Calls for Sir Clement Freud scholarship to be renamed over sexual assault allegations

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Photo: University of St Andrews

A woman who was allegedly sexually assaulted by former politician and St Andrews rector Clement Freud has called for the University scholarship associated with him to be renamed.

Rosemary Rimmer-Clay, now 62, was allegedly attacked by Freud when she was 19 and a student at the University of Dundee, where Freud also served as rector for two terms from 1974-1980.

She is the fourth woman to make allegations of sexual assaults and predatory behaviour and waived her anonymity to make public her experiences.

The Metropolitan Police are currently investigating the claims.

In the wake of the claims, Ms Rimmer-Clay has called on the University, where Freud was rector between 2003 and 2006, to change the name of a scholarship programme named after the late MP.

The call comes after a wave of allegations of sexual assault were made against him.

Sylvia Woosley, who first met Freud when she was 10 and was sent to live with him at 14, told the ITV Exposure programme that he abused her for several years.

A second woman, who wants to remain anonymous, claimed he abused her as a child and raped her when she was 18.

In a statement, his widow Jill Freud said, “This is a very sad day for me.

“I was married to Clement for 58 years and loved him dearly.

“I am shocked, deeply saddened and profoundly sorry for what has happened to these women. I sincerely hope they will now have some peace.”

A spokesperson for the University said, “These are shocking allegations and as you are aware the Metropolitan Police are investigating. We should all wait until those investigations are concluded.

“At that time the decision whether to rescind his honorary degree or association with the Sir Clement Freud Scholarship will be a matter for the University’s senate business committee.”

The Clement Freud Scholarship forms part of the Wardlaw Scholarship scheme, established in 2004 to provide financial assistance to academically gifted students who would otherwise struggle with the cost of studying at St Andrews. Applicants must be able to demonstrate sporting excellence.

Clement Freud defeated candidates such as Germaine Greer to become rector of the University of St Andrews in 2002.

At the time of his death, President of the Students’ Association Andrew Keenan said that, “Sir Clement was a popular and eccentric character amongst the student body.”

No allegations have yet been made against Freud regarding his time as rector of St Andrews between 2003 and 2006.

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