A PROMINENT freemason and respected Peterborough schoolteacher has been jailed for six years after being convicted of abusing two young boys,.
A PROMINENT freemason and respected Peterborough schoolteacher has been jailed for six years after being convicted of abusing two young boys,.Richard Taylor was a science teacher for 25 years at Bretton Woods School, Bretton, before he was exposed as a paedophile following an incident on a family holiday.
Two nine-year-old Dutch boys complained Taylor had been spying on them in the showers at a Spanish campsite where he was on holiday with his wife in 2006.
The incident sparked a series of events leading to his conviction for assaulting two young boys in the UK in the 1980s.
Lincoln Crown Court heard yesterday that Taylor had now lost his wife, family, job, home and reputation.
Taylor had been forced to leave the Spanish campsite following the complaints by the Dutch youngsters, the court was told.
When he returned home his two English victims, now adults, discovered what had happened in Spain and reported him to the NSPCC.
Taylor, a highly respected member of the community in the Deepings area, was by then secretary of the local St Guthlac's Freemasons Lodge and a Provincial Grand Junior Warden in the organisation.
When police spoke to him he denied committing any offences and continued his pleas of innocence throughout a three-day trial at Lincoln Crown Court, but was convicted by a jury.
Taylor (47) of Lady Margaret's Avenue, Market Deeping, was convicted of assaulting two boys, causing actual bodily harm between 1980 and 1982.
He was also found guilty of two charges of indecent assault and two charges of indecency with a child involving the older boy between 1983 and 87.
Judge John Machin, passing sentence at Lincoln Crown Court, told him: "These are very serious offences.
"You have ruined a distinguished and useful teaching career, but that cannot save you from an extensive sentence of imprisonment.
"This was a wicked and very, very damaging course of abuse against both these young boys."
Robert Underwood, prosecuting, said Taylor had beaten the boys "mercilessly" with a hosepipe on a number of occasions before going on to sexually abuse the older boy.
He said both victims, now grown up with families of their own, were badly affected by what happened to them.
Graham Huston, defending, said Taylor had himself been abused as a teenager by a Scout Leader who was later jailed.
"It is no coincidence that Taylor perpetrated on others the behaviour he had endured.
"He was corrupted by that man – that may give an understanding of why he behaved as he did against these boys," he said.
"His teaching colleagues spoke very highly of him in a career at the same school for 25 years.
"Over those years there has never been any complaint by any member of staff or pupil."
He added that Taylor had now been sacked and his wife had begun divorce proceedings against him.
"He has lost his job, his family, his home, his career and his reputation. He has lost everything," Mr Huston said.
Detective Constable Gill Allen, who investigated the case said that the families of the two Dutch boys decided not to press charges against Taylor, despite his behaviour.
But it had been that incident which led to the earlier matters being revealed.
"Both the victims have been traumatised by what happened." she said: "All they wanted was for him to admit the offences and show remorse, but he has not done that."
Peterborough City Council's assistant director of learning and standards Mel Collins said: "Mr Taylor was immediately suspended while the police investigation was under way and has not worked in school since. He was dismissed following his conviction last month. We worked extremely closely with, and gave support to, the school while the investigation was under way."