Chetham's School of Music
Chetham's School of Music, one of the UK's most prestigious performance academies.Wikimedia Commons

A former teacher at one of the UK's most prominent music schools has been cleared of raping an 18-year-old pupil in the 1980s.

Malcolm Layfield, 63, of Castle Quay, Castlefield, denied using his "power and influence" to sexually assault the woman after allegedly getting her drunk during a music summer school in Cornwall.

The complainant said she "gave in" and then went on to have consensual sex with him over the following six weeks out of fear he would take work opportunities away from her.

The former violin teacher at Chetham's School of Music told Manchester Crown Court sex had been consensual with her and he was not in the position to "destroy people's careers". He also admitted to a number of other consensual sexual relationships with students in the 1980s, which was reportedly common knowledge at the time within musical circles in the area.

A jury took less than 90 minutes to have him acquitted of the offence.