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Manchester City Council settles second set of historic child abuse claims

Manchester City Council this month agreed to settle a second set of child abuse cases, three years after paying out more than £2m in compensation in a group action.

The second batch of claims were brought by alleged victims who said they were abused while in the care of children’s homes run by the council between the 1950s and the 1990s.

The group action centred on three homes – Rosehill in Northenden, Broomehouse in Didsbury and Mobberley Boys in Knutsford.

Peter Garsden of Abney Garsden McDonald, the claimants' solicitors, said the council had agreed recently to settle all abuse cases now and in the future.

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The 163 claimants in this second group will no longer have to give evidence in court, but have agreed to accept a deduction of 45% of the value of their claim.

It could take a year before a final settlement figure is known, said Garsden, who previously secured £2.26m in compensation from Manchester City Council for 168 claimants.

That case related to a police investigation called Operation Cleopatra, which looked at 66 children’s homes in Greater Manchester  – most of which were run by the council – and led to a number of prosecutions.

Garsden said Manchester’s decision to settle the second group of cases was very welcome. He added: “The claimants want an apology for the abuse they suffered in the past, not technical arguments designed to defeat their valid claims.”

A spokeswoman for Manchester said: “We are genuinely committed to settling legitimate claims as quickly and fairly as possible, recognising that no amount of money can compensate individuals who have suffered abuse whilst in our care.

“It is important that claimants are spared the trauma of lengthy court proceedings where this is possible. Where claims are settled we will write to individuals and offer a full apology."

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