A MAN from Old Colwyn charged with 20 sexual offences “grossly abused the trust and responsibility” placed in him as headmaster of a Bangor secondary school, a court heard.

Neil Foden, 66, of Gwynant, denies all charges put to him in connection with his time as head of the school.

Foden, whose trial began at Mold Crown Court today (April 22), is accused of the following:

  • 13 counts of sexual activity with a child.
  • Two counts of sexual activity with a child by a person in a position of trust.
  • Causing/inciting a child to engage in sexual activity.
  • Possessing indecent images of a child.
  • Sexual assault of a child.
  • Sexual communication with a child.
  • Attempting to arrange the commission of a child sexual offence.

His charges relate to alleged incidents dating between April 2019 and September 2023, with five different alleged victims.


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During today’s trial opening, prosecutor John Philpotts outlined details of the case before the jury.

An image was shown to the jury of Foden with his arm around a child in what the prosecution describes as an “inappropriate embrace”.

A sequence of text messages also showed Foden making reference to oral sex, as well as what he proposed to do to one of the children.

Foden was arrested in early September 2023 after the allegations had been reported to the school and Gwynedd Council, and has been remanded in custody since then.

Mr Philpotts told the court that Foden told one of his alleged victims that they must “take it to the grave and not tell anyone”.

Sexualised images of a child were discovered on his mobile phone following his arrest, as well as messages he had sent such as: “I’d love another video xx”.

Following Foden’s arrest, his car was searched by police, who recovered a pair of handcuffs from it.

These handcuffs were forensically examined, and DNA consistent with being from Foden and an alleged victim was recovered.

Mr Philpotts also said that Foden had exhibited a “fetish for urination” during the course of his alleged misconduct.

He said that, when officers interrogated a laptop associated with Foden, they found that, between 2010 and 2012, he had accessed material related to “girls, urine and urination”.

During his initial police interviews, he declined to answer all questions put to him by officers.

When he was spoken to by police again, in late October 2023, he submitted a short prepared statement denying any sexual activity with children.

He then submitted a further statement one month later denying any sexual contact between himself and one of his alleged victims.

But, Mr Philpotts said, Foden has never answered questions put to him concerning any of the allegations.

Foden, sat in the dock wearing a blue jacket and jeans, occasionally shook his head as the prosecution’s opening statement was read out.

The trial is expected to last three to four weeks, and will continue at Mold Crown Court tomorrow morning.