Coroner criticised care of child abuse victim

Former choirmaster Michael Brewer and ex wife Kay jailed for abusing students at Chetham's School of Music in Manchester

Former choirmaster Michael Brewer and ex wife Kay jailed for abusing students at Chetham's School of Music in Manchester

First published in News Burnley and Pendle Citizen: Photograph of the Author by , Assistant news editor

THE coroner conducting the inquest into the death of a concert violinist abused by her predatory former choirmaster and his East Lancashire ex-wife has criticised her care by mental health services.

Richard Travers accused them 'failing' to look after mother-of-four Frances Andrade who died just a week after giving evidence against choirmaster Michael Brewer.

The 68-year-old from Birmingham was jailed for six years in March for indecently assaulting her when anunder-age student at Chetham's School of Music in Manchester.

His 68-year-old ex-wife Kay, of Knowl Gap Avenue in Haslingden, was jailed for 21 months for indecently assaulting Mrs Andrade when she was 18.

Working Coroner Mr Travers said Mrs Andrade was 'extremely traumatised' after testifying about abuse she suffered as a teenager at the hands of the couple, taking a fatal overdose at her Guildford home days later.

She did not live to see her abusers convicted two months later.

Mr Travers said he could not be sure she intended to kill herself.

He condemned the support received by the talented musician.

He said: "I can't help but think there was a real failure to appreciate the urgency of the situation and a failure to act upon it."

The coroner will write to the Director of Public Prosecutions to call for better legal and psychiatric support for vulnerable victims and to Surrey and Borders NHS Trust calling for greater safeguards to ensure such witnesses are better cared for.

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