Former Ashfield housemaster sentenced to more than 20 years for abusing five boys in the 1960s

An 87-year-old man who raped and sexually assaulted five boys at an Ashfield care home, heard harrowing testimonies from his surviving victims before he was sentenced to 26 years in prison.

Thursday, 14th October 2021, 2:10 pm

A jury found Nigel Pipe guilty of four counts of buggery, nine counts of indecency with a child and 14 counts of indecent assault on a male, when he was a relief housemaster at the at the now-defunct approved school for boys at Skegby Hall in Sutton during the 1960s.

Judge Julie Warburton told Pipe the boys were in a ‘particularly vulnerable situation’, but were afraid to challenge authority.

The jury heard ‘sometimes harrowing evidence’ of Pipe removing the boys from their beds and taking them to secluded places, where he molested and ‘systematically raped them’.

Nigel Pipe.

Mrs Wharburton said: "They were painful and disturbing incidents which they were forced to live with for more than 50 years.

"You have essentially escaped blame and justice.

"These men have carried the burden for the same period of time – never thinking they would be believed.

"That day has now arrived.”

Skegby Hall.

Prosecutor Sarah Knight said one of the victims died before Pipe was brought to justice, but two men did attend Nottingham Crown Court.

One told the court: "There have been times when I have been driving when I have thought of driving straight into a wall.”

Another man said: "You took my childhood away and made me feel ashamed.

"You took advantage of me as a child.

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"Because of what you did to me my mum suffered because of my bad behaviour.

"I now know that it was your fault not hers, my mum died not even knowing what happened to me.”

One man spoke of suffering post-traumatic nightmares which caused him to injure himself, triggering a serious bout of illness, while flashbacks of what he suffered led to a breakdown and early retirement.

He added: "I am unable to trust people, I stay away from anyone in authority.

"We should have been protected – not abused.”

Barrister Mark Barlow, mitigating, said Pipe ‘still maintains he did not commit any of these offences and the reality is he will die in prison’.

Pipe, of Llanwenarth View, Govilon, Abergavenny, was jailed for a total of 26 years.

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