A man who was molested on multiple occasions by one of his teachers whilst attending a prestigious private school in Surrey has spoken of his ordeal for the first time after his abuser was sentenced to 10 years in prison.
Referred to here as AP, the man, now in his 60s, attended Chinthurst School in Tadworth between the ages of 4 and 13.
During this time he was taught by a number of different teachers, including convicted paedophile Robert Youngman who was jailed for 10 years in November 2021, after he admitted to 11 counts of indecent assault against children as young as 3.
While much of the publicity at the time of Youngman’s sentencing centred around abuse which took place when he was headteacher at HMS Indefatigable - a naval boarding school in Llanfairpwllgwyngyll, Anglesey - he was also found guilty of no less than eight incidents of indecent assault against AP which took place at Chinthurst in the late 1960s and early 1970s.
He has now instructed Hywel Thomas from Simpson Millar Solicitors’ specialist abuse law team to pursue legal action on his behalf in a bid to hold the Surrey prep school to account over failings to protect him.
He has also urged others who may have suffered at the hands of Youngman to reach out for help, amidst concerns that many still don’t know about his conviction.
Speaking of his ordeal, AP said: “What happened to me at Chinthurst has affected every aspect of my life. I will never forget the abuse I endured, and I remain very angry that the school did not do more to protect me.
“I had my hesitations about coming forward because of how much time had passed, but the police dealt with my complaint really professionally.
“It was a real relief to finally secure a conviction last year, and even though my abuser was in his 90s when the trial took place he was still given a custodial sentence.
“I now think it is really important that others who may have been affected by abuse, or who may have suffered at the hands of Youngman are made aware that he is now in prison and that justice has at last been done.”
AP added that while compensation isn’t going to change what happened, he hopes that by taking legal action against the school it will hold those who failed him to account.
He added: “It is also my hope that by bringing legal action against Chinthurst other abuse survivors will see my story and that it will give them the courage to get the help they need.”
AP’s lawyer Hywel Thomas, a specialist Abuse Solicitor at Simpson Millar, added: “My client spent much of his young life at Chinthurst, during which time he was subjected to horrific abuse at the hands of convicted paedophile Robert Youngman over a number of years.
What Hywel, AP's lawyer, had to say
"School is supposed to be a safe place for children, where they can grow both personally and academically. Parents place their trust in the teachers who are supposed to care for and nurture them."
“Youngman broke that trust on multiple occasions in the most despicable way. Both during his time at Chinthurst, and again while he was in a position of authority at HMS Indefatigable.
“While my client was very relieved to have been involved in the conviction which led to his 10-year jail sentence last year, he remains disappointed to see that the school he attended has not issued a formal apology for failing to protect him.
“We have now started the process of bringing a claim for compensation against Chinthurst on behalf of AP.”
This is the latest private school to come under scrutiny over historic sexual abuse allegations, with BBC presenter Nicky Campbell recently speaking publicly about his time at the Edinburgh Academy where he witnessed incidents of both sexual and physical abuse.
If you would like to talk to someone in complete confidence about your experience of abuse at Chinthurst School please do not hesitate to call Abuse Solicitor Hywel Thomas on 0345 357 9565, or [email protected].
Simpson Millar is a leading consumer law firm offering which has been helping abuse victims claim their legal rights for more than 20 years.
For further information, interviews or images please contact:
Ashlea McConnell, PR Consultant
Get in touch, today!
Fill in the form below to get in touch with one of our dedicated team members, or call our team today on: 0808 239 1287