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Greg Hill made trainee teacher’s life ‘a living hell, court told - but he claims he has been ‘set up’





A former head teacher made a trainee’s life “a living hell” by “trying to control her”, a court heard today.

But Greg Hill, taking to the stand for the first time this week, claimed he has been “set up” and that evidence against him has been “doctored”.

He also continued to slam his arrest by Norfolk Police, stating that “a lesser person would have died” during the incident.

This was the third day in Hill’s trial, which got under way on Tuesday.

He is accused of harassment without violence against Chloe Regester, who worked under him at Howard Junior School in Gaywood, as well as resisting arrest and breaching bail conditions. He denies all charges.

A verdict was originally scheduled for today, but delays mean a further day of proceedings will be required. Closing arguments will therefore be held at Great Yarmouth Magistrates’ Court on July 18 before the district judge overseeing the case makes his decision.

Greg Hill leaves court in Norwich today alongside barrister Mathew Dance
Greg Hill leaves court in Norwich today alongside barrister Mathew Dance

Today, once senior crown prosecutor Monali Raleraskar had closed her case against him, Hill provided evidence for the first time this week.

Having heard evidence that he previously declared his love for Ms Regester, Hill insisted throughout today that the feelings were reciprocal - and put the complainant’s comments about being uncomfortable down to her “hot and cold” nature.

On Tuesday, Ms Regester said she had been left “petrified”, “vulnerable” and “fuming”, alleging that Hill listened into her conversations at school, took photographs of her car while she was celebrating her brother’s birthday, and embarrassed her during an assembly.

And in cross-examination today, Ms Raleraskar said to the defendant: “I am going to suggest that unfortunately, Mr Hill, you were the one who harassed Chloe Regester. You made her life a living hell.

“It was all in your head, wasn’t it Mr Hill? I am going to suggest the reason why you can’t remember things accurately isn’t because you are confused - it is because you are lying.

“She never reciprocated her feelings for you when you made the first declaration (of love), did she?”

‘A SET-UP’

However, Hill was adamant that Ms Regester did feel the same way about him.

Ms Regester was first hired at Howard Junior School in September 2021 as a trainee teacher. Hill, meanwhile, had been head teacher at the school for around 15 years.

Today, Hill described an alleged phone call during which there was a “declaration of feelings” between them.

He said he swore “100% on this Bible” that Ms Regester’s mother could be heard in the background encouraging her daughter to share her feelings with him.

“I would only operate, as a head teacher, through mutual consent,” he said.

“With Chloe, she would be a little bit hot and cold. One minute she would cool off a bit, and the next she would want attention again. It was a bit confusing.

“She was flirting, she was getting attention from me all the time, and coming across with what I would call positive body language.”

Hill also discussed previous evidence put forward in the trial in the form of an audio recording made by Ms Regester.

She made the recording following a school assembly during which she claims Hill embarrassed her by saying she was hungover.

Attempts were made to play it aloud in court this week, but technical issues meant only certain sections were heard.

“She was setting me up, 100%,” Hill said today.

“The cogs were in place to set me up. Somehow, her and her mother thought, ‘Let’s get some financial gain out of this,’ and that is the vein it has followed since then.”

‘LOOKING TO YOU FOR LEADERSHIP’

Ms Raleraskar said that as head teacher at Howard Junior School, staff would have been looking to Hill “for leadership”.

However, she repeatedly asked him if he agreed with suggestions that he is an “eccentric character”.

The barrister therefore argued this combination would have played a part in the alleged harassment of Ms Regester.

“I am going to suggest to you that in the position you held, you had a particular influence over the newly qualified teachers,” Ms Raleraskar said.

“I am going to suggest that you became very fixated on her. You saw a very young shining star… you tried to control her, didn’t you?

“You tried to keep her away from other members of staff, didn’t you, so that effectively you were the only person that had full access to her?”

Hill denied the claims, and said that the relationship between him and Ms Regester “grew like a flower in a pot”.

“She said she had feelings for me. I said I had feelings for her, so that was the consensual way forward if you like,” he said.

“There was a romantic interlude in conversations.”

“I am going to suggest that these feelings are something that you have just made up,” Ms Raleraskar responded.

‘COLLUDING’

At the start of proceedings today, Isabel Rowe - a teacher who previously worked under Hill at Howard Junior School - took to the stand to testify against him.

She claimed she was also the subject of inappropriate behaviour from him during her first stint at the Gaywood school.

However, barrister Mathew Dance - representing Hill - asked why she would choose to return for a second stint at the school if she was as scared as she said she was.

Hill, meanwhile, made numerous statements hinting that he believes Ms Rowe has been “colluding” with Ms Regester and her mother to bring about the charges against him.

He also argued that a screenshot from Ms Regester’s phone showing a missed call from him could easily have been “doctored”.

However, he did make contrasting statements about whether the call was a “slip of the finger”, a misplaced attempt to delete Ms Regester’s contact details, or whether it existed at all.

DENYING THE ALLEGATIONS

Hill hit back at allegations that he forced Ms Regester to take trips to Sandringham with him following the death of Queen Elizabeth II in 2022.

“That would be impossible,” he said.

“I was in a state of shock and mourning for the Queen. She has been indirectly part of my life.

“I am sorry, but it was not about Chloe Regester at all - it was about the Queen.”

He also denied claims from the prosecution that he took a photograph of Ms Regester’s car while she was celebrating a family birthday at her father’s house.

Her father lives within a short walking distance of Hill’s home address at Valley Way in Fakenham.

Hill said that the police have forensically examined his phone and found no record of any such photograph.

‘IT IS ONLY BECAUSE OF MY SIZE I SURVIVED’

Earlier this week, the trial saw dramatic footage which captured the arrest of Hill in March last year. During it, he shouted: “This is like George Floyd in America.”

He became emotional and had to leave the courtroom when it was played - and today, he says he would struggle to watch it because the incident caused him “psychological injuries”.

However, when the courtroom was temporarily cleared, he did watch it before being questioned by Ms Raleraskar.

“A lesser person would not have survived… it is only because of my size that I survived,” Hill, a former special constable himself, said.

“I just had an onslaught. I thought I was going to die, to be honest. In my last struggle, I thought I was going to end up like him (George Floyd)”.

But Ms Raleraskar said: “I am going to suggest to you that you are lying about the officers assaulting you.

“You knew that your reputation was going to be destroyed. You knew you had finally been caught out.

“You can see that all the injuries caused to yourself were caused by yourself.

“That is what you do, isn’t it Mr Hill? When you are caught out, you start lying.”

Hill has claimed he was assaulted by 16 police officers during his arrest, causing injuries to his arms, legs, back and head.

Today, he said medication to help these injuries has led to his memory being affected.

WHAT NEXT?

Hill has been released on conditional bail until July 18, when he will return to court in Great Yarmouth.

The district judge will hear closing arguments from Ms Raleraskar and Mr Dance before retiring to decide whether or not Hill is guilty of the offences.

The trial continues.



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