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  • Writer's pictureCharlotte Denley

Concern Raised Over Possible Link Between Paedophile Teachers

A solicitor suing Sefton Borough Council on behalf of a group of former Formby High School pupils abused by their teacher Ian Farquharson says she is concerned about the similarities between him and recently convicted headteacher Neil Foden.  


Neil Foden, aged 66, who had been head teacher at Ysgol Friars in Bangor since 1997, was sentenced yesterday (1st July 2024) to 17 years imprisonment for the sexual abuse of teenage girls.  Among other sexual proclivities he is described as having a fetish about urination and in at least one case plied a teenage victim with water and then pressed her bladder to make her urinate.  


Neil Foden was found guilty of 19 charges in total, including 12 counts of sexual activity with a child and two counts of sexual activity with a child while in a position of trust. 


He was also convicted of one count each of causing or inciting a child to engage in sexual activity, attempting to arrange the commission of a child sex offence, sexual communication with a child, possession of indecent photographs of a child for show, and sexual assault of a child under the age of 13. 


Sentencing, Judge Rowlands said Foden was "a forceful, bullying presence" in his school - a man whom "people were afraid of crossing". 


Katherine Yates, solicitor for the Formby High School victims, is concerned about the apparent links between the two abusers, Neil Foden and Ian Farquharson.


“I have been working in the field of child sexual abuse for 26 years now and it appears unusual to have two sexual abusers in a similar area who both had fetishes about urination.   


“Farquharson used to invite boys to his office under various pretences and ply them with fizzy drinks or water until they were desperate for the lavatory. In most cases, he initially refused to let them go and when they were finally allowed to go, he used to interfere with them whilst they were urinating.” 


“In many cases the sexual abuse became more and more serious, culminating in a rape and Farquharson’s suicide that finally brought his horrendous series of crimes to an end. The abuse occurred between approximately 1975 and May 1992.”  


Farquharson abused children in North Wales as well in Formby and was a regular visitor to North Wales.  


When he ended his life in May 1992 after raping a Formby High School boy, he travelled to an isolated spot near Mold in North Wales to end his life by attaching a hose to the exhaust pipe of his car.  


A complaint about his sexual abuse of children at Formby High School had been made to the headmaster shortly before his death.   


David, a former pupil and victim of Farquharson, said: "When I started at the high school, he started taking me out of lessons and would force me to drink water and fizzy drinks so I would need the toilet. Then he would follow me to the toilet and start touching me all the time. This was around two or three times a week over the space of two years." 


Court proceedings have been issued by Andrew Grove and Co to claim compensation for his many victims who currently number 64, and Katherine said there is still time to join the claim.  


“Sixteen of the claims have now been settled and although progress has slowed in recent weeks, I hope that once the Liverpool Court sets a date for a hearing, the remaining claims will be settled in a timelier fashion,” she explained.   


“However, we believe there are more victims of Farquarson, and no doubt of Foden, who have not yet spoken out and continue to suffer in silence. 


There are many reasons why people feel anxious about coming forward, but we would encourage anyone who has suffered abuse at the hands of either of these perpetrators to get in touch and claim the compensation they deserve.” 


Katherine added: “All claims are funded on a no win, no fee basis so financial concerns should not prevent anyone from making contact and bringing a claim.” 


Katherine Yates can be contacted at Andrew Grove and Co on 01223 367133 or 07810 224545 or by email:  

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