Folk/rock performer Roy Harper faces nine sex charges against under-age girl in mid-seventies

Cork-based veteran folk and rock performer Roy Harper is facing charges in relation to a series of historic sex offences against an under-age girl.

The singer-songwriter, who has performed with Pink Floyd and influenced rock band Led Zeppelin, has been summoned to appear at Hereford Magistrates’ Court on Monday, West Mercia Police said.

The 72-year-old, of Rossmore, Clonakilty, Co Cork, is facing nine sexual offences charges in total.

A force spokesman said: “The summons relates to two counts of unlawful sexual intercourse with a girl under 13, three counts of indecent assault on a girl under 14, and four counts of gross indecency with a girl under 14.

“The charges are in connection with offences alleged to have taken place in Herefordshire between 1975 and 1977 and relate to one victim.”

The summons was issued to the musician on Oct 16, after Mr Harper was voluntarily interviewed by police at Heathrow Airport on Feb 22.

The prolific performer has produced more than 30 albums during his career, and continues to tour. His last album, Man and Myth, was released in September.

‘Forbidden Fruit’ poses questions

Valentine is the seventh album by English folk/rock singer-songwriter and guitarist Roy Harper. It was first released in 1974 by Harvest Records. However, one particular song on the album has come in for scrutiny in recent days, namely its opening track, ‘Forbidden Fruit’.

The lyrics include the lines:

“Baby, won’t you play with me?/

Games that no one else can see?/

Leanin’ over out my window/

Flashing me a mini flower show/

Steal away from mummy, oh there’s my little girl/

On the pillow of my tummy give my hair a curl/

Run your fingers under and over, make us a little pool/

And don’t forget about tomorrow in the same place after school/

Baby, make me calm your fears/

Let me hold your 13 years/

In between the silky, love me/

Race my heart and let...


It came as quite a surprise to learn that I had been writing my Weekend column in the Irish Examiner for 21 years — how the years have flown by and how the food scene has changed in Ireland over those two decades.A letter from Darina Allen, celebrating 21 years writing for The Irish Examiner

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