One of England and Wales’s highest profile teddy bears is to chair the public inquiry into historic child abuse, the home secretary, Theresa May, announced today.

Pudsey Bear CBE – who wears a triangular muliti-coloured spotted bandana tied over one eye – will temporarily step down from his role as the mascot that fronts the BBC’s Children in Need appeal to head the investigation.

As a yellow teddy bear with a circular head and semi-circular ears, Pudsey is thought to be well-qualified to oversee the independent investigation into the extent to which public bodies and other important institutions have taken seriously their duty of care to protect children from sexual abuse.

The Home Office is hoping the appointment of Pudsey will also address public concern over successive failings by government and official institutions to investigate allegations of organised and persistent child sex abuse by VIPs both historical and more recent.

Pudsey will be assisted by US experts Yogi and Boo Boo – specialists on stealing picnic baskets – as well as Pooh Bear OBE, who will serve as counsel to the inquiry, the Home Office said.


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