Humberside

Abuse appeal started by Catholic Middlesbrough Diocese

St William's Community Home
Image caption The home provided care for boys with emotional and behavioural problems

A Catholic diocese has launched an appeal after being found liable for running a boys' school where 150 former pupils are suing for abuse.

Middlesbrough Diocese is facing the £8m compensation claim.

The alleged abuse took place between 1960 and 1992 at St William's in Market Weighton, East Yorkshire.

A judge ruled last year that the De La Salle Brotherhood, which provided the school with teachers at the time, had no legal responsibility.

At a hearing at Leeds Crown Court last year, a judge decided that the diocese, which owned the home, and not the De La Salle Order of Christian Brothers, a Catholic order of lay teachers, was responsible for the abuse that took place.

The compensation claim by the 150 pupils was submitted in 2006.

Started appeal

However, the Middlesbrough Diocese said it believed the Catholic brotherhood should take some responsibility.

Jeremy Stuart-Smith QC, representing the diocese and its Catholic Child Welfare Society, started the appeal in front of the three judges at the Court of Appeal in London on Monday.

The case centres around the alleged systematic abuse of boys aged between 10 and 16 from 1960 to 1992.

The home provided residential care and education for boys with emotional and behavioural problems aged from 11 to 18, mainly from Yorkshire and the North East.

Humberside Police started an investigation in 2001, which focused on child abuse at the home between 1965 and 1992.

The appeal is expected to last four days, when judgement will be reserved to a later date.

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