Letter: Concerned parents defend Stoke Place

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Sir: As concerned parents of a resident at Stoke Place Residential Centre in Buckinghamshire, we feel very strongly that the good side of life at Stoke Place should be put on record.

Our son has been a resident at Stoke Place for five years and we cannot speak too highly of the care given to him there. We have never had any reason to believe other than that he is completely happy, treated well and kept fully occupied each day - not cheap labour, just necessary occupation - and able to enjoy organised social relaxation evenings and weekends.

Whoever made the original allegations obviously has an axe to grind, and it seems to have blown up out of all proportion, but we refuse to believe our son is in any danger: mentally, physically or spiritually.

A great deal of distress has been caused to parents and to the dedicated staff. Our son has a weekend at home each month and we were at Stoke Place last Friday to collect him. The staff there are being crucified by the publicity and by obscene phone calls. It seems utterly unfair, unnecessary and cruel.

Our son, brain-damaged at the age of 12, is one of the lesser handicapped, and we are sure we would know if he had experienced or witnessed anything unforeseen.

Yours sincerely,





4 October