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January 26, 2013


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John Jones

Some six months or so ago the Exclusive Brethren successfully appealed for the re-instatement of their Charitable Status. The Commission laid down certain conditions for re-instatement, to which the Preston Down Trust agreed, and one of those conditions is that the E.B. Church must allow easier and greater PUBLIC access to their services. This is NOT happening. Their "Church" notice boards remain unchanged."Well DISPOSED persons" wishing to attend a service convened at 5 p.m. ( Most inconvenient for most folk ) on a Sunday, are invited to phone beforehand to ascertain availablity of seating. This is a cynical joke. Their local "Church" seats 500 people, and the membership is 125. The only time this "Church" is full is when they hold the occasional conference, and members from all over the country attend. Members of the public are NOT allowed into that service. Around the "Church" the 8ft fences and locked gate remain, and is only unlocked to allow members only to attend. On those occasions when the gate is unlocked to allow members in, they still place guards on the gate to ensure no non-member gains access So here is one clear instance where they are in breach of the conditions laid down by the Charity's Commission for the re-instatement of their Charitable Status. This should be investigated, and a much closer monitoring of their compliance of all the other conditions to which the Preston Down Trust agreed, needs to be put in place.

Alan Hart

We have seen the statement from the Wilton Park Trustees ‘COMMENTS ON ARTICLE IN THE MAIL ON SUNDAY 20TH JANUARY 2013’ and as informed of the witnessed facts we unequivocally support everything contained therein.
The Mail article is a disgraceful misrepresentation of the true situation and is full of error and distortion.
As regards the alleged ‘shutting up’ of the girl pupil:
• The girl pupil was never ‘shut up’ at any time by her local elders or the congregation.
• When the family was going through a difficult time, church elders provided support and counsel as a result of which the household has been kept together as a family unit.
• The girl temporarily stayed at home in support of and with the full sympathy of her mother, and with the full knowledge of the school. Wilton Park School facilitated this by providing learning materials and support and in fact successfully sat her exams during this time.
Teaching at Wilton Park School, as in all PBCC schools, is based on the National Curriculum and is carried out under the direction and guidance of non-Brethren professional teachers.
The Plymouth Brethren Christian Church believes strongly in the sanctity of marriage and the family and this is reflected in the Christian ethos of the school.
Peter Trevvett Garth Christie Graham Reiner John Rich
Julian Aris Bruce Hazell Keith Birch
WEBSITE: factual information about the PBCC and our beliefs and practices can be found on www.plymouthbrethrenchristianchurch.org

Alan Hart

Wilton Park School
This statement has been prepared by the Trustees of Wilton Park School who legally affirm its accuracy having investigated all the facts.
 The Mail on Sunday has published a defamatory and erroneous article which is a serious distortion of the facts which we emphatically and categorically deny as being both false and prejudicial.
 At the time of writing (Tuesday 22nd January 2013 0900 hours) Wilton Park School has received no notification or advice of any impending investigation by the Wiltshire County Council, the Department of Education, the Police or any other agency
 The headline ‘Christian sect school that ‘shut up’ girl pupil’ portrays the biased and inaccurate character of the entire article: it is completely untrue to suggest that this government registered and accredited school in any way acted upon directions or instructions from the Plymouth Brethren Christian Church.
“Christian sect school” The Plymouth Brethren Christian Church is a mainstream Christian Church holding substantially the same doctrines as the Church of England. The PBCC is not a sect but is structured and operates on common Christian ground as taught by Holy Scripture which is available for all Christians.
“Yesterday a local education authority confirmed it was investigating allegations of child cruelty and failures to teach the National Curriculum at…Wilton Park School”
Wilton Park School has not received any notice or advice of any investigation whatsoever. Teaching at Wilton Park School is based on the National Curriculum and is completely open to unfettered inspection by relevant Government Authorities at all times.
“The only girl was shut up for the longest number of days…”
 The ‘only’ girl was never ‘shut up’ and the Plymouth Brethren Christian Church congregation in her parish have never taken any action restricting her activities.
 The girl’s father was going through a difficult time and the girl’s agreed wish was to stay at home with her mother in support of the household.
 This was done with the full knowledge of the school, and the school provided educational resources and support so that she could do her schoolwork at home temporarily
 It is unconceivable that a national newspaper should denigrate a school that was showing support and care for a family that was going through a difficult time
“… boys and girls, aged 16 to 18, are subjected to gender segregation at all times” This allegation appears next to a picture (two boys and a girl talking to each other) and is both completely false and damningly unbelievable. Boys and girls are taught together in the same classrooms and participate together in extracurricular projects and excursions. Nor are they restricted in any way as regards appropriate social contact. This preposterous allegation is clearly intended to ridicule our very treasured young people who enjoy and cherish very active lives as youthful members of our community.
“Laptops are considered instruments of evil” this is completely untrue. Laptops are found in nearly all Plymouth Brethren homes and businesses and are used in all Plymouth Brethren Schools. Computers and mobile phones used by Brethren members have restrictions to prevent access to the unrestricted, immoral and contemptible filth and corruption that we regard as evil and which is so readily available on these electronic devices.
“Liaisons and relationships between pupils are prohibited and monitored using CCTV” use of CCTV show our commitment to Child Protection and school security. According to an independent study last year, more than 2000 secondary schools and academies used 47,806 cctv cameras in total, including 26,887 inside school buildings. Wilton Park School is hardly unusual in this.
“Pupils seldom play any competitive sport” this is another falsehood. Pupils play football, hockey, cricket, table tennis, basketball, volleyball, tennis and other competitive games. They enjoy competitions between houses within a school and also compete in carnivals between schools.
“The Exclusive Brethren … formed in 1848. In that year they broke off from the much larger Plymouth Brethren… founded in 1832” The Mail on Sunday cannot even get basic historical facts right, which can be found in any encyclopaedia. The Brethren originated in Dublin in 1827, after J.N.Darby with others separated from the Established Church. In 1848 there was a division and some members set up other churches also known as “Brethren”. The Plymouth Brethren Christian Church and the other “Brethren” continue to hold JND’s teachings. The “Exclusive Brethren” name was ascribed to the PBCC by the press in the late 1950s.
 Wilton Park is an excellent school with a fine record
 The latest School Inspection report praises Wilton Park’s provision for its pupils’ wellbeing and makes no adverse comments about the school at all – see:
 Teaching is almost entirely by non-Brethren professional staff and is based on the National Curriculum
 Examination results are significantly above the national average
 Wilton Park School is committed to child protection and has a Child Protection Policy which is made freely available
 Two Designated Persons are trained to deal with any issues that may arise and to liaise as required with the relevant agencies
 One of the school trustees has overall responsibility to ensure that all legislation and directives are complied with
 Use of CCTV shows Wilton Park’s commitment to school security and child protection
+44 (0)20 8391 7620


I think their signage is a clear attempt to bamboozle people into thinking it's a place of public worship (It also means that no rates are paid on the building) while making it as difficult as possible to attend in reality.
Once vetting has occurred am I right in thinking the visitor is no longer a member of the public, but now a guest? So how does that fit with public worship?

John J. Jones

The Mail on Sunday ( Jan 20th ) printed a report by one of their journalists stating that the Exclusive Brethren school at Wilton, near Salisbury, Wilts is being INVESTIGATed by the POLICE for child abuse; and by the local Educational Authority for it's methods of teaching and descipline. What does this say for a CULT that professes to adhere to "the Word of God" more closely than any other Christian group.
Furthemore,their current Notice Boards outside their "Churches" now state that they have a "PUBLIC" service at 5 p.m. on a sunday.........BUT, and here's the rub. The wording goes on to say, "All WELL DISPOSED PERSONS are welcome.........PLEASE CONTACT ONE OF THE ABOVE TELEPHONE NUMBERS TO CONFIRM TIME, AND AVAILABLITY OF SEATS". THIS HAS TO BE A JOKE. THEIR BUILDING IN bREST rOAD pLYMOUTH, SEATS 500 PEOPLE, AND WHILST IT IS FULL WHEN THEY HOLD A SPECIAL CONFERENCE, WHICH IS ATTENDED BY MEMBERS FORM ALL OVER THE U.K., THEIR NORMAL CONGREGATION IS ABOUT 150. This is but a shallow attempt to appear to be a "PUBLIC PLACE of WORSHIP". It is of course nothing of the sort, and their entitlemnet to tax and rates exemption should be withdrawn.
Matthew 9.13 says that "Jesus came NOT to call the WELL DISPOSED, but sinners to repentance". Why put this condition ?, No other PUBLIC place of worship does. And who decides if a person is "WELL DISPOSED" or not ? They should not be allowed the rates/etc exemptions applicable to a genuine PLACE OF PUBLIC WORSHIP..........should they ?

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