Two men arrested as part of investigation into sexual abuse at guest house in Barnes


Operation Fernbridge examining claims of child abuse at the home in the 1980s.


By SWLondoner staff

Two men were arrested this morning by police investigating allegations of child abuse at a guest house in Barnes in the 1980s.

Elm Guest House is at the centre of Operation Fernbridge, an investigation focusing on claims that senior political figures, among others, sexually abused boys at the Richmond premises.

The probe, which is examining links between the guest house and the now-closed nearby Grafton Close children’s care-home, began after Labour MP Tom Watson passed on information to the police.

A 66-year-old man from Norfolk and a 70-year-old man from East Sussex are being held in police custody.

Commander Peter Spindler, head of the MPS Specialist Crime Investigations, urged anyone with information to get in touch.

“This is a complex multi agency investigation supported by the NSPCC, CEOP and Richmond Social Services involving non recent allegations of sexual assault against children,” he said.

“It is vital that anyone who has been affected by or has information about activity in the early 1980s at the Elm Guest House, or the Grafton Close care home, in Barnes speaks to the NSPCC on their Helpline on 0808 800 5000, or their local police.”

Police made clear that the allegations are not connected with current residents of the building, which has since been converted into residential flats. 

Photo courtesy of Metropolitan Police, with thanks.

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