THE Church of Scotland minister at the centre of the Orkney child sex

abuse allegations had a hot-water bottle in his main bedroom with a

legend referring to a sexually abused youngster as The Big Boy, the

inquiry was told yesterday.

The Rev. Morris McKenzie and his wife Jan were among a close-knit

group of South Ronaldsay islanders who sent letters, postcards, and

gifts to eight children from the W family.

Former Orkney social worker Mrs Sue Millar said yesterday much of the

correspondence contained coded messages which were later linked to

allegations by three of the children of an organised child sex abuse


Many of the letters were read to the inquiry yesterday by Mr Hugh

Campbell QC, representing the Royal Scottish Society for the Prevention

of Cruelty to Children.

Constant references were made to love hearts, Brownies, and the Boys'

Brigade, and a middle-aged woman referred to one of the boys, BW, as The


Mrs Millar told the inquiry police had informed the social work

department about a hot-water bottle taken from Mr McKenzie's manse.

Mr Campbell showed her a photograph of it. He said it had come from

the main bedroom of the manse and bore the legend ''B -- The Big Boy.''

He asked: ''Did that fit in with the nature of the correspondence from

others who were referred to in the W children's disclosures?''

She said: ''Yes, in terms of a sexual context with the Rev.


The inquiry was told that Mrs W sent one of her daughters, AW, a poem

which said: ''No harm can come to one another, when we love each sister

and brother.''

Mr Campbell asked Mrs Millar if that was a poem she fixed upon given

the history of abuse between brothers and sisters within the W family.

She said one of the other girls mentioned having a sexual relationship

with her mother and ''it all began to fit into place''.

Mr Campbell: ''If it be that there has been connection between brother

and sister that the mother was aware of, did it seem to you that this

was a particularly revolting reference in terms of it being sent to a

child of tender years?''

Mrs Millar: ''I think it is a very inappropriate reference. I would be

resistant to being too judgmental given the very difficult situation

that incest obviously is.''

The eight W children were taken from Orkney last November when one of

the girls revealed abuse within the family.

In February three of the children -- aged seven, eight, and nine --

told social workers that orgies had taken place in an Orkney quarry and

that Mr McKenzie and some adults had abused children.

Police and social workers took away nine children on February 27.

Mr Campbell said the correspondence which gave rise to concern came

from four main sources: the W household; Mrs T; Mr and Mrs M; and Mr and

Mrs McKenzie.

He asked Mrs Millar about letters from Mrs T to nine-year-old BW in

which she called him ''B -- the beast''. Mrs Millar said that Mrs T

often wrote ''I love you'' on her notes to BW.

Mr Campbell asked her if her concerns about such references were

heightened after the nine children were taken into care.

Mrs Millar: ''In terms of the statements that the girls made about

having seen BW sexually involved with Mrs T and saying that BW was very

sad and not happy about it.''

Among the other letters and cards read out by Mr Campbell yesterday


* References to German lessons. One letter from the McKenzies to AW

read: ''Dear A. Are you getting any German. I am told you are missed in

class.'' Mrs Millar said the girl was too young to be learning German.

* Constant references to rainbows. The girl QW, while making sexual

allegations, began to draw a rainbow, a girl in a wheelchair, and

someone coming out of the rainbow. She then became upset and drew an

even larger rainbow.

* Constant mention of Brownies and the Boys' Brigade, including a poem

from Mrs W to QW which read: ''Darling Q, please be glad. Think of all

the love you've had.'' The letter referred to a Brownie pack.

* When the children made their allegations, some said they were

dressed in BB, Brownie, or cowboy uniforms before being abused.

The inquiry continues.