Force-Feeder Given Child Work Ban

A former nursery manager found guilty of force-feeding youngsters in her care has been banned from ever working with children again.

Gillian Gold, 63, of Macbiehill Farm, West Linton, in the Scottish Borders, had denied ill-treating children at the town’s Country Kids Nursery.

She was found guilty at Peebles Sheriff Court and placed on a list of people unsuitable to work with children.

Gold was also fined £1,000 by Sheriff John Horsburgh.

She denied the offence, between March 2005 and August 2007, but was convicted after a three-day trial.

The sheriff described her attitude to children as “excessively disciplinarian”, adding: “My impression is that the accused is somewhat impatient, intolerant, and lacked sympathy towards children.

“If that was her order of the day when she was a mother, well things have changed.

“She fed these children in an inappropriate fashion.”

Former and current workers at the West Linton nursery told the trial how they saw children being sick as Gold forced food into their mouths.

‘Instant dismissal’

Caroline Hogg said she quit her job at Country Kids after only three weeks because of the force-feeding and contacted the Care Commission watchdog with her concerns.

She told the trial: “I have never come across someone feeding children like this.

“It would have been instant dismissal at any other place I’ve worked.”

The nursery’s owner – Gold’s daughter – said her mother had not done anything wrong, but Sheriff Horsburgh dismissed her evidence.