Boys who were physically and sexually abused at The William Henry Smith School in Brighouse, West Yorkshire, have received and are to receive compensation in an out of Court settlement.
Claims were made against staff working at the William Henry Smith School, a residential special school in Brighouse, in the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s. One of the child abuse solicitors acting for some of those victims said:
“This case has been going on for many years. The people I represented have been, or are to be, compensated in respect of their allegations of physical and sexual abuse in the 1960s and 1970s. The allegations involved a range of staff. If they are true, the abuse was endemic at that time. The amount of compensation is confidential and the sums differ, depending on the nature of the abuse. This was historic abuse and the school would no doubt say it does not relate to the school now.
If the allegations are found to be correct, this was a school at that time that was clearly badly managed and employed totally inappropriate people to look after vulnerable teenagers. It was a residential school for maladjusted teenage boys who were in need of additional care and education. In many cases, that was the last thing they got, and just exacerbated their problems.”
One former pupil, who attended the school between 1981 and 1984, said he was being paid £7,500 compensation and £6,000 for legal fees. The man, now aged 45, said he was beaten black and blue, had his face smashed into a sink and was sexually abused. He complained about his treatment to education authorities and his social worker in 2004 and started a campaign and support group.
Christine Sands, Deputy Managing Partner and Head of Personal Injury and the Child Abuse Claims Department at Jordans stated “Jordans Solicitors act for some of the Claimants and although compensation cannot take away the pain caused by the abuse, it will go some way towards offering rehabilitation and support to the victims”.