A FORMER music teacher who filmed a pupil naked in his bath has denied having an underwater sexual fetish.

Giving evidence at Snaresbrook Crown Court today, Michael Crombie said the pupil, who played the recorder, was only in the bath to help her improve her breathing.

He said he filmed the pupil, who was seven-years-old when she started seeing Crombie for lessons in 1991, so the pair of them could watch her holding her breath and he could give feedback.

Dermot Keating, acting on behalf of Crombie, asked why the pupil had been tied up in some of the video footage.

Crombie, of Monkhams Avenue, Woodford Green, said there was "an element of fun" to it.

Mr Keating asked why the video showed the alleged victim trying to undo the tie while Crombie held her underwater.

Crombie said: "If you time those moments, (underwater) we are obviously aware from watching the video that she was capable of staying underwater for at least two minutes.

"None of those holds ever exceeded that sort of time.

"It looks dreadful I can't argue with that."

The 73-year-old, former Wanstead High School music teacher, said he knew the alleged victim could cope and "you might say it's not much fun but it was not intended any other way".

He said he only touched the pupil's head and chest to ensure she stayed underwater.

Earlier in the trial prosecutor Sandy Canavan suggested Crombie took sexual pleasure out of filming the alleged victim holding her breath in his bath.

Asked if he took any sexual gratification out of the filming, Crombie instantly replied "absolutely not".

In response to comments on film where he could be heard saying "I'm just about to drown one of my pupils," Crombie called it a "silly flippant remark".

The former teacher also admitted creating an alias, Edna Barrett, who he told the alleged victim was a writer with The Recorder magazine.

He said he made up the fictional character in an attempt to motivate the pupil by claiming the imaginary reporter would write an article about her if she held her breath for longer.

Crombie has denied 28 charges of indecently assaulting nine girls aged under 16, seven charges of making indecent images of a child and one charge of possessing indecent images of a child.

The trial continues.