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Settlement of claim for abuse at Shebbear College in Devon

Our client, who we have called George, brought a civil claim against the Methodist Independent Schools Trust (MIST) arising out of sexual abuse he had experienced at Shebbear College in Beaworthy, Devon, whilst a pupil there in the late 1970s.

Posted on 24 November 2021

This civil claim followed a criminal prosecution of the perpetrator, Anthony Bennett, who is currently serving a sentence of 19 years’ imprisonment for serious sexual offences against a number of former pupils of the school.

The claim settled for a sum of £65,000 compensation, reflecting both the persistent sexual abuse to which George was subjected and the impact that it had on his mental health, life and relationships subsequently. 
 
Alison Millar, specialist abuse solicitor, said: 
 
“George described how the abuse by Bennett had changed him from being an easy-going, happy young child to a young person who was troubled and emotionally detached from others.  Sadly, this is in my experience typical of the destructive impact of this form of abuse, which it is now well known can last for many, many years after the acts of abuse have stopped.
 
“I am very pleased that we have concluded this case for George with this acknowledgement by MIST of the serious wrongdoing which he should never have experienced.”
 
George commented:

“I have lived with this for many years. Following the conviction and the subsequent compensation settlement, I can draw as much of a line as is possible under the horrific events that happened whist I was at school.”

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Alison Millar
Abuse claims

Alison Millar

Alison Millar works in the human rights department at Leigh Day, where she is the Head of Abuse claims

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