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Experiences Shared


All names and identifying details have been changed.

Participants have given us permission to share their experiences.

Rick lived with his mother and stepfather, who was in the armed forces.

He was sent to an army boarding school run by a sadistic and abusive headteacher.

Rick explains that he went to boarding school so that his education was not disrupted by the frequent moves the family had to make. 

He describes the school environment as ‘bleak, basic and stark’. The headteacher issued regular, harsh beatings to the pupils, using different implements on their bare backsides. Rick says there was a sexual element to these punishments. 

The head also made the boys write ‘the same essay’ as a punishment, and Rick realised when he was older this was ‘porn fodder’. 

Other young people at the school also joined in the physical abuse and Rick still has injuries as a result. 

Rick has suffered from PTSD and says he has struggled with all aspects of his life due to his experiences at school. He has difficulty communicating and interacting with others, but has started writing and finds this helpful.

He is involved in a legal case and one benefit of this is that he has been reunited with some of the other former pupils, which he says has made him feel less alone. 

Rick is fighting for compensation, because he wants an acknowledgement that the abuse occurred and some form of justice.

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