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Last Updated:  Monday, 24 February, 2003, 21:35 GMT
Teacher's bullying claim fails
Scales of justice
Dr Grimshaw's claim for 250,000 was thrown out
A sixth form head at a top public school in Blackpool who alleged he was "bullied and intimidated" by the headmaster has lost his claim for damages.

Dr David Grimshaw, 55, claimed he suffered a breakdown under pressure from headmaster Bill Gillen and went on to claim 250,000 damages against Arnold School, Lytham Road, Blackpool, at the central London County Court in London.

But Judge Simon Goldstein found in favour of the school and dismissed the claim, saying evidence for Dr Grimshaw had been "exaggerated" and "malicious".

Judge Goldstein said: "I have come to the clear conclusion the allegation of bullying is a general distortion of the facts as referred to the headteacher."

'Foreful personality'

An essay by a 14-year-old boy describing the head's alleged arrogance was "irrelevant" and did not require consideration at all because of the critical way it was written, he said.

Dr Grimshaw had called other former members of staff to support his claims that Mr Gillen had acted like a bully on occasions over a five year period when he had been humiliated.

Mr Gillen told the hearing while he accepted he had a forceful personality he was not a bully.

The judge said Mr Gillen was under pressure to improve standards.

He said that what swung the case was his belief the chairman of the governors Sir Martin Holgate would have known had Mr Gillen been a bully.

Dr Grimshaw declined to comment after the case. His legal team have eight weeks to decide whether to appeal.



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