More on Wooden-Leg French

I am still in the midst of sorting out paperwork for my French nationality application, and this is something I just hate doing. It revolts me to the tips of my fingers – as the French say – and it is all because of the same damned subject… However, it would be good to participate in French civil life and be able to vote, not merely Brexit-proof myself. Democracy is also a duty. I also have a big and boring translating order on, and I am still bogged down with my next Blue Flower article. I would like to get some more interesting articles written for this blog, something constructive and positive.

Something more has come up about Philip James French – The Reckoning of the Fake Catholic Bishop of Whitby?  I would certainly like to hear of an end to this travesty in that lovely little fishing town on the east coast of Yorkshire. For French himself, take away his money and he’ll go elsewhere, and no one will care. What about the church?

It would take someone who knows about law relating to trusts and ownership of property, especially an old proprietary chapel. English law can be quite a jungle, and this is an eighteenth-century building. A trust is a juridical person, but what happens to it if there are no physical members?

Supposing the town council could do something with the building, it would probably be to sell the building. It would go to a developer and be stripped out for some kind of commercial or business use. There used to be a bunch of worshippers from when St Ninians was with the ACC. The scandals started then, and people left, never to return under any circumstances. I don’t see this church being of any interest to the Ordinariate, and it would be difficult for the ACC to extirpate it from associations with Wooden-Leg-Soaked-In-Booze. It seems a lost cause…

The big questions is whether French has broken the law and would be of interest to the police, and what can be done about the trust. I am not very optimistic.

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5 Responses to More on Wooden-Leg French

  1. Ian says:

    Dear Father, a trust is not a juridical person, as it is unincorporated. Thus legal action cannot be taken against the trust (as it is not a person), but rather the trustees are jointly and severably liable for the actions of the trust. It seems that the Charity Commission are looking into the mater, and they can, in extremis, replace the trustees and make a Scheme to alter the governance of the trust. But I don’t know the full story, and so would not like to speculate.

  2. Stephen M. Martin says:

    it appears the church is up for sale. https://www.blenkinandco.com/properties-for-sale/property/9981228-baxtergate-whitby Not sure where Mr French has disappeared to.

  3. Mike Heslehurst says:

    Hi, I was visiting Whitby several years ago when I noticed a man dressed as a member of the church walking into a little church. I recognised him straight away as my old school mate Philip French. I managed to speak with him briefly and was surprised to hear of the position he held with the church and that he had trained in Rome. Philip was Church of England when I knew him and admitted to me he was gay. We swapped email addresses but I have not heard anything from him since. He always wanted to go into the church but I don’t believe he has received training in Rome etc… All very strange

    • He’s with this lot now. Look him up in the bishops section. I always take the attitude “If it looks too good to be true, it isn’t true”. I understand people going independent as bishops of priests, but not pretending to be what they’re not. These men pretend to be regular Roman Catholics.

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