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UK News Desk

Brynteg Comprehensive art teacher ‘abused teen pupils’

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Two men have revealed how they were sexually abused by their art teacher while they were pupils at a secondary school in the 1980s.

Clive Hally, 67, was arrested earlier this year on suspicion of indecent assault, following allegations of historical child sexual abuse at Brynteg Comprehensive School, Bridgend.

The retired teacher was on police bail, when he was found dead on 18 May.

He is thought to have killed himself before a charging decision was taken.

His body was found floating on the edge of the Cwmwernderi reservoir near Maesteg. Police say there were no suspicious circumstances.

His inquest will be held in November – a police investigation into the allegations is ongoing and an independent investigation will be conducted.

Hally, who was from Maesteg, taught art at Brynteg for 36 years, from 1975 until 2011.

Two men, now aged 48 and 50, said he sexually abused them on school premises in the 1980s, one when he was aged 13.

The other victim said he was assaulted multiple times, from the age of 15.

Their names have been changed to protect their identities.

Their allegations contain descriptions of child sexual abuse which some readers may find upsetting.

Mike claims he was abused in a locked photography darkroom, an art storeroom, disused toilets and elsewhere at Brynteg, after school and during school holidays, from when he was in Year 10, until after he left school at A-level.

He was made to perform sex acts on the teacher and receive them.

“He’d take me by the hand we’d go into the storeroom and it would be maybe 5 or 5:30, something like that, and I’d end up getting undressed… and it’s odd, I can’t remember Clive saying anything,” said Mike, now 48.

“I think he would undress me. I don’t remember me wanting to get undressed. I think he did it to me.

“Lots of awful things would happen. I didn’t want to touch him.

“So I’d be in the storeroom and I’d focus on, like a stapler or a door handle or a jug of pencils or something. It’s a crazy thing – I didn’t want to disappoint.

“But also, I didn’t know how to get out of there – I didn’t want to do any of this.

“But you’re in this position and you don’t know what to do.

“I can remember being naked and lying on a wooden counter, a sort of desk, where he kept lots of paper. I just wanted it to end really quickly.”

David, who’s now 50, said Hally touched him sexually in an incident in the art store room when he was 13.

He said he had endured years of unwanted and inappropriate physical attention – including hugs and kisses, and they were once interrupted by a supply teacher.

“People must have known that things were going on because we were interrupted and I know I’m not the only person,” said David.

“He was at this school from 1970 something to 2011, so there’s a big period there where he had the opportunity to do things.

“I’ve learned that some staff did have concerns about the way that he conducted himself, to the point where they knew he would be one-to-one with boys in his art room and he’d lock the door.

“The bottom line is the man was a paedophile. It’s unbelievable really, when you think about it. That word should be associated with that man, as that’s what he was.

“There are more kids out there who’ve been abused, that’s a definite, an absolute definite.

“Paedophiles don’t stop abusing children, so for years in that school there was an active paedophile, and people should know.”

The men have heard a group of teachers did once raise concerns later in Hally’s career about him spending time alone with boys in the art room, but it is unclear what action was taken.

The school has declined to respond to questions about this from the BBC, and whether it ever received complaints about his conduct during his career.

In a statement, the school responded: “We value and promote the safety and wellbeing of all our pupils and take these historical allegations very seriously. We will be working alongside partners such as Bridgend County Borough Council to look into the allegations independently.”

The council said: “We support schools in having effective safeguarding procedures in place, which can be followed in the event that any allegations are received.

“While the council does not have any record on file of these historical allegations having been raised with us as a local authority, we will be looking into them independently in conjunction with all relevant partners.”

South Wales Police said the two victims in the investigation have been updated and offered support by specially trained officers.

“South Wales Police takes all reports of sexual assault seriously and urges victims to come forward to report it, regardless of when it happened, safe in the knowledge that they will be treated with respect and dignity and that their allegation will be fully investigated,” said a police official.

The Children’s Commissioner for Wales, Sally Holland, has said she will follow-up the cases with both the school and local authority.

“I am shocked and saddened by the serious allegations that have been brought to light today, and I encourage anybody with related information to contact South Wales Police, who are investigating the matter,” she said.

“Following developments today, I will be seeking assurances from the school about their safeguarding arrangements and asking them to be clear with existing pupils and parents about the procedures they have in place to protect children.

“I will also be seeking clarity from the local authority about its investigation and writing to the local safeguarding board to establish its role in all this.”

If you have been affected by child sexual abuse, sexual abuse or violence, help and support is available at BBC Action Line

If you want to raise any of the matters discussed here with BBC Wales, you can also contact the BBC Wales News Focus team in confidence by email at: news.focus.team@bbc.co.uk

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