Church of England row over historic sex abuse apology

The Church of England is in a dispute over an apology to a survivor of historic sex abuse.

Matt Ineson survived sex abuse at the hands of the Church when he was a child, but says he never received an apology.

The Church says they have apologised repeatedly.

Matt Ineson Pictured (Centre top) protesting outside Canterbury Cathedral last year.

The Archbishop of Canterbury said in a recent interview that he has personally apologised to Matt and would chase up the National Safeguarding Team for an apology he was promised from them.

Justin Welby said: “I’m surprised he hasn’t received it, I am aware that I’ve apologised, so he has had an apology from me.

“I apologised to him in person when he came to see me.”

Commenting on what The Archbishop said, Matt Ineson dismissed the comments: “Justin Welby has never apologised to me. Nobody has.

“I double checked with my solicitor, who was present at the one time I met him and he confirmed that the Archbishop did not apologise at all and wouldn’t really talk about the case.”


Survivors of historic sex abuse and campaign group It’s Time held a protest outside of Canterbury Cathedral in October 2017 during the annual Primates Meeting.

WATCH: Interview with church sex abuse survivor Andy Morse – footage courtesy of Unified

Canterbury Cathederal Protest – It’s Time – Andy Morse

@AndyMorseUK speaks to Unified about the alleged Church of England sexual abuse cover up.

Matt says justice for survivors is an easy thing to do. Victims should be given the support they need whether that be counselling, medical, psychological or financial.

A spokesperson for the National Safeguarding Team said: “This matter has been taken very seriously by the Church since it came to their attention.

“Both Archbishop Justin and Bishop Peter Hancock, the Church’s lead safeguarding bishop, have issued personal apologies for the appalling abuse that Matthew suffered.”

One year on

One year after Matt Ineson was abused and he says nothing has been done.

Matt’s abuser, Trevor Devamanikkam was found dead at his home and is thought to have taken his own life on the same day as the trial.

Matt’s abuser Trevor Devamanikkam took his own life – Picture: Oxford Mail

Matt said: “It is over one year since my priest abuser was charged with three counts of rape and three counts of indecent assault of a child, me.

“One year and still nothing”

“It is almost a year since my priest abuser took his own life on the day he was due in court. That has tremendously added to the stress I suffer from and yet no one in the church seems to care.”

“One year and still nothing.”

The Church has been contacted for further comment but had not replied by the time of publishing.