September 24, 2020 3.18 pm This story is over 15 months old

Former priest denies sexually assaulting young boy

He’s back in court in October

A former priest denied sexually assaulting a teenage boy in Grimsby in the 1980s when he appeared at Lincoln Magistrates Court on Thursday.

Terry Atkinson, 68, from Tetney Road in Humberston, is accused of five counts of indecently assaulting the boy, who was aged 15 to 16.

Lincoln Magistrates Court heard that the offences were said to have taken place when he was involved with St Johns and St Stephens Church Centre, which is now known as the Shalom Youth project on Grimsby’s East Marsh Estate.

Atkinson was bailed to appear at Lincoln Crown Court on October 22.

Father Atkinson, who also served at St Francis Church in Cleethorpes and St Andrew’s Church in Grimsby, was once invited to a Garden Party at Buckingham Palace in July 2009 to acknowledge his service to the community as a Church of England priest, according to Grimsby Live.

It comes as part of a Lincolnshire Police investigation codenamed Operation Redstone into historic sexual abuses cases within the Diocese of Lincoln.

Operation Redstone

Three men were convicted – Roy Griffiths, John Bailey and Stephen Crabtree – for historical sexual offences against children and vulnerable people.

The trials highlighted a culture of coverups in the church.

Investigations found decades of allegations had been ignored by former Bishops of Lincoln.

Abuse cases were not referred to police until decades later, it was revealed in the Church of England Past Cases Review.

Victims also spoke out the first time in a BBC Panorama documentary.

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