Compensation over alleged abuse at Catholic school

The former St William's school
St William's school near York was closed after allegations surfaced Photo: ITV

The Supreme Court will hear a case to decide how much compensation the Roman Catholic Diocese of Middlesbrough must pay to victims of alleged abuse at a former Catholic school.

St William's School near York closed after its headteacher was jailed for sexually abusing young boys.

The Diocese argues that because the school had been run by the Catholic order of lay teachers, The De La Salle Brotherhood, they should be responsible for part of the £8m compensation bill.

In a statement, the Diocese says:

"The Diocese has always agreed that, as the nominal employers, it is partially liable. But it is also right that the main liability should lie with the organisation which ran the school and home.

"The De La Salle brothers appointed the staff and made all the decisions in respect of the day to day running of St William's, and it is right that they should share the cost of compensating victims."

However, victims of the alleged abuse say the eight-year legal argument over who is responsible for paying the compensation is an insult to the alleged trauma they suffered while at the school.

"In my book it's about time they stopped the suffering of all these victims, recognised the trauma that these victims are going through, and recompensed them adequately for the suffering and damage that has occurred. "

– Graham Baverstock, victim of alleged abuse

One of the alleged victims, Graham Baverstock, waived his right to anonymity today to demand justice for himself and other former pupils at the school.

"St Williams was a nightmare from hell."

– Graham Baverstock, victim of alleged abuse