Abuse inquiry into former Coventry children’s home

An inquiry has been launched into allegations of abuse at the former children’s home, Wisteria Lodge in Coventry.

14 April 2016

Former workers, Kenneth Owen and Alan Todd were jailed in February 2016 for the “grotesque” abuse of children.

The children’s home in Coventry has since been demolished. Coventry Safeguarding Children Board will investigate why complaints from the 1980s were not acted upon for so many years.

Janet Mokades, chair of Coventry Safeguarding Children Board, said: "This is not an inquiry that anyone has told us we have to do.

"We're doing it because it is the right thing to do, because children who are now adults deserve it - and because it will help us to make things safe."

Todd was jailed for eight years following a conviction of six indecent assault and five cruelty charges. Owen was sentenced to more than four years when he was found guilty of five cruelty charges.

I welcome the inquiry by the city's Safeguarding Children Board. However, this case should also be examined by the Government's independent inquiry into child sexual abuse - the Goddard inquiry.

The Goddard inquiry will be looking at the abuse of children in residential care homes as one of its key areas of investigation. It will focus particularly on cases where complaints of abuse were made but not acted upon. This appears to have happened in Coventry and is very disturbing. We need to ensure that the failure to act on complaints is properly investigated and ensure that it never happens again.

Richard Scorer is head of the abuse team at Slater and Gordon Lawyers UK.

Slater and Gordon have the UK’s most experienced team of child abuse lawyers and are currently representing over 800 survivors of abuse.

We offer a free and completely confidential consultation to anyone affected by sexual abuse. Call us anytime 24/7 on freephone 0330 041 5869 or contact us online.

All information was correct at the time of publication.

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