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Yehudi Menuhin Music School

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Former pupils at the Yehudi Menuhin music school have made fresh claims of sexual abuse at the Surrey school.

In 2003, violinist Nigel Kennedy made allegations that female students were being abused by teachers, then in 2013 a Channel 4 investigation featured allegations by 3 former students that they were abused by Marcel Gazelle, one of the co-founders of the prestigious school, who died in 1969.

Now a further 14 ex-students have come forward with allegations of sexual, emotional and physical abuse against members of staff that are said to have occurred between 1964 and 2007.

The new allegations follow the Yehudi Menuhin School’s inclusion in the Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) which concluded in 2022, which also investigated other music schools, such as Chetham’s School of Music.  IICSA’s investigation in the Yehudi Menhuin school uncovered further allegations of abuse by members of staff.  

IICSA’s report said “In the specialist music schools examined, the power and influence of often revered and influential music teachers made some pupils even more vulnerable to being sexually abused by them.  The reputation of both the musicians and the schools were often seen as more important than their victims…”

David Hawkins, a specialist in child abuse law, who represented Participants in the residential schools strand of IICSA said “The people who have now come forward following the uncovering of the culture at many music schools, certainly in the past, have taken an immensely brave step.  If anyone else was affected by the events at the Yehudi Menhuin School, or any other residential schools, please talk to me and I can advise you, in complete confidence, as to your legal rights in obtaining redress.