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PM pledges action on mental hospital abuse after daily’s exposé

A regional daily’s exclusive investigation into experiments on children at a mental hospital has been raised at Prime Minister’s Questions.

An investigation by the newspaper has revealed Dr Kenneth Milner faces multiple accusations of abuse at Aston Hall Hospital in the 1960s and 1970s.

Since the Telegraph first carried its story on its front page last Wednesday, pictured below, 34 alleged victims have now come forward to say they were abused at Aston Hall.

Former patients claim they were restrained by Dr Milner and given high doses of tranquilisers, while some allege he sexually abused them.

Derby Aston

Dr Milner died in 1976, after retiring the previous year from a career in which he also worked at institutions including Broadmoor and Rampton.

Derby North MP Amanda Solloway raised the Telegraph’s investigation during yesterday’s PMQs.

Addressing David Cameron, she said: “A recent investigation carried out by my local paper, the Derby Telegraph, uncovered reports of alleged experiments carried out on children, by medics, at a medical facility in Derbyshire during the 60s and 70s.

“Can I ask the Prime Minister to ensure that a thorough investigation into this situation is now undertaken?”

Mr Cameron responded: “I’m very happy to give my honourable friend that assurance. She is absolutely right to raise this. They are very serious allegations and it is vital the full facts are considered.

“My understanding is the police, the local authority and the NHS are working together and there is an inquiry process under the Derby Safeguarding Children Board in line with its procedures.

“I would encourage anybody who knows anything about this to come forward and give their evidence to that board.”

The Telegraph set up a live blog on its website to cover reaction to the Prime Minister’s response, with one of the alleged victims saying she couldn’t thank the newspaper enough for its support “from the bottom of our hearts.”

Editor Neil White said: “I would like to thank Amanda Solloway for taking this very serious issue to Parliament and I am very pleased that the Prime Minister has understood the seriousness of the complaints about experimentation and abuse at Aston Hall.

“We have been overwhelmed by the number of people who have come forward, claiming they were victims. As Mr Cameron said, a thorough investigation is needed to help them gain some sort of closure. We look forward to what the authorities can find out about what happened at Aston Hall.”