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I Didn't Belong: Chapter Nine - Kelvington

"The following morning I was loaded onto a coach
handcuffed to the seat and taken to Kirklevington
Detention Centre...''

Ronnie Cook is sent for what used to be called the short sharp shock treatment - and finds that life is indeed tough for young wrong-doers sent to Kirklevington.

Ronnie's inspirational story brings the message that a way of life can be changed - that darkness can give way to light.

Do buy Ronnie's book I Didn't Belong. To obtain it type the title in amazon.co.uk

The following morning I was loaded onto a coach
handcuffed to the seat and taken to Kirklevington
Detention Centre near a small place called Yarm.
To look at it was what appeared
to be an old army type camp with a seventeen foot
high rigid wire fence topped with what I found to be
called Hess wire around the top.

This is what used
to be called a short sharp shock, and believe me it
was. You have to remember this was crown
property and normal rules and regulations didn’t
apply. I dare say that anyone of a similar age to
myself there at the time I was will tell you exactly
the same. I was fourteen years old at the time.
Needless to say I was a little apprehensive as we
approached the centre situated in the middle of
nowhere surrounded by trees. This was so we
couldn’t see to the outside world or because the
government didn’t want people becoming aware of
the centre’s location or what happened there.

As we entered the big gates, the officers on the coach
suddenly changed from jovial chaps to the sadistic animals
they actually were. They made a
point of giving a taster of things to come.
When the coach stopped outside reception, a
screw grabbed me and tried to pull me from the
coach whilst I was still handcuffed to the seat, while
another unlocked me. This was a man we referred
to as shiny shoe Dixon, we soon found he was so
evil due to the fact that he had been attacked by
an inmate and left scarred on his left cheek. So as
you could imagine, to him everyone that came
through the gates were scum and were treat

I was then dragged and kicked into the
reception area slung against the wall and told to
stand to attention and read a notice on a small
piece of paper with very small print on it. They
actually tried to force my face into the wall.
Inevitably my face went to the left so I couldn’t see
what I was supposed to read. They then asked me
questions about what I was supposed to be reading.
Of course I couldn’t answer, so they decided to beat
me for being a stupid little disgusting filthy gypo so
and so! I was then placed in a freezing cold holding
cell over night, as we didn’t arrive until late that

At this point that I realised that this was going to
be a long, hard few months. I decided the thing for
me to do was to try and behave myself and
conform to the rules. The next part of induction was
just as bad. I stood at attention at the reception
desk whilst my details and dietary requirements
were sorted. When I tried to explain my wants were
a normal diet I was told good ‘cause we don’t do
Paki food or gypo swill as it is not fit for normal
proper people.’

I was then forcibly stripped and
dragged to a bathing area and thrown into a
freezing cold bath filled with what appeared to be
cold water and gallons of that disinfectant that was
used to clean outside drains. They then threw me a
floor cloth along with a floor scrubbing brush and
told me to clean myself up, so I did. But was told I
wasn’t doing it hard enough so they took turns in
scrubbing me with a yard brush. I was then allowed
to get out of the bath to dry myself with a wet dirty

My next humiliation was to be made to run
naked from one end of the centre to the other,
where I was forced to sit in a chair and have my
head shaved, with the taunts of, “Someone should
have squeezed this blackhead at birth” or “It’s
obvious that blackheads are full of puss or you
wouldn’t be here!” I then had to run back to the
reception area where I was given a heap of clothing
and other bits: razor, nail brush, bedding and
everything else I needed for my term of internment.

Everything we did was in military double time. We
were shown how to pack our kit and how to display
it for inspection on Sunday afternoons. We were
told to put our gym kit on and line up where we
were taken to the gym to do what we found was a
daily compulsory circuit training. God that was hard!
The thing we weren’t aware of was whatever time
you completed the circuit in you had to do better
next time or you would be punished in some way.
So all of us being young and apparently tough guys
tried to out-do each other to set a mark of
superiority. What a big mistake. We all found to our
detriment as each time we did it we either were
punished or we punished ourselves, as we had to
go faster. We then had a shower in cold water
allowed to dress and go for our evening meal.


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