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An actor known for his roles in Coronation Street and Emmerdale actor is banned from teaching after ‘acting out his sexual fantasies and flirting with schoolgirl’ at a £39,000-a-year boarding school.
Coronation Street actor, Anthony Bessick, has been banned from teaching after acting out his sexual fantasies with a schoolgirl and flirting with two other teen pupils.
Alongside his acting career, he was working as a drama coach at Tring School of Performing Arts under his real name Anthony Cooke.
The 57-year-old has now been banned from the classroom for life over his sordid behaviour at the £39,000-a-year boarding academy in Hertfordshire.
Bessick acted in four roles on the Cobbles – gangster Lewis Knox, Street Cars cabbie Vernon Bradshaw, dying hospital patient Mike Scott and fireman Vince Lonsdale.
Anthony Bessick, 57, whose real name is Anthony Cooke, has been banned from teaching after acting out his sexual fantasies with a schoolgirl and flirting with two other teen pupils
Bessick is best-known for his roles on Coronation Street, including gangster Lewis Knox, Street Cars cabbie Vernon Bradshaw, dying hospital patient Mike Scott and fireman Vince Lonsdale
He played Mike Scott again on Harry Hill’s TV Burp, poking fun at his character’s death scene.
The Bolton-based actor, who specialises in ‘Bad Boy’ roles, also appeared in The Royal, Emmerdale, Boy Meets Girl, The Street, Kay Mellor’s The Chase, and Truth Dare Kiss.
Tring has produced some of Britain’s biggest stars – most recently Lilly James, X-factor singer Ella Henderson, and Life after Life’s Jessica Brown Findlay.
A misconduct panel was told Bessick was involved in filmmaking with the students and would comment on their performances via social media and text.
But with three girls, referred to only as Pupil A, Pupil B, and Pupil C the conversations took a sinister turn.
On the night of the school ball in July 2016 he ‘took Pupil A to the staff room and offered her beer from the fridge according to co-workers who interrupted him.
He messaged her, begging her to indulge his sexual fantasies of ‘being squashed’, ‘crushed’, and ‘sat or stood on top of’, teaching watchdogs found
While living on the grounds as school caretaker, he messaged Pupil B: ‘You should come down for a ghost hunting sesh
A misconduct panel was told Bessick was involved in filmmaking with the students and would comment on their performances via social media and text
‘Not too bad after a few shots of voddy.
He shared a picture of two pairs of naked legs on a bed and messaged her: ‘Uni, shmuni…can be a waste of c***ing time.
‘Just been for a costume fitting today…have to wear a big f**k off moustache… look like a Victorian porn star.’
He began to pester Pupil C while she was a student taking part in one of his productions in 2015, and then again in 2018 by which time she was an established performer.
Congratulating her on her performance on Facebook, he drooled: ‘I love what you did and it’s sometimes hard to separate the actress from the role. I am saying this on FB as I would find it hard to say to you in school.’
Three years after she had left, he reconnected with her in 2018, asking for a personalised animated logo to promote one of his school movies and perform for him as well.
Alongside his acting career, he was working as a drama coach at Tring School of Performing Arts
John Knowles, the Education Secretary, underlined: ‘The panel found that Mr Cooke was responsible for sexually motivated conduct using his position to engage with pupils’
He told her: ‘Be cool having some top totty in the logo. Could u squish a real one if need be?
Told me class that an ex Tring, top totty superstar may be in their film.’
He also asked her to perform an act related to one his sexual fantasies, according to Penny Griffith, who chaired the Teaching Regulation Agency hearing.
She said: ‘Mr Cooke’s conduct affected the way he fulfilled his teaching role, since he had blurred the teacher pupil boundary and demonstrated a disregard for School policies.
‘Furthermore, his actions exposed those pupils to his sexual fetishes.’
Finding Mr Cooke was guilty of unacceptable professional conduct, Ms Griffin added: ‘He has referred to having lost a position that he loved.
‘But he has not demonstrated an understanding of the impact on pupils and the school. His actions spanned a number of years.
‘The nature of his communications with pupils and former pupils was sexually motivated, and on one occasion culminated in acting out his fantasies with a pupil in the school.
‘He accepts that he was sexually motivated when he engaged in this conduct, in that it was done in pursuit of sexual gratification.
‘Mr Cooke had engaged in sexually motivated conduct in that it was done in pursuit of sexual gratification as his actions related to his own sexual fantasies.’
Banning him for life, John Knowles, the Education Secretary, underlined: ‘The panel found that Mr Cooke was responsible for sexually motivated conduct using his position to engage with pupils and former pupils for his own sexual gratification.’