter to the Scottish Executive Schools Division.

I am able to confirm the main thrust of the ex-housemaster’s [Glenn Harrison's] claims "from public records" some "12 years after the event".  Yet HM Commissioners, the legally responsible guardians of the pupils, and furthermore, "managers" of the school "knew nothing (or claim to know nothing) about Thomas Hamilton’s" presence and influence at the school.

HM Commissioners almost to a man (with a few exceptions), claim to know nothing of the allegations of bullying and abuse at the Queen Victoria School far less the investigation that supposedly took place.  Without exception they are unaware that Hamilton visited QVS!   This is testimony to the ignorance of the Commissioners.

Allegation 4: Masonic Influence.

It is the ex-Housemaster’s contention that there were powerful Masonic influences at work in the Queen Victoria School.  He was advised by a colleague (a Mason) that there was no point in his complaining to the authorities or the Police as the influence of Freemasonry ran through the upper echelons of the Military, Government, Law and other VIP’s who were part of the elite that frequently visited the school.  The lavish Commissioners Lunches that were put on for this elite were on such a scale that the school was sometimes unable to cater for all guests at one sitting and they had to be accommodated in two sittings, two weeks apart.

The failure of the police to return all of his documents after breaking his door down and taking his property convinced the ex-housemaster [Glenn Harrison] that the school authorities and the police were linked by Masonry, which allowed them to act above the law.

Independent Corroboration.

There is no way of corroborating evidence of Masonic influence, as it is secret.  The Grand Lodge of Scotland of Antient Free and Accepted Masons will not divulge membership of “gentlemen who are still alive”.

That Masons belong to an organisation with a constitution and obligations which demand fraternal preferment is a matter of fact but without confirmation of the identity of the “brother who must prefer a brother” evidence is at best perceived or circumstantial.


I embarked on research into the Dunblane Inquiry as a result of an invitation from the Justice 2 Committee of the Scottish Parliament who asked “if the petitioner was able to provide evidence of further specific cases where difficulties have arisen over the question of Sheriff/Judicial membership of the freemasons.”

When responding to the Justice 2 Committee’s invitation I had no idea that my research would lead to the allegations that have surfaced regarding Thomas Hamilton’s privileged position at Queen Victoria School.  In my petitioning of Parliament I gained an impression of secrecy and censorship regarding anything associated with the Dunblane Inquiry.

I found this same secrecy repeated when I wished to establish if the police reports of the arrest and door breaking incidents at QVS referred to in the Headmaster’s letter to the ex-housemaster [Glenn Harrison] featured in any Dunblane Inquiry police reports about QVS.

The Crown Office have refused my requests and a request made through my lawyers seeking access to inspect these documents.  Furthermore the Crown Office have refused to state whether or not the Queen Victoria School features in these closed documents.

My disappointment regarding the lack of openness of the Crown Office is added to by their recent decision to remove the names of all witnesses from the embargoed document Index, and from the 4 documents that have been released as well as removing the names of schools from these documents.

I have viewed some of the Crown Office’s recently released documents and the obscuring and deleting makes these documents barely legible.  It is probably now the case that the documents as censored by the Crown Office would not provide any information regarding Queen Victoria School even if it were present in the original documents.

The above actions by the Crown Office and the recent Press expose which highlighted the fact that much of the Police and Crown documentation produced at the Dunblane Inquiry was edited and summarised gives credence to the recent claims by Dr Mick North who lost his only daughter in the Dunblane massacre that:

  1. The Crown Office has been less than open.
  2. The Dunblane Inquiry looks to have been a cover-up.
  3. The Dunblane Inquiry was nothing more than a piece of theatre.

To avoid any further allegations of this type regarding the allegations relating to Queen Victoria School, which is linked by Thomas Hamilton to the Dunblane Inquiry, I would urge you to act with complete openness and urgency in looking into my complaint.

The matters I raise are serious ones and no less so because of the passage of time.  These allegations deserve proper investigation because, if the ex-housemaster's [Glenn Harrison's] allegations of physical and sexual abuse of pupils are true, the victims will now be young men who may be psychologically disturbed by the traumatic experiences in their formative years.

It is within your power to trace those pupils who attended the school at the same time as the ex-housemaster and seek confirmation or otherwise of his claims.  There are other serious allegations which have been intimated to me, but I will not disclose them until I am confident that they will be treated seriously and not as the complaints of the ex-housemaster [Glenn Harrison] .

I would have no confidence in your impartiality to carry out or instigate any enquiry unless you give me a personal guarantee that you have not taken the oath of Entered Apprentice into Freemasonry.

I would also ask you to consider whether there is any other matter, which might be seen as influencing your impartiality.

I would also make it clear that I would be reluctant to cooperate with HM Commissioners or any branch of the Scottish Justice System in helping to further expose the activities of Thomas Hamilton at Queen Victoria School without an assurance regarding their Masonic status.

My position in this regard is not frivolous and is expressed clearly because I genuinely feel that to assist those who are undeclared Masons in dealing with matters which I suspect are inextricably linked with Freemasonry would be to participate in the further suppression of the truth about the circumstances leading to the Dunblane shootings.

I intend to treat this letter as an open letter detailing matters of public concern and I will distribute it in order that its contents are not suppressed in any way.

Should you require any further clarification please do not hesitate to contact me.

Yours faithfully,
Thomas Minogue.

CC. Lieutenant General Sir John MacMillan, Chairman of the Board of Governors.
Brigadier Miles Hunt-Davis, P.S. to H.R.H. The Duke of Edinburgh.

Tom Minogue

Lord Gill

Lord Gill

Lord Cullen

Lord Cullen

Lord James Douglas-Hamilton
Lord James Douglas-Hamilton
Thomas Hamilton

Thomas Hamilton

Lord George Robertson
Prince Philip
Prince Philip Duke of Edinburgh
Jim Wallace qc mp
Jim Wallace
Michael Forsyth MP
Michael Forsyth
Ian Lang MP
Ian Lang MP
Glenn Harrison
Rachel Squire MP
Rachel Squire MP
Helen Liddell MP
Michael Forsyth MP
Lord Forsyth of Drumlean
Prince Andrew
Prince Andrew
Beware Authority
Dunblane Whitewash
Dunblane City Sign
Scotland Map


Dunblane Public Inquiry
Dunblane Massacre
Read the full list in the Dunblane Whitewash catalogue. LINK
Dunblane Angels
St Blane's Church Dunblane
The stained glass window in St Blane's Church, Dunblane, which commemorates the victims of the 1996 massacre.
List of the victims of the Dunblane massacre
Victoria Clydesdale
Mhairi MacBeath
Charlotte Dunn
Melissa Currie
Emma Crozier
Kevin Hassell
Ross Irvine
David Kerr
Gwen Hodson/Mayor - schoolteacher
John Petrie
Hanna Scott
Joanna Ross
Sophie North
Emily Morton
Maegan Turner
Brett McKinnon
Abigail McLennan
We know who killed the above victims, but, although we may not care, we do not know for sure who killed Thomas Hamilton, and why that person was carrying a revolver at the time!
Why did Lord Cullen try to bury William Burns' letters to him for 100 years? LINK
Copyright © 2016 Billy Burns. All rights reserved.