He was a teacher they called Uncle. But to these men, he is still a monster 17 years later
Simon Rocker and Josh Jackman investigate as abused pupils speak out and pensioner is jailed
FOR SOME of the boarders at the exclusive Carmel College, a Saturday night treat was offered. A select group of half a dozen or so young boys would be invited up to watch Match of the Day in the flat of teacher Trevor Bolton, who would give them fizzy drinks and crisps.
Bolton had arrived in 1968 at the Jewish school, secluded in a pleasant rural campus near Oxford, to teach French. He was 31 and became master of the junior boarding house, looking after boys aged from 10 to the ages of 13 or 14.
He would offer a reassuring hug to those who were bullied or homesick.
One former pupil recalled being “taken under his wing” when he was unhappy; the boy felt out of place at an institution where other pupils arrived in a chauffeur-driven Rolls-Royce while he came from modest circumstances.
But beneath Bolton’s kindly veneer lurked more sinister designs. Over the course of 20 years, until he was asked to leave, he took advantage of the boys he had befriended, some as young as 11, and repeatedly abused them. One recalled that while the other boys were watching the football in the housemaster’s flat, Bolton would put him on his lap and fondle him.
As Bolton, now 78, was jailed for 19 years, two of his victims waived their anonymity to speak out. One described the experience as liberating, adding it was “almost like slaying the bogeyman”.
Giving evidence at Oxford Crown Court,PeterGlucksteinfromnorth-west London, had described how Bolton had smuggled him out of the boys’ dormitory and into his flat. He would slip his hand inside the boy’s pyjamas. “I was screaming for it to stop,” he said.
The entrepreneur and father of two was abused from the age of 10.
“I’ve struggled,” he said. “He taught me to equate intimacy, sex and affection with a transaction. It was sex for Jaffa Cakes.
“For some years I didn’t think about it at all; I blocked it out. And then when I did start to think about it, and start to havetherapytodealwithit,Iwasembarrassed, ashamed.”
Now aged 56, Mr Gluckstein added: “I look at my two little girls and I think: ‘How can anyone do this? That’s not going to happen to me, is it?’ And of course it won’t, but there’s that little bit that worries, so that’s a reason to come forward — to stop the cycle.”
Asked in court why he did not report anything sooner, he said that “Uncle Trevor” was the teacher in charge — “the person I was supposed to turn to if I had any problems”.
Others recounted lying naked in the master’s bed with him. One 11-yearold said that Bolton used to bathe him from “head to toe” and say “this is what fathers do”.
Only later did he realise that what was going on was wrong. Bolton was “a predator”, he said. “He used his power and manipulated me into a position for his own sexual gratification.”
Most pupils were too embarrassed to tell anyone. One described his family as having a “stiff upper lip” and not being inclined to talk about such things. In another instance, Bolton inveigled himself into the boy’s family and even helped to pay the school fees.
It was not as though abuse was unknown at the school. The court heard that two teachers were dismissed after complaints from boys.
Bolton’s luck ran out finally in 1988. The headteacher Philip Skelker — Peter Gluckstein today, and at Carmel College received a letter from the parents of a former pupil; it enclosed another letter, apparently written by Bolton to their son while he was at the school which, among others, imagined what the parents would think of the teacher if they saw him dressed in shorts.
The head was “troubled” and, after he discussed it with the chairman of governors, Bolton was sacked.
Mr Skelker even sent a copy of a letter to the Department for Education and Science asking for Bolton to be blacklisted but was “appalled” to learn that he had found a job at another school.
And it took almost 25 years before he was eventually exposed, long after the college’s closure in 1997. Another of his victims had told his wife about what he
Hetaught metoequate intimacy witha transaction. It was sex for Jaffa Cakes. I look at my little girls and