Released On 7th Feb 2018
Robsonshaw Solicitors are acting on behalf of clients who allege they were sexually abused by former football scout and youth coach Eddie Heath.
Reportedly also known as Ted, Eddie Heath worked as a football chief scout in the 1960s and 1970s and looked out for new young footballing talent. He was part of the coaching set up at East London club Leyton Orient before joining Chelsea. Heath was dismissed from his job at Chelsea by player-manager and World Cup winner Geoff Hurst in November 1980 and given an ex-gratia payment of £7,500.
Heath then joined Charlton Athletic as a scout and coach. It is alleged Heath continued to sexually abuse the young footballers and found the opportunity to do so while ferrying the boys to and from sessions at Charlton’s training ground in Eltham, South London. Heath would try and separate a boy from the rest of the team. One victim has said when they were alone on the 12-seater mini-bus, with nobody else around to witness what was going on, Heath would touch the boy’s leg and try to kiss him. Heath would also hang around the showers after training to carry out his abuse. Often Heath simply laughed at the terrified by “as though it was normal”. Heath died in the early 1980’s of a heart attack.
One survivor of Heath’s abuse wrote to a letter to the FA telling them what had happened and, naming Eddie Heath as the person who had done it and naming Charlton Athletic. Speaking recently, he says of the FA
“I begged them to investigate so it wouldn’t happen to any youngsters coming through the ranks.
But I never got a reply back or any response, I don’t know if it was thrown in the bin but I did write it.
It makes me angry. I was abandoned then and I still feel like nobody cares. I just want answers.
I would love to speak to some of the other coaches at Charlton now. I am sure someone at the club knew.”
Charlton Athletic have not admitted any fault. Regrettably the club has adopted a technical defence and say that any claims are now too late to consider. This is a matter of regret as there are vulnerable survivors who are being denied the compensation they deserve. However, if there are other survivors who allege they were abused by Eddie Heath at Charlton Athletic or indeed any other club then we would like to hear from you. The more people that now come forward with similar allegations the more difficult it will be for the club to deny liability.
Your comments will be treated in complete confidence and there will be no obligation on you to instruct us. If you or a family member have been affected by the Eddie Heath scandal, please contact solicitor Robert Shaw on his direct dial, 01392 345332.