FORMER SCOUTMASTER Peter Hamilton-Harvey appears in court charged with rape and historic child sex abuse

A FORMER Bournemouth Scoutmaster has appeared in court charged with rape and nine other offences of historic sex abuse. Peter Hamilton-Harvey, of Dean Park Road, Bournemouth is alleged to have committed the offences on various dates in the 1980s. The 55-year-old said nothing during a brief hearing before Bournemouth magistrates. An application by his solicitor, Robert Renshaw, to ban publication of his address was thrown out by the magistrates. Hamilton-Harvey faces one charge of rape of a boy under the age of 13, alleged to have been committed between 1983 and 1987. He is also charged with four offences of gross indecency with a boy under the age of 14, between the same dates, and five charges of indecent assault against a boy under 14, also between 1983 and 1987. No plea was taken and magistrates sent the case to Bournemouth Crown Court where he will appear for a preliminary hearing on Monday February 9. During the 1980s Hamilton Harvey lived in Bournemouth and was a local scoutmaster. He also ran an organisation called the Bournemouth Community Care Trust. In 2003 he and his family escaped from a fire which destroyed their three-storey, Meyrick Park home. Dorset Police revealed details of the charges against him last month and Detective Inspector Neil Phillips of the Child Abuse Investigation Team said: “In order to complete our investigation I am appealing for anyone with information regarding this case to come forward.” Verisona Law have considerable experience in dealing with cases of abuse in the Scouts and have successfully secured damages for individuals including those involved in the high profile case of Nicholas Thorpe, a Scoutmaster, who was convicted in 2012 in relation offences against children. If you or a loved one have been subject to abuse please do not hesitate to contact Charles Derham our specialist child abuse solicitor. We will treat any communications with the strictest of confidence


Charles has considerable specialist experience in pursuing claims for compensation for those who have been abused in childhood. His specific expertise means that he is recognised locally, nationally and internationally for his work which has taken him all over the world including, USA, Australia and New Zealand.

He is also recognised for his significant involvement in the high profile litigation against St Georges School (Anglemoss Limited) and Cyntwell High School. These cases involved a staggering number of individuals who pursued those responsible whom despite heavily defending the claims brought against them settled by way of out of court settlements.

Charles regularly features in local and national press and he is often asked to provide his professional opinion and commentary on relevant abuse law issues and developments on radio and television broadcasts. Such broadcasts include BBC South Today, BBC Wales, ITV and ITN News.

Charles is a member of the Association of Child Abuse Lawyers.

You can follow Charles on Twitter and Facebook.

Charles obtained his Law degree at Kingston University, before successfully completing his Legal Practice Course. He trained and qualified with Verisona Law beginning his specialism in the field of child abuse claims. He received his higher rights of Audience in 2012 making him one of the youngest Solicitor-Advocates in the country who is able to represent his clients in the High Court. Charles is head of the abuse team who collectively have secured compensation for hundreds of victims of abuse.

He began diversifying in to other aspects of abuse law and his team are one of the very few in the country who specialise in claims against social services.

He is involved in complex group action litigation and also represents a number of individuals and who are pursuing private companies, local authorities and perpetrators in pursuit of their justice.

Charles has strong contacts with some of the most prominent barristers who advise on abuse claims including a number of QC’s. He also has robust connections with highly qualified expert witnesses he instructs in support of those who he represents.

  • Child abuse claims
  • Claims against social services
  • Complex/Catastrophic Clinical Negligence claims

"Thank you for all your much appreciated hard work. I will truly never forget your kindness towards me. Your patience, respect and understanding at all times was beyond words. The sincere compassion shown meant more to me than words could ever express. This firm will forever hold a special place in my heart."

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