I was at St Benedicts' in the late 60s. Dom Gerard, initially headmaster of the Middle School, was notorious for his interest in little boys. Later he moved to the Senior school, where he attempted to abuse me, amongst others. I ran away, kept on running. Others weren't so quick or so lucky. Point being that everyone knew about Gerard – boys and teachers alike. But to go against him was seen as going against the Church and that was the worst sin of all. Anyway, the Abbey at the time was a hot-bed of bullying, waspish homosexuality. . .I knew at least one postulant who left because the atmosphere was so poisonous. Gerard continued his career and activities into the 70s, ending as headmaster of the Senior school. God only knows how many lives he and others like him ruined.There's a pattern here. Horsey, Hayes, Soper and others. The abuse is widespread. The perpetrators often seem to have been made headmaster of the middle school at some point in their career. The abuse was common knowledge - to both boys and teachers. And nothing was done, because the authority of the church was behind the abusers. They were monks and priests as well as teachers. Sometimes senior monks - headmaster or even Abbot.
And the same management is still in place at the Abbey. Francis Rossiter was Abbot at the time referred to in the account above, he is Prior now.
UPDATE 10th November 2011
With regard to the above article about Father Gerard Hayes, I was repeating a comment which had been made by somebody else on the blog, and the description was clearly indicated to be a quotation, both in my introduction and my use of blockquote formatting
I accept that the original comment was very probably incorrect. Lord Carlile has not indicated in his report that he has received any allegations against Father Gerard Hayes, and I am entirely willing to concur with his conclusion.
I apologise to any of Father Gerard's colleagues or family who may have been distressed by the article.
The point I made in the article was a more general one, as follows. "The abuse was common knowledge - to both boys and teachers. And nothing was done, because the authority of the church was behind the abusers. They were monks and priests as well as teachers. Sometimes senior monks - headmaster or even Abbot."
I think that point has been entirely borne out by subsequent events and has been made in the strongest possible terms by Lord Carlile himself.