The Victoria Park Hotel is a short walk from the bustling Manchester thoroughfare known locally as the ‘Curry Mile.’ The establishment offers budget accommodation at cheap prices (£45 for a single bed).
Standards at the hotel reflect the bargain-basement rates. Several ground-floor windows are boarded up. Guests have complained of mould in bathrooms, marks on walls and ceilings, and dirty bed linen.
Room 38 is on the first floor. It is also where, just before midday on August 9, 2013, a young girl found herself trapped and about to be subjected to the most degrading and terrifying ordeal imaginable. She was 16, an A-grade student from a middle-class family, who had just completed her GCSEs at a leading private school.