Child victims of the infected blood scandal have claimed they were considered to be “cheaper than chimpanzees” when it came to their treatment for haemophilia in an NHS clinic at Lord Mayor Treloar College and Florence Treloar School in Alton in the 1970s and 1980s.

Gary Webster, Steve Nicholls, Ade Goodyear and Richard Warwick have spoken out about how they received blood clotting products containing HIV and hepatitis in advance of the publication of public inquiry chair Sir Brian Langstaff’s final report.

“We believe that haemophiliac boys as young as eight years old were recruited to Treloar’s for medical research purposes. Not only into the progressive treatments of haemophilia, but predominantly for research into blood borne viruses and infections, such as hepatitis and HIV. The effects and data were gathered on this ‘unique cohort of boys’ and they were subsequently exploited. We were ‘cheaper than chimpanzees’.

“We claim that infected commercial products were knowingly used on children within Treloar’s when safer products or alternative treatments were available.

“We are outraged that the above was allowed to happen without our knowledge or any parental consent whatsoever. We were children being used as lab rats.

“Our parents entrusted care of their children into the hands of Lord Mayor Treloar College, enabling them to act in loco parentis. It was a conscious decision made by them not to contact our parents regarding treatments, or any risk of infection to ourselves or others.

“It is our claim that Treloar’s failure in their duty of care to us is documented within the evidence supplied to this public inquiry. We are anticipating Sir Brian Langstaff’s report will contain a chapter dedicated to the tragedy that unfolded within Treloar’s, and we expect it to be most damning.

“It is essential to learn from its past mistakes and recognise what went on.”