A timeline of my childhood experiences involving The Paedophile Information Exchange.




Acquainting with paedophiles,


1966 December 8, My brother Dominic Thomas Chadbon was born.

1968 September 30, I was born, Nicholas Richard Chadbon.


1969 (summer),

Barnes Montessori was founded in the now demolished Shoreline Building by Celine Argent, (later became Madame Jolivet Gerber) and my mother, The Right Honourable Deborah Elspeth Leathers, (Debbie Chadbon or later Mrs Pitt).


Debbie took her class in the darkened basement, I was not old enough to join in with the class so she forced me to lay down in a cot, silent and unmoving and would beat me if I did otherwise. She was very strict with the children, beating them if they misbehaved.

1972 (summer),

Celine did not like Debbie shouting at and hitting the pupils and persuaded her to teach in the large main room where they held their classes side by side. As a three year old I was a year too young to join a class and although Celine said I could join her class but Debbie would not allow it, I was to sit at a table on my own, with my back to everyone. Debbie continued with her harsh discipline which would disrupt Celine’s class and the two argued about teaching methods. As if to prove a point to Celine about corporal punishment, Debbie took my brother, Dominic, who was in her class, down to the basement and must have given him quite some beating judging by how distraught he was when he emerged, Debbie at his side holding his hand tightly. At the end of the class she took a photograph of him looking forlorn.

I really wanted to join a class and kept looking round to see what they were doing but after being glared at, shouted at and hit, the next punishment was being stripped and beaten in the basement so I kept my back to them and joined in with singing the alphabet in my head.

An exuberant four year old mixed race Boy (V) in Celine’s class crossed Debbie, she took him down to the basement for punishing, however, he did not come back up crying and distressed like I expected, (the door to the basement was on my left) instead he was excited, jubilant, jumping up and down, Debbie in denim dungarees held his hand tightly,

“She played with my willi..” he started to say but Debbie brought her free hand up wagging her finger and placed it to her lips, she bent down to his level and said in a hushed voice,

“SHH! This is between you and me, okay?”

Celine called out incredulously from behind me,

“Debbie!” I turned my head. Celine stood, shocked, the summer sun shone through her hair. She accused Debbie of molesting the boy. Debbie denied it and and silenced the boy in a threatening manner, Celine became irate and yelled at her. Debbie yelled back, Celine shouted out the reasons, [funding/backing] that made it her who calls the shots. The row ended.

Soon after, Boy (V)’s parents arrived at the steps of the nursery, with boy (V) in a baby buggy. They were livid, his mother shouting at Debbie and the angry father ascending the concrete stairs. Debbie locked the door. She stopped working there.



Debbie would sexually abuse both Dominic and myself at the family home. With me it was either when I was half asleep or in the bath. Dominic would always become distressed and cry when I witnessed him being sexually abused.

The last bath I had together with Dominic. Debbie was simultaneously molesting the both of us and Dominic burst into tears and pleaded with her for us to take our baths separately which we did from then on. At a later date Dominic came up to me on the landing and said to me that I was too young to get a big willy.



My grandmother, Elspeth Graeme Leathers, (Viscountess Leathers or Mima as her grandchildren called her), was not normally violent, she only hit me once. One morning the smell of kedjeree enticed my brother and I into the dining room, we burst in but there was no place set for us and Elspeth was furious, she beat both my brother and myself. Soon after, I made the same mistake again, her persona changed from carefree to fierce, she shouted at me in Bihari, (a dialect of, or in another Indian language) to come to her, (which somehow I understood, probably by her body language) but knowing what would happen I did not go to her and ran out of the room.

1973 December,

For Christmas Dominic got a book of transfers he had completed two years before, (Elspeth was a chronic alcoholic) and Elspeth said she would give him another present which he had to go upstairs to her bedroom for. When he came down he was empty handed. I asked him where the present was and he said it was sex. My uncle, The Right Honourable Christopher Greame Leathers, (Christie) later yelled his disapproval up the stairs, (that lead to my grandparents dressing room and bedroom) directing his ire at Elspeth, who replied in a waving voice,

“It was alright in India.”

“You’re not in fucking India!” Christie shouted back.



Debbie had a children’s clothes shop called ‘Child’s Play’ which was in Barnes, on the corner of White Hart Lane and Limes Field Road.

In the middle of the shop floor were clothes rails with princesses/fairy costumes, ballet dresses and one kings outfit. Debbie did a good trade with these clothes. (Except for the kings outfit which stayed on the rack)

One day Elspeth turned up with Leon Brittan who had a dark haired chubby Boy (P) of around eight years old with him. Boy (P) was told to put on a pink tutu which he did and ran around the shop in a hyperactive way. Leon Brittan cut a hard deal with Debbie over the bulk buying of these little girl’s outfits.


1973 (summer),

During the summer Debbie organised a photo shoot for a catalogue, her friend Judy, (now deceased) came along with her daughter, (Girl B) as did Dominic and myself.

The site was in east London, a derelict goods yard. We parked the car and went through the a door set into large blue solid wooden gates. The photo shoot started on an overgrown loading bay/railway platform, two other boys were there; a mixed race Boy (T), aged around eight and Boy (Z), aged about ten. Boy (Z) came over to me and said,

“I’m going to rip your shirt off.” He ripped at my shirt and I lost a button. I retreated and stood at a distance. The children were then photographed against a high wall. Then we went into a small yard which was enclosed on three sides, against a wall was a 1940’s motorbike, opposite was a single story building that had a heavy curtain/rug hanging across the doorway. A dark haired Girl (A), aged around four was there. After changing into other clothes, Dominic and Boy (Z) were told to sit on the bike, the photographer was a man with dark hair and a beard and another man was barking out orders, this man was Sydney Cooke. Boy (Z) sat with his hands on the handle bars and Dominic sat behind. Cooke then told him to sit closer to Boy (Z) and said,

“Make it look like you are going really fast,” The two boys leaned forward, “Stick your arse’s out!” Boy (Z) stood up and stuck his backside into Dominic’s face, Cooke and the photographer laughed loudly. “Okay, lets do some modelling without clothes,” Cooke ordered, “We won’t charge you anything then. No toddlers.” He and the photographer cackled. They all went inside except for the Girl (A) and myself.

“Stay here and don’t come in.” Debbie said to me as she went in.

I stood there for a couple of minutes, then took a look inside to see what they were up to. On the left there was a low stage, Cooke was standing on the near side, Girl (B) was running around naked/half naked on the stage along with a naked Boy (Z) and sitting on the far side of the stage was an unattractive woman with frizzy fair/blonde hair and she was undressing/molesting Boy (T). Opposite the stage was the photographer and Judy. At the far end of the room was a changing booth, the curtain was drawn and Dominic stood shaking his head and tearful as Debbie, kneeling was caressing his groin with a fixed grimace on her face. Dominic saw me and became more distressed, he started to cry,

“Nicholas is watching!” Debbie looked over at me and glared,

“Get out!” She shouted. Cooke said,

“He’s disobeyed you, punish him, spank him!” The photographer and Boy (Z) both made sounds of agreement. Cooke continued, “If you won’t, I will. He’s disobeyed a direct order!” He made his way over to me.

“No hitting the kids!” Protested the woman sitting on the stage, “It distresses them!”

“I love it!” Cooke said, advancing, his eyes bulging and fixed on me. I ran into an open area, I had two options; go for the door in the gate but I did not know whether it was locked or not or run into the open goods yard where I was bound to get caught, I stood there waiting for Cooke to emerge but he didn’t. I went back into the yard to check out the bike. Girl (A) then walked over to the curtain and went inside, I heard several adults all in-taking their breath to shout my mother raged,

“I…!!!” Realising it was not me the voices all turned falsetto and in unison chimed,

“ESS-TERR!” in a ‘ahh, how sweet’ way.

I waited, but not for long, Judy and Debbie came storming out with Dominic and Girl (B) following behind, Judy remonstrated with Debbie,

“Paedophiles Debbie, paedophiles!” she said loudly with distaste. Debbie started to argue and Judy spelled it out, “PEE-DO-PHILES!!” Debbie looked over to me, I was backing off towards the gates,

“Okay.” Debbie said and we left. The door in the gate was unlocked. On the way to the car Judy was astonished how easily the kids (Particularly her daughter) had been duped into such behaviour. She asked Debbie who’s contact these people were. Debbie said it was Elspeth’s contact. Judy asked where the kids came from, Debbie said they were kids from Lambeth care homes.

A couple of weeks later at 83 Elm Bank Gardens the catalogue was on the dining table and there was someone discussing it with Debbie, (An uncle or a policeman) they said it was not evidence as there was no text on it except for the name of the shop. Debbie had tried to pay by cheque, (she had no cash and was not charged) so there was no cheque or receipt with the photographers details on it.


I was standing amongst the clothes rails in the middle of the shop, I was annoyed at not being allowed to play with the sword and kings outfit, (although I was encouraged to put on girl’s costumes.) My aunt, The Right Honourable Anne Catherine Leathers, (later Mrs Centner)was standing next to me at the end of the rail and I whispered to her,

“Mummy plays with Dominic’s willy.” Anne’s jaw dropped, she alerted Debbie who was standing three meters away by the till and then said to me to say what I had just said again, louder, which I did, Debbie glared at me and said,

“It’s just child’s play.” Anne wasn’t having it and an argument ensued which ended up with Anne lying on the floor, rolling from side to side with her hands quivering on her chest as if she was having an epileptic fit, she was crying and wailing,

“My sister’s a paedophile! My sister’s a paedophile!”

“OH, GET UP!” Debbie shouted.



I walked into Debbie’s bedroom and Dominic was dancing on the bed whilst she sexually abused him.

I was what is known as a ‘late developer’, (a boy who does not get an erection until a later age) my abuse was mostly physical. The beatings were severe, when I was two years old I had to have stitches in my face after one such beating. Tuesday’s, (and sometimes Monday’s) were good because at primary school we would go swimming on Wednesday’s and the state of my backside would cause teachers to wince and raise concerns therefore Debbie would refrain from beating us.

Other punishments were; being locked in the under stairs cupboard, (where I had to stand as she would keep checking), put in a Kashmir table, (my gibbet), eating off the floor, (on my hands and knees where the dog ate).

Elspeth and Debbie were both proud to be paedophiles and would state:

“Francophiles are people who love France and paedophiles are people who love children.”

Debbie said the age of consent should be thirteen and considered the sexual abuse of younger children as ‘child’s play’.


1974 (early or middle),

Debbie took Dominic and I to get our passport photographs taken at a studio in White Hart Lane. After we had our photo’s taken the photographer, (a man) photographed a woman beating a Boy (I) of about four years old and then photographed Debbie doing the same with Boy (I), but she stopped and then declined when asked to beat Dominic and/or myself.



On holiday in Spetses. Elspeth, Debbie, Dominic and I stayed at a hotel by the harbour. In the morning lying in bed after being woken, {by molestation} I watched Debbie standing over Dominic’s bed watching Elspeth who sat on the bed molesting Dominic. The maid walked in and screamed like she had seen the devil, she used her hand to make the sign of the cross in front of her and ran out of the room. The hotel management arrived and a huge row ensued and we had to leave.



Debbie had a copy of ‘understanding paedophilia’, the front cover featured a child actor and there were more photographs of him inside, one of which he was holding a sword, (rapier) standing next to a high stool. She would hide the journal and I would find it straight away. She claimed she was psychic. This ability also manifested in the game of Cluedo; Debbie would hold a card and I would guess what it was and I would be right, (most of the time) but she started to try and trick me which confused me. She expressed her revelations to one of my uncles who said,

“Maybe he’s the one who’s psychic.” This did not please Debbie who replied,

“But he’s a child.” When, at the suggestion of my uncle I held the card and Debbie tried to guess, she could not get it right.

She tried to do it with playing cards which was a lot harder and would end up shouting and threatening to hit me. From then on I shied away from playing this game.


Debbie announced that Elspeth was to work for the charity ‘The Princedale Trust’ which involved taking children from deprived backgrounds on day trips to the funfair, the zoo and outdoor activities such as dirt bike racing. When the trust changed names, (Albany trust, Albany trust limited) it was to the annoyance of Debbie as she was in charge of [expenses], she had a chest of drawers with the bottom drawer full of cheque book stubs). Elspeth would bring these children, (boys) to Elm Bank Gardens whilst on their day trips.


I was hiding under Debbie’s bed and her and Dominic came in, got in bed and started moving up and down, the mattress form of Debbie’s body got closer and closer to me, I started to poke her in the back on every down motion, she called out my name several times and when Dominic realised what was going on he leaped of in tears, they were angry and I ran out the room.



Once a large man was in the shop with a Boy (H) of around nine years old and the man flew into a rage and used the flat edge of the wooden sword (which came with the kings outfit) to give Boy (H) a harsh beating. Boy (H) collapsed into a rail of clothes and onto the floor screaming and sobbing with the man falling on top of him with his arms around him. The man then apologised and started to kiss him and run his hands all over him. Debbie then sent me into the cellar.



Elspeth had separated from my grandfather and was on her own at Hillsgreen until it was sold, (On the market 10th August 1977.) In between selling Hillsgreen and buying Vergers, (Also in Kirdford) she was homeless. She was in Vergers by 1978.

I visited her once at a ground floor flat in Gloucester Place, it was a sombre occasion. Debbie took me there, Elspeth’s brown Citroen GSA was parked outside. We entered the building at ground level, the flat was the first door on the right side of the hallway. Elspeth was sitting in a room which smelled of cigars/pipe tobacco, there were net curtains that made the room dingy although the sunlight shone in from the street, (Gloucester Place) She wore her large sunglasses and had her brown/grey tweed ‘safari type’ suit on. A sheepish old man disappeared through a doorway at the back of the room, [Anthony Blunt?] Elspeth hardly said a word or moved a muscle. Debbie deduced she was hung over and sensed there had been a party the night before. We didn’t stay long.



I came out of the house and saw that Elspeth had turned up. With her were two boys, one Boy (U) was around nine years old and stood by her side holding her hand. The other Boy (A) was about twelve years old and was five meters away up the street standing in the middle of the road, he was tall and had dark short hair with a swept fringe, a square jawed face, broad shoulders and wore smart, fashionable clothes. On the pavement outside the front gate, slightly to the right and next to Elspeth stood Debbie and her partner, (the late Graham Foster?) They faced the road where, in the middle of, Elspeth’s car (brown Citroen GSA) stood stationary and pointing up the street (away from the river) towards the boy. On the passenger (far) side of the car was a tall dark haired and bearded man, this was Sydney Cooke. The garden gate was closed and although I had not yet greeted Elspeth I was told by Debbie to stay in the garden, which I did along with Dominic. Cooke was really angry and was shouting up the street at the boy,

“Get in the car Danny!” he bellowed, “Get in the fucking car!” Boy (A) would not do so and turned and walked further up the road towards the church. He then came back and weaved around some parked cars as the Cooke tried to catch him and he then went further up the road again, to about twenty meters away. I thought why doesn’t he nip through the churchyard but he probably did not know that there was an alley there. Boy (A) turned and faced us, he looked confused and scared but defiant. Cooke laughed callously and shouted,

“You’ve got nowhere to go have you Danny? Get in the car!” Boy (A) came back to within a few meters but still would not get in the car, and continued to give Cooke the run around. Cooke was livid, “GET IN THE FUCKING CAR!” Boy (A) would not. Then Cooke, cursing and swearing got into the drivers seat of the car, stuck it in first gear and launched it towards Boy (A). Boy (A) looked straight at me wide eyed, I looked away and heard a soft crunch. Immediately the man shouted, “DANNY!” in a mock concerned voice and got out of the car saying in a false tone, “It was an accident!” Debbie’s partner objected saying he did it deliberately but the man kept saying it was an accident which it was obviously not. I could not see Boy (A) on the road as he was obscured by the garden fence. They all crowded around him and Debbie told Dominic and I to go into the back garden which we did. An ambulance was called.

A day or so passed and Debbie said that Boy (A) asked if Dominic and I would visit him in hospital but she convinced us that we did not know him and he was more of a stranger than a friend so we did not visit.

A few days later Debbie showed me a local newspaper which had a small paragraph stating that Boy (A) had died in hospital, (Charing Cross?) his name was Daniel, his surname looked Irish. Debbie’s partner became angry and said Boy (A) wanted to see Dominic and I so we could be witnesses, and how sad that Boy (A) chose children to try and get witnesses over adults. A row ensued between Debbie and her partner. Debbie wanted him to sign a statement saying it was Elspeth who had been the driver which he would not do and he kept saying,

“That was no accident!” and he threw his hands in the air and shouted, “It was murder!” and stormed out.

At some point I went with Debbie to a police vehicle depot in Barnes (St Annes Road) where she remonstrated with a policeman who sat at a table with log book in a small booth which was immediately inside the large entrance to the left. He would not return the car saying,

“It’s evidence”.

Elspeth bought a new car, (Citroën CX prestige) it was light blue and matched her ‘safari’ style tweed suit which had ‘drainpipe’ trousers, she wore black leather heeled boots with this outfit. Her previous ‘safari’ style suit was grey/brown and also tweed. She often wore a tweed grey/brown skirt.

During the time Elspeth had no fixed address she had a PIE, (Paedophile information exchange) membership package sent to Elm Bank Gardens, I was there when Debbie picked it off the hall floor, it was addressed to Elspeth and used her full title. There was a PIE sticker in the package that was put in the front window alongside a Liberal party sticker.


Elspeth and Debbie were in the kitchen. I was in the sitting room in my gibbet playing a game with Dominic with ‘pick a sticks’, (small pointed sticks with coloured ends). He would poke the sticks through little arched windows of the intricately carved hardwood sides of the table which had five sides and an octagonal tin clad top and try to prick me, I would try and grab the stick off him and prick him back. The game would end when I had all the sticks in a pile underneath me, (which would cause additional discomfort) I had very little room for manoeuvring, I could only swivel 360° on my hands and knees or sit in one position. Halfway through playing this game Boy (Q) who had arrived with Elspeth entered the room and immediately joined in. He was eleven or twelve years old, had straight mousey hair and quite a large nose and was poking the sticks through a lot harder than Dominic was. I was doing the best I could in defending myself and then Boy (Q) took a stick in each hand, Dominic followed suit and I became helpless, Boy (Q) was going for my eyes, moving around the table jabbing the sticks in hard, I cried out in pain but they continued, laughing all the while. I was also being impaled by the sticks beneath me, I screamed and lurched up against the heavy top and to the side to try and escape bringing the whole table crashing down on me. I was face down and Boy (Q) jumped on top of me and started to writhe and grind his body into me, tearing at my clothes whilst kissing the back of my neck and cheeks. Elspeth and Debbie came in the room,

“Richard!” Elspeth shouted, “Get off him!” Boy (Q) continued and they had to pull him off me.



Debbie had a flat topped Wendy house/playhouse built so she could put the till on it and display items. Below the till she had a round window cut into it at crotch level. Once I went to enter the playhouse, I stepped through the cut-out door and Dominic who was inside halted me saying he did not want me to come in, there was a lot of excitement, I persisted. There was another Boy (J) inside, Debbie was standing at the till and her jeans were undone, child sex abuse was taking place through window opening. I was told to go away again, which I did.


I arrived at the shop from school and there was police crime scene tape wrapped around the playhouse. I looked at it and Debbie said to an uncle who was there,

“This is silly.” And went to take the tape down but was advised that the police would not like it and would take it very seriously if she was to do so. My uncle then started to shout at Debbie saying how she deliberately had the window cut in that position so she could abuse children and with added abhorrence exclaimed this abuse would be committed, (on Child/Boy K) as she worked at the till.

Some time after my uncle’s made Debbie say to me,

“I’m not allowed to work with children any more.” She started to walk off and my uncle’s said loudly,

“And the rest!” My mother bowed her head and without looking at me mumbled,

“I’m a paedophile.”

{uncle’s, “…….but it doesn’t say anything about having/bringing up children…”}


1978 April/May,

Jonathan King ran as a candidate to be the local MP and was canvassing down our street, posting his leaflets, (“JK all the way” on a ‘complimentary’ sized slip of paper, all printed in black and white.) He knocked on our door but neither Dominic or I answered, we were upstairs looking out of the window as he walked towards the river. Toby, a twelve year old boy who lived opposite was hanging out of his first floor window shouting at King, Dominic and I opened a window each and listened in,

“Wanker!” Toby shouted. King had stopped at the yard entrance and was facing Toby,

“Yeah, I’m a wanker!” King shouted back, “This is how I do it!” He made a hand gesture simulating masturbation. “How do you do it?” Toby responded with more insults and King became angry, held his arms out provocatively and yelled, “You think you’re hard don’t you? Come on then!”

“Arsehole!” Dominic said. King turned to face him,

“Yeah, I got an arsehole right here!” he pointed to his rear, “Where’s yours?”

“Twit!” I shouted. Toby, Dominic and myself all laughed at King whose mood softened, he looked at me, smiled and said,

“Twit? Is that the best you can do? Is you’re mother in?” Dominic and I were silent. “She’s not is she? you want me to spank you, don’t you?” King started walking back towards our house, “Open the door.” He commanded. I definitely was not going to open the door but I was fearful that Dominic would. “Open the door!” King said more forcefully. Toby started screaming,

“Pervert! Help! Police!” Someone opened their front door further down the street, King turned on his heel and walked off rapidly.


One afternoon I was standing in the sitting room in the bay of the window and Debbie was in the room along with Mima. Debbie was asking my Elspeth about how she wanted me to mix with the boys she was taking on day trips and said,

“Have you got someone with you now?” Elspeth did not reply. Debbie and I looked out of the window to Mima’s car which was parked fifteen meters away on the other side of the road facing away from us. “Why have you parked over there when there is a parking space right outside the house?” Debbie said crossly. I focussed on the back window of the car and a Boy (N) turned his body and head and looked directly at me. He had brown straight hair cut in a pudding bowl style, a round face with large round brown eyes and a slightly cleft lip, he was about ten years old.

“Bring him in.” Debbie said. Elspeth remained silent. Debbie continued, raising her voice, “Bring him in, what’s his name?”

“Edward.” Elspeth replied.

“No it’s not, you’re lying, I know when you’re lying Ma!” Debbie said confrontationally. I was still eye to eye with Boy (N) and in a strange empathic moment I saw naked boys being beaten by naked adults and then the boys being sexually abused, one of the adults was Elspeth. Boy (N)’s eyes were like saucers, ‘HELP ME!’ I turned away in embarrassment and shock. Elspeth was saying to my mother,

“….he’ll be running wild all over the furniture, climbing the shelves….putting things in his pockets!” Boy (N) stayed in the car.


1978 December,

Debbie, Dominic and myself went for a holiday in South Africa. We hired a camper van and left aunt Anne and uncle Arthur’s place in Johannesburg and headed for Durban. Along the way, one of the stops we made was at a campsite on the Umgeni river. It was late afternoon. We parked the van and went in to the grassy area and pitched our tents close to the river bank. Twenty meters away, by a couple of picnic benches and under a large tree were a group of Afrikaners, the only other camper was a man with short dark curly hair and a beard in his thirties who had his tent close to ours. The man, (Jim) was friendly and was soon chatting with Debbie, he made a bar-b-q and we ate, Dominic and I were given red wine. Night fell and giddy with the wine I crashed into my bed and Dominic was next to me in the tent.

In the middle of the night I awoke and found that Dominic was not in the tent next to me. There were sounds coming from Debbie’s tent, giggling, laughing, pleasurable moaning and the sound of backsides being slapped. I got up and went out to have a look. I half unzipped Debbie’s tent, (from the top down) and peered in, child sex abuse was taking place. Jim, who was laying on top of her turned his head and said,

“Mmmm, more the merrier!” and Debbie told me to go back to my tent which I did. The curious noises continued and I fell asleep.

In the morning I was feeling the after effects of the alcohol. The four of us were milling around, packing and preparing breakfast when a blonde man came over from the direction of the other campers.

“I am in charge here,” he said, “I’ve had a serious complaint.” He went on to say who he was, some kind of police chief/man of importance. “Are you Jewish?” He said to Jim.

“What if I am?” Jim retorted, “I’ve served my time in the army and I have my identity papers.” He rummaged in his belongings and started to produce some documents but the blonde man stayed him with his hand and said,

“Thought so. Some of us..” he indicated his head left, towards the campers who were sitting on the picnic benches “..think you should be out there with the rest of them.” He nodded his head right, towards the entrance gate of the campsite. He continued with an air of authority announcing he was going to put us all on trial and he made it clear that it would be held in English for our benefit only and it angered him that he would have to do so.

I was told to continue tidying and packing our stuff. Debbie, Jim and Dominic went with the man to where the eight or so other campers were. Jim sat still on one picnic bench with the male campers standing a few meters away surrounding him. Debbie was sat fidgety on another bench and the women campers sat with her, not letting her move. The blonde man stood under the tree and was speaking whilst Dominic stood near by. Then the women had Debbie on the table, pinning her down on her back whilst one of them carried out some sort of gynaecological test. All the men had turned their backs. Debbie looked over to me, eyes glaring angrily but also fearful.

After a little while, the blonde man walked back over with my brother and a blonde woman in her twenties. Debbie remained on the bench, sitting with the women who held on to her. The man spoke about what he had decided to do and turned to my brother and said angrily,

“You lied to me.” Dominic backed off. The man then said to me, “Curiosity killed the cat.” He introduced the woman and said she is going to look after us and told us to get in the river and sober up, he laughed without humour and went back to the picnic benches. The woman told us to swim to the other side of the river. Dominic and I got in the river and swam across to the far bank, the woman became angry as we reached the other side, telling us to get back in the river, but we picked our way through the mud and climbed the bank and turned around to see the woman irate, shouting at us to get back in the river, she kept glancing over her shoulder at the proceedings which were taking place under the tree. All of a sudden there was a massive distressed shout,

“NOOOO!!!!” It was Jim, he was standing in a defensive position by the picnic bench, the men were closing in on him and the women were banging pots and pans creating a large clamour. There was a man scuttling around a branch of the tree with a rope. The men jumped on Jim. The woman who was with us turned back to us and with fury told us to get back in the river and swim over to her. I thought it was some sort of endurance test, I couldn’t understand her anger but Dominic and I got back in the river and started swimming back. Half way across the woman ordered us to stop swimming and tread water which we did, she became frustrated and told us to put our hands in the air which we did. There was still the sound of pots and pans being banged. The woman kept looking over her shoulder towards her fellow campers. Dominic and I faced each other in the river, treading water with our hands in the air, we were both strong swimmers but I was starting to tire and wanted to get out but the woman shouted at us to keep going and told us to tread water faster and faster, as hard as we could. We did so and my head was getting lower and lower, I was spluttering from swallowing water and all of a sudden Dominic grabbed me and held me under the chin and took me back to the bank using a rescue technique.

“Yes,” the woman said, “Come back here.” We climbed back up the bank and the woman told me once more to come to her. She was a pretty woman and I was happy to oblige, I thought she was going to dry me down, even give me a cuddle. We faced each other on the grassy river bank, Dominic stood behind me. She started to stroke my neck, I thought this was a strange way to dry someone, there was no towel. I stood looking into her eyes, a fixed grimace on her face. She continued caressing my neck and then she placed her hands around my neck and started to squeeze, gently at first but with increasing pressure. I thought this was still part of the endurance test and it started to hurt but I remained still and silent. It came to a point where it really hurt and I thought ‘gosh, this is harder than Dominic strangles me’, but the woman continued to apply pressure on my throat, I couldn’t breathe, I looked into her eyes wondering if I had ‘passed’ the toughness test but her grimace remained and she didn’t stop, I had run out of air and felt faint, I started to make involuntary choking noises and my eyes were almost popping out. And then, suddenly, she broke her grip and wailed, she turned and ran back to her fellow campers squealing and sobbing, she was crying out something in Afrikaans.

Dominic and I went back to our tents to finish packing, we had the cool box packed and were about to dismantle the tents when the blonde man and Debbie came back over,

“What’s that?” I said pointing to a shape hanging from the tree. [It was Jim, they had hung him low, hog tied with a bag over his head]

“A sack of potatoes,” Debbie said quickly, “Don’t look, come on we’re going.” The blonde man thought this was funny and repeated,

“A sack of potatoes,” he then started to reminisce about witnessing his first hangings when he was a child, how they would hang them high with no bag over their heads. And he admitted it was not a good look for any tourist turning up. He went on to say that he would of had no problems hanging Debbie and Dominic but none of them wanted to put the rope around my neck, I was too young to hang and too old to take in as one of their own (I would probably remember) and none of them wanted me anyway and also, although it would give him great pleasure to hang a member of the British aristocracy (he had hanged all sorts), he thought Debbie might be missed, unlike Jim.

An ambulance turned up, the blonde man confidently spoke to the paramedics who, looking scared took Jim away very swiftly.

“We’re going.” Debbie said to Dominic and myself.

“What about the tents?” Dominic asked.

“Leave them.” Debbie said and started walking to the car park, Dominic picked up the cool box and we followed.

“We’ll burn them for you.” The blonde man called out after us.

We drove off and we were all silent for a long time until Debbie started to sob gently as she drove and when we got to Durban and traffic she drove into the back of someone’s car, the driver, a man, came flying out,

“That’s just like a woman to cry when she’s done something wrong!” he shouted.

“I was already crying.” Debbie confessed. Dominic and I sat in the back picking glass out of our legs as some bottles of pop had exploded in the cool box on impact. Another man appeared and said he was a witness to the accident. The first man calmed down and asked why she was crying, Debbie explianed that her boyfriend had just died.

“How did he die?” Asked the driver sympathetically.

“He drowned.” Debbie replied still tearful. One of the men invited my mother to a bbq and an argument broke out between the two men who faced each other off and we left.



Debbie persisted in wanting me to mix with the care home boys, and sought to find one of my own age.

I came home after school one afternoon and walked through to the kitchen where Debbie and Elspeth sat. I was told to make friends with a boy who was in the sitting room and I went in and was introduced to Boy (S). He was about ten years old and had a friendly manner.

“This is Carl, Carl this is Nicholas.” We were left alone.

“My friends call me Nick,” I said, then added, “Is it Carl with a C or a K?”

“C.” Boy (S) replied. We sat down in separate armchairs and each of us had a magnetic puzzle to do. After no more than two minutes Boy (S) said,

“This is boring, lets go up the chimney.” He walked over to the fire place and disappeared up the chimney. I was astonished and went over and peered up and saw his face, “Come on it’s easy, there’s space for two.” he said and explained how to climb up. I climbed up and sat in an alcove opposite him in his alcove. He started to talk about ‘Uncle Leon’ and the gifts he got and he spoke about sex. I did not know what sex was which surprised him and he said, “You must know what sex is, I do it all the time, with my family, with ‘Uncle Leon’, I’ve just been having sex in the kitchen with your mum and your gran.”

“Is it swearing?” I asked.

“No.” He laughed, look I’ll show you, he took his penis out and tried to arouse himself but couldn’t and suddenly became abashed and his perky attitude changed and he said he hated ‘Uncle Leon’ and spoke of how sex really hurt him and how ‘Uncle Leon’ would beat him up.

We were called down by Debbie and the first thing I said was,

“What’s sex?” Debbie recoiled and looked at Elspeth who smiled and said,

“You don’t want him hiding up the chimney Deborah, it’s top of the list for the social services to take children into care, they get stuck and the fire brigade have to get them out. Out of the frying pan and into the fire!” She continued smiling and shaking her head, “You don’t want him going up the chimney Deborah, at the care homes they light fires to flush them out!”

“No they don’t Ma!” Debbie said.

“They do in Jersey. They burn them alive!” (Child/Boy C)

“NO!” Debbie exclaimed.

“YES they do Deborah! Out of the frying pan and into the fire!”

I would use this excellent hiding place to avoid Debbie’s beatings. I would be up there for hours waiting for her to calm down. I was up there once when she was particularly cross, she could not get me down even by cooking my favourite meal fishcakes and baked beans and placing the plate on the grate causing me to have hunger pangs, I would not budge. Then, in silence her hands appeared below me and she started to prepare a fire, scrunching up the paper, setting the kindling and placing the coal. She produced a large box of matches and and slowly took out a match and held it to the box at an angle, ready to strike. I wailed and came clattering down the chimney into her arms.


Elspeth and Debbie would host parties* (at the house in Elm Bank Gardens), when Dominic and I were visiting my ‘good’ grandmother. Once, when I returned I discovered a wet patch in my bed and there was a message written on the wall: “Hello Nick please help me” (Boy W).

*’Wild’ parties according to Martin John Hanness b.July 1952.


I walked into the dining room, Debbie was sitting on a carver dining chair, with Dominic on top moving up and down, he saw me and leaped off and collapsed in a crying heap,

“He saw me! He saw me!”

“No he didn’t!” Debbie said tersely.

“He did, he saw me! Nicholas saw me!” Dominic wailed, sobbing heavily. Debbie turned to me,

“What did you see Nicholas!” She said crossly.

“Dominic bouncing on your lap.” I said in a level voice, (I actually thought very odd for someone his age.)

“There! Now get up.” Debbie chided, but Dominic remained hysterical, “OH, GET UP!” She shouted.

Dominic told me sex was a thing I did not know about and that when he was thirteen he was going

to have sex with Debbie.



Dominic and I were at the funfair. We were walking along the main row of attractions which ran parallel with Lower Richmond Road and came within a few meters of the shooting stall where Boy (R) stood firing an air rifle at the plastic ducks which floated along at the back of the stall. Standing next to him was Elspeth.

“Mima!” Dominic called out. Elspeth ignored us and walked off holding Boy (R)’s hand. We were confused. “Mima!” Dominic called after her, she did not turn around and disappeared into the middle of the fair. We did not follow and had a go at shooting the duck’s out of the water. We then continued to other rides and attractions and after a while ended up in the South West corner of the fair where caravans and generators formed a barrier from the road, (Queens Ride). There was a ‘test your strength’ attraction with a long horizontal piece and an upright piece, a group of boys were crowded around waiting for their turn to wield the long handled mallet, the man in charge was Sydney Cooke. Elspeth and Boy (R) were also there, they were all laughing and excited. Dominic and I started to walk towards Elspeth and called loudly,

“Mima!” She ignored us, we started to run up to her,

“Mima!” I shouted, she turned,

“Clear off, you little shits!” We stopped dead in our tracks, stunned, the boys all laughed, Cooke was beaming. We left the fair.

That night two Boys (X and O) were sexually assaulted in the same part of the common. The police were investigating. It was in the local papers.

A few years later, (1985) I was at the site after it had shut for the night with some school mates, it was local knowledge that one of the fairground workers was a paedophile and lived in one of the caravans in the South West corner. We circled that corner from the road, shouting abuse, taunting the occupants, tipped a gas bottle over and ran off.



One afternoon I was alone at my home in Barnes and Elspeth turned up and took me in her car the very short distance to Avondale Road, we entered from the river end and about halfway up the road we pulled up to the left, directly outside the front gate of a house, (flat) which Elspeth entered. I could see up the garden path, through the hall and into what looked like the kitchen where there were two naked men and a naked woman, one of the men was sitting on a chair beating a Boy (Z) everyone was laughing including Boy (Z) who was holding his head up and looking directly at me. I was in the back seat of the car and I sunk beneath the window, out of sight. Elspeth came out and asked me if I wanted to come in, I said,

“No.” She asked me if I would like a drink, I said, “No thank you.” She went back in and came out with a mug of orange cordial which I took and held under my nose, it smelled of cheap brandy/whiskey, I said, “It’s been laced.” And handed her the mug, Elspeth thought this was hilarious and went back in and jokingly rebuked the people in the house. She made another attempt to get me to go into the house but I was lying on the back seat scared and avoiding eye contact. We left.



Debbie was suspicious at Elspeth parking away from the house. One afternoon Elspeth arrived and there was no sign of her car. Debbie asked her where her car was and Elspeth replied that she had parked on White Hart Lane by the news agents because she had bought some cigarettes and then walked. Debbie was not convinced and when Elspeth left she followed her. On her return she was discussing with my Richard that she had followed her to Avondale Road, where her car was and she saw a Boy (AA) coming out of a house and getting into the car. Debbie said how she felt like she was spying on her mother and Richard said that’s exactly what she was doing, she was a spy.



Debbie took me to a dirt bike track somewhere in the Home Counties, it was on a hill and we walked from the car through some pine trees to the track on the slope below. On the edge of the woods were Elspeth, Sydney Cooke and Lesley Bailey. All the kids bikes were taken and I got on an adults bike, it was my first time on a bike and I took it really slow, first gear all the way. All the other kids were tearing around on their bikes, constantly lapping me. Boy (Z) was on a bike, he was much too big for it, every time he lapped me he tried to knock me off and making nasty comments such as,

“I’m going to hurt you.” And, “I’m going to fuck you.” Cooke and Bailey were taunting me from the tree line. I had enough and got off and went and stood by my mother wanting to go. Cooke and Bailey continued to taunt me,

“We’ll toughen him up!” They were drunk, holding cans of beer, Elspeth was also drunk, they were all laughing raucously, Cooke continued, “Yeah, we’ll toughen him up, give him a good bumming!” Bailey doubled up laughing, spewing beer out of his mouth. Debbie was dismayed at their behaviour including Elspeth’s, asking her if they really meant it, Elspeth just laughed. Debbie rebuked her angrily for keeping such company and we left.



Elspeth and Debbie were arguing over whose car they should take and they decided on taking Debbie ‘s Red Renault 5 (reg:NLX79OP). We set off from the house in Barnes and drove to a London children’s care home. There was a high wooden feather edge board fence around the property and we went through the back gate which was set into the fence and made of the same wooden boards. In the back garden, at the back of the garden, sitting on an ‘adventure playground’ type tyre rope swing was a Boy (L) of around 10 years old, he was mixed race, had ‘afro’ hair of around 6 inches and was quite chubby. He looked at us, we looked at him but nothing was said. We walked towards the back of the large house, passing Boy (L) on the right and following the fence line on our left.

We entered the (Victorian era) house and walked into the dining room, passing along, on our right a long wooden dining table with many wooden chairs through a large opening into the sitting room, I could see through the front windows and the front garden with a well kept lawn. We walked passed a sofa on our right, into the middle of the room and turned around to face the way we had come in and the sofa. Standing behind the sofa were 3 men and a woman, another man stood behind an arm chair to the left. There was an initial silence and I did not like the atmosphere or the men and woman looking at me. Elspeth spoke of “picking up” the boy. But the man standing furthest to the right asked “Who for?” he had dark hair, a round face and had a ‘wide boy’ stance, he was very confident. Elspeth replied in an almost whisper and the man said,

“You mean Leon Brittan, just say it, we are all paedophiles here.” He looked down the line for confirmation and the other men and the woman all nodded or voiced their agreement.

“Yes,” Elspeth said “Leon sent us.”

“No he didn’t!” the man retorted, “He always calls me when he wants to take a boy. Who are you? You are paedophiles right?”

“Yes, we are paedophiles.” Elspeth said and turned to Debbie as did everyone else,

“Yes.” Debbie said.

“Who are you?” Elspeth asked. In turn from left to right they all gave their names, the man on the right stuck his chest out and said,

“Detective chief superintendent John Smith.” [Sir John Alfred Smith] emphasising the ‘chief’.

“Ooooh! Don’t forget the chief!” Elspeth mocked “John Smith?” she asked incredulously. Smith pulled his police ID out and replied

“Yes, and I could arrest you for attempting to procure a minor!”

“Wooo!” Elspeth mocked again. I looked at Debbie and Elspeth in an puzzled way,

“He’s a policeman.” Debbie said to me.

“We’ve told you who we are, so who are you?” Smith continued. Elspeth said,

“I am Viscountess Leathers and this is my daughter, The Right Honourable Deborah Leathers.”

“We’ve heard of an aristocratic branch. Prove you are paedophiles.” Smith said. Debbie and Elspeth shifted a little and I stood behind Debbie who was wearing a long ‘A’ line denim skirt. “Go on, prove it, spank him, go on fuck him!” Smith said. The others suddenly turned to each other and started kissing and trying to arouse themselves but stopped after a few seconds and one of them said,

“This is silly.” The others agreed saying they were embarrassed. But the man and the woman in the middle carried on, the woman jumping up and down and trying to catch my eye said,

“I’m horny, I’m horny!” The man next to her said,

“You are always horny Harriet!” (Harriet Harman MP) and he started to kiss her. One of the other men said,

“Jack, you and Harriet are always at it!” (Jack Dromey MP) The couple then left the room through a door to their right. Detective chief superintendent Smith carried on talking, asking why Elspeth and Debbie wanted to take the boy and why they had brought me along if I was not groomed for sex. Elspeth spoke of Dominic being,

“The one,” and “You should see him dance.” Smith became angry and said,

“You are not taking him. Now leave!” We started to walk out and Smith was still angry, “It’s okay for you to fuck our kids but not okay for us to fuck yours!” He said. As I walked out I turned my head left to look in to the room Harriet and Jack had gone into, it was the kitchen and Harriet was sitting on a chair facing me with Jack with his back to me standing between her legs, they were having sex.

“He’s looking! He’s looking!” Harriet exclaimed. As we walked out of the house Smith called out angrily,

“He’s a witness! You know what happens to witnesses?” We walked out into the back garden and towards the back gate, Boy (L) still sat on the rope swing looking bewildered as we left in silence.



My friend, Hans Stauch had a sleep over at his parents house in Rosslyn Avenue with six or so other boys from my class. There was a PIE sticker in his window too. We were playing ‘murder in the dark’ (turning the lights off and lumping each other with pillows) in Hans’ bedroom when Hans’ parents decided to join in. Just before the lights went out Hans’ father eyed up my position. I did not like the way he did this and when the lights went out I leaped and dived into a corner and huddled up in silence. Hans’ father got his hands on Boy (Y) who was closest to where I was, Boy (Y) protested at being molested.

“Oh, it’s you.” Hans’ father said to Boy (Y), the lights came on and Hans’ mother, (Jane) had also been sexually abusing boys, she was topless.

Boy (Y) told his parents who made a complaint to the police.



Elspeth took Dominic and I to Eaton Row, London SW1W. As we turned in from the A3217 an old man who was smartly dressed and on foot was walking along the pavement, he smiled in recognition to Elspeth who smiled back.

We pulled up behind a smart dark blue car outside the 5th mews cottage on the right. We went upstairs into a sitting room. Peter Righton was there and after a brief conversation with Elspeth, he went into the bedroom which was directly off the sitting room to ‘get changed’. Dominic and I were ushered into the bedroom by Elspeth and stood close to Righton. He still had his trousers on but it was clear he was sexually aroused and he started to undress further. I left the room so did Dominic, Elspeth, laughing said to Righton,

“You’re not fucking my grandchildren!” And we left the flat.

As Elspeth turned the car around, (my brother and I were in the back seat) the man who we had seen earlier appeared at the front passenger door and spoke to her through the open window, he had a familiar deep rich voice. It was Charles Thomas (Later styled as Viscount Tonypandy,) he stuck his silver topped cane through the window to try and get her to stop the car,

“Elspeth, I’ve heard about these party’s of yours, is Peter in on it? If Peter is invited then you have to invite me!” Elspeth just laughed and drove very slowly. Thomas inquired who Dominic and I were, Elspeth told him and Charles asked,

“Are they well groomed?”

“Yes,” Elspeth laughed, “very well groomed, especially the older one.” Charles continued,

“Let me in Elspeth! I can smell them!” He clung to the door and stuck his head through the window as if trying to get to us in the back seat of the car, Elspeth started to pull off with him clinging to the side of the car, both were laughing hard. Charles pulled back as we drove off, “Let me in on it Elspeth!” he called out.



A new judo class started at the church hall in Elm Bank Gardens, I was already attending judo classes at a sports hall at Chiswick school but Debbie said she would not take me on a ten minute car journey when I could walk in under two minutes. The new judo class was run by a Japanese instructor and his Japanese wife. The first class they insisted that all the parents came along and watched. On the second lesson I noticed out the corner of my eye, the woman, who was in the changing area going through all the bags and coats, she was writing down her findings. Further into the lesson, Boy (M) who was a charismatic, confident blonde boy fell foul of the instructor who stripped him and gave him one hell of a beating, the instructor was clearly sexually aroused. I ‘felt’ someone looking at me and I turned to see the woman sitting on one of the chairs, (there was a row of chairs) she had her skirt up and her hand in her under ware masturbating, she was looking directly at me. Boy (M), after his beating was distraught and shouted,

“My Daddy’s a lawyer and you’re going to prison!” he then went and cowered and sobbed under the chairs.

I did not continue with judo after this lesson. The instructor and his wife turned up at my house asking why I did not show for lesson three, Debbie who had answered the door asked me, (I was at the top of the stairs) why I did not want to go and I just shook my head and said I did not want to.

Not long after the police came to the door and asked Debbie whether I had witnessed any improprieties at the judo class. Debbie said that I had not although she had never asked me. Richard was angry and said that Debbie had not wanted me to speak to the police because I might tell them of her abusive nature. They also discussed how clever an operation the instructors had, how did they get my address and how they would probably move to the next place and do exactly the same thing.



Dominic had been invited to one of the ‘Kids’ parties that Elspeth used to do the catering for. It was her friend Leon Brittan who organised these parties so children of similar backgrounds could meet the movers and shakers as well as making friends amongst themselves. Cliff Richard was going to be there and although Dominic and I thought he was really cheesy one could not help getting excited by a massive celebrity such as he was. I was not invited as I was “too young”. After Debbie came back from dropping him off at around 11am she looked worried and spoke of her concerns with Richard.

“They’re all boys.” she said, “And they spoke with the most vulgar of language and had really course accents.”

“What kind of accents?” Richard asked.

“Irish I think.”

“Northern Irish?”

“Yes, I think so and there were only men there… sleazy men, it didn’t feel right.” she said.

“Well go and get him!” Richard said.

She did not get him and waited until the afternoon to pick him up and took me with her. We drove to the other side of Barnes, Rocks Lane and walked up to the house, there was nothing on the outside that indicated there was a party inside. Inside the hallway was the same, the walls were bare and it had a bed-sit feel. Debbie paused to leaf through a visitor book which was on a console table on the right, I asked her if she was going to sign it and she laughed and said no. We went through to the back room. The party was over. Along the wall to my left was a sofa, a portly man sat there, he had his top off. On my right two men turned their backs on us and started to look through a pile of record albums, heads down and chuckling, they were standing in front of the record player. Sydney Cooke and John Pugh MP. I was looking around for Dominic and Cliff Richard.

“Looking for Kitty?” the man on the sofa asked. I looked at Debbie quizzically.

“Cliff Richard.” She said quickly.

“Why does everyone want Kitty? Kitty has come and gone. Can I be of any help?” The two men laughed hard and he made a move to get up.

“Who are you?” Debbie said.

“Councillor Peter Dowd, pleased to meet you. Who are you?” He rose further proffering his hand.

“The Right Honourable Deborah Leathers.” She replied and turned to look into the garden. I looked through to the garden as well. On the right side of the garden Dominic stood statue still with his back to the fence, he saw us and made his way towards us rapidly. There was a table full of food and drink in the middle of the garden, and a tubby dark haired Boy (G) of about 12 years old was standing by the table. Sydney Cooke went out and stood by the boy. He called him Benny.

“Don’t listen to Benny,” he told Debbie, “He tells big porkies!” He laughed. I looked at Debbie quizzically again,

“He tells big Lies.” she explained.

“Up your arse you fucking cunt!” Boy (G) said to Cooke.

“Ben-neee!” Cooke replied, smiling, eyes bulging, shaking his head. We left Elm guest house.

Later on back in Elm bank gardens Debbie and Richard were discussing what went on. To get to eat and drink the children had to put on frocks/princesses outfits.

Also, soon after, Dominic said to me that Cliff Richard had taught him how to ‘Dance like Elvis’ and he started to demonstrate, doing a bop-like dance but all of a sudden he stopped, looked blankly into space and burst into tears and ran off.

Soon after this Cliff Richard had a record out ‘Wired for sound’ and every time the video was shown on TV Dominic would run out of the room. I thought this was a game as Cliff was so cheesy and I used to run out of the room with him until one day we had both run out of the room into the hallway and he turned to me and said,

“You don’t even know why I am running away!” He burst into tears and sobbed into Debbie’s arms.


1980 (spring),

It was the afternoon, I was in the house along with Dominic, Debbie and Richard. We were in the open plan sitting/dining room on the ground floor and Elspeth arrived with two men. One of the men was a small man with a flat face, a little nose and light coloured hair, (John Pugh LibDem politician) he followed Elspeth into the room, he wore a smart dark over coat and had an open bottle of champagne in his hand, he looked at Dominic who standing by the fireplace, stepped over to face him and exclaimed,

“Whoah! Party!” and proceeded to gyrate his hips in some kind of dance and broke into a forward/backward pelvic motion (as if in fornicating) directing his groin at Dominic. The second man was tall and wore a scruffy tweed-like suit and narrow rimmed hat, he stayed in the hall looking through the sitting room doorway. It was Sydney Cooke.

All three of them were drunk and laughing. Richard asked who they were and if he could help them but they continued being lewd and so he asked them to leave. Pugh was spouting off about a party,

“Elm, Elm..house party. Is this Elm..house..guest party?”

“No,” said Richard “This is Elm bank gardens, I expect you want Elm guest house which is up the road on Rocks Lane, there is no party here, you have the wrong house, please leave!”

Pugh, pointing to the Liberal Party sticker and then the PIE (paedophile information exchange) sticker which were in the front window replied,

“Right party. Right house!” and he, Elspeth and Cooke all roared with laughter.

“John! Oh John!” Elspeth exclaimed, praising his mischief. She was calling Cooke ‘Cookie’ who was pacing up and down the hall, through the door of the dining room I saw Cooke stop at the open kitchen door and have a good look through at the back door (which led into the garden and out the back gate into the yard.)

“Cookie?” Richard said with distaste, “Cookie? Is that your name? Is that because you entice children with sweets?”

“No.” Cooke said, sticking his face out and sizing up Richard, “It’s my name, Cooke! Sydney Cooke.”

Richard threatened to call the police, they laughed and hooted then tumbled out of the house, Elspeth fell to the ground at some point between the house door and the car door.



Debbie had started a business with Charlotte Lumley, (later Mrs Frazer) called ‘Knits’ which was based at Charlotte’s house on Castelnau, Barnes. As Debbie was in charge of the accounts she was frequently at the bank which was at the intersection of Castelnau, Church Road and Rock’s Lane. On three occasions I heard her say that she had seen Cyril Smith, (The late Sir Cyril Smith) heading up Rock’s Lane, on the last occasion she followed him and saw him enter 27 Rocks Lane, (Elm Guest House.)



Debbie would threaten to call, (on the telephone) Cyril Smith if my brother or I misbehaved. She thought that him administering corporal punishment to us, (or any child) was okay.

Debbie had taken the Liberal Party sticker off the window and asked my brother and I if we would like to choose a window sticker, (To go alongside her PIE sticker.) Dominic had a World Wildlife Fund sticker which he put up and I said I wanted to put up a sticker of my favourite pop group ‘Madness’, I knew which sticker I wanted, not the ‘M’ with curved sides or with Madness written down the side of the ‘M’ but the plain, straight sided ‘M’ which I had a sew on patch of but I was sure I had seen it in sticker form. Debbie refused my request so I said I wanted a sticker of my favourite football team, Arsenal. She refused to allow this too and said it had to be a charity or political movement, Richard became angry with Debbie and said,

“It is madness, [referring to PIE and paedophilia] it’s a malaise, a mental illness! Put Arsenal’s cannon up and blow the whole lot away!”


1980 July,

One morning Elspeth arrived, (Elm Bank Gardens), in a sky blue Citroën CX to take Dominic and I to the zoo. It was not unusual for the interior of her car to smell of sick as the Citroën’s hydraulic suspension lift would cause some of her grandchildren including me to vomit before we’d even set off. On this occasion the back seat smelled a lot worse than kids vomit, stale or otherwise and Dominic and I both refused to get into the car because the foul odour was causing us to wretch and baulk just trying. Elspeth said she had recently taken another grandchild out for the day who had been sick, hence the smell. Debbie ordered me to get in the car,

“It smells like a dead fox!” I protested. Debbie shot Elspeth a glance, they stared at each other eye to eye and Debbie asked,

“What’s going on Ma!”

“A dead fox!” Elspeth repeated endearingly, Debbie poked her nose in the back of the car to smell for herself then resurfaced saying it was the smell of sex and accused my grandmother of having sex in the back of her car, Elspeth replied,

“I have a perfectly good bed to do that sort of thing thank you!” Debbie, not happy and disbelieving Elspeth’s explanation suggested she take it to be valeted, which she agreed to do and drove off, my mother went inside and made a phone call. Elspeth came back after a short time and said that the car cleaners had refused to clean the car. Debbie confronted her saying she had just phoned her brother(s) and she had not taken out another grandchild anytime recently, Debbie was angry and forced Dominic and I to clean out the back of the car. We were given a bucket of warm soapy water each and Dominic took the rubber gloves. It was in the foot well that the vile stench came from, it smelled of sick and faeces and musty bodily fluids which were all rotting in a pool of slime which Dominic was dutifully mopping up on his (curb) side but I could not bring myself to touch it with my bare hands on the (road) side and made a fuss so Debbie decided as I was in the road and obstructing cars I could clean my side when Dominic had finished. Dominic finished and the car was moved across the street so I could safely continue but even with the gloves on I could not bring myself to do it so Debbie, who had been shouting at me to clean started to poke and grab me trying to force my arm to scrub and pushing my face into the foot well, I started to cry and she started to punch me, I became very distressed and started to hyperventilate and as I lay on the pavement she started kicking me so I tried to scramble under the car but the car was too low and the curb was too high to escape and I went into convulsions whilst being clawed, punched and kicked. Elspeth said in a grandmotherly way,

“Ahhh..look at him, he doesn’t want to do it.” Debbie was furious but aware she was in public and stopped beating me and she got Dominic to clean my side in the end and we set of for the zoo.

As Elspeth drove Dominic and I to London zoo, she announced that she had forgotten her purse and slowed the car muttering,

“Just popping back in here,” whilst turning left into the main entrance of Dolphin square. A man emerged from the right from either a one man hut or the smaller arch, he was wearing a chauffeurs uniform, smiling, he eyed up Dominic in the front seat and myself in the back,

“Good morning Lady Leathers, it’s a bit early for a party!” he gloated,

“Morning Sydney, these are my grandchildren, I’m taking them out and I’m just getting my purse!” she chortled. Sydney (Cooke) laughed and with a wink and a nod said,

“Are you going to the party tonight?”

“I’ll be there..” Elspeth called back as we entered through the arch. We turned left then right and parked three quarters of the way up in one of the diagonal parking spaces on the west side of the complex. Elspeth walked up to the entrance of Howard House and pressed a button on the intercom and spoke, a man’s voice answered,

“You’re bloody late!” Elspeth explained she had to get the car valeted.

“Are they there?” The man said, clearly irritated.

“Who?” Elspeth asked.

“The boys! You’re fucking grandsons! Are they with you?” The man said angrily.

“Yes.” Elspeth confirmed.

“What, they’re standing there with you right now?!” The man said incredulously.

“Yes.” Elspeth said. There was an intense pause and then, hissing and irate, the man seethed,

“Don’t fuck up!” The intercom went silent.

We walked back down and around into the square where we started walking back up north again. As we weaved diagonally through the low walled rose gardens a woman of around sixty years old who had dark hair and wore large glasses scowled at us from a window on the second or third floor from Nelson or Howard house, Elspeth said,

“What are you looking at you cunt?” Dominic and I sniggered. We continued and entered Hood house where Elspeth took a key out of her bag and opened the apartment door on the immediate left, we entered. Quince, her brown and white spaniel greeted us in the hall and stood on the first couple of steps of the staircase on the right which led directly away and up wagging its tail looking back expectantly, the hall also continued directly away and led into the study, there were paintings covering the white walls including the boxed in banisters and in the study a bookcase ran along the right wall, here Leon Brittan was pulling out or putting back a book, as he turned his eyes lit up but he said nothing and no introduction was offered by Elspeth, he disappeared to the left as did Elspeth, but into the nearer room and as I advanced Leon’s voice rang out from the study,

“Elspeth, what the fuck do you think you are doing bringing me boys at eleven o’clock on a Sunday morning? I’m in enough trouble already!” I was still in the hall and the dog was making excited noises ascending and descending the first few stairs as if it knew what was coming, I could see Elspeth sitting in what seemed to be the room she was staying in, with her belongings around her she held her handbag upside down then did the same with her purse, shaking it and said,

“These are my grandchildren and I am taking them to the zoo but I have no money.” She then demanded he give her some.

“How much do you need?” he said.

“A thousand pounds!” Mima shouted into the study,

“A thousand pounds!!” Leon scoffed, “Who do you think I am? Where do you think I can get that sort of money!”,

“You’re Minister of State, you’ve got all the fucking money,” Elspeth retorted, shouting through the door, “I’ve been running your boys all over the fucking country for you, taking them here and there on treats and to your dirty fucking parties, taking them back..” Leon interrupted, placating her with words of affirmation on the money front and stepped into the study doorway, smiled at Dominic and said,

“It’s Dominic isn’t it?” Dominic smiled nervously and nodding politely replied,


“Come in, you must tell me all about yourself Dominic.” Leon beckoned and disappeared back into the study completely ignoring me. Dominic walked from the hall and into the study, I followed. On the immediate left against the wall was a desk at which Leon was seated with his back to me, he was pouring Dominic a drink asking him if he had any hobbies, Dominic replied that he liked to make ‘Tamiya’ plastic 1/32 scale model kits of WW11 tanks and military vehicles especially of the German army,

“Germans!” Leon said distastefully with emphasis on the ‘er’, Dominic explained he was not a Nazi he just liked the military style, “We’ll have to do something about this” Leon chuckled and swivelled in his chair 180 degrees to face me, he wore a dark suit and he sat with his legs open and was pouring whisky from a decanter into a tumbler which he handed to Elspeth who had entered the room, he then poured whisky into another tumbler and handed it to me, as I drank the whisky Elspeth called Leon by his name and Leon said,

“We don’t use our names Elspeth, how many times do I have to tell you!” Elspeth, who was standing by the bookcase to my right replied,

“You’ve just said my name!”

“They’re your fucking grandchildren, they know your fucking name!” Leon said irritably. Elspeth stepped forward and held out her glass for a refill, Leon started to pour and Dominic also held out his glass over Leon’s left shoulder, I too stepped forward and clunked my glass into the other glasses for a refill, we were all laughing and giggling but as Elspeth stepped back with her refill Leon pulled the bottle back from my glass and said in a loud voice, (like the workhouse man in Oliver Twist),

“More!?” Dominic and I laughed but as Leon’s face remained curled up in contempt and his eyes glared red I knew he was not joking, confused I continued to smile nervously and Leon said, “You rude boy!” at which Dominic tittered and so did I because being a ‘rude boy’ was a music fashion thing and I thought I was a bit of a ‘rude boy’ in my white Fred Perry shirt. But Leon’s scorn was intensifying, I felt utter hatred coming from him and retreated out of arms reach as I was sure he was about to give me a beating. Elspeth drained her glass and exclaimed,

“Fuck that’s good!” and started discretely pointing and jabbing her fingers in the direction of Dominic, Leon suddenly switched his mood from hateful to falsetto pleasantness and turning to Dominic said,

“Dominic can have some more, he’s a polite boy, not like his brother, would you like some more Dominic?” He was already pouring as Dominic smiled and nodded a ‘yes please’, Leon continued to talk asking Dominic more about his modelling and what he was working on now, Dominic replied he wanted to get the tiger tank and make a scenario with another (Sherman) tank, Leon made a remark about the German thing again and then started talking about how he liked modelling too and that he was working on a model right now which Dominic might be interested in, he turned to Elspeth and brought her into the conversation, they talked of going upstairs to do some modelling, I asked what it was, “…a special kind of modelling” Leon sniggered and then said, “Oh go on then! Have some more.” and held the bottle out to me, I stuck my glass out in front of me, he poured and I drank, we were all laughing, it was good whisky. Leon stood up and asked Dominic whether he could help him on his modelling project as it required the hands of an expert. Dominic agreed and I was still asking what the model was actually of, it wasn’t anything to do with war and it was not a train set. We started to move out of the study and Elspeth said,

“Not him,” Indicating me. Leon seemed to think otherwise but Elspeth said, “He’s a late developer.”

“We’ve got ways around that!” Leon pipped, chuckling at his own humour.

“He will tell his mother.” said Elspeth. Leon looked at her grinning,

“And what’s she going to do?” he said,

“He’ll tell his teacher, he’ll tell everybody.” Elspeth answered.

“We’ve got ways around that too!” Leon said triumphantly.

“It won’t work! He [Dominic] won’t perform when he [me] is there!” Mima protested.

“Oh, okay then, be boring like your grandfather!” Leon huffed and pulled out a book on ships from the bookcase and thrust it into my hands, we moved into the hall, “Go in there, sit down and read that,” he said, “we’re going to have much more fun modelling.” The three of them started to climb the stairs leaving me standing in the doorway of the room Elspeth was using, I was still trying to guess what the mystery model was,

“Is it a battleship?”

“No! Nothing to do with war!” Leon said.

“A castle?” I inquired.

“No! Why do you boys always think about war? Think love, think queens!” They were giggling at the top of the stairs and disappeared. I went and sat down on the sofa and opened the book. I flicked through the book just looking at the pictures and when I got to the end I did the same thing backwards. I sat there for a moment then decided I would go and see what the others were up to. I walked out of the room noticing the key was in the lock on the hall side of the door and went upstairs, I turned left on the landing and on the left there was a door and I looked in and saw a bath with the shower curtain pulled across it and a sink with a badger hair shaving brush on it. I then looked in the room on the opposite side of the landing and saw a darkened room with dark tiles all around the walls and roughly in the centre of the dark tiled floor was a red dentists chair. I then went back along the landing past the stairs on my right to the first door on the right (the dog was sniffing at the gap at the bottom) which was closed, I opened it and looked in. There was a double bed on my left with the head board against the same wall as the door, opposite was the window wall with two windows and on the left on the other side of the bed was a built-in wardrobe which covered the whole wall. The right hand door of the middle wardrobe was open, hanging up at the back was a rack of black lingerie, Leon was standing there, jacket off with the opened wardrobe door behind him shielding him from the window, he was holding a camera at waist level which he was looking into and smiling, he had it pointed towards Dominic. Dominic was on the same side of the bed as Leon, he was kneeling on the floor and had his head in between Elspeth’s legs, she was reclining on top of the made bed, her skirts were pulled up around the top of her thighs and she had her legs open, her left leg trailing off the bed, she was watching Dominic making pleasurable noises. Dominic then jumped up grinning and started dancing and shaking his hips in front of the camera, he was naked from the waist down. I stepped into the room and could not see any model of any kind, Dominic saw me and dropped to the floor hiding behind the bed and started making distressing noises, Elspeth saw me and laughed in an ‘oh no’ sort of way. Leon then looked up from the camera and over to me, his mood changed from jubilant to disgusted, his eyes glared red, his face curled up as he drew breath,

“You insolent boy!” He proclaimed, pure evil radiated from him, I froze in terror and in that instance I was distracted in a sixth sense sort of way and automatically turned my head and looked through the window, across the square into an apartment opposite where a man of medium build, about 40 years old with dark ‘casual’ style hair stood staring at me in shock reflecting my fear, he had a camera and tripod set up and trained on Leon, Elspeth and Dominic. Then my eyes switched to the window to the left, (of the apartment opposite) and a seated man bellowed the word ‘cunt’ which I could read by his lips, he was looking directly at me and was seriously angry, (this was my great uncle Patrick Findlater Stewart, MI5), he spun his wheelchair and moved in the direction of his accomplice. Leon followed my eye line and exclaimed,

“It’s a set up!” He started moving, “Elspeth, you’ve fucking set me up!” I turned and ran, I ran downstairs and into the room Elspeth was staying in, taking the key out of the door and placing it in the other side I closed the door and locked it. I stood by the locked door for a few minutes waiting for Leon to arrive and when he did he tried the handle, rattling it ordering me to,

“Open the door!” I did not, I just stood there. He put on his falsetto tone of voice and was very persuasive but I did not open the door and he flew into a rage shouting and screaming, banging on the door and trying to break it down. I was highly distressed, running around the room crying, falling over and rolling around the furniture. “Open the fucking door boy!” Leon bellowed. The dog was in the room and very excited, it was all over me, staring me in the eyes and trying to nip my mouth. I focused on the emblem on my shirt wishing I was elsewhere, Leon was going demented. I went to try and open the windows to escape but they were locked and there was no key and there was nobody about, my tears prevented me from seeing if the men were still watching from the other side of the square but I had a feeling they were. Leon was having a go at Elspeth, “I’ve told you not to leave keys in doors!” Elspeth protested that she had not and Leon continued to rebuke her, “The door is locked, you left the key in the fucking door!” Elspeth said she had not and that the key was on the hall side and he must of left it in there the other night. It all went quiet. I waited. Eventually Dominic and Elspeth coaxed me out,

“We’re off to the zoo now.” I begged them not to leave me, “Come on, we’re going!”

“Is that man there?” I asked.

“No, he has gone.” Elspeth replied, I asked again directing the question at Dominic.

“He’s not here, you can come out.”

“Promise?” I said.

“Promise.” Dominic replied. I opened the door and walked out to the front door, Dominic garbled from halfway up the stairs that earlier they had been working on a model of a Hawker Siddeley Harrier jump jet and as we left Leon’s voice came from the study,

“Get him out of here before I kill him!” Elspeth and Dominic laughed and so did I.

We exited the building to the east and searched up and down looking for the car and after quite some time Dominic found it where we had left it on the west side of the complex.

On the way to the zoo I sunk beneath the window of the back seat of the car as other motorists beeped and shouted. Elspeth was drunk. At the zoo she was too drunk to sort the money out, she had a roll of twenty pound notes which she spilled and threw around the pay booth, Dominic had to take the money and pay for the three of us. Going through the turnstiles Elspeth fell on the floor and people laughed, she laughed too and the people started to scorn her. Dominic stood behind one of the metal posts which supported the entrance canopy and I stood behind him, we were both embarrassed. It was a sunny day and I had that skanky (dirty and messy) feeling of being drunk in the middle of the day.

We stood looking at the Orang utan in it’s bare concrete enclosure and Dominic, completely out of character started to jump up and down, scratching under his arms making monkey noises and I copied. As I mocked the animal it was looking me straight in the eyes, I could see tears coming from its eyes and running down its face,

“Ahhh, look the monkey’s crying.” Elspeth proclaimed from my left, I turned to my right where Dominic had been but he had vanished. Elspeth said, “You’re good at finding Dominic.” She held my hand and I led, breaking into a run. We searched the entire zoo but we could not find him, I suggested that we go to reception and get a member of staff to call his name out over the PA system but Elspeth said she would get into trouble so we continued searching on our own. Dominic suddenly appeared as instantly as he disappeared, “Where have you been?” asked Elspeth.

“The vivarium.” Dominic said, he was upset. I had checked the vivarium several times.

“Oh you are a clever boy,” continued Elspeth, “You know the proper name for the reptile house, show me where you were.” We went to the vivarium, down the painted black concrete steps/ramp and immediately on the right Dominic pointed to a small hiding space and then at Elspeth’s request demonstrated how he hid, curled up on the floor, he then burst into tears. Elspeth sat on the ramp wall and Dominic sat on her lap sobbing and shaking, she tried to console him but me being there made it worse and he said so. Elspeth told me to wait outside and I left but ducked down and double backed. Down the steps I sneaked, keeping the wall of the ramp to my right, I crawled as close as I could get and listened. Dominic had calmed down a bit,

“We’re spies” Elspeth was explaining, “You are a very brave boy.”

“Who were those men?” Dominic said snuffling.

“Which men?” Replied Elspeth.

“The men who were watching us through the window.”

“They are spies too, one of them was my brother, Patrick” Elspeth said.

“Is..is Nicholas a spy?” Dominic asked.

“No, Nicholas is not a spy.” Elspeth said, placating him.

I raised my head and showed myself,

“Nicholas IS a spy!” Exclaimed Elspeth, shocked, she laughed, Dominic jumped in surprise and went into hysterics. “Get out! Can’t you see you’re upsetting him!” Elspeth said crossly and I ran outside and waited.

Back in Barnes the three of us stood in front of Debbie and she asked how the day went, I blurted out that we went to see a man and had whisky and Dominic had taken his trousers and pants off, Dominic shouted,

“No I didn’t!”

“Yes you did!” I said. Debbie asked Elspeth what happened and she said,

“We went back to Dolphin Square to get my purse and we all had a little tot of whisky, Leon was there and we got changed.” Debbie was not convinced and I was sent to my room.

Richard got involved and Dominic and I were separated and we were told to get our story’s together as the police wanted to know what happened. Dominic went down to the police station first, (Richmond), I waited for my turn to tell the police what happened and as the days passed I kept asking but was ignored. Eventually Richard said angrily,

“Dominic has told the police what happened and they believe him, and they do not want to talk to you!”


1980 August,

The cover up became official within the family home, Dominic was in on it, Leon Brittan morphed into a man with a monocle who I was to believe was an actor, Dominic actually let slip that it was a cover up and I was falling for it.

Contrarily, my uncle, The Right Honourable Christopher Graeme Leathers was outraged by the Dolphin Square incident and the inaction of the police. He started a whistle blowing account of the incident, initially calling it; ‘The child spy and his psychic brother.’ Dominic being the child spy and me being the psychic.

“What’s psychic?” I inquired.

“Don’t tell him!” Christie said gruffly, “It’ll go to his head, excuse the pun. Look it up!”. I had no idea how to spell ‘psychic’ and angrily my family spelled it out for me. I looked it up in the dictionary and still didn’t understand the meaning of the word. Debbie questioned why I was deemed to be psychic and Christie answered that how could I; A: realise I was been surveilled and B: turned and focussed on the surveiller as it is a considerable distance from one block, looking across the square to another.

I was pleased to be the centre of attention which displeased everyone else and Christie then changed the title of his account to, ‘The child spy and his sidekick brother’ and showed me the piece of paper with the word ‘psychic’ crossed out and ‘sidekick’ written in. I asked what sidekick meant, which I was again rebuked for not knowing and Christie said,

“Batman and Robin. He’s Batman, you’re Robin!”

1980 August/September,

Late one afternoon Debbie got a phone call from Elspeth stating that she would be arriving with Leon Brittan and that they had a present for Dominic. Plans were discussed with Debbie and Richard, they decided that they would not accept the present and they would not permit either Elspeth or Leon over the threshold, Dominic and I were to be separated, he was to be in Debbie’s bedroom with the door closed, I was to be in my bedroom with the curtains closed and the door closed and was told explicitly to sit on my bed, (on an internal wall) and not venture over to the window.

I was on my bed and I heard a car pulling up, I padded over to the window and peeked out through the curtains. A very dark blue, (almost black) Daimler, (DS420 MkIII?) had just pulled up to the curb outside the next door house, the chauffeur turned the overhead light on, he was in his early to mid twenties, had long wavy blond hair, a thin nose and face and was laughing. Elspeth was on the back seat, her legs were apart and in the air, her black underware clearly visible. Leon was on his hands and knees with his face in close proximity to Elspeth’s crotch, the sudden halt of the vehicle caused Leon to roll around on the floor, they were both ecstatic with laughter. They alighted the vehicle and walked along the pavement and up the garden path, one of them was holding a Hamleys, (toy shop) plastic bag, Leon was walking in a way that seemed like he was gliding. The doorbell rang, I tip-toed back to my bed, sat and listened, by the sound of their voices they were all standing in the hall,

“Dominic.” Leon’s voice, sickly sweet and elongated, wavered up the stairwell. My thoughts were with Dominic, I expected him to come out on the landing and answer but he did not. “Dominic.” Came Leon’s voice again, slightly louder. Dominic stayed put. I could hear a scuffle as Richard blocked Leon from ascending the stairs. Leon and Elspeth departed. Debbie and Richard congratulated each other at their success of not letting Leon or Elspeth coming face to face with Dominic, they spoke of how persuasive Leon was as he managed to step over the threshold and tried to deliver his gift in person. I was not happy at my lack of a present, it was nowhere near Christmas or Dominic’s birthday, it was closer to my birthday. The present was a model aeroplane: Airfix F-15A/B Eagle, 1-72 scale. It was a big box and I, in my disappointment asked if there was two model kits inside because there were two planes depicted on the cover of the box. Dominic was also disappointed, he thought he was getting a Harrier jump jet, (Which he was promised at Dolphin Square.) Debbie and Richard commented that the jump jet’s had probably already been snapped up by Leon and given as gifts to all his other ‘boys’. Then it all went quiet. Dominic did not assemble the model.

1980 September/October,

I came home from school and Debbie had some sort of test for Dominic and I. He went first, in the dining room and then I came in and was told to sit at the table and look through/read a magazine, which I did. This was MagPIE, the ‘paedophile information exchange’ magazine that PIE members received through the post. I sat there and was forced to read it, although I just pretended to read the text as it was of no interest to me and I looked at the inappropriate photo’s and sketches of children. Debbie then told me to stand up and face her, she scrutinized my crotch area to see if I had an erection. Richard voiced his disapproval to the whole exercise,

“This is ridiculous, put this filth in the bin!” He took the magazine and put it in the kitchen bin.

This did not stem Debbie’s enthusiasm for paedophilia. In the back of MagPIE were the personal ads, she was adamant that Dominic and I were to respond to these personal ads. Most of them mentioned something of a sexual nature, (white pants specifically) and they all had a remit on gender and age. Richard tried to explain to Debbie that all the adverts were alluding to a sexual encounter but my mother would not have it and insisted that both Dominic and I were to chose an advert to reply to. I would not choose any and Dominic eventually was coerced into replying to an advert offering to take a boy of his age to a football match.

1980 November 15,

Dominic was in a sultry mood. He was going to Crystal Palace FC V Liverpool FC, (He supported Liverpool Football Club). Two men came to the door, they asked for twenty pounds to cover the costs but Debbie said that it was up to them to pay for the tickets/petrol, they started bickering and the two men relented and said they would pay for it, they were polite but left looking sly and revengeful. They took Dominic. When he returned I was at the front door eager to hear what it was like to go to a football match. Debbie answered the door and the two men were at the gate gloating and smiling, Dominic entered the house and before I could ask him what it was like to be at a football match he ran past me and up the stairs and as he ascended the last few stairs he could not help but to emit a squealing sound to try and hold back his tears and distress.


One afternoon I was standing in the sitting room, Debbie, Richard and Dominic were present. From outside I heard a woman exclaim,

“There’s another one!” I looked outside and there was a burly woman standing in the road looking straight at me, “They’ve even got kids in there!” She shouted. She had a child in a pushchair and was with another woman and a girl. She ordered the girl, “Go and get your dad!” She turned her attention to Richard and started hurling abuse at him, pointing at the PIE sticker in the window.

“They think it’s me!” Richard said, “They think I’m the paedophile!” He deduced that the girl would take about ten minutes to get to her dad who was probably knocking off work about now and going for an after work drink down the pub, another ten minutes explaining to her dad and his mates and and another ten minutes getting back, they would be turning up in about half an hour. Richard went outside to vindicate himself. The woman was really angry and Richard was explaining how he was not the paedophile, it was not him who had put the sticker in the window. He said that he wanted to marry Debbie and take her out of it all. The women applauded him and he came back inside the house. Debbie, who was visibly shaken ordered Dominic to go outside with a razor blade and scrape the sticker off, which he did frantically and in tears. The woman said,

“He’s taking it off!” Dominic came in and the curtains were closed. A little later I could hear the woman saying,

“They’ve taken it down now!”


1980 November,

Mid morning. Debbie took Dominic and myself to Godalming, Surrey to visit my great aunt Sheila Fairbairn Stewart. We drove there in a blue Renault 18 estate, Dominic sat in the front passenger seat and I sat in the back. We were early so Debbie decided to take us past Sheila’s flat in Chapel Fields apartment complex and around the Charterhouse school grounds where her fiancé Richard was a former pupil. We drove slowly past some school buildings and around a green, Debbie was looking for a particular route through to Chapel Fields but the road was barred and another track led elsewhere so we turned back. Driving back up the incline of the road that curved around the green, Debbie pointed out four or five pupils of around thirteen years old, she started to make sexual arousal noises and laughed and smiled at one of the boys who smiled back with embarrassment. Dominic too, giggled with embarrassment and Debbie said something about curb crawling and we sped up and left.

We headed back to the main entrance on Charterhouse Road of the Chapel Fields apartment complex. We dove in and around, down to the far end corner and pulled into a leafy area under a large horse chestnut tree. Debbie told us to smarten up a bit and pulled Dominic over from his seat to sit on her lap facing her, he protested but Debbie chided him and continued, straightening his collar and using her spittle to clean the sides of his mouth as a mother would do to a small child. She then started rubbing around his groin area and was making sexual arousal noises, Dominic squirmed, became distressed and cried,

“Nicholas is looking!” Debbie told me to go and collect conkers, I said I did not play with conkers any more and she suddenly became angry and shouted,

“Get out!” I got out and stood a few feet away facing the car, she ordered me to go further away which I did a little and faced the car, “Piss off and find some conkers and don’t turn around!” She hissed. I walked ten meters off and started kicking the leaves over finding more dog shit and used tissues than conkers. The conkers that were there were shrivelled, black and rotten, it was past conker season, I was not going to put my hands into the mulch and in the futileness of it all I turned to face the car again and through the steamed up window I saw Dominic and Debbie moving energetically in the front seat, Dominic saw me and tried to writhe off of her and Debbie, realising I was watching stuck her face to the window, glared at me and bellowed,

“Fuck off!” Fearful, I turned around instantly and as I turned, for a split second, in one of the small windows on the second or third story in the side of the building I saw a woman’s face, she was looking straight at me. I stood statue still with my back to them all and awaited Debbie’s command.

After a few minutes I heard the car door open and my name called. I turned around. Debbie told me to go to the front of the building and wait for them by the entrance, I hastened towards the car not really understanding the situation and she repeated the command saying they were going to find a parking space and I must stay and wait for them by the front door. She shut the car door before I could reach them and they drove off, laughing, towards the car park which was also at the front of the building. By the time I got to the front of the building and up the steps to the front door, which only took half a minute, I could not see the car in the car park, there were plenty of parked cars but also vacant spaces near to the front door, I could see the blue roof of a car at the far end of the car park and assumed that was them.

Ten minutes later Debbie and Dominic appeared but not from the car that I had my eye on. We went into the block and up the communal stairs to the second or third floor to a door on the left where Sheila let us in to her apartment, she led us into the kitchen and immediately confronted Debbie, asking her what was she doing in the car by the side of the building,

“What are you talking about?” Debbie said innocently, brushing the question off. Sheila asked her again, angrier and louder,

“What were you doing in the car outside Debbie?”

“Nothing,” Debbie replied, “We were early and were smartening up.”

“Smartening up? To see me? Why didn’t you come in if you were early?” Sheila continued questioning, “What were you doing Debbie? With Dominic in the car? I saw you!”

“No you didn’t.” Debbie said.

“Yes I did, I saw you from the window,” she pointed to the small window which was two meters from the floor, “Nicholas saw me, didn’t you Nicholas? What did you see?” Sheila asked me.

“He was looking for conkers.” Debbie interjected, “We were early and Nicholas wanted to find some conkers.” Debbie gave me a menacing glance.

“Nicholas, what did you see?” Sheila quizzed. Debbie glared at me and I was silent. Sheila continued, “Let him speak! Did you find any conkers?”

“No, just dirty tissues.” I answered.

“Dirty tissues.” Sheila repeated, “And when you were looking at the car, what did you see?” Debbie shifted and interjected again,

“How could you see out of the window?” she said waving her hand at the window, “It’s too high to see out of!” Sheila then very fluidly pulled out a small set of steps from under the kitchen worktop, erected them, climbed up, looked out of the window, came back down, closed and replaced them,

“I haven’t spent forty years in the civil service [MI6] for nothing!” She exclaimed, “Nicholas, what were they doing in the car?” I remained silent, Debbie was within arms reach and could strike if I spoke out of turn. “Let him speak!” Sheila continued heatedly, “Nicholas, what were they doing in the car? I saw you looking at them. What did you see?”

“I couldn’t see, the windows had steamed up.” I answered as diplomatically as I could.

“STEAMY WINDOWS!!” Sheila shouted, she was riled and stared at Debbie, “You were having sex with your own son and then left Nicholas standing there whilst you went off for a clean up! Didn’t you?!” Debbie quickly retorted,

“What were you doing at the window anyway? You’ve obviously done it before, peeping at lovers in their cars?”

“Peeping!? Lovers!?” Sheila replied incredulously, “I’ve been told to keep an eye out for a paedophile ring, dirty old men who take children from the school to that very spot, rape them and discard the tissues in a clean up, this is what I wanted to talk to you about!” She wailed, “And you’re one of them! A dirty paedophile!” Sheila burst into tears, Debbie motioned for Dominic and I to leave the room, which we did and then she exploded into a rage, shouting,

“There MY children and I’ll do what I like with them!” Sheila shouted and screamed back at Debbie and it went on. Dominic and I stood in the sitting room not knowing what to do, and he turned to me and yelled,

“I fucking hate you!” Then disappeared behind a sofa and sobbed heartily. After ten minutes or so

of rowing Debbie came out of the kitchen and we left.


1980 December,

Debbie, Richard, Dominic and myself all went to Hamleys toy store in Town, we took the number 9 bus, (The four of us using public transport was highly unusual if not unique.) Debbie was wearing her fur coat and was cagey as we stood at Barnes Bridge bus stop, she ordered me to wait under the bridge on the wooden walkway that connected the tow path. We alighted the bus and as we walked up Regents Street, Debbie’s cageyness returned.

On the first floor of the store I was persuaded to stay in the middle of the shop floor looking at the in-house model railway display. Richard and Dominic went to the side where there was a wall full of scale model Tamiya WW11 kits, Debbie went behind me and over to the sales and returns counter. I turned around just as she was passing a Hamleys bag across the counter, the young man at the till pulled the bag back to reveal the box of the model Fighter plane, (Airfix F-15A), she glared at me, the young man at the counter was bemused at Debbie’s hostile reaction, she rebuked him for not having carried out the exchange as she had asked. I turned back and then went over to my Richard and Dominic who told me to go away. I was allowed to choose a present and although my brother tried to persuade me to choose a British or Russian model so we could make a scenario against his German models, I wanted to be on the same side as him so I chose the Horch type 1A, (German.) He was not pleased with my choice but got his Tiger tank. Debbie was furious that I had seen her returning the gift as she had kept it hidden for three months, Richard asked her if she thought that me seeing this gift would be the reason for the cover up failing.



I had developed a taste for whisky, Elspeth would tell me it was ‘cough mixture’. One evening I was craving for it and pleaded with Debbie to give me some cough mixture, feigning a cough. She would not give me any and I screamed,

“Where’s my fucking medicine!” And was promptly savagely beaten.

My uncle The Right Honourable Jeremy Baxter Leathers also got wind of the Dolphin Square incident and what Elspeth was up to. He was standing in the sitting room facing Elspeth with Debbie between them and he was irate and threatening violence against Leon Brittan. Elspeth smiled and said that Leon carried a ladies pistol and would shoot my uncle if he threatened him. Jeremy asked if Leon would actually use the gun and Elspeth replied that he had shot a Boy (D) dead who had attempted to go for the gun. She quipped that she was working for SIS but it was really BRUV.

There were many telephone conversations between Elspeth and Debbie, all of which would end in a huge row. I would make myself scarce when these calls occurred as they would make Debbie angry and she was likely to take it out on me. During these conversations Debbie would sometimes be suicidal,

“I’ll kill myself!” She would shout down the phone. Dominic and I repeated this claim in front of Richard who commented,

“Blimey, that bad?”

1980 July,

It was the afternoon, Dominic and I were in the dining room. I went into the kitchen, in front of me, the door to the back garden, (which had glass panes in the upper half) was shut. I jumped at the sight of a man’s right arm through the cat flap, his hand was moving up and down the wall on the hinge side of the door, his fingers feeling around, wriggling, and then the fingers grasped the hook where the key was normally kept and then stopped. I looked through the glass of the door to see the man’s head look up, a look of defeat on his face, he saw me, my head automatically turned to the key which was still in the lock, a smile broke out on his face and he twisted his arm around towards the other side of the door where the key was but could not reach. Dominic had arrived and was standing by my right shoulder, Cooke withdrew his arm, [presumably to switch to his left arm] but Dominic suddenly leaped over to the door in no more than two steps, made sure it was locked and then took the key out and leaped back. We stood triumphant, I could not help a smile. The intruder stood up, he wore a shabby grey or light brown suit jacket and a white shirt, it was Sydney Cooke. He smiled back,

“Open the door,” he said. Dominic and I both stood still, looking at him. “Open the door,” he said again, “Your gran’s here to take you for a treat, she’s waiting for you in the Daimler.” He indicated towards the back gate and the yard beyond.

His words did not sound right, we did not call either of our grandmothers’ ‘gran’, and ‘treat’ was a word we did not use, ‘Treats’ to me, was a packet of sweets (chocolates). Cooke continued enthusiastically,

“Come on, your gran’s waiting out the back in a DAIMLER to give you a treat!” Both Dominic and I remained silent and still. I pictured a faceless granny in the back of a Daimler handing me one chocolate ‘treat’ from a packet of Treats. We were not told about our grandmother coming to pick us up and why via the back garden? I was confused. “Come on!” Cooke repeated, “Open the door! Gran’s here, Granny’s here…Mima! Mima’s here! She’s out the back in a Daimler waiting for you, Mima’s here! You’re going out for a treat! Let’s go! Come on!” He became angry at our inaction, “OPEN THE DOOR!” he glared at us but we were unmoving, “OPEN THE FUCKING DOOR!!” he hissed. Then gave us a mean look and walked off. We watched him exit the back gate then we both then ran to the front bay window and saw Cooke and another man (they also saw us) in a Jaguar (MK11), speeding out of the yard entrance and off down the road.


Christie had collected a lot of information regarding the PIE network. The Dolphin Square incident had turned into a chapter in his book. He spoke of ‘Kincora’ and referred to his book as ‘Kincora’.

Around the dining table were my uncles and Debbie and Richard, they were discussing Operation Drake which was a charitable event taking children around the world in a boat. They said it was a ‘paedophiles paradise’ as law’s on the high sea’s were in a grey area. They talked of children dancing naked on tables which Debbie was defending as just partying but my uncles stressed that children were being raped and made to walk the plank, (Child/Boy B). Not really realising the gravity of the subject I piped up that it would be fun to walk the plank. Jeremy turned to me with tears in his eyes and made me think about it,

“Would you? What would you do when you were in the sea all alone and the boat sailed off and left you?”

“Swim to the shore.” I answered flippantly.

“It’s the middle of the ocean, there is no shore!” Jeremy said and turned away crying.


A letter arrived from Leon Brittan inviting Dominic to his house in Yorkshire for the week-end. I saw that it contained an itinerary and a list of things to bring. The itinerary detailed tennis sessions and photography, as well as educational classes. The list of things to bring was very detailed; toiletries and a specific amount of white pants, (more than the days he would be there). Richard pointed out the inappropriateness of the request but Debbie reasoned that the tennis sessions would make Dominic sweat thus the need for extra pants. Richard questioned, why white pants? But Debbie said that was just what a tennis kit was; all white.

Whilst he was away I missed him dearly. At one particular time on the Sunday I suddenly became very anxious and ran over to the window looking for him.

Dominic developed a ‘stutter’, Debbie talked of children being an average age of nine years if they were to pick up a speech impediment and Dominic was fourteen. He was sent to a child hypnotherapist. One day I was in the front garden when Dominic came home from the hypnotherapists, he was bounding happily up the garden path. Debbie spoke to Richard about how the therapy was working in relation to his memory,

“All he can remember is that he has had a happy childhood.” She continued in hushed tones, “He still has a stutter but he can’t remember any of the….” I couldn’t quite hear, then they spoke of the therapy’s huge cost,

“Who’s paying for it?” Richard asked. “Is it L…”

“Leon Brittan.” Debbie cut in at a lower volume, confirming Richard’s guess.

“What about Nicholas?” Richard asked. Debbie said there was only the offer of therapy available for Dominic and that it was just too expensive for her to afford,

“He’s too young.” She said, looking over to me, “He’ll never remember.”


Debbie kept insisting that I wrote a letter replying to the personal adverts in the back of MagPIE, (the paedophile magazine.) I had to sit at the table and go through each advert with her trying to persuade me to respond, a blank piece of writing paper and pen in front of me. I would sit there for hours and be deprived of an evening meal. Both Dominic and I had to say we did not like football or any other sport to avoid answering the bulk of the adverts. It was a battle of wills which affected my concentration at school, I was under a constant feeling of dread, I would return home and see the PIE sticker in the window and my heart would sink. One day Debbie asked me if I would like to go to the banger races which was my favourite thing, particularly the demolition derby at the end where the cars would ram into each other and the last car moving was the winner, I said yes, I was very keen. Then, triumphantly, Debbie produced a copy of MagPIE open at the personal ads page, a pen and paper and pointed to the advert offering to take boys to see the banger races. I made a scene and was hit and forced to write, she grabbed my arm and made me write at the threat of further beatings and no supper.

I was waiting in the house, dressed for my blind date, through the sitting room window I saw a car pull up, (early 1960’s orange/yellow Austin mini countryman) with two occupants inside, they stopped in the middle of the road and got out, it was a man and a woman, they looked around confirming house numbers and pointed to our house, the woman had short cropped hair, she saw me through the window, her eyes lit up, she smiled, I screamed and became hysterical. The woman became upset and burst into tears,

“He thinks I’m a paedophile!” She said to the man, who was tall and slim, and cried on his shoulder, he comforted her. I rammed myself into a corner, Debbie would have to drag me screaming and kicking. Debbie and Richard went out and spoke with them, there was a confrontation and they were exchanging details using the bonnet of the car as a surface to write and then the two visitors departed.

Debbie and Richard came back in and discussed what had just happened, they said that the two people claimed they were from Richmond council and were working undercover but Debbie disputed this: The council needed authorisation for such an operation and she would’ve known about it because her mother would of told her. They could of been undercover on their own accord, or they were genuine paedophiles who bluffed when confronted by authority.

“A double bluff?” Richard asked, “ You told them you were undercover, working for SIS, [Secret Intelligence Services] a double agent! But you are a paedophile, in which case you were triple bluffing, a triple agent!”

Jeremy had arrived with a magazine which he put on the dining table. The front cover was colourful, (too glossy to be Private Eye) it depicted a man running down a path away from a church on a hill, he had a big blonde baby under his arm, in the background were some tree’s, one of which a little boy was standing behind, peeking out. The man looked a lot like Leon Brittan. My family discussed how the man should be running up the hill towards the church and in fact it should be the Houses of Parliament he was running to. They said that the baby under his arm was Dominic and the boy behind the tree was me. I thought this odd because Dominic was older than me and I said so.

“He is a big baby.” Someone replied. They said that the magazine was being taken off the shelves as it was said to be racist. “How can you have a cartoon of Leon Brittan and not make him look Jewish?”


1981 June,

Dominic had a school friend over, Nick Moore. I was allowed to hang out with them but they were playing ‘soldiers’ and as my classmate’s and myself thought playing ‘soldiers’ was something we had grown out of, I was reluctant; if one or more of my mates turned up and saw me with a plastic machine gun playing ‘war’ I would get no end of grief. But I decided to join in. My role was of a Japanese WW11 officer and I was hunting down two escaped Commando’s so I tucked my socks into my trousers to look like gaiters (puttees), put an Afrika Corp cap on and took a toy Lugar pistol, if a friend showed up I could pocket the cap and pistol, un-tuck my trousers and hopefully they wouldn’t notice.

I waited a while for Dominic and his friend to go and hide and then left the house in search of them.

I headed towards the small churchyard which is a cut through between Elm bank gardens and Cross street, I walked through it, along the path with the church on the left and the overgrown narrow cemetery on the right which was fenced off with spiked railings. I scanned the foliage and grave stones whilst I walked and when I got to Cross street I turned around and returned to Elm bank gardens peering through the railings again. There was a sarcophagus at the Elm bank gardens end of the graveyard and I was sure I heard a stifled laugh as I walked around it but I could not hear leaves rustling or twigs snapping as they moved around it in order to avoid my line of sight. I stood on the pavement of Elm bank gardens and pointed the toy gun through the railings expecting Dominic and his friend to jump out waving their toy guns when a tatty red Lancia beta montecarlo arrived and slowed as it approached. The man in the passenger seat shouted through the open window,

“Look! A German!” he laughed, “We’ve got the boots!” There was more laughter coming from the car and he continued, “We’ve got the boots if you want!” It was Sydney Cooke.

“We’ve got the boots if you want?” There was Boy (Z) in the back of around fourteen and he was nodding frantically and repeated Cooke’ offer.

I was embarrassed and did not want to tell them I was a Japanese officer not a German or that I did not want their boots and walked past them to the path through the churchyard. They reversed and stopped at the entrance to the path, I thought they wanted directions so I turned and took a step towards them but did not see Cooke holding a map or piece of paper with directions on it and then an acrid smell hit me of stale body odour and whatever they were smoking, there was prog rock blaring from the stereo. It did not feel right, they were not asking for directions. The driver turned his head slowly towards me, he had long dark hair and a droopy moustache, it was Lesley Bailey, he smiled, turned back to face to windscreen and laughed.

“Come here.” Cooke commanded. I stood still. Boy (Z), in the back seat was giving me hard stares, his neck-length hair was fair and straight, his face long and angular. “Come here.” Cooke said again, “It’s alright, I’m not going to hurt you.” He twisted his arm out from the seat belt and raised it slowly towards the door handle. I turned and started to walk off quickly through the churchyard.

“Chicken!” Cooke said loudly. I thought this unfair as two men and an older boy was hardly a fair fight and I was walking away, not running.

“Chicken!” Boy (Z) echoed excitedly. When I got around the second buttress of the church and out of sight I broke into a run, at the Cross Street entrance to the churchyard I turned right and immediately doubled back on myself, clambering over the wall into the cemetery. (Unlike the high railings along the path Cross Street was separated from the cemetery by a low brick wall topped with flat, low metal railings). Keeping low, tip-toeing, focusing on not snapping any twigs (and only just aware of someone sprinting past on the path just a couple of meters away) I got to a gravestone in the middle of the cemetery and as I ducked down to hide behind it Cooke arrived, almost running, he stopped in front of me and looked towards Boy (Z) who was jogging back from the opposite direction with a look of astonishment on his face, his arms held out and shrugging he said,

“He’s gone!” At this moment laughter broke out, not from Cooke or Boy (Z) but from behind me, sitting up on the wall of the garden of the house that ran alongside the cemetery was Dominic and his friend. They sat and laughed because they had been watching me search for them the whole time. Cooke and Boy (Z) looked over and grinned. My cover was blown but I felt safer because Dominic and his friend were there, I turned and jumped at the wall putting my arms up for them to pull me up as it was too high for me to climb,

“You’re not on our side.” Dominic said, there was no helping hand.

“Help me up!” I said and tried again to jump up and get my hand on the top of the wall, failing.

“We’ll have him!” Cooke said, “Hand him over, he’s a German.”

Cooke commanded Boy Zed to get in and get me and we all looked along the railings until our eyes fell on a missing upright a few meters away, Boy (Z) smiled and walked towards the gap. Dominic levelled his toy ‘Tommy’ gun at him and pretended to fire, Boy (Z) hesitated then put his hand on his chest,

“Ah!” he said and staggered back along the path pretending he was shot, “I’m dead!” he proclaimed and he and Cooke roared with laughter and then he moved towards the gap. I yelped and turned to launch to myself at the wall, Boy (Z) was laughing as he squeezed through the gap.

“Help me up!” I pleaded, scrabbling at the wall “I’m a Commando! I’m on your side!”

“We’re not Commando’s any more, we’re Marines!” Dominic replied.

“I’m a Marine, I’m a Marine!” I cried “Get me up! PLEASE!!” I was desperate, Boy (Z) was almost on me.

Dominic’s friend reached out and grabbed my wrist and tried to pull me up but couldn’t, the laughing was right behind me, I looked at Dominic who just looked at me as my hand reached for his.

“HELP HIM!” Dominic’s friend called to Dominic, “HE’S YOUR BROTHER!!” Dominic suddenly reached out and grabbed my hand and they hauled me up. We sat there on the wall and looked at Cooke and Boy (Z). A pedestrian approached, Cooke signalled Boy (Z) to stop the pursuit, the pedestrian walked past.

“Come on Kevin [Colin?],” Cooke said, “We’ll come back later.” Boy (Z) looked disappointed and followed Cooke back to Elm Bank Gardens and the waiting Lancia.

We sat on the wall for a while and discussed what we would have done if they had come after us; the only escape route was to drop into the back garden of the house and then either knock on the back door, (would the owner/s, if they were in, hand us over to Cooke and company?) or to jump the next garden fence which was higher than the wall, then the fence after that with a trellis on top. I knew I could not scale the fences. Dominic’s friend asked him,

“Would you help your brother over the fence?” Dominic was silent, his friend was amazed, “He’s your brother!”

The three of us returned to the house and we started again, I counted to a hundred whilst they ran off and hid. I got to one hundred and went to find them, I went straight out the back door, through the garden into the yard and climbed up onto the garage roofs and crawled along, (to keep out of sight from the first floor of my house and Debbie’s eye), I tipped myself over onto a lower roof that was shielded from view of the houses and there was Dominic and his friend sitting looking relaxed but Dominic jumped up and was not happy that I had found them, his friend was dismayed at his reaction and said that I was alright and not a problem, but Dominic was angry,

“I wish you had gone with that man!” he said, I stood up ready for a fight. At this point Debbie saw us from her bedroom and screamed blue murder at us, we all got off the roofs and I ran off.

I left the yard and swiftly walked back up Elm Bank Gardens and through the churchyard, turned left at Cross Street and made my way along Thorne Passage towards Archway Street. I got halfway down the passage and a red Lancia beta montecarlo appeared at the end on Archway Street, the front passenger looked down the alley at me and, excited, turned to the driver and barked a command, the car reversed revving loudly and in a turn. It disappeared out of view. Cars turning round was normal there as it is a dead end street but it did not feel right. I slowed down and came to a halt.

A boy appeared at the end of the alley, sprinting at full tilt towards me, it was Boy (Z), he started to laugh as he approached, I turned and started to run back towards Cross Street. There was a man walking up the passage towards me, I was relieved as I thought an adult would intervene and stop Boy (Z) getting his hands on me, I slowed down, then to my horror I realised who the man was, it was Sydney Cooke, he was smiling.

Thorne passage at this point has a row of little cottages tucked behind the Houses of Cross Street and Archway Street, there is a path that accesses the front gardens but leads nowhere else. There was an old woman in the first or second cottage looking out of the window sternly, this was the woman who normally wrapped on the window to tell my friends and myself to ‘clear off’ when we were messing around climbing up on the high wall.

Ruling out the back gardens and paths as an escape route I turned 180° to the high wall. I had climbed it once without help but it took me eight or nine attempts, Cooke and Boy (Z) were almost on me, I thought about having a jump at the wall but I was rooted to the spot with fear, Boy (Z) was delirious with laughing, he slowed to a walk and was staggering sideways, ecstatic. I turned around, Cooke was right there, in the middle of the alley, I moved to squeeze past him and he held his arms out and laughed. The old woman who was at the window was now opening the door,

“Come in.” she called out calmly. I did not think twice, I was in.

I stood in the middle of a room, there was no hallway and the woman remained at the front door talking to Cooke. She asked him what he was doing, Cooke replied that he was taking me out (he used my name) for the day and the woman argued against his claim, she turned to me to confirm my name and asked me,

“Do you know this man?”

“No.” I said. The woman turned back to Cooke who was in the passage and said,

“I don’t believe you, I don’t like the look of you and I’m calling the police.” She shut the door. Cooke gave me a beady look and walked off with Boy (Z), back towards Cross Street. The woman went to the telephone which was on a side table next to me,

“Stand over there by the wall!” she ordered, then, seeing that I was scared she said, “It’s alright, I’m not going to hurt you, you haven’t done anything wrong.” I stood by the wall. She took my details and called the police and described to them what had just happened. She put the phone down, turned to me and said pensively, “I am often ‘telling off’ children like you for climbing up and running along the garden walls and until now I had not considered what it was that you are running away from.”

The police arrived swiftly, one woman and at least two men. They escorted me back to 83 Elm Bank Gardens. On the way back the policewoman asked me about my mother, whether she sexually abused me, we stopped at the entrance to the church yard, she was excited, she was coaxing information out of me. One of the policemen interrupted, chiding her for her method.

At the house the rapport between the police and Debbie was confrontational. The police left unhappy.



Dominic and I went to stay the night at Elspeth’s house ‘Vergers’. Before we left we were told by Debbie and an uncle not to go through an interior connecting door to the adjoining property ‘Little Vergers’ because we would be buggered, literally, by the man who ‘worked’ there. The man was Leon Brittan.

We spent the warm, sunny day with Elspeth at a local (Petworth House?) fête. As we drove through the gatehouse entrance in her Citroën CX, she passed round a flask of whisky, we all had a swig or two. We parked up and stood near the parking area and a 1926 Vauxhall E Type car pulled up, it was open topped had large aliminium wheel arches, a man got out and greeted Elspeth who replied,

“Ooh! Hello Edwin!” It was (Lord) Edwin Bramall, Dominic and I were not introduced but we laughed and giggled at his ‘posh’ name, he was not amused, he berated Elspeth for saying his name in front of children but she told him not to worry as we were her grandsons. This did not appease him. Elspeth gushed compliments regarding his car, how splendid it was, Bramall proudly stated it was as old as him and could do one hundred miles per hour.

“Are you going to be there tonight?” Elspeth asked. Bramall was shifty and spoke in a low key, scowling at Dominic and myself. We watched The Red Arrows, at which Elspeth poured praise over Bramall asking him if he organised the fly past, he nodded an affirmation. There was a Cromwellian reconstruction battle, I was disappointed that the re-enactors kept their pikes vertical.

We went to Vergers, there were no toys at Elspeth’s house except for a British Rail board game with missing pieces. Still drunk, Dominic and I messed around with an antique guillotine, (about twelve or fourteen inches long similar to a paper guillotine, originally for threshing cereals maybe) putting our arms in for a dare and seeing how far we could pull the blade down before pleading mercy. The steel blade was very sharp and the game ended when Dominic did not heed my plea’s and pulled the blade slowly onto my arm leaving a long cut across my forearm.

We spent the night in a bedroom on the first floor which was situated on the left at the top of the stairs, there were two single beds, I was in the bed next to the window, Dominic in the bed closest to the door. Later that night I awoke to the sound of a man’s voice which I instantly recognised and was fearful of, I was lying on my side facing Dominic’s bed, I kept very still and opened my eyes a fraction to see Leon Brittan sitting on his bed, he was wearing a suit and the air was thick with the smell of liquor,

“Dominic… Dominic… ” he was saying softly, my brother stirred. “Dominic, we’re having a little party downstairs, would you like to join us?” he said as Dominic sat up, “Don’t tell your brother!” he added giggling. They then both left the room.

I waited some time before deciding to find out what was going on. Very quietly I tip-toed to the top of the stairs and lay down manoeuvring myself head first so my head hung over the top stair and I looked through the banisters. The door to the dining room was open and there was a dinner party taking place with Leon sitting at the head of the table, his chair pushed back, his napkin on his lap, he was beside himself with joy, his face puffed up and red,

“Dominic!” he laughed, “Oh,Dominic!” Dominic was naked and dancing on the table, moving down the table away from Leon, Dominic then saw me and immediately crumpled and became distressed. The man who was sitting halfway along the table looked at me over the top of Dominic’s cowering body, he had an intense blue steely gaze, it was Edwin Bramall,

“Bloody peeping tom! Bring him down and give him a damned good thrashing!” I heard someone say in a cut glass accent. Leon also saw me and gave me his evil red glare, a pair of long legs in flared trousers appeared at the door which slammed shut. Terrified, I ran back to my bed and pretended to be asleep awaiting the worst but nobody came except (later) Dominic who did not communicate with me. I lay there and listened to the guests leaving and thanking my the hostess, she then came up with some whisky for me which I drank. Later on I awoke to find myself semi naked, Elspeth was sitting on the bed fiddling with my genitals. One curtain was drawn and the light streamed in, {flash photography} Leon stood at the end of the bed with a camera taking pictures of me.

“Get your hand out of the way Elspeth,” he said, “Nobody wants to see your wrinkly fucking hands! Look he can’t get an erection, he’s a dud.”

“He’ll be okay,” Elspeth replied, “He’s just a late developer.”

“He’s a dud Elspeth, you know what we do with duds? We get rid of them, we snuff them out!”

“Noo!” Elspeth replied, “He’ll be fine! Give him time!”

“He’s a witness Elspeth, You know what that means? We snuff them out!” Leon said with a smile and as he walked out the door said in a matter of fact way, “I don’t like him Elspeth and there is nothing you can do about it.”



My family had a meeting concerning Debbie’s involvement in the Paedophile information exchange, (PIE) of which she was a member. It was at my grandfather’s house, present were; My grandfather, Frederick Allen Leathers (Viscount Leathers or Freddie), my uncle’s and aunt’s; Christie and Maria, Jeremy and Fiona and Debbie, Dominic and myself. They were in the sitting room and Debbie did not want Dominic or myself present and were told to leave the room.

“But it’s about them!” Fiona exclaimed. Debbie was drunk and aggressive. Dominic and I were in the hall and we went up to the door, Dominic cupped his hands to the door and placed his ear so he could listen in. I looked through the keyhole and saw Debbie sitting on the floor gesticulating angrily and frequently filling her glass with wine. Dominic and I stood back,

“They’re talking about pie!” He said excitedly. I looked at him quizzically, “PIE!” He said.

“What, birthday cake?” I asked, thinking they were maybe discussing a birthday surprise for me. Dominic’s excited smile dropped, his mood saddened and from within his eyes I saw loneliness, he turned and ran up the stairs,

“Don’t follow me!” He called without turning his head. I walked through the dining room and into the kitchen where Freddie was drying the dishes in silence, he looked at me grimacing, tears were streaming down his face. Embarrassed, I walked out.



Dominic had completed his Tiger tank, it was, like all his other models, meticulously painted and set in a scenario. He was looking at it, but not with the immense pride he had with his other models, his head was slightly bowed and he had an aura of sadness about him. Richard was there and said,

“Feels bad doesn’t it?” Dominic lifted his head and tried to look enthusiastic about his model tank, adjusting the positioning, “To sell yourself, feels bad. I know.” Dominic dropped his head again, his arms came down and he just stared at the tank. Richard angrily told me to go away and then stepped forward to console Dominic saying he had similarly sold himself.

Christie’s book had got bigger, the experiences of Dominic and myself no longer filled a chapter, he said we were now only documented in a paragraph,

“A mere mention, mentioned in passing.”

Christie voiced his disapproval at Jeremy for trying to sell the story, (Dolphin square incident) to the papers.


Debbie had been nice to me all week, I had my favourite meal at least twice. She said that corporal punishment was wrong, which she was sorry for and that she would stop beating me if I were to sign something for her.

Jeremy was excited and he was trying to think of an alternative acronym for E.R.N.I.E, (The computer that picks the National Savings and Investments Premium Bond winners),

“Electronically Rigged Nonce Intelligence…” He couldn’t quite get there and all of a sudden he came out with, “B.U.N.C.I.E” and Buncie stuck.

I was sitting at the kitchen table with a form in front of me, Debbie was standing over me holding a piece of blank paper over the top of the form. Also in the kitchen was Jeremy and Richard. Aunt

Fiona was in the hallway. The atmosphere was tense. Debbie pointed to where I should sign.

“At least show him how much!” Richard said. Debbie lifted the piece of paper for no more than a second and then placed it back down,

“Lots of naught’s, naught’s mean nothing!” Jeremy chuckled.

“It’s what’s at the beginning of the naught’s that count.” Richard said. I had not seen what was under the paper as I had no time to focus. Fiona clasped her hands together, her eyes rolled up to the ceiling and she uttered what sounded like a prayer or a spell. I signed the form. Jeremy and Fiona were jubilant, they left immediately without looking back, Fiona could hardly contain herself as she walked off down the hall, gurgling,

“We’re rich, we’re rich!” When they got outside they hooted and cheered clenching their fists in the air ecstatically. The front door closed.

“What would you have done if he hadn’t signed?” Richard asked Debbie. She did not answer. “You would of signed it for him, wouldn’t you?” Debbie looked to the floor and nodded with a fixed smile on her face. Richard went to the bin and fished out a piece of paper with my signature on it and lots of attempts at forging it.

Not long after Debbie said to Richard that she had made a transfer into his bank account, she stood with a smile on her face as if anticipating a gratuitous response but Richard was outraged,

“How dare you put money into my account without my permission!” Debbie looked at the floor, “How dare you!” Her smile became a grimace.

After a week she was beating me again. I got a new bicycle.

My Post Office account book went missing, (Although it was kept in a safe place) and Debbie made me get a new one. (In 1982 she convinced me to close my account completely.)



Elspeth took Dominic and myself, in her light blue Citroen CX to the Thornham Hall estate. As we drove up a long sweeping drive with parkland either side an impressive stately home came into view on the left at the top of the hill.

“Are we going there?” I asked excitedly.

“No,” Elspeth replied, “Splendid isn’t it?” [Thornham Hall burned down in 1953 – was the facade still standing or was this another property on the way to the Thornham estate?]

We pulled up at the coach house and entered into a large room which was being used as an office, with antique furniture. There was one man there whom I had encountered before at a property in Eaton Mews, London, it was Peter Righton. Dominic and I were given whisky and Righton was talking to Mima,

“Yes, I think Richard will be interested in this,” he mused, he and Elspeth laughed and Peter continued “You go on and I’ll meet you down there after I’ve got changed,” he made his way to an interior door, “..yes, very interested.”

We drove down a short distance into the parkland again and into view came a collection of ramshackle huts (at least one of which was painted green) and lean-to’s with a couple of farm animal pens and I thought, ‘we’ve come all this way (from London) for this poor set up’.

We walked up to an animal enclosure and a large excited pig came rushing out towards us as if it were feeding time, it arrived at the barrier and looked at me in the eyes, squealing in delight as if I was dinner, I was scared of this animal, it had a malevolence about it. We sped around and ended up inside a room of one of the huts. Along one wall was a row of about six concave and convex mirrors like one would find in a ‘fun house’ at the funfair. Dominic and I were looking at ourselves in them and laughing at our distorted images. Then I heard the sound of a bare backside being slapped from the room in which we had entered from, then the sound of moaning and groaning, more slapping and a man’s voice was saying,

“Ohhh, Peter, you’re the daddy!” and “Oh! Daddy!” Elspeth encouraged us to have a look, which we did and bent over a table was a man who was looking back at me, he was being buggered by Righton, both were naked. Dominic and I ducked back into the mirror room and continued to look at our images but it was not as funny as before, we could still hear the men having sex. Then Righton appeared in the mirror behind me, laughing, naked and with an erection followed by Richard Alston, also naked. Alston was of slim build and had blonde/grey/white sticky-up hair, he had a thin face and a thin nose and was very camp, he walked towards me and I backed off towards the other end of the room, so did my brother as Righton advanced towards him. The two men and Elspeth were laughing, Elspeth toyed with her Polaroid camera and encouraged and coaxed Dominic to touch Righton’s penis which he did,

“Eww, it’s slimy.” Dominic said.

“Go on, touch it again.” Elspeth said, poised with the camera, Dominic reached out his hand,

“Put it in your mouth.” Righton ordered. At this point Dominic got distressed, and did not want me being present. I was ordered out of the fire door which slammed shut behind me and I reeled around in the fresh air and rolled on the grass next to a large evergreen hedge as the whisky took effect.

A short time later the fire door burst open and Dominic came running out, choking, spluttering, spitting and coughing followed by Elspeth who was laughing triumphantly and waving a Polaroid photograph in the air to dry like it was a prize. I went over to have a look and Dominic became hysterical, sobbing and pleading with Elspeth not to show me. I did not see the photo. We left.



Debbie had decided to move house. Richard was angry with her because she manipulated it to make it look like it was Dominic and I who were unhappy and wanted to move. He said it was all part of the cover up and it was her who wanted to “Turn over a new leaf.”

Debbie became paranoid over the PIE membership list as the press were onto the Westminster paedophile ring scandal. She would scour the house looking for anything relating to PIE and take apart ornaments which her mother had given her. Richard asked her that the only thing he wanted to know was what was her membership number and I heard her say under her breath four hundred, (and something.)

Elspeth arrived with a new camera, she was drunk and had a photograph of Dominic naked which she put on the mantle piece, she had other photograph’s of him as well, these were Polaroid photographs. She was wanted to take some more photograph’s with her new camera, (regular film) and Richard got angry, took the camera off her and frog marched her out of the house, he put the camera on the mantle piece alongside the photograph of Dominic. He discussed the matter with Debbie saying that she wanted to sell the photographs hence the new camera as it was the negatives that had value. The Polaroid camera was just for instant gratification as it didn’t produce negatives.

These photograph’s of Dominic I knew had great power over him, even just mentioning them would distress him and I was determined to obtain one and take it to our new home so I would have power over him but they vanished.

Elspeth arrived when I was home alone and asked me where the passports were kept, I told her and she took my passport and wrote down the details and left.

“Easy as pie!” Was her favourite saying.

1981 July 29,

On the day of the royal wedding, there was a ‘Kings and Queens’ children’s party on at the same place (Elm Guest House) that Dominic had gone to the year before and this time Elspeth had said that I was invited as well. A lot of debate went on at our house in Barnes whether to go or not, Dominic kept changing his mind and me instantly copying his decisions. Also, as I was not yet thirteen years old Debbie would not let me go (with a friend) to the fun-fair (Putney?) without an adult, (although I had been allowed to go previously.)

The doorbell rang. I answered the door and a woman in her mid-thirties with tied back black hair stood there, she smiled kindly, she wore a smart black uniform with a hat.

“Is your mother in?” she said politely. I turned around and called out to Debbie who was in the kitchen,

“It’s the Samaritans.” I pronounced the word ‘Samaritans’ in a disrespectful way.

Debbie sighed and came to the door.

The woman thought this was funny and said,

“No, I am not a Samaritan, although I do like to think of myself as one, in fact you could say that that is why I am here, actually I am a policewoman.” She gave her name and became serious and asked Debbie if she could come in as she had some information involving her son.

Debbie let her into the hall and Richard arrived, I was sent into the sitting room and the door was closed. I could hear their voices becoming excited and then Debbie wailed out my name,

“NICHOLAS! NOT NICHOLAS!” It sounded like she staggered in a faint.

“Not Nicholas!” Richard also exclaimed in a surprised and aghast manner.

The policewoman left and I waited in the sitting room with Dominic and then Debbie and Richard came in and there was a change of plan.

Debbie said that although we had done nothing wrong, we were ‘grounded’ (which was also not in her punishment remit) and Dominic and I were to watch the wedding in separate rooms, Dominic in an upstairs room with the colour tv and me in the sitting room with the black and white tv. Also we had to close all the curtains and the doors, leave the lights off and I was told not to answer the door to anyone including, (and especially) Elspeth. And also I had to turn the volume on the tv down to barely audible. And don’t answer the telephone. And don’t leave the room. And do not look out of the window, even the tiniest peek through a crack in the curtains. It became silly but they said it was for our own good and we would have to trust them.

I sat in the dark on my own, the curtains were closed front and back, the doors into the hallway were closed and the tv virtually silent. I watched the wedding. We were moving house and had started packing boxes, I was upset that I was not out with my friends. I felt like climbing the walls and eventually I could not resist a peek into the hall and quietly opened the door, I looked at the front door and panned my head around to the kitchen, the door was open and Richard sat staring through the hall at the front door, he was red eyed and looked very serious, there was a lump of wood next to him propped against the wall, I withdrew my head and remained in the sitting room.

Later on, as I sat/lay on the sofa, still alone, I heard the sound of footsteps coming up the garden path, the doorbell rang. No one answered. The letter box flap which was two thirds of the way up the door was opened momentarily then dropped. I heard the crunch of shoes swivelling and taking two steps back along the path then stopping for a few seconds, I could tell by the ‘click-clack’ of heels it was a woman. The sound of footsteps then continued to the gate and out onto the street, stopping, then the sound of the car door and the car starting and moving away. I recognised the sound of those teetering footsteps, it was Elspeth.

1981 July/August,

In one of the days following the disappearance of Vishal Mehrotra, Jeremy arrived. I was sat at the dining table and there was a local newspaper on the table it was folded to a page that had an artists impression of a woman on it. Jeremy asked me who it was. It was clearly Elspeth; she was wearing her large distinctive sunglasses and an item of clothing (neckerchief/head scarf) that I recognised, she was either standing next to Vishal Mehrotra and/or her car, (light blue Citroen cx) or there was a description of her car in the text.

My family talked about the plans Elspeth, (and PIE) had for me and they said that they had planned to take me to Amsterdam, Holland and that they had the tickets, one of which was for me. I said I would of liked to go to Amsterdam and uncle Jeremy answered,

“No you wouldn’t!” He sucked through his teeth at the thought, shook his head and repeated, “No you wouldn’t!”

1981 August (Early),

Uncle Jeremy had arrived, Elspeth was in the dining room and he was berating her, shouting,


“Let sleeping dogs lie.” Elspeth replied impassively.

My uncle erupted, “DOGS!!!?? YOU CALL LITTLE CHILDREN ‘DOGS’!!!??” Elspeth muttered another comment which I could not hear. “WHAT? A BROWN BOY MEANS HE IS WORTH LESS?!!” Jeremy bellowed at her, a meter and a half away across the corner of the dining table, Elspeth was standing still by the chimney breast and remained silent. Jeremy screamed at her, “WHAT DID YOU DO TO HIM!! DID YOU KILL HIM?” Elspeth just looked at him. Jeremy continued, “DID YOU KILL HIM??!! YOU KILLED HIM??!! YOU KILLED HIM DIDN’T YOU???!!! WHAT DID YOU DO WITH HIM??!! WHAT?!! DID YOU THROW HIM IN A DITCH???!!! WHAT?!!! YOU KILLED HIM AND THROUGH HIM IN A DITCH???!!!!” He broke down sobbing and I was told to leave the room.

In the days leading up to the move Dominic tried to get me to assemble the Tamiya model Horch type 1/A and was close to pleading with me to do so but I wanted to do it in my own time.

1981 August 04 or 06,

Richard bought a Luton van and he and Dominic loaded it with belongings and went to the new house in Gloucestershire, (The van broke down in Bracknell.)

1981 August 07 – 09,

Debbie and I move to the new house:


1981 August (Early/Mid),

Richard asked Debbie where the Kashmir table was and she said she did not know which angered him, he said it was all part of the cover up, she wanted to get rid of evidence of her abuse, it was my “gibbet”, he deduced that she did not have time to take it to the tip, (Mortlake) and so she must have dumped it on the street somewhere close to the old house. He was cross because it was worth money and could of paid for some rugby boots and/or running shoes for Dominic and myself. She said it was all part of her turning over a new leaf.

1981 August,

Christie arrived, he slammed two newspapers, (‘Red tops’) on the dining table, he was upset. I was sitting at the table, one newspaper had the same artists impression of Elspeth that Jeremy had showed me in a local paper,

“Who’s that?” He asked me.

“Mima.” I said. The other paper had an artists impression of Martin Allen, (A 15 year old who went missing 05.11.1979) and his suspected abductor.

“Who’s that?!” He said, indicating the suspect male abductor.

“I don’t know.” I replied.

“Who wears clothes like that?!” He said raising his voice.

“Mima.” I said. Debbie scooped the papers up and removed them.

Christie then spoke to Debbie, he said that Elspeth had been interviewed by the police and they had asked her what was she doing in the area at the time of Vishal Mehrotra’s disappearance, she had said she was with her grandsons. Christie then said his son was not with her, so this ruled out Jeremy’s son (as her alibi states ‘grandsons’), and he had asked Jeremy to be sure who said his son was not with her. He then asked Debbie if Elspeth had been with Dominic and myself at any time on that day, (29.07.1981) and Debbie replied,

“No. We were in the house all day.” Christie was visibly shocked, he recoiled then asked,

“Did they even ask?”

“Who?” Debbie replied.

Christie raised his voice, “THE POLICE! DID THEY ASK YOU…”

“NO!” Debbie exclaimed. Christie became distraught, staggering around and crying and wailing,


September/October 1981,

The house was at the end of a track and we were isolated, television was regulated to educational programs, Dominic and I were banned from watching the news. The cartoon series, ‘Dangermouse’ was also on the banned list, the arch villain ‘triggered’ my brother as it bore similarities to Leon Brittan, Dominic was Dangermouse and I the sidekick. Instead we were encouraged to go outdoors, there were plenty of tasks on the fourteen acres of land.

I had all but completed, (but not painted) the model of the Horch type 1/A which was a German WW11 military truck but I could not decide whether I should leave it open topped or put the canopy on. I preferred the look of it with the canopy on but it seemed a waste that the mounted machine gun and the soldiers in the back would be unseen, if I left the top off and glued the machine gun and soldiers in position the canopy would become redundant and also be a waste. So I jumbled/arranged the soldiers in the back, looking improper in their sitting positions, along with the machine gun and put the cover on.

At the dinner table Richard commented about my predicament of the canopy,

“The million dollar question is; Cover on or cover off? Cover up or not? What are those Nazi’s doing in there?!”



Debbie, Dominic and myself went to visit Elspeth. My uncles were going to be there and I assumed my cousin James would also be there. As there were no games/toys at Vergers except for the British Rail board game I took along Cluedo and was looking forward to a smug victory against my cousin and Dominic as I was Cluedo champion extraodinaire.

We arrived mid morning, Christie and Jeremy were waiting outside, Christie was not happy,

“I thought I said no kids!” He barked at Debbie who shrugged. Christie explained he wanted to confront Elspeth who had just had one of her kids parties and had arranged it early so my grandmother was not yet drunk. We went in, Elspeth was surprised to see us. We all followed Christie through the reception room,

“What’s that?” Christie asked Elspeth pointing to the guillotine that sat on a side table.

“It’s a cigar cutter.” Mima replied.

“You don’t smoke cigars!” Christie retorted.

“It’s for guests.” Elspeth said. Jeremy commented that it was rather a large cigar cutter. We moved onto the dining room,

“And what’s all this?” Christie asked, indicating the dining table laden with canapés.

“It was for a kids party.” Elspeth replied. Debbie then forced Dominic and I to eat some canapés, I tried to but they were soggy and very unappetising, Debbie stood behind me, ready to strike me if I did not, so I managed a tiny bite and she made me eat the entire thing and I balked but managed to force it down. Jeremy said he would not eat anything there and asked Debbie why she did not eat anything and she said she was not hungry and continued to force me to eat, luckily there was an unopened box of chocolate fingers which my brother and I tucked into.

“Especially not the chocolate fingers!” Jeremy quipped. Debbie angrily told us not to eat them all. Christie pursued Elspeth into the kitchen, we all followed, he kicked a plastic wrapped case of Strongbow cider, (large plastic bottles) and pulled it out from under the worktop,

“And what’s this?!” He asked, becoming irate.

“Cider.” Elspeth replied innocently.

“Cider! At a kids party?!” Christie bellowed.

“It’s my cider.” Elspeth claimed.

“YOU DON’T DRINK CIDER! GET THESE KIDS OUT OF HERE!!” He roared. Dominic and I scuttled off to the study and closed the door, the door to the dining room was also shut. We set up the British Rail board game, (he refused to play Cluedo) and as we attempted to play we could not help but listen to the massive row going on in the dining room. At one point Jeremy’s voice reverberated through the walls,


After a while we left, (except for Christie who stayed in the house) and stopped at Elspeth’s car, (A brown Citroen Visa) Jeremy said that this was more like a granny’s car, (Rather than her Citroen CX) and that it would be good for her new “Meals on wheels” venture. I suggested she get a van.

“Oh no, not a van!” Jeremy said aghast. I said she could get a lot more meals in the back of a van and Jeremy said,

“A lot more kids more like it.” He shuddered at the thought of it and went on his way.

As Debbie, Dominic and I were walking back to the car I commented that it was a bit harsh of Jeremy to talk to his mother like that.

“He was talking to me.” Debbie replied with a grimace.



We had parked facing the sea in Debbie’s Renault 18, she was at the wheel, Christie in the passenger seat and Dominic and myself in the back. Christie was talking to Debbie, he was agitated,

“Not Teddy!” Debbie gasped. Christie continued, confirming Ted Heath and adding Louis Mountbatten. Debbie pressed for details and Christie said he can’t say any more with kids in the car, he turned to look Dominic and I in the eyes, Debbie tried to assure him otherwise but Christie turned back to her and stressed that he was “told” that children were the one of top compromisers to be aware of. Debbie asked who “told” him and Christie became angry and spoke of MI5 and national security and asked again to get Dominic and I to get out of the car, Debbie told us to get out which we did and stood by the railings looking out to sea, I occasionally looked back and saw Debbie glaring back and in debate with Christie who was raising his voice. After a while we were called back to the car and we left.



Debbie had resorted to hitting me in the head with hardwood domestic items and when, whilst sleeping, she whacked me with a hoover attachment, I jumped up and without knowing who my assailant was, I pushed Debbie into the corner of my bedroom holding her by the wrists to prevent her hitting me further,

“What are you going to do?” She said realising I was stronger, “What are you going to do?” She asked again smiling manically, I looked into her eyes and saw desperation. I was not going to do anything to my mother, I let go of her and walked away.

Richard suggested Dominic burn his plastic model Tiger Tank, I was not invited to the ceremony. Later Dominic told me how realistic it had been.

Uncle Christie and aunt Maria arrived unexpectedly. They and Debbie and myself were in the kitchen, Maria launched into a narrative about her son who had had some sort of break down/freak out at his school, and how he was found walking down a (train?) track. He had written an essay which graphically described child sex abuse perpetrated by his grandmother and his aunt. Maria said she was shocked at the content and followed Debbie around the kitchen, she said that it did not take much to work out the grandmother was Elspeth and the only other aunt, (Apart from Anne who lived in South Africa), was Fiona and her son had never stayed at Fiona’s so the aunt in question

was Debbie. Debbie laughed at the accusation.

“It’s not funny!” Christie started, he walked and over and stood in front of her. “Pervert!” He said loudly into her face, my mother scoffed. “PERVERT!” He said again, Debbie tried to walk away but Christie cornered her by the stove, “You fiddled with my boy!” He shouted in her face, she looked away, “FUCKING PERVERT!!” Christie asked her if she fiddled with her own boys and yelled, “YOU FIDDLED WITH MY BOY YOU FUCKING PERVERT!!!” Debbie started to cry and after a few more words from Christie and Maria they left.


One day or evening, Debbie, Richard and I were sitting at the kitchen table and Richard said

angrily to Debbie,

“Dominic has complained to me about your behaviour. I thought you were turning over a new leaf?” Debbie claimed she did not know what he was talking about but Richard said she knew what he was talking about then accused her of inappropriately touching him while they were out on a driving lesson, (Debbie was teaching Dominic how to drive.) he was furious, and when Debbie protested that I should not be listening Richard replied,

“I don’t care if Nicholas is listening!” He was utterly disgusted with her and questioned her for her choice of an estate car and alluded to her choice being motivated by indecency. He wanted to get rid of the car. Soon after the car was replaced with a dark blue, 5 door Renault 11.

The television series, “Spitting image” became popular in our household but at some point when the puppet of Leon Brittan was in a sketch Dominic walked out of the room and could no longer watch. {..Leon sings like a canary..}

Debbie made Dominic sit on his own and watch ” and Maude” to see if it triggered any memories of Mima.

1984 July,

We were moving house again, back to London. Debbie wanted to continue Elspeth’s ban at the new house but wanted her to visit Woodlands House before we moved so she invited her to lunch. Debbie said that Elspeth was to be stopped from getting drunk. She also stated that Elspeth had some sort of hypnotic influence over Dominic who normally sat on her right so I was to sit on her right and Dominic opposite her, Richard suggested that Dominic should sit opposite me to avoid any footsie. Elspeth arrived and we sat and had lunch. During the meal I turned my head to Elspeth who had turned her head simultaneously and was looking at me, I smiled, returning her gaze and looked into her eyes, they were not the twinkly green and glazed, (by the effects of alcohol) eyes I expected, they were black and full of utter hatred, voids, my smile instantly vanished, fear became me as I looked into the abyss, the horror, I was shaken to the core and I broke eye contact and turned sharply back to my plate in front of me and continued eating lunch. Elspeth had one or two glasses of wine and departed not long after lunch, [This was to be the last time I saw of her]. Debbie stated,

“I don’t like my mother.”

1984 July 29,

Dominic obtained his driving licence and a car; a Citroen Diane. He drove to a music festival in the West Country, (The Elephant Fair, 27th-29th) with his friend Duncan Silvey. They were going to camp there for a couple of nights.

On their return to Woodlands House I greeted them in the courtyard and was keen to know what the festival was like, they had planned to take LSD. As I helped them unload the camping equipment Duncan unrolled a camping mat and showed me how it had been raked and clawed in a frenzied manner by Dominic. Duncan asked me,

“Who’s Mima?” Dominic talked over him and tried to obfuscate but Duncan passed me the mat and some more camping gear and laughingly asked me again, “Who’s Mi…”

“Don’t tell him.” Dominic said to me sternly. I ran down the cellar stairs and had another look at the camping mat before I put it away. I did not understand why my brother did not want Duncan to know who ‘Mima’ was. On the way back up the stairs Dominic once more asked me to keep my mouth shut, he was intense but I could not see that there would be a problem so when Duncan asked again who ‘Mima’ was I said,

“Our grandmother.”

“Your GRANDMOTHER!” Duncan exclaimed, jumping clean into the air in shock.


1984 August (Early/mid),

We moved and Debbie made sure everybody in the family knew not to give Elspeth the new telephone number.

My Horch type 1/A was missing and I asked if anyone had seen it.

“Lost in the move.” Richard said, he and Dominic then started laughing and I suspected that they had done something to it.

The suspicions were validated later when Dominic told me he and Richard had burned it and how surreal the experience was: As the plastic canopy of the truck melted away, the Nazi’s in the back were exposed, burning and writhing around in their absurd sitting positions, one Nazi fell out of the truck and made an attempt to run from the wreck. The driver burned too, {Elspeth?}.

Over the next year, uncle Christie would call on the telephone quite frequently,

“Is your mother in?” He would say.

“Yes.” I would answer and get her straight away. These conversations took place behind closed doors, but what I gleaned listening to conversations about Elspeth is that she was talking to Christie and opening up about her past.


Christie arrived and he was upset, he walked up the hall towards Debbie in the kitchen,

“And Martin.” (Boy ‘E’) He said as he passed me.

“Who? What are you talking about?” Debbie asked nervously.

“And Martin.” Christie repeated, his voice strained.

“Who’s Martin?” Debbie said, ushering him up the two steps and into the kitchen, she reached for the door. “Nicholas, go to your room!” She ordered hastily, I started to ascend the stairs.

“Martin Allen!” Christie blurted and burst into tears and went to sit down, Debbie closed the door, “And Martin! Nicholas, don’t forget Martin Allen!” I heard him shout and I could see Debbie through the glass panes of the door making efforts to quiet him down. I went to my room.

1985 August,

Aunt Anne and uncle Arthur Centner came over from South Africa and stayed with us in Wandsworth. Arthur was a journalist, he had found out about the Dolphin Square sting involving my great uncle Patrick, Elspeth and Leon Brittan. He was being lambasted, mostly by Debbie, for his attempts to “sell” the story but the press did not want to know. His frustration clearly showed when he pointed to a photo caption of Leon Brittan on the front cover of that month’s “Private Eye”.

“Who’s that?!” He asked me. Debbie interjected, telling him not to force me to remember. I did not make the connection from the photo caption. Arthur reasoned that the quality of the image was poor and people look different in photo’s but then threw his arms up in disbelief and said he could not understand why my Dominic could/would not identify Leon Brittan.

1985 September,

I answered the telephone and the caller’s voice sounded familiar,

“Is your mother in?”

“Who’s calling?” I enquired politely.

“IS YOUR MOTHER THERE!” The caller snarled with contempt. Not wanting to upset anyone I went and got Debbie who asked who it was, I made a confused face and said I thought it was Christie. She went to the kitchen to take the call and realised it was not Christie, she knew the caller and her voice dropped to hushed tones and she gasped as she listened to what he had to say and looked as though she needed to sit down. The door closed, I walked off.

Later on Debbie joked with Richard about my mistaking “You know who” [aka Leon Brittan] for Christie. She told Christie who was mortified by my error.

1985 September (Late),

A few days before my seventeenth birthday Debbie asked,

“You don’t want to have your birthday at home, do you?”

“No.” I replied although I had not thought about what to on my birthday.

1985 October 01,

Having had a fairly quiet birthday, (a few drinks in a pub, Red Lion, Barnes?) and crashing at a mates, I was not hung over so was up fairly early and made my way back to Wandsworth hoping Debbie had some lunch on the go.

I walked into the house and through to the kitchen, there was no lunch on the go, I could see through the back window Debbie was gardening, she looked like she was toiling hard and I went out to see if I could help. She was at the back of the garden, new shovel in hand, digging a hole and crying. I walked towards her demanding she give me the shovel and let me do the digging as I thought it was the physical hard work that made her weep. She turned to me and said,

“Go away!” Confused, I stopped advancing and looked at the ground around her expecting to see a shrub she was about to plant but there were two or three sacks, (ready mix?), a bucket of water and a board or dust sheet all displayed around. Closer to me was an open handbag with Elspeth’s silk scarf nestled within, I wondered where I had seen that handbag.. “Go away!” Debbie insisted. I asked her what she was doing and still offering to take the shovel I took a step towards her, she looked around, across the fences and up into the windows of the surrounding houses then turned to me and hissed,

“FUCK OFF!” I left her to it.

1985 October (Early),

Debbie informed me that Elspeth had died, the cleaner had found her at Vergers. She had fallen down the stairs, (probably drunk) and passed away.

There was much debate on whether Elspeth was to be cremated or buried. Debbie wanted her cremated and argued, (over the telephone) with her siblings, she discussed the topic around the kitchen table, asking me whether I wanted to be buried or cremated, I knew the answer she wanted was, ‘Cremated’, but I said, ‘Buried’. She was displeased and asked me why, I said I did not want to end as a bit of pollution, (smoke), I wanted to be buried so my nitrates can go back into the soil,

“Mmmm, Well…” Debbie said in a, ‘Not if I’ve got anything to do with it’, way.


1985 October (Early),

Elspeth’s Funeral.

I arrived in Kirdford with Debbie, we had driven from London. Aunt Anne flew in from South Africa and gone to Norwich to meet Dominic, and they were travelling from there. Richard was arriving late from work. Most of my family gathered at Vergers before the service where Patrick wanted to have a {talk?}, I was told I was too young for the meeting and I felt left out and aggrieved, especially as all but one of my cousins were younger than me.

Debbie was agitated and wanted to see the Vicar concerning the log book/register so we drove past Vergers, (One hundred meters) and turned into the track that went past the church gate and into a parking area which serviced a few houses, one of which was where the Vicar lived. I was told explicitly to stay in the car while she went into the house. When she emerged she was very angry, she had not got her way. I got out of the car, (Dark Blue Renault 11) and we walked the short distance to the church. The family were gathered along the path and outside the entrance porch, the door was locked, they were waiting for the vicar. They stood; Freddie, (my grandfather) and his wife Lorna, Aunt Anne, Uncles’ Christie and Jeremy and their wives Maria and Fiona, Richard, Debbie, Dominic, my cousins; Melisa ( ), James (16), Tara ( ), Luke ( ), fern ( ) and my sister Isabelle (4). I walked up to James to say hello, he wore a light blue suit and had black ‘pie crust’ shoes on, I laughed at his unfashionable shoes his mother Maria stepped in and explained his attire, mistakenly thinking I was laughing at the colour miss-match. I heard my uncles talking about my Mima’s grave being a “war grave”. On the other side of the path great uncle Patrick was flanked by his wife Paulie on his left and his son Hugo on his right, behind them were two large women of about fifty years whom I did not recognise.

“Who are they?” Jeremy said contemptuously, looking over at the women, “Are they paedophiles too? I’m just sick of it!”

“They’re probably saying exactly the same thing about us.” Richard said calmly. My eyes caught Hugo’s, we both nodded in acknowledgement, I exchanged glances with Paulie and levelled my gaze to look at Patrick in his wheelchair but he turned his head covering his face with his hand and spoke to Paulie intently almost desperately. The sun was in his eyes and as Paulie started to turn Patrick’s wheelchair Hugo stepped in and manoeuvred him to face Paulie. Patrick would not look over, he continued his intimate conversation with his wife. Maria called across, her Irish brogue cut through the air silencing everyone,

“You can’t look them in the eye, can you? CAN YOU PATRICK? You can’t even look them in the eyes, Shame on you Patrick, SHAME ON YOU!” There were exclamations and guffaws from the funeral goers,

“She’s been on the white {wine} already.” Somebody muttered, a couple of people made motions of knocking back the drink and others shook their heads and tutted. Maria burst the air again, shouting,

“I HAVEN’T TOUCHED A DROP! IT’S ELEVEN O’CLOCK IN THE MORNING AND I’M SOBER! I HAVEN’T TOUCHED A DAMNED DROP!!” Debbie ushered Dominic and myself away and told us to go and have a look around the other side of the church and churchyard which we did and stood for a while opposite the C 12th bricked up doorway remarking on it’s Tolkienesque qualities, in particular the resemblance to the door to the ‘Mines of Moria’, it just lacked the elvish runes. Then we wandered back round to the front and re-joined the main group, they were talking amongst themselves,

“You don’t think he’s going to turn up do you?” Debbie was saying,

“Who?” Someone asked,

“Leon Brittan.” said somebody else, my ears pricked up as this was a forbidden name which I could not utter without the fear of a beating. Debbie turned and gasped at the sight of me, she glared angrily, flicking and pointing at me to go away and out of earshot, I backed of a few paces and stood still, confused. Jeremy joked that if he did turn up Elspeth or the ghost of Elspeth would be the chauffeur. Debbie looked daggers at me and made a move to indicate she was about to hit me,

“Turn around! Go round the other side of the church!” she demanded.

“Not too far!” Somebody interjected, “What if they’re out there?” Debbie fretted and started to give me instructions on exactly where to go, somebody else said,

“They’ve got us surrounded? You’re paranoid! You and you’re bloody cover up! He’s not coming!”

“He is coming!” came another voice. A dark blue/black Daimler pulled up right outside the lych gate amid gasps from the funeral goers, my mother gasping the deepest.

“IT’S HIM!” came several voices at once as Leon Brittan got out of the car.

“Have you got your knuckle duster Nicholas?” Jeremy asked me half jokingly,

“It’s not my knuckle duster.” I replied and turned my head to Dominic who scowled back at me.

“Oh, it’s Dominic’s knuckle duster is it? What about a knife, did you bring your knife?” Jeremy asked, I did not answer, “One of your knives, from your knife collection that you’ve got?” He got angrier, “See that nasty man,” he nodded towards Leon Brittan, “Get your knife and st…”

“Violence won’t solve anything, we’re the men here!” Richard interjected and stepped forward onto the path. Leon Brittan was walking up the path accompanied by his wife Diana, they were both beaming with smiles, I looked at Diana, then my eyes met Leon Brittan’s, his face curled in malice for a moment, then turning his head he made a quip to Diana who burst into laughter throwing her head up into the air.

“It’s the Home Secretary!” Bawled one of the large women. Richard corrected her at a similar volume,

“Former Home Secretary!” and commented, “And he’s got a woman with him, a blonde!”

“Bottle blonde!” Aunt Fiona called out in the same corrective manner and volume as Richard who called out,

“It’s a cover up! It’s all part of the cover up!”

As the Brittan’s approached, Jeremy continued to moot a plan of action,

“This is a war! What would men do? Yes, what did the Greeks do? No, er, what did the, er…yes, at war the Greeks would form a phalanx!” Leon spotted Dominic standing amongst the family group,

“Dominic!” he called, elongating the name and making a bee-line for him. Dominic froze and stared back dumbfounded. At this point my family switched into action, the men and Debbie formed a phalanx along the side of the path, they tried linking arms but went for elbow to elbow. From the church they stood; Freddie, Christie, Debbie, Jeremy and Richard. Behind this protective line were the women; Anne, Maria, Fiona, Lorna and Melisa. Maria and Fiona immediately closed in on Dominic and started to paw at him, calling his name, asking him distracting questions, Anne quickly followed suit, Melisa also stepped towards him, feeling his jacket lapel and issuing compliments, Lorna was asked/pulled to join in and did so, saying she did not know what was going on but she could tell it was important and would go along with it, Melisa, shrugged her shoulders, she was also unaware of the reasoning but went along with it. They surrounded him in a full circle and started caterwauling, talking in tongues, drowning out Leon’s voice. Jeremy turned to me and said,

“Go over there and look after the children,” he was pointing to the south east corner of the graveyard, “You can do that can’t you? Look after your sister?” Christie turned his head and said,

“James, go and look after your cousins, if anyone comes hit them.” I started walking with my cousins and sister excited I had (sort of) been given permission to hit someone but I was walking away from the action, I looked over my shoulder and Leon had reached the phalanx and stood opposite Debbie,

“Debbie!” He exclaimed, red faced and smiling, “You must be so upset!” He burst out laughing, doubling up causing his face to redden further. Debbie stood her ground and grimaced. I kept glancing back as I walked away, Leon made a move to try to pass between or around Freddie and Christie but Christie stepped forward to confront him, blocking his advance and staring menacingly at him. As I was passing out of earshot I could just hear Freddie say,

“You’re not having him.”

Meanwhile the chauffeur had turned the Daimler around in the parking area and was passing the church gate back towards the main road.

“The chauffeur!” Someone exclaimed, “Don’t go too far!” They shouted to us. James, Luke and myself stopped under a low branch of an oak tree and stood vigilantly as Tara, Fern and Isabelle ran and skipped around the brick tombs, Tara was able to jump up and sit on one.

“THE CHAUFFEUR!” Shrieked an aunt, the chauffeur had turned the car left and was working up the gears coming our way, “WATCH OUT FOR THE CHAUFFEUR!” she shouted, panic and fear in her voice, “WATCH THE CHILDREN!!” Several other warnings were issued and I was ready for a fight.

“Take a good look at him!” An uncle bellowed as the car approached. James and I stared intently at the vehicle trying to get a look at the chauffeur but the sun was reflecting off the windscreen, I wondered what I would do if he got out and jumped the wall, I was scared. But the car accelerated rapidly and as it passed us, between the reflection of the sun off the passenger door window and the silhouette of it’s shadow I saw the chauffeur smiling broadly, a look of malice in his eyes, he turned his head from us to look ahead and kept accelerating. Over by the church porch the women still encircled Dominic and the phalanx had curled into a throng around the Brittan’s. The vicar arrived with great smiles, I walked back over with the children, all the funeral goers entered the church behind the vicar.

Anne was in tears, sprawled out on the front pew of the aisle, she contained herself as we found our places. I sat a couple of rows back from her and during the service I kept getting the feeling of being watched and looking round to see Leon and Diana Brittan who were sitting in the nave grinning and giggling. Before the vicar had finished the service Debbie was half off her seat hovering and whispering, and when he did finish my mother was up and coordinating the next plan of action; Dominic and I were to stay in the church and after the funeral goers had exited the church we were to leave for London immediately. The excuse Debbie concocted hardly made any sense, something about Richard needing the car to get back to work. We waited with my mother in the narthex as the funeral goers filed out with the coffin and were forced to read the literature, I was given the booklet with the most pictures and ordered to look at it and nothing else. The church emptied and my brother and I had to wait with my mother for another five or ten minutes.

“Okay,” Debbie said, “We are going to walk directly to the car looking straight ahead. Just do as I say!” We left the church. Debbie was in front walking quickly along the path towards the gate, my brother was behind her and I was at the back lengthening my stride so I could follow my brothers footsteps in order to keep up. Debbie turned her head to the right and she called out, turning her shoulders and looking right back at us,

“DON’T LOOK!” It was too late, Dominic was looking to his right and I instinctively looked too. The funeral goers had congregated around Elspeth’s grave twenty meters away, James and I exchanged sheepish smiles, Leon and Diana Brittan were smiling as well. Dominic and I both looked straight ahead again and we left the church yard through the gate and got in the car and left Kirdford.

A letter exists in which Patrick wrote of the funeral, and sent it to his sister Sheila who was not at the funeral. All I know about it is what Dominic wrote in this email:

[….I have seen an extract from a letter of Great Uncle Patrick’s,

detailing those present. Here’s the extract:

“Vergers where the children – Christie, Maria & James; Anne; J & Fi &

Tara; & Debbie – were gathered”

Patrick mentioned later on that Richard was there, he came late from work.

Hugo was there too. No mention of me or you. You could check with James or

Tara I guess. Christie has the letter; he would have scanned it to me but the

scanner wasn’t working. No-one in the family remembers any kind of

relationship between either Mima or Grandpa and Brittan. Christie said that

he wasn’t aware they’d ever met….]

My family say Dominic and I were not there or that they, ‘Don’t remember’ us being there.

In 2015 I visited the church and went directly over to Elspeth’s grave. I was there.


1985 November/December,

There was another heated debate over Elspeth’s grave, Debbie wanted an unmarked grave, no headstone, best forgotten, the money saved on the cost of the stone could be utilised for posterity.

1986 January,

Uncle Jeremy arrived unannounced, he entered the house and said,

“Come and look what I got outside!” He was in a jolly mood. Debbie and I followed him out onto the street and he pointed to a new car, (Grey Audi Turbo Quattro CS 5000) that was parked along the curb.

“Oh! Is that your new car?” Debbie said trying to sound enthusiastic.

“Yes, smart isn’t it? But that’s not what I want to show you.” He moved round to the back of the car and opened the boot, “Here! What do you think?” Debbie was wary, we both went to the back of the car, Jeremy was leaning in, he swept aside a blanket and revealed a blank headstone, “Ma’s headstone.” He smiled, Debbie remained silent for a moment, Jeremy continued talking about the stone and what should be written on it.

“I thought we’d agreed not to…” Debbie interjected and looked at me, “Get back.” she ordered, I backed off.

“…Not to what?” Jeremy asked her, his mood became sour.

“Put it back,” Debbie said, “Put the blanket back on, I don’t want…” she glanced at me and drew her breath to issue me a harsher command but Jeremy cut in,

“You don’t want Nicholas to see? Is that it? You want me to put the blanket back on? Is that what you want? You want me to cover it up?!” He was now upset and lent back into the boot of the car and reasoned to himself aloud, “You don’t want Nicholas to see…you want me to cover it up…okay…I’ll cover it up.” He tugged at the blanket and clenched his teeth, trying not to cry, “BLOODY COVER UP!” He blurted and he seemed to be having some difficulty spreading the blanket, “I’M SICK OF THIS FUCKING COVER UP!!” He cried and became quite angry, sarcastically asking Debbie for suggestions on a fitting epitaph, then running his hands over the bare stone, he traced an epitaph with his fingers, speaking while he did so; Elspeth’s name, date of birth and date of death, “And what do we put here?” He sobbed, “Pervert? Paedophile? MONSTER? YES, PAEDOPHILE MONSTER! And there is room for you too…here…” Jeremy read out Debbie’s similar fashion, ending with him calling her a “Paedophile monster”, he covered the gravestone back up and slammed the boot door shut. He calmed down instantly.

Later on, over the telephone Debbie had another series of heated conversations/debates involving her siblings and Elspeth’s grave, she wanted the headstone left blank.

Uncle Christie’s phone calls became more frequent and intense. Debbie would end up shouting and hanging up. She told me that Christie was going mad and she did not want to speak to him.

1986 (Early),

The telephone rang and I answered,

“Is your mother in? It’s Christie.” He had taken to saying who it was before I could ask, ‘Who’s calling?’ (Which had been at Debbie’s request for some time. She had also recently required me to inform her of Christie’s call before saying she was available.)

“Er..I’ll just…see if she is in.” I said, compromising my credibility with a higher tone than usual. I knew she was in and went into the sitting room to inform her that Christie was on the phone. She said,

“I’m not in.”

“But…” I started to protest, “What shall I say…?”

“Tell him I’m not in! He’s mad!” I did not like it but dared not get into an argument. I went back into the kitchen, picked up the phone and said,

“Sorry, she’s not in at the moment, can I take a message?” I was clearly lying. Christie was silent for a moment and then sighed and said,

“Okay….” And hung up.


1986 (Early),

Debbie and I were walking the dog on Wandsworth common. She talked about Christie and his state of mind, how she thought he was, “Going mad.” We kept walking and she continued,

“..Yes, he thinks that I killed Mima.” I stopped momentarily and looked her in the eyes,

“He must be mad!” I said, (and meant it.) Debbie, looking me back in the eyes, nodded her head and laughed, she kept walking and I also continued with the walk.


1986 (Early),

The doorbell rang, I opened the door, it was Christie, unexpected. He looked me in the eye. He did not ask if my mother was in and started to advance up the steps, he looked like he meant business, I stood to the side and opened the door fully, he walked into the hall, straight past me without any further acknowledgement and into the kitchen, I followed. Debbie was standing in the kitchen and was surprised to see him, Christie stood and faced her,

“I’ve spoken to the coroner,” He said. Debbie shifted, Christie manoeuvred with her, “Where were you on the first of October last year?” Debbie expressed confusion,

“What on earth are you talking about?” She turned away to carry on with her chore.

“Ma’s coroner.” Christie said and continued speaking about how he had finally, after month’s of being ignored, tracked down the coroner [name?] who wrote/signed Elspeth’s coroner’s report/death certificate, he was not happy with the report and wanted an inquest but the coroner had stated that she had died of hyperthermia and that there were no suspicious circumstances. Christie then spoke of, {identifying the deceased} and the suspicious circumstances he had noticed surrounding her death, “She had two substantial dents in the back of her skull which were caused by a rounded object,” He said, using his thumb and finger as a depth gauge, “Substantial wounds….”

“She was drunk!” Debbie interrupted, “…Fell down the stairs, bumped her head, got concussion and died of hyperthermia.” She said rapidly in a ‘matter of fact’ and ‘end of’ way. I nodded in agreement.

“….Substantial wounds,” Christie emphasized, “Wounds that are not consistent with falling down the stairs,” He turned to me and asked me if I thought falling down the stairs could result in such wounds.

“Yes,” I told him, “She must of hit her head on the way down.”

“Hit her head on what?” He asked.

“The stairs.” I said.

“What part of the stairs?”

“Err..” I thought about it, “On the bannisters.”

“The bannisters? What, the rail? The uprights?”

“The uprights.” I replied.

“She hit her head on the uprights? Would square wooden uprights cause deep rounded wounds?” Christie questioned. I thought about it again imagining Elspeth falling down the stairs and hitting her head on an angular wooden upright, it did not seem possible that it could result in a rounded dent in her skull, the upright would break at such an impact.

“What about the edge of the stairs? That’s rounded.” I said and again visualised Elspeth falling down the stairs, this time hitting the back of her head on the edge of a stair. I thought of the wound.

“It has to be rounded,” Christie said, “The wound would be linear from the edge of a stair and they are carpeted in any case.” Once again I imagined Elspeth falling down the stairs, this time with carpet, violently hitting the back of her head… “TWICE!” Christie exclaimed. I imagined her falling down the stairs and violently hitting the back of her head twice on the carpeted stair edges; she would of have to have been launched high in to the air and come down extremely hard and then bounce off and fall back down with a similar force, twice! Backwards! I spluttered at how ridiculous the thought was,

“That’s ludicrous!” I uttered. The scenario was comical, I failed to suppress a laugh, Christie turned back to Debbie,

“Ludicrous!” He repeated as incredulously as I, “It’s an absurd scenario!” He stared hard into Debbie’s eyes and said, “She was murdered.” Debbie gasped and groaned at the suggestion saying Christie was being silly and weird,

“You’re mad.” She said.

“I’m not mad!” He said, glancing at me and back to Debbie, “I’m not mad!” Christie then returned to talking about how he had had to corner the coroner and have a fierce altercation with him to get his queries heard, the coroner had said to him that he did not think there were any suspicious circumstances as there were no signs of a forced entry. Christie had questioned him on the head wounds not being consistent with falling down a flight of stairs and could not get a straight answer, Christie had to further press him until he had finally said,

“Well, if it was murder, she would of known her killer!” Christie went on and said there must of been plenty of culprits/motives to murder Elspeth considering who she mixed with, he deduced it was not, “You know who..” aka Leon Brittan, [alibi?] He spoke of her watch stopping at, half past ten and her daily routine of winding up her watch and whether it had stopped when she received her blows but there was no damage to the watch so it would of continued until it stopped, he had tested the watch and deduced that the watch had stopped at half past ten in the morning and, “She was not drunk!” [Autopsy?] “So she must of let the killer in which got me thinking about you.” He stared at Debbie and spoke of her curious behaviour during the funeral proceedings, Christie raised his voice, “Where were you on the morning of the first of October 1985?”

“I don’t know what are you’re talking about?” She said dismissively.

“You know what I’m talking about!” Christie said, raising his voice further, “Where were you when Ma died?”

“W..well I was here.” Debbie said.

“Can you prove it?” Christie yelled. Debbie looked at me, “Don’t look at Nicholas!” Christie barked, “He didn’t do it, he would have been at collage…” He looked at me, I thought about if collage had started and where I could of been; at a friends, down the pub, “..Or where ever.” Christie continued, “And he doesn’t drive.” He turned back to Debbie, “Can you prove you were here?” He asked her, she was flustered and replied,

“No I can’t, I…I was here, Christie, this is…..”

“Prove it!” Christie shouted. Debbie threw her arms out, moaning in despair and drew breath to speak but Christie yelled, “You killed Ma!” Debbie glanced over at me and motioned for me to leave,

“Nicholas, get out!” She ordered. I went to leave,

“YOU KILLED MA!” Christie bellowed at Debbie, I left the room, my mother tried to speak but Christie shouted her down, “MURDERER!” I heard him shouting as I walked off, Debbie kicked the doorstop away, (small iron hand press) and reached for the door, “YOU FUCKING MURDERER!!” The kitchen door closed and I went into the sitting room closing the door behind me and sat and listened to the tv and the muffled arguing. Christie screamed, “YOU MURDERED MA!!” and was soon gone.

1986 March 29,

Saturday morning, on the day before Easter day, Debbie was hurriedly tidying up the house, there was an excited air of the unexpected. Richard was helping with chores. Dominic was back from university. I had been forewarned by Debbie that Christie had ‘gone nuts’ and was obsessed with ‘crackpot idea’s’ and ‘absurd scenario’s’ and now he had got Jeremy involved in his crazy idea’s and they were both coming over at short notice for an Easter Eve event, a ‘scenario’, it was Holy Saturday, too late for Epiphany, but that was what they wanted; an epiphany. We were to prepare for a familial game but it was not a game. Debbie was nervous, it was ‘very’ short notice, she did not like it but had no choice as her brothers were already on their way.

Christie and Jeremy arrived mid/late morning and entered the house, they stood in the hallway and said that they were going act out a scenario, we were each going to play a role in this scenario, Debbie groaned, she didn’t like these kind of games and was told that this was no game. Dominic and I came down the stairs as we were required to participate, Christie said he had just finished, (or was just finishing) studying to be a magistrate and wanted to practice conducting a courtroom trial, he knew the court procedures so he would be the judge/magistrate. Debbie groaned even more, Christie continued, saying,

“Jeremy will be the prosecutor, Richard can stand for the defence…”

“I know were this is going.” Debbie said.

“And we need someone to play the defendant.” Christie said. He and Jeremy looked at Debbie,

“Yep,” Debbie said, grimacing through her clenched teeth, “Thought so.” She made a commotion over the selection of the defendant but was outspoken by my uncles, Christie continued to allocate court roles,

“We need a witness…Dominic could be the witness, Jeremy, Richard and myself will become the jury at the relevant time…” Debbie protested that the whole thing was unfair and complained how ridiculous it all was. I felt excluded and asked,

“What am I?” There was some confusion as to whether I should take part, and if so under what title, but there were more important matters to attend to,

“Nicholas can be another witness for now, hopefully he won’t be needed…” The three men surrounded her at the open door of the sitting room, “….and we can take on the role of any other court official at any time…….such as ushers!” They shunted her through the doorway, “We need a crime for a trial…let’s make it a murder trial! You can be the defendant and you are accused of murder!” Debbie cried out in indignation. Dominic and I had to remain separated until summoned, we were to go to our bedrooms and close the doors, no colluding. The sitting room door closed, “…And enforcers!” An uncle yelled. Dominic and I ascended the stairs, I could hear the sounds of Debbie struggling from the sitting room, I entered my bedroom and shut the door.

The morning went as I listened to music in my room. Richard brought me a sandwich for lunch, they could not think of a proper title for me his current role, he said he felt more like a prison guard than a court usher. A bit later I heard Dominic’s name being called and I went to see if they were calling me too, they were not, I was rebuked, (Your name’s not Dominic!) and told to stay in my room. I continued to listen to loud music for a while and then Richard came and summoned me, we went downstairs and into the sitting room. Debbie was seated in an armchair, Christie was standing in the bay of the window, (open curtains) Dominic sat, sultry, on a piano stool in the dining area. Jeremy was highly animated, he was walking across the floor backwards, shouting and holding his arms as if he were dragging a body,

“….or did you drag her backwards like this?!” His emotions were raw, “Did you see her face?!” He looked at Debbie, “Look her in the eye? Or was her skirt all up over her head?” He threw out his arm, “Did you see her knickers…were her knickers in your FACE!?” He had become beside himself but managed to stem his tearful rage when Christie asked for the court to continue with the summoning. They had not wanted me to take part in the proceedings but because Dominic had been a poor witness, he had been more like a character witness for the defendant and he was accused of contempt of court and perjury which was another matter. This was a murder trial, they had the motive, the accused had no alibi, they knew where the victim was murdered because the body was found in the house, but the room where the fatal blows were received was still a mystery. Jeremy thought it was in the kitchen but somewhere in the house was close enough. What they did not have was what the victim was murdered with. They wanted to know what the murder weapon was before they could give their verdicts and since they did not plan to go on into the night questioning the witness and the accused they had summoned me. There was not an official title for me, they did not want to call me as a witness or a victim, I could be ‘The Public’, but this trial was being held in camera. Jeremy, acting as the prosecutor had argued that I was not too young to be questioned as a witness or a victim but was overruled,

“Sangoma.” Christie said.

“What’s that?” Jeremy asked.

“An African witch!” Christie answered, “A Shaman!” I mouthed the word, it was whispered around the room,

“Shaman?” Jeremy said questionably. He asked, half jokingly whether we should conduct a séance and protests erupted around me, Debbie attempted to stand up, expressing how ridiculous the whole scenario was, Christie jumped over and pushed her back into her chair and stood in front her, braced as if expecting resistance, she called for a stop to the ‘silly games’. Richard also closed in, ready to assist as an enforcer, telling her that she did not want her children to witness a repeat performance of her last little escapade. Order was retained, Jeremy stood in the middle of the room and preceded to speak in his role as prosecutor,

“Yes, a game! Okay, that’s what we’ll do…we’ll play a game!” He looked around the room, “Hmm, a game….” He mused, “Nicholas! You’re the shaman and we are playing a game, okay?”

“Okay.” I said. Debbie protested she should be able to stand during the proceedings, and was rebuked for disrupting the court, Jeremy was allowed to stand and he continued,

“What sort games do you like Nicholas? What games do you play?” He asked quickly.

“I used to play D&D.” I said.

“Ah yes, Dungeons and Dragons!” Jeremy continued, “And in this game of D&D you slay the dragons? Is that it?”

“Not just dragons,” I answered, “Monsters too, there’s….”

“Monsters!” Jeremy cut in, “Slaying monsters! Yes, that’s what we need! Let’s play Dungeons and Dragons, how do we play Nicholas? Do we need a board?”

“No, it’s played with dice.” I said.

“Dice! Right, you need a flat surface to play dice,” He looked around and moved a few paces to the grand piano in the dining area and pointed to the painted black surface, “What about here? Can we play here on the piano?”

“Yes.” I answered.

“Have you got dice? How many dice do you need?”

“ Yes, there’s lots of dice,” I said, “There’s a twenty sided dice, a twelve sided dice, an eight sided dice, six…”

“Okay we got dice,” Jeremy interrupted, “What else do we need?” I explained that it helped to use little figures and that there were several rule books and I offered to fetch them but Jeremy did not like the sound of several rule books or little figures and said it was not necessary, we would play our own way, forget the dice, we would make are own rules, “So you slay these monsters do you Nicholas?” He questioned, keeping up the pressure, “How do you slay these monsters?”

“By rolling the dice…” I started to explain but Jeremy cut me short again,

“No, what do you USE to slay the monsters? Surely you have to use a weapon? Come on Nicholas!”

“Yes, there’s lot’s of weapons,” I said, “But you can kill monsters with spells too.”

“We want a weapon Nicholas, think!” Jeremy implored, he was getting irritated, “What sort of weapons do you use to slay the monsters? A sword? Lance?”

“Er…yeah,” I said and continued to name some of the weapons that were used in the game, “Long sword, short sword, broad sword, two handed sword…er…halberd, knife, axe, er….spear…bill hook….er..”

“Think of a blunt weapon, it must be blunt!” Jeremy said, “No sharp edges…” He asked Dominic to think too,

“Mace.” Dominic said.

“No.” Came several voices. I thought about a mace and what was similar to a mace,

“Club.” I said.

“NO!” Cried the voices, Christie said loudly, “You’ve just copied your brother!” Dominic rose and expressed his annoyance at me always copying him but he was told to sit back down.

“This isn’t going to work..” Jeremy said frustratedly, pacing around the room until he stopped suddenly, “I know!” He exclaimed, looking up, “CLUEDO!” He broke into a revelatory smile,

“CLUEDO!” Came the call from Christie and Richard, “Cluedo!” Richard went immediately over to the bay window,

“Do you still have a set?” Christie inquired,

“Yes, it should be in here.” Richard had the games chest lid open and was rummaging around for the boxed set of Cluedo,

“Okay, How are we going to do this?” Jeremy continued,

“Think of a domestic item,” Christie said, “Rounded, no edges.”

“Shovel.” I said.

“NO!” They laughed at my stupidity, I tried to explain that a shovel had a blunt side but was further heckled, Richard asked me if we still had the set of Cluedo and if so where would it be, pointing, I said,

“It’s in the games chest.” Richard said it was not in the games chest and walked out of the room to search elsewhere,

“A shovel!” He laughed sardonically.

“A DOMESTIC item! Something you find around the house.” Christie explained and motioned for Jeremy to continue,

“Okay, Nicholas.” Jeremy said, “We are going to play a game of Cluedo…I have forgotten how to play, how do you play it Nicholas? Explain the game to me.”

“You have to guess who done it.” I said.

“Yes! That’s right!” Jeremy continued, “Who done it…well we know who done it, we just want to know what it was done with.”

“Yes,” I said, “Who done it, what with and where.”

“We know where!” Jeremy said, showing his annoyance. “Where?” He repeated more slowly, “Where…can we play this game Cluedo Nicholas?”

“Anywhere.” I shrugged.

“Anywhere? What, can we play…?” Jeremy looked around, “…..on the piano again?” He said and moved towards the piano, to where he had stood before,

“Yes,” I said, “We could put the board on top of the piano.”

“It’s a board game!…Okay, Let’s put the board here and you can stand there,” Jeremy directed me to stand in the convex of the piano, opposite him, “It’s an imaginary board until we can find it okay?” He pointed to the imaginary board spinning a circle with his finger. “Can you describe the board Nicholas? What sort of board is it? Does it have squares on it, like a chess board or with pictures like snakes and ladders?” I nodded in affirmation, Jeremy continued, rapidly firing his questions, “Okay, squares…what’s in the middle of the board?” He pointed to the centre of the imaginary board. I started my reply,

“You put the black envelope in the middle, with the three cards inside…”

“Okay,” Jeremy interrupted, “So you put the black envelope in the middle of the board, what’s the envelope on Nicholas?”

“It goes on the middle of the…”

“ NO! What’s in the middle of board!?” He said angrily. “What is printed on the board? Is there a picture?” He placed his finger on the middle of the imaginary board, I realised what he was asking,

“Yes, stairs.” I replied.

“Stairs!” Jeremy said with relief. He embarked on a conceited narrative, quizzing me pedantically on the composition and dimensions of the stairs, where they led to and why we couldn’t go upstairs, what kind of house it was, in what style, “Where does the black envelope go on the stairs? At the top? No? In the mid…” I said it was not important where the envelope went exactly, I tried to describe the layout of the rest of the board but Jeremy talked over me and asked about places that were not on the board. I mentioned the secret stairs which caught his attention,

“Ah! A secret staircase! A secret door!” Jeremy paced back and forth, “Yes….a secret door!” I told him there was not a secret door and he became confrontational in his manner and said if there was a secret staircase there would have to be a secret door otherwise the staircase would not be secret, in fact there would have to be two secret doors for the staircase to be secret. He stepped up to the piano and pointed to the shiny black surface, “Can we put the black envelope in the secret door?”

“No.” I said.

“Okay. What’s in this black envelope?”

“It’s who done it, where….” I started explaining,

“Who done what?” He interrupted.

“Who done the murder.”

“Murder! Okay, who’s murder?” He queried. I shrugged and replied,

“Dunno, it doesn’t matter..”

“Yes it does matter!” Jeremy clearly irritated, “The victim must have a name!” I tried to think of the name of the victim. Jeremy narrowed it down, “Is it a woman?” I nodded. “An old woman?”

“Yes,” I said, “She was the Lady of the house and was found murdered at the bottom of the stairs..”

“The Lady of the house? An old Lady, how do you know she was old?” I shrugged and said I was not sure if she was old. Jeremy asked, “What can we call this Old Lady of the house who is found murdered at the bottom of the stairs? Lady X?” I realised that I had misinformed him on the rules and corrected myself,

“..But, actually you have to guess which room she was murdered in.”

“This is sounding all too familiar,” Jeremy commented, “What about Lady XXX? Can we call her Madam X? ” He said the names sounded too salacious. Richard was passing by the doorway, still searching for the Cluedo, he had heard us talking and defined ‘salacious’ as I was ignorant of it’s meaning, he agreed that the suggested names of the victim made her sound too ‘raunchy’. He went on to apologise for interrupting the court proceedings and said he had searched the house top to bottom and not found ‘Cluedo’, he asked me again if I knew where it was. I said I thought it was in the games chest or in an upstairs cupboard but Richard said he had checked all the cupboards. Jeremy carried on,

“What about the suspects? What names shall we give them? Mrs P?..Mrs Pitt!”

“Not in my name,” Richard said, “What about The Right Honourable Deborah Elspeth Leathers?”

“Not in my name!” Jeremy said with distaste. “What about Debbie Chadbon?” He sneered. Dominic and I remained silent. I went over to the games chest to have a look for the Cluedo.

“Yes. Ms Chadbon.” Jeremy proposed.

I started to empty the entire chest to double check. Richard said he was now even more determined to find the board game.

“She was not a Chadbon at the time of the crime,” Said Christie, “She was married to Richard, she was Mrs Pitt.”

“Not in my name!” Richard said again, louder, as he walked off down the hall to search the house again. Jeremy did not like me searching through the games chest and wanted to continue questioning me but Christie told him to give me a break. I replaced the games in the chest, stacking them neatly then returned to stand by the piano. Jeremy continued,

“So, we know the old lady of the house was murdered and found at the bottom of the stairs, but we don’t know which room she was murdered in, but we know she was murdered in the house?”

He jabbed at the surface of the piano top which lay in between us and put his finger on the piano top and made hurried little circular movements, he was desperate for a conclusive answer, I looked at his imaginary board, the dark painted gloss surface absorbed the daylight coming in from the bay window and the glass sliding back doors, there was a considerable depth to the blackness, I could see the reflections of the garden outside. “What about the garden?” Jeremy asked loudly, “Can we put the black envelope in the garden?”, he was still playing the conceited prosecutor, “Don’t tell me there is no garden! It’s a period mansion house, it must have a garden!”

“Yeah, there’d be a garden but you can’t go in it.” I stated. Jeremy became irate,

“Why can’t it go in the garden Nicholas?” He asked.

“It’s not on the board,” I said, “It’s not in the rules.” Jeremy said it was his time on the floor as prosecutor, he was the one who was making the rules,

“There IS a garden and you ARE allowed in it!” He announced. I was tiring of, and confused by my uncle’s manner. Debbie complained, saying that it was not fair to question me in such a way and that Jeremy was distressing me with his demeanour, she was overruled and Jeremy continued, “Okay…where were we?…put it in the garden…put what in the garden?…the black envelope…what’s in this black envelope Nicholas?”

“The three cards that were picked at the beginning of the game; The murderer, the room she was murdered in and the murder weapon. You have to move around the board guessing all three and whoever gets it right wins the game.”

“This is sickening.” Jeremy said, breaking away from the imaginary Cluedo board, doubling up and holding his stomach, “SICKENING!” Debbie agreed and tried to get up but again she was blocked by Christie and was forced to stay seated. He then said Jeremy’s time to question me was up, Jeremy sat down, he was not happy. Christie then started questioning me on ‘behalf’ of the defence,

“The murder weapon.” He said, asking Dominic to join in, probing, “A blunt instrument that you would find around the house, something you would see every day…a rounded object that is familiar to you, you would recognise it..you could almost see it..hold it in your hand…” I was thinking hard about all the things it could be and I visualised the ‘Three Wise Monkeys’ brass paperweight that sat on the desk in the dining room at my (other) grandparent’s house in Chichester. It had a flat base, (on which was stuck a piece of green or blue baize), the monkeys were fairly rounded. I thought of it as a weapon, it was a bit small but could certainly do some damage,

“A paperweight!” I called out, happy to say something before Dominic.

“A paperweight!” Jeremy scoffed, Dominic scowled at me and complained again about how I copied him, Debbie complained about the ridiculous situation, Jeremy started to speak further but Christie spoke louder,

“Hold on!” He said, motioning for calm and turned to me, “What did you say Nicholas?”

“Paperweight.” I repeated. He squinted and gazed intently into my eyes. I was now thinking about another paperweight that was sitting on a different desk.

“Go on…” Christie encouraged, “What kind of paperweight?” I thought harder about the paperweight sitting on the desk, the desk was in a study I recognised, I kept my mind focusing on the paperweight…”What’s it made of?” The desk was made of wood and it was in the study at Hillsgreen…I was looking into Christie’s eyes but my vision was of the study, looking across the room at the desk… “Yes…” Christie said slowly, coaxing me further, he got closer and stared hard into my eyes…the paperweight was holding down many papers which were curled up and obscuring it, I moved towards it rapidly feeling somebody else’s presence in the vision, moving with me to the pile of papers, the mood was intense, we got closer and the papers/parchments reflected light from the paperweight, which was reflecting the daylight coming through the study window, the paperweight was somewhere in the middle of the pile, I could not identify the object as the scrolled blank parchment blinded and hid it. A darkness started to descend, time was running out, desperation was in the air, I had to get there, I looked into the middle of the white light and saw it,

“Round and smooth.” I said and heard tutting and mutters of displeasure from the others in the room.

“Yes,” Christie whispered excitedly, ignoring the others and closing in on me, “What’s it made of?” I narrowed my focus, concentrating solely on the smooth, round object that shone brightly, it was no longer on the desk being used as a paperweight, I could feel and hear the anticipation of Christie who was unable to bate his breath…creating a sense of great urgency, I was now back where I was when I first visualised the study, but turned left at 90° facing the opened study door…darkness was all around, the overwhelming presence at my side, daylight flooded through the door, (from the garden door via the hallway) and the darkness fought to envelope me…the shining object was on the floor…the presence was over the top of me, I zoomed in, I wanted to get to it first, it was at the base of the door holding it open….shining brightly…the presence was on top of me gasping in awe…I rushed in towards the doorstop, focusing on it’s transparency…

“It’s a doorstop!” Christie said slowly, quietly and in wonderment.

“Glass.” I said almost simultaneously, I heard Debbie wail/gasp and the sound of confused exclamations around me, we had got the murder weapon, I had seen it on the floor but I had been pipped at the post, Christie had identified it whilst I was still determining it’s composition, “Yes, a glass doorstop!” I was heckled by Debbie and Dominic and I tried to claim some credit, “The one in the study at Hillsgreen! It was used as a doorstop as well!” I continued, eager to show it was me who discovered it, describing the colour of the hue, (green/blue) and the internal air bubbles.

“Doorstop,” Jeremy said, “Yes, what happened to that?” He looked at Christie, “Did it get sold?”

“I don’t know.” Christie said shrugging and shaking his head. “I can’t remember it being sold.” My uncles were stunned. Richard was in the doorway again, holding a bin bag.

“It’s a doorstop!” Both uncles informed him at the same time.

“A doorstop.” Richard repeated then asked how they had guessed it. Christie and Jeremy held their arms out in bewilderment, Jeremy pointing at Christie and Christie pointing at me.“Astonishing!” The words ”revelation’, ‘epiphany’ and ‘oracle’ were branded around the room. “Who guessed it?” Richard inquired further.

“I was going to say paperweight [doorstop?]” Dominic said to Debbie, she brushed off his comment, “I was going to say paperweight.” he repeated louder.

“Why didn’t you?” Christie shot the question at him, Dominic turned to Debbie and sulkily started to repeat himself,

“I was…”

“Why didn’t you?” Christie shot the question at him again, staring intently.

It was not evident who had guessed it but Christie concluded it was a joint effort. He resumed the court proceedings, they were now to take the role of the jury,

“The verdict,” he said, “Guilty.” He looked at Jeremy.

“Guilty.” Said Jeremy. They looked at Richard,

“And so it comes to me,” Richard said and went on to say that he had fought hard for the defence, despite the overwhelming case against the accused. He wanted the evidence. He was not familiar with the murder weapon, he needed to see it. The circumstances that had enabled the two other jurors to make their guilty verdicts was debatable at the very least, he was sceptical about the shaman thing; witches, psychics, (he looked at me) and the like, he didn’t believe in fairies but wasn’t present at the time of the revelation so couldn’t possibly judge, and after all, he was searching for the Cluedo therefore taking a part in it. He looked down at a black bin liner he was holding in both hands, “Evidence.” He said he wanted to retrace his steps, to explain how he had come to be standing in the doorway holding a bin bag in front of him; He was just about to give up looking for ‘Cluedo’ and as he came downstairs after his third search of the house, arriving at the open door of the ‘courtroom’ he overheard Jeremy asking ‘what about the garden?’ and me saying that you were not allowed in the garden and Jeremy responding that there ‘was’ a garden and you ‘were’ allowed in it. This had got him thinking, the garden was the one place he hadn’t checked so he went out to the back garden and had a thorough search but it was not there. He thought about the front garden but it was bare so it could not be hidden there…unless…unless it was in the dustbin. The dustbin was the only place in the entire house, including the cellar, that he had not looked in, so he had gone out to the front garden and up to the metal dustbin. Richard paused then went on to describe his feelings when he took the lid off the dustbin and discovered the bin bag laying on top; all his hopes and aspirations were in that bag, his heart, his unconditional love. As he reached in and took the bag out of the dustbin he spoke of how surreal it felt, to stand there in the front garden on a perfectly normal London suburban street with people going about their everyday business and there he was, about to determine his future, his dreams, from a dustbin. He looked down at the shiny new bin bag laying flat in his hands, he looked dishevelled, weak, broken, “Guilty.” He said and looked up at Debbie. Debbie burst into tears and hung her head, sobbing profusely. Richard turned and walked away.

“Did he find the Cluedo?” I asked only to be rebutted for my idiocy.

“Your mother’s a killer Nicholas.” Jeremy said. He and Christie were mystified at my lack of comprehension.

The idea of continuing the ‘questioning’ to find out what Debbie had done with the murder weapon was mooted but dismissed.

Christie then voiced the issue of sentencing. It would mean informing the police and the whole incident being made public,

“Not in my name! Not my wife!” Richard said.

“Not my sister!” Jeremy added. Christie turned to Dominic and myself and said, “You can go back to your rooms now. Thank you.” We went back to our rooms.

The following day/s I realised that the Cluedo was in the dustbin and I retrieved it but was fiercely intercepted by Debbie and had to put it back, I complained that it was a waste of a good game.

Many years later, at a family gathering, I overheard Christie saying to Jeremy and Richard how Debbie had,

“..Inadvertently and single handedly ended The Cold War.”

“LITRALLY single handedly.” Jeremy restated.


Debbie wanted to get me something ‘to remember her by’ and asked me what she could get me, I said I would like a pocket watch. She got me one and in the presence of Richard and myself spoke of her strange encounter with the vendor who’s clock shop was on Camden Passage.

The vendor had scoffed at her budget of twenty pounds and said she was fortunate that he had one that cheap but it needed a face so he would get one specially made. When she went back to collect it the vendor had told her that the face was indeed special and was worth more than the watch itself but he would not charge her any more than the original asking price. Debbie took her cheque book out to pay and the vendor was aghast at the means of payment for such a small amount, he refused and asked for cash, Debbie was having none of it, adamant she began writing out the cheque. The vendor noticed her name on the cheque book, (Barclays bank insist on using full titles) and stopped his protestations, he knew who she was and who her mother was and knew of her mother’s death.

At this point in her narrative she paused, standing in the kitchen, bemused she queried,

“How could he have known who I am?” Richard perked up,

“I expect he knows who Dominic and Nicholas are too.”

“Yes, he did.” Debbie sounded totally confused. Richard continued,

“Did you tell him who the watch was for for?”

“Yes,” Debbie replied, “and…”

“..and he asked you if Nicholas had any children.” Richard stated.

“Yes,” Debbie’s jaw dropped, “h-how did you know?”

“Yes. That would have been Keith Harding, former secretary of the paedophile information exchange, he would know all the former members names and addresses, I bet he knew your mother personally AND how she died.” He turned in his chair to look her directly in the eye. “He’s probably got a list of all your names somewhere.”

A day or so later Debbie wanted the watch back, she said it was faulty and needed to take it back to the shop to get repaired, I said it worked fine but she insisted and got angry so I gave it to her. She returned it to me the next day, I asked her how she managed to get it to the shop, have it repaired and back again so quickly, she did not give an adequate answer. The back cover of the watch had been tampered with and came off easily. Then the watch went missing, she had taken it, again she returned it, this time the front clear plastic cover kept falling off, she took it to ‘get fixed’ again but when she returned it the front cover was glued on, it was a shoddy job, glue everywhere and it fell off. I complained at how much of a poor job the clock maker had done repairing it, Richard agreed and commented to Debbie that she had not checked behind the face at which point Debbie agreed at the poor job and said she would take it back yet again but Richard said she would not be able to get the face off because it was painted on and she would have to completely ruin it by using acetone. The watch stayed in my possession from then on, it would never work properly and never stay in one piece. Richard also commented on the text which is written on the face; ‘S SERVICES’ and ‘FORIEGN’,

“Secret services, foreign office.” He said.

“Oh, cool,” I said, “I’m a spy!”

“Could be.” He said.


1988 January 14,

Sheila Fairbairn Stewart died. At her funeral Debbie made sure that I sat next to her. Sheila’s brother, Patrick Findlater Stewart was giving a reading, I started to cry, I liked Sheila, she was a good woman. Patrick looked up to see who was crying and as we stared at each other I started to rise, letting out a nightmarish wail, Debbie put her hand on my thigh which turned my stomach, embarrassed and sickened I sat and endured. When we all started filing out into an anti-chamber,

there were some concerned glances and Christie glared contemptiously at Patrick and moved towards him, I was ushered by Debbie into the anti-chamber, soon followed by Jeremy who chortled,

“Well that confirms it then.”

“Confirms what?” Debbie asked. Jeremy hesitated and replied,

“Dolphin Square.”

Debbie burned/destroyed Sheila’s diaries.

Elspeth did not leave a will but Debbie passed on two thousand pounds to both Dominic and myself on condition we used it to go traveling,

“A holiday of a lifetime, a holiday to remember.” Or as Richard put it,

“A holiday to forget.”

“Dirty money.” Jeremy said mockingly.


1990 April/May

Dominic and I were looking for work in Wellington, he told me that he liked to ‘blag’ his way in to places, (having an air of confidence and importance that enabled him to enter buildings without being quizzed on his authority) He had work double booked, so arranged for me to do a days gardening. He gave me a peice of paper with the name, ‘Lowell Goddard’ written at a 45° angle in the top left hand corner, written in the same hand, (presumably Lowell’s) was an address to go to, [The Glen? House Number?] in the suburbs.

After a considerable walk from the backpackers hostel, I arrived, the house was almost the last house on the left at the top of the hill, where the road was barred, further up were trees and public gardens. [Top of the hill – botanical gardens?] There were some steps from the pavement that led up to a small front garden. Lowell Goddard, (Dame Lowell Patria Goddard QC) was waiting on the garden path, she was not pleased that I was a little late or that Dominic had sent me. She told me to prune a couple of trees and do the weeding, when I was done in the front I was to do the same around the back. She said not to worry about the dogs when I was working in the back garden as they were really friendly and she left for work saying she would be back at eight o’clock, (or later) that evening.

I started working and after a couple of minutes I opened the back gate to have a look, poking my head through I eyed up what was to be done, my gaze fell on two untethered Rottwiellers who stared back at me. I closed the gate and got back to work around the front, thinking that if I were to poke my head around the back every ten minutes or so, the dogs would get used to me. An estate car pulled up and a man jumped out, opened up the boot and said,

“Delivery.” I went on to the street, to the back of the car to help him but there was nothing in the car, “Pick up!” he added, walking up to me. He wore a grubby puffer jacket and an awfull stench of a vile fart enveloped me, he grinned proudly, eyes bulging. I had not been told about a delivery/pick up and there was nothing left out by the front door, he suggested it might be round the back, I agreed and told him to have a look and not to worry about the dogs as they were really friendly, he went round the back. There was silence for a minute and then there was an eruption of noise; barking, growling and yelling. The man managed to half open the gate, there was a look of complete terror on his face,

“HELP ME!” he screamed. The dogs were on him and they were dragging him back, he continued to scream, the dogs were in full attack mode. The man managed to scrabble out, the back of his jacket had been ripped in two, he closed the gate behind him and came charging down the path, “I thought you said they were friendly!” he screamed in my face, he looked like he wanted to hit me.

“That’s what the owners said.” I said, shrugging. The man tore off, shouting, back to his car, slammed the boot shut, jumped in, turned the car around whilst glaring furiously at me and sped off.

I got back to work. I did not feel comfortable about doing the back garden or poking my head round to let the dogs get used to me, by lunchtime I had done the front and decided not to do the back. I took umbrage at being asked to work in such a dangerous environment and since I had come to do a days work, I was going to do a days work and continued in the front picking out every single miniscule little weed and left at the end of the day.

I went back later that evening to get paid. Lowell let me in and we went upstairs into the dining room, it was open plan with the kitchen at the back of the house, (on my left) and the sitting room at the front, (on my right) In front of me was a pine table, seated opposite, (slightly to the right) was a balding middle aged white man who Lowell introduced to me as Chris, (Christopher Hodson QC). Lowell asked me if I would like a glass of wine, I said yes. She poured me a glass and sat at the table to my left, the glass was massive, the wine delicious, (sauvignon blanc) and perfectly chilled. I was not offered a seat. Lowell was still not happy and she launched into a monologue about how she had caught Dominic in a place he should not have been, [a masonic lodge] and how she did not accept his excuse for being there; he had said he was looking for work and had visited the job centre and had wandered, inadvertently into an unauthorized area. She mused why was it that he was in the job centre when he had no work permit? Lowell said she was a lawyer, (criminal prosecuter?) and knew when people were lying and said that Dominic was devious to send his little brother, he must not think a lot about me and that these occurances had a habit of coming back round again. She asked me why I had not done any work in the back garden and I said I was wary of the dogs, she continued saying the were really friendly and perhaps she should of told me their names, she was a big Beatles fan and had named the dogs after her favourite band members, with an air of rebelliousness she said that it was not John and Paul who were her favourites but George and Ringo. She asked me how much did she owe me and I replied,

“Eighty dollars.” Lowell became irate and asked me why I was asking for a full days pay when I had only done half the job, I said I had been worked whole day, picking every single weed out of the front garden.

“Yes, I saw that,” Lowell said angrily, “But why did you not do the back?” I blurted out how I had intended to and told her about the man who had arrived and what had happened to him when he went round the back. Lowell said she had not expected a delivery and had not ordered any ‘pick up’, she looked at Chris and asked him if he knew anything about a delivery, he shook his head and they deduced that the man was a thief and Chris said,

“At least they work then.” indicating the dogs, they laughed at the thought of him being mauled and Lowell said George would’ve been particularly pissed off with him for being a smelly thief, we all laughed. Then Lowell continued to berate me, she worked herself up into a bit of a froth making it clear she was the boss,

“…Chris and I are both Lawyers, I am (privy?) to the Queens Council and…” I was expecting her to say ‘I could have you deported’ but she ended her rant with, “..we are both Masons and we could bury you!” Chris rolled his eyes and threw his hands up to his shaking head and groaned, Lowell continued, “But I believe you and I like you, which is more than I can say about your brother.” She produced and handed me eighty dollars, I put my empty glass on the table and waited a couple of seconds for an offer offer of a refill, none was forthcoming, just silence, I saw myself out.


1994 Mid/Late May

I was in Barnes visiting my friend Ben who was living back with his parents, Leona and Monty Raphael. Monty asked me if I have ever tried pink champagne, I said I had not and he invited Ben and myself to a party his friend Greville, (Lord Greville Janner) was hosting. When he mentioned the name ‘Greville’, both Leona and Ben scoffed.

“Gre-ville!” Ben said sinisterly. Monty left the room to get ready to go out, Ben told me about Greville Janner and without any bitterness or malice, (but perhaps with a touch of sadness) he explained how Greville’s son Daniel was the son that Monty had always wanted, how ‘brilliant’ a law student he had been,

“Daniel this and Daniel that.” Ben mimicked the way Monty would lavish praise on Daniel. Daniel was Monty’s protégé. Leona spoke about Greville’s penchant for young boys and continued to do so when Monty returned,

“Oh! Don’t believe what you read in the papers!” Monty scoffed incredulously, laughing. Leona was adamant that he was a paedophile. Monty, Ben and I went to leave and as we walked off down the hall Leona yelled after us in her booming Yorkshire accent,


We got into Monty’s dark blue, (or black) Porche 911, Ben was repeating the name ‘Greville’ in his sinister, (Monty Burns from The Simpsons) voice, bringing his hands up to his chin and curling his fingers just like the cartoon villain did,

“Gre-ville! Heh-heh-heh. My name is Greville Janner and I like little boys! Heh-heh-heh!” I asked him if he really was into little boys and Ben answered still using his croaking evil voice, “I don’t know but with a name like Greville, GRE-VILLE! Heh-heh-heh!” Ben would not stop, we drove all the way to Hampstead with him croaking like this, “Hello little boy, my name’s GREVILLE! Heh,heh,heh!” Monty Yee Ha!-ed in a high pitch voice all the way too, yelling Hebrew expressions. They tried to drown each other’s voices out, getting louder and more intense as we drove. I could not see much from the back seat but I noticed that we took a left onto Heath Street from Fitzjohn’s Avenue and were soon there.

Greville stood by the fireplace in the reception room which was on the ground floor of a period property. He greeted us and Monty introduced me,

“Are you interested in politics?” Greville asked me and before I could answer he called me a reprobate, I took a step back. He then tried to do some kind of magic trick, he was flipping his hands around, shaking his sleeves, “Watch this.” He said. I was already wary of him and I knew what was coming; he was going to do a slight of hand trick and produce something from behind my ear making me look foolish as well as touching me on a sensitive part of my body, (my earlobe) I did not want him to do either so I kept a close eye on his left hand which was the hand he had already passed the object to, he wanted me to look at his right hand, I refused and kept my stare fixed on his left, I ruined his trick. “Reprobate!” He said again.

“He’s a bit old for all that!” Monty said. Greville and Monty continued their conversation, Monty complaining bitterly about how his Porches kept getting stolen,

“You should buy British!” Greville said, “Get a Jaguar, great cars, mine has never been stolen!” Monty said he would buy whatever car he wanted and he liked the 911, he would not let,

“..fucking thieves determine what car I buy!” Greville offered us a drink, he said he had opened a bottle of champagne the night before in celebration of.. [becoming DWP commitee chair?].., he went through a door and came back with a bottle and poured us all a glass, it was not pink and it had lost it’s fizz.

Monty’s attention fell on a framed photo on the mantle piece, it was a ‘grip and grin’ of Greville and John Smith QC, (former leader of the Labour party) who had recently died just a few, (or two) days beforehand, it took pride of place. He and Greville talked about what a shame it was that he had died and what a good leader, (prime minister) he would of made, then Monty asked Greville,

“So how are you feeling?”

“I feel fine, great.” Greville answered nonchalantly.

“No,” Monty said, “HOW are you FEELING?” He reiterated, emphasizing the words ‘how’ and ‘feeling’.

“How am I feeling?” Greville was confused for a second as he asked himself the question, “Oh,” the penny had dropped, he glanced around at Ben and I, “err..” turned back to Monty, dropped his voice and said, “I don’t know, how AM I feeling?” Monty stood smiling at him, a smile broke over Greville’s face.

“Ben, you two go outside while we discuss business.” Monty ordered. Ben and I went out into the back garden, there was a small balcony with steps down to a paved over garden with no foliage, just a picnic bench which we sat at and chatted. There was a view across London. I drained my glass fairly quickly and after a little while got quite irritated at not being offered a refill, I suggested that I would go inside and get are glassed topped up but Ben said that was not a good idea as Monty was talking business and would be angry if I went in. I wondered weather more guests would arrive as this was hardly a party. After some time Ben and I were summoned, we went in and Monty said we were going, we left promptly, I turned to say goodbye to Greville and thank him for the champagne,

“Reprobate!” He said harshly. I remained silent, turned back and exited.


One thought on “A timeline of my childhood experiences involving The Paedophile Information Exchange.

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