Brian Richard Martin, aged 71, of Ferrensby, Knaresborough
Brian Richard Martin, aged 71, of Ferrensby, Knaresborough

Queen Ethelburga’s School owner Brian Martin sent to prison for non-recent child abuse offences


The owner of Queen Ethelburga’s School near Harrogate has been sent to prison for three years and three months for non-recent sexual abuse of a boy and a girl.

  • Brian Richard Martin has been jailed for three years and three months
  • Conviction follows a retrial for a case that was put before a jury in 2018
  • Investigating officer paid tribute to the bravery shown by the victims

Brian Richard Martin, aged 71, of Ferrensby, Knaresborough, was sentenced at Leeds Crown Court today (Friday 2 July 2021) following a retrial for a sexual assault on a boy in the late 2000s that was first put before a jury in 2018.

Martin was also found guilty of indecent assault on a girl in the early-to-mid 1990s at another retrial held in 2019.

He was acquitted of six other child sexual abuse offences at the original trial in 2018.

Martin has been placed on the Sex Offenders’ Register.

Detective Sergeant Graeme Bevington, who led the North Yorkshire Police investigation, said:

Brian Martin was a well-respected member of society and a successful businessman. It was due to his success as a businessman that he was able to purchase Queen Ethelburga’s School which he moved from Harrogate to the Thorpe Underwood Estate where he lived with his family.

The students who attended the school considered it to be safe and family oriented, and Brian Martin was a key figure at the school.

Despite significant investment being made in the school, all this served to do was to create an environment that Martin could exploit for his own sinister gains.

He preyed on the vulnerability of the students and was able to manipulate circumstances which allowed him to sexually abuse two children who were boarding students and therefore isolated from their families.

The school was supposed to be a safe place for the victims, and they should have been able to trust all adults and staff at the school.

They could not have possibly conceived that it would be at this supposed safe place where they would be harmed so significantly by someone in a position of trust.

The bravery shown by the victims in this case to speak out against their abuser cannot be praised highly enough.

They have had to give evidence in open court about the most vulnerable and traumatic experiences of their lives and re-live the dreadful abuse that was forced upon them many years ago when they were just children.

The courage and conviction behind their evidence has led to Brian Martin being publicly exposed as the predatory paedophile that he really is.

They have finally had justice for what they have had to endure for so long.


  1. Finally justice is served. It has taken a long time to get there and now all of those abused by him can move forward and know children are safe while he is behind lock & key. I pray others will now come forward and find the courage to expose him. I am so proud of everyone who fought this manipulative, wealthy man to prove money doesn’t buy you everything. We’ll done to the police and all those involved who preserved to bring him to justice.

  2. How deep does this depravity go? I read on ( Wikipedia) that two other male staff members have also been found guilty of similar misconduct. Further scrutiny by the police must surely follow. Please do not let this drop. Parents talk to your children. As for Martin, 3yrs is a joke, for a person in such a powerful position, who else knew of his activities? and failed these children by not speaking out.

    • I agree and I’m worried my son boards there as of sept just gone. Wow. It’s the firts I’ve heard of this.

  3. Why has this taken so long to come out, he was observed in the 90’s in his car with a school girl publicly near Goldsborough! I guess money or naivety of the local judge, he is probably as prolific as Jimmy Saville, and should be put away for life.

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