England

Durham School chaplain Revd Philip Bentham still suspended after sex inquiry dropped

Durham School
Image caption The sex abuse allegation did not relate to Durham School

The chaplain of an independent school is still suspended from his job after police dropped a sex offence inquiry.

The Reverend Philip Bentham had been on bail since May after being arrested on suspicion of a historical sexual assault.

The 58-year-old clergyman, of Bishop Auckland, was suspended from his job as chaplain at independent Durham School.

Merseyside Police confirmed on Friday he faces no further action. But the school said he was still suspended.

A spokeswoman said it was acting on advice from the local authority. The allegation does not relate to Durham School.

A letter sent to parents said: "You may have heard that Merseyside Police have decided that no further action is necessary with regard to the historical allegation against the Rev Bentham.

"At the moment, he remains suspended from Durham School on advice from the local authority.

"The school takes its commitment to child protection very seriously and is acting in accordance with recognised procedures in this matter.

"When we are in a position to do so, we will be in further communication."

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