Skip to content | Skip to navigation

Church of England News Release on Kendall House Abuse Cover Up Accusations

22nd May 2009 | in Kendall House Child Abuse News




The Diocese of Rochester and other bodies have received enquiries from a journalist regarding the
administration of Kendall House, a residential home for young women placed in care by a number
of local authorities which closed in 1986.

On 26 March 2009, the Diocese of Rochester issued the following statement:
“We understand that Teresa Cooper has historically brought various allegations to the attention of
the police and social services. To date, none of these bodies have sought to investigate matters
with the Diocese of Rochester.

The Diocese of Rochester is unable to discuss individual circumstances for legal reasons. It would
be wrong for the Diocese to speculate on how Ms Cooper may choose to take her allegations further
or what may come of them. However, if the police, social services or appropriate legal body
initiates an investigation, the Diocese will cooperate fully with them.

When Ms Cooper was accommodated at Kendall House, it was run by a separate Charitable Trust
under the auspices of the Diocese of Rochester. It would be inappropriate for the Diocese to initiate
any internal enquiries since we are not qualified to do this. In any event, it would be essential for
any investigation to be conducted both professionally and impartially.” The statement ended here.

Page 2

The Diocese of Rochester still stands by this earlier statement. In addition, we would like to
add the following:

“The Diocese of Rochester recognises that Teresa Cooper feels her life has been blighted by events
in her childhood outside of her control, and has every sympathy for her. Members of the Church of
England clergy have offered Ms Cooper pastoral support and remain committed to this.
In 2007, the Crown Prosecution Service determined that there was insufficient evidence for them to
bring a successful prosecution and in April 2009, the British Government declined an invitation to
investigate this matter.

We understand that allegations have been made recently that the Diocese of Rochester and other
bodies are involved in some sort of so-called “cover up”. We strongly refute this and repeat our
earlier statement that if an appropriate legal body such as the police or social services deem it
appropriate in the public interest to investigate these complex matters, we will do everything we
can to assist them.

Some confusion has arisen regarding files which originated in Kendall House.
In a further genuine attempt to assist Teresa Cooper, Kent County Council prepared a report for her
in December 2008, which outlined procedures concerning the archiving and retrieval of files
originating in Kendall House. That report was prepared by members of staff from Kent County
Council only. Neither David Grimwood nor any other member of staff employed by Church in
Society had any input to the writing of the report. Kent County Council, however, have stated that
they sought assistance from Church in Society in their endeavours to shed light on past

Page 3

events and asked David Grimwood to confirm the accuracy of the report once it had been drafted.

This is entirely compatible with the statement from the Diocese of Rochester that no members of
Church in Society compiled this report. Any suggestion to the contrary is entirely disingenuous.
As Chief Executive of Church in Society at the time, David Grimwood was not in a position to
disclose information regarding previous Kendall House residents which fell outside of an individual
Subject Access Request under the Data Protection Act. He was careful to seek legal advice about
this at the time in order to comply with and not inadvertently breach the Data Protection Act. The
Diocese of Rochester believes that in so doing, David Grimwood acted correctly.

Three individual women made Subject Access Requests under the Data Protection Act and Mr
Adrian Spellar, employed by Church in Society at the time, has now confirmed that he furnished
them with the appropriate information. One of these applicants was Teresa Cooper, and she has
publicly thanked staff at Church in Society for their assistance. In April 2007 she said, “Thanks
also to Church in Society, especially Adrian and David for providing information, files, listening to
me when I needed someone to talk to and for their support.” The Diocese of Rochester is
confident that Mr Spellar acted entirely in accordance with his responsibilities at the time.

Although this unfortunately contradicts the Kent County Council report that no files were removed
from the archives, we believe that this is a reflection of human error and in no way represents a
deliberate attempt to mislead or misinform Ms Cooper.

We would like to reiterate that any concerns or allegations should be brought to the attention of the
police and social services who have the competence to investigate them. As we have said
repeatedly, we will cooperate fully with any such investigation.”


  • On 22nd May 2009 at 04:13 PM pandora said...

    im sure if someone just simply asked for a full investigation into what happened at kh the results or answers would astound people this is why the goverment and all the bodies wont ask for one which is a cover up surely there must be a way to get an investigation underway for teresa and all the girls

  • On 23rd May 2009 at 12:18 AM Admin said...∈_a_source=

    Is this man for real? The arch bishop of canterbury omg christian? is he having a laugh. What has the church done thats christian for KH?

  • On 23rd May 2009 at 12:37 AM Admin said...

    I need the Kendall House girls to contact .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

    Pandora the previous story came out yesterday (Friday) grin not sure if youve read it? Its including the radio which you can click on and listen too.

    If only it were that easy getting them to investigate. The church, the government, the police and social services including Wandsworth have all chosen not to deal with it. Its been an ongoing problem for years now and ive been pushing for years and all I can keep doing is keep trying. There is so much that needs to come out and I wont stop until I get justice.

    It would be good if the girls were to send an email to their own MP and urge them to take action on your behalves or email Tim Loughton MP

    There are now 18 girls total all with similar problems and whilst I appreciate some do not wish to take it any further and I respect their decision but for those who do, you need to contact me asap by phone. Any girls who need my phone number please email me x

    There is an article in next weeks Take a Break grin

  • On 23rd May 2009 at 12:49 AM Admin said...

    Can all Kendall House girls wishing to have a copy of their files please contact the local authority they were in care with and request their files and request your GP records from your GP. Please also request a copy of your KH files from the church however girls pre 1980 - the church say it doesnt have those personal files but request it anyway and ask for it in writing if they do not have your files. Girls post 1980 your files do exist at the church.

    I urge any girl who recieves her files not to read them on your own. You may find the content extremely upsetting so please, read them with a family member or friend you trust.

  • On 21st Oct 2009 at 04:15 PM Zoompad said...

    The Church of England have acted in a shameful way towards the victims of Pindown all over the country, plus Jersey.

    I agree about the files being upsetting to read. There were some pretty vile things in mine. They try to make the VICTIMS of child abuse out to be like predestinated evil offspring, as if we were born evil. That lets them off the hook, you see - or so they think. Jesus won’t be too happy with them over what they did, and I would not like to be in their shoes when they have to face Him and explain what they have done!

    Like the Bible predicts, there will be some folf saying, “Lord, Lord”, and He will say, “I never knew you”.

  • On 17th Mar 2012 at 05:33 AM Blue said...

    March 16, 2012

    I believe Queen Elizabeth 11 has a Facebook open for her subjects.

    Question: is it possible use that platform and make a written request she is Head of the Church of England and the Archbishop of Canterbury is under her jurisdiction and

    she always wants to know that her employees are not doing and definitely would not want her subjects to suffer;
    A) she would be shocked at the extra cost to her Government by this psychaitrist. (spelling error)

    Remember she is a WW11 Veteran, car mechanic (still repairs her cars); is a lorry driver and Ambulance driver.

    Dare you try, Dare you not try.

    Signed Mrs. Fraser

    God Bless

    Email me

Add a comment

Submit the word you see below:

Next entry: To Abuse or Not to Abuse - The Systematic Negative Conditioning of Children by Social Services

Previous entry: CofE Accused of Care Cover Up by Angus Stickler BBC The Today Programme