Detective urges sex abuse victims to ‘take a leap of faith’ and step forward

Former Skegby Hall Care Home
Former Skegby Hall Care Home

The detective leading a new inquiry into historic abuse at care homes across Nottinghamshire is calling on abuse survivors to ‘take a leap of faith’ and step forward.

A team of 20 officers will be working full time on Operation Xeres to collate testimony from victims who lived at 10 homes across the county, including Skegby Hall, Laybrook, Berry Hill Open Air School and The Ridge in Mansfield, and Cauldwell House in Southwell.

We just need five minutes, give us time to listen and we will convince them they are doing the right thing. Without them we can’t do anything.

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Other homes at the centre of the inquiry include the former Whatton Young Offenders Institution, Repton Lodge in Worksop, Amberdale in Stapleford, Ashley House in Worksop and South Collingham Hall.

The investigation will run alongside Operation Daybreak, which has been going for five years and is focussed more towards alleged abuse at Beechwood home in Nottingham.

Around 20 victims have stepped forward already, but DCI Mick Luke, who is leading the operation, urged more to come forward who may have suffered physical, emotional and sexual abuse.

He said: “They need to make that leap of faith, and we will resolve their complaints as fast as we can. We are here for as long as it takes.

“It’s important for us to engage with the victims and manage their expectations. Some will want convictions, some might just want to be listened to. We will just see where the investigation takes us.

“We just need five minutes, give us time to listen and we will convince them they are doing the right thing. Without them we can’t do anything.”

Victims wanting to provide information can contact police on 101, and ask to be put through to the Operation Xeres team.