Thursday 20 March 2014

Jersey's Dean----Steel and Gladwin Reports On The Rocks

It was last March that the Bishop of Winchester Tim Dakin suspended Jersey’s Dean, Bob Key. It was also last March that I published my first Blog on the matter. One year on I thought I would look back at what has or has not happened and what has been achieved.

The Dean was suspended following a review conducted by Ms Jan Korris into his handling of a complaint made in 2008 against a Church Warden by a young lady known as HG.

One question that has never been answered is what prompted Winchester to engage Jan Korris to conduct a review and what did it hope to achieve particularly as neither HG nor the Church Warden were ever interviewed. HG was never made aware of the review or received a copy of the report nor asked to comment on it.

The Korris Report contained a number of the recommendations and also identified a number of failings by the Dean and the Parish Vicar in the way they dealt with the complaint. The report also recommended that the way HG in 2010 was arrested, detained in La Moye Prison for two weeks, then removed/deported from Jersey in her pyjamas and left destitute at a UK airport on cold October night should be investigated.

The Korris Report is dated March 2013 yet within a matter of days of it's publication the Dean was suspended, unreserved apologies given to HG  and it was announced that a Visitation would be conducted by John Gladwin the former Bishop of Chelmsford. Quite dynamic action but thereafter it has been down hill all the way as those at the helm have struck one rock after another and is now stranded.

In looking back what has been achieved? At some stage it was unwisely decided that John Gladwin would only address the Constitutional issues and Dame Heather Steel would address the Dean’s handling of HG’s complaint but no immediate Terms of Reference were published. However when published they were narrow and unclear. There was also the issue of Dame Heather's perceived conflict which has never been addressed.

It was soon evident that Winchester was totally unaware of “the Jersey Way” and that questioning any establishment figure would be seen as an attack on Jersey. It only took a letter from Senator Bailhache to the Archbishop of Canterbury to lift the Dean’s suspension even before he had been interviewed by the Investigators so why he was suspended in the first place.

However it should be noted that on being reinstated the Dean apologised for mistakes made in 2008 and publicly apologised to HG, but not personally.

Last June with HG I met John Gladwin and Christine Daly in London and some very important promises were made. Meetings would be recorded and reports to be agreed. Further interviews would be arranged so that HG’s side of story could be recorded and acted upon. Tangible assistance would be given to help her and to avoid unnecessary stress all communications would come via me. Also reference was made of Dame Heather’s perceived conflict. It is now evident that these promises were not forwarded to Winchester or Dame Heather, why?

In early August a full page advert on behalf of the Jersey Laity appeared in the Jersey Evening Post. It asked members of the public who had experienced inappropriate or unbecoming behaviour by Bishop Dakin to write to Dame Heather Steel. The advert clearly placed Dame Heather in both camps but neither she nor Winchester took any steps to refute or clarify the Adverts’ claims.

Dame Heather’s investigation has been a disaster where she not only failed to interview HG or the Church Warden but her report which she claimed to have completed last October is apparently still incomplete. I wrote to Dame Heather on seven occasions asking to meet her but somehow my emails which were also copied in to the Bishop’s Chaplain and John Gladwin were ignored until late October when by that time Dame Heather had almost completed her report.

It was hoped that HG would accompany me to Church House in Westminster but on learning of her visit, the venue was changed because the powers that be refused to allow her on the premises. Unfortunately HG did not attend the meeting but Dame Heather promised that my meeting with her would be recorded and I would be given a copy of the transcript.

However Dame Heather has reneged on her promise and has refused to give me a copy. I have made repeated requests to Bishop Dakin for a copy but although first promising to let me have it he now fails to even respond to my further requests.

In November Bishop Dakin announced that although Dame Heather had not completed her report no disciplinary action would be taken against the Dean and the Vicar. He also announced that the Bishop of Dover would now have oversight over Jersey and that another review would be commissioned on the Constitution issue.

We are now into the third week of March but what has been achieved? It might be easier to ask what has not been achieved. For a starter John Gladwin has not published his report but now that a similar review has been commissioned his report is irrelevant.

Dame Heather submitted her report at the end of October yet almost 5 months later we are told that it has not been completed. If that is the case why has she refused to see HG or arranged for some one else to interview her so that her account of events is recorded? At the States Sitting on 4th March Deputy Le Fondre via a written question asked the Chief Minister to provide an update on the likely date for the publication of the Dame Heather Steel review?

Chief Minister Senator Ian Gorst replied “The position has not changed since I made my statement to the States Assembly in January. I continue to expect that the Bishop of Winchester will honour the commitment made in the terms of reference of the investigation by Dame Heather Steel that, upon receipt of the final report, the Bishop of Winchester will supply a copy to the Bailiff, the Dean and the Ministry of Justice. Lambeth Palace confirmed in January that the reports being conducted by Dame Heather Steel and Bishop Gladwin will be completed in due course. I hope that the Steel report will be completed as soon as possible in order that our community can be strengthened through reconciliation and healing based upon integrity and transparency.

I thought the Chief Minister was being hypercritical because he has commissioned a report on HG’s arrest which has not been satisfactorily investigated because like Dame Steel, the investigator Ms Glenys Johnson has not interviewed HG so her report will be as worthless as Dame Heather’s. Where is the integrity where is the transparency?

Following my meeting with Dame Heather I published a Blog on 28th October 2013 Jersey’s Dean--- The truth, the whole truth or nothing but a whitewash? At  its conclusion I said the following, “What is becoming abundantly clear is that the Visitation is a waste of time and money, the guilty will be found innocent and the innocent condemned. What sort of message is the Church of England sending out to the poor, needy and vulnerable members of our society?

I stand by that statement, the Visitation has been a meaningless and financial disaster as events have overtaken it. John Gladwin’s report is pointless and Dame Heather’s should be confined to the dustbin. Not only has she failed to conduct her investigation in a satisfactory manner but her conflict and bias is evident by her failure to see HG and supply me with a copy of the transcript in which Dame Heather was less than discreet in her support for the Dean and her condemnation of HG.

The promise to assist HG has not been kept and Winchester’s decision last November to refer her to the NSPCC without consulting her or me was a disgrace. In his press statement dated 22nd November the Bishop said he was praying that HG would accept what she had been offered. He knew full well that his offer was totally unacceptable and has since been reminded that it is action not prayers that is needed, but alas my advice is still being ignored.

Over £200k has been spent, no reports have been published, Winchester no longer has oversight for Jersey, apologies have not been given personally, promises made have not been kept and HG is still being ignored. What is interesting is that the Church Warden is certainly still within the fold and it is strongly rumoured that he is a candidate for the Church Warden’s position at the Town Church. If that is the case then God really does move in mysterious ways.

I have tried to find the positives from the past 12 months but to no avail. Perhaps readers may be able to inform me.


  1. Be careful not to get done for treason.
    I can just see them hanging the bloggers on the top of the hill.

    1. Bailache and his cronies will not allow anything negative to leak to the outside World,this little rock has become very important to the UK (London) financial markets,power is now absolute,Liberty and free speech under threat from the very people who are supposed to defend these values.Greed Is now good on this island and probably has been for the past Twenty years.The church is just a pawn in this seedy little episode.We are no longer a proud independent island race but a people shackled by the chains of greed and fear that the "Educated" pious elite have forged for its people.Luckily there are a few honest men left like you Bob who are not afraid to speak the truth and who keep us plebs informed,but for how long?

  2. "What is interesting is that the Church Warden is certainly still within the fold and it is strongly rumoured that he is a candidate for the Church Warden’s position at the Town Church. If that is the case then God really does move in mysterious ways."

    This is most alarming. Especially as Korris not only highlighted complaints from HG, but also that he had been spoken too and was chaperoned because of inappropriate contact with other women. That's been buried, and it will be interesting to see if Dame Heather bothered to consider it.

    1. I doubt Steel considered it, her report only seemed focussed on covering up at my expense.
      And as for chaperoned. He simply wasn't.
      His CRB has a note on it about my complaint and they still think he is fit to stand, and Bishop will grant it?

    2. It might be opportune to remind ourselves of the Steel Terms of Reference

      a. Allowing a church warden to operate in contravention of the
      Safeguarding procedures and the training he had undertaken.

      b. Failure to notify the Safeguarding Advisor on receipt of the

      c. Failure to implement and act in accordance with Diocesan
      Safeguarding Procedure in the handling of the initial complaint

      d. Failure to record and make all documentation available for a review
      of a Safeguarding matter as required by the Safeguarding

      e. Despite the request of the Bishop of Winchester, unwillingness to
      permit review of Safeguarding practice and also discouraging
      others from participating.

      f. Any other inappropriate or unbecoming conduct in connection with
      these matters.

      It is difficult to know what conclusions Dame Heather has reached other than no disciplinary action is being taken against the Dean and Vicar so presumably Dame Heather did not agree with the Korris findings.

      It should be recalled that neither the Church Warden nor HG were interviewed by Dame Heather. Readers will no doubt draw their own conclusions but I find it surprising that neither were interviewed.

    3. Dame Heather close associate of king Philip Bailhache doesn't find fault with Bob Key close associate of King Philip Bailhache? How on earth did that ever happen?

    4. It’s a bit like the Magic Roundabout. With Dame Heather as Florence, Senator Bailhache as Zebedee (Jack in a box) and the Dean as Dougal (the Skye terrier of the drop ear variety.)

      I am not sure whether Bishop Tim would be better as Brian (the snail) or Mr Rusty (the Roundabout operator) but the whole affair gives one the impression that it has been conducted at snail pace and has gone round in circles.

    5. Glad to see you've a magic roundabout sense of humour Bob. One has to, otherwise you'd go nuts.

    6. It was me and I can remember watching the Magic Roundabout with my daughters in glorious black and white.

    7. I remember dougal because I had a toy dougal but no television so I didn't really know what magic roundabout was.
      I am not sure I understand why these people who have been so thoughtless and harmful to say the least, are harmless cartoon characters?

  3. Here's a positive

  4. You ask:
    "I have tried to find the positives from the past 12 months but to no avail. Perhaps readers may be able to inform me."

    Hmmmmm............. well at least we know that they are a coven of shameless shysters.

    any improvements on that?

  5. Isn't it ironic that it's Jay Jay Nortyperson who is first to come up with a positive.

    I will reciprocate and say that getting to know her (sort of) has been a very positive experience for me too.

  6. Humpf, well Polo, I am grateful for you and Elle keeping an eye on me, keeps me out of nortiness a bit.

  7. Don't believe a word of it. We're just encouraging you in your Nortyness. :)

  8. yes, that as well, obviously :) subtly encouraging it

  9. Bob
    I will also be putting the statements on the new 'additional evidence blog' in due course

  10. I listened to Matthew Price's interview this morning about the Dean and Bishop of Winchester having another go at signing an agreement for Canterbury to take over from Winchester. We were never told why this will be the fourth attempt to sign the agreement. Do you know what the problem is?

  11. I suspect it's the money, but, no doubt there is more to it. There always is.

    1. I am relying on information that can be found on Peter Ould’s Blog of 21st March. Peter always appears to be up to speed on Church matters and I have no reason to disbelieve what he has published on his Blog which in summary is as follows;

      Apparently there was general agreement between the Deans of Jersey and Guernsey and Bishop Tim who all apparently turned up to sign the agreement. However someone had subtly changed the wording which Bishop Tim fortunately had noticed whereby he chose not sign and good for him.

      It is not known who changed the wording and Peter equates the goings on to a soap opera, getting to be more like the Borgia’s to me.

      I understand that the agreement is being signed today.

      Polo is probably right about money being an issue. Given the cost of the futile Visitation one wonders who will be accountable for the waste of money.

      It may be of interest to readers but I am due to discuss the last 12 month's sage with Matthew Price on Radio Jersey this coming Sunday after the 8 am news.

    2. "Apparently there was general agreement between the Deans of Jersey and Guernsey and Bishop Tim who all apparently turned up to sign the agreement. However someone had subtly changed the wording which Bishop Tim fortunately had noticed whereby he chose not sign and good for him."

      Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha ........ "subtly changed the wording"
      Was this the hand of god or an attempted hijack by the forces of evil?

      You couldn't make it up.

      Like the Napier disappearing T.O.R.s

      Does the island worship false gods ?

  12. bob don,t let price treat you like he did shona

  13. As you may know the choir of Selwyn College, Cambridge, were in the Island last weekend, during which time they performed a concert and an evensong at the Town Church. Some weeks ago a notice appeared in the church's weekly news sheet requesting offers to host the choir members during their stay. As EY and his wife are now stalwarts there, needless to say they "volunteered their services". They were very wisely allocated a MALE member of the choir, however another host couple had a prior Sunday lunchtime engagement, so their two FEMALE guests were invited to join their choir colleague at EY's home for their lunch on Sunday!!!

    Although these two young ladies were above the age of consent (just) and could certainly not have been considered "vulnerable" in any respect, I wonder if they or their choir mistress would have thought twice about their lunch invitation had they known of EY's reputation. Indeed, were the College authorities made aware of the fact that one of their students was being "billeted" with an alleged sex offender, whose behaviour is at the centre of the furore currently dividing the Church of England in Jersey??

  14. Thank you for Comment and the points you have raised. Safeguarding appears to be the least of the CoE's concerns and your example just proves the point. There are safeguarding issues in Jersey but one wonders whether Bishop Trevor will be strong enough to tackle them.

  15. Another Equally Sad Singer27 March 2014 at 10:56

    I agree with Sad Singer: EW being welcomed at the Town Church is typical of the double standards now expected from Bob Key and his henchman. It is even more ironic given the fact that another alleged sex offender is all but barred from crossing the threshold of the church, even though he has raised thousands of pounds for it! But of course his “perceived crimes” were of the gay persuasion, a hanging offence in the eyes of a congregation of rampant homophobic “evangelicals”!