The government is to provide extra funding to help cover the costs of the legal teams representing South Yorkshire Police and former officers at the Hillsborough inquests.
South Yorkshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner, Shaun Wright, received a letter yesterday confirming the additional funding from Home Secretary Theresa May.
The PCC said he applied for support in funding the legal teams in November, last year.
Mr Wright said the exact amount of money had not been confirmed which had left him ‘disappointed’ but it will cover those designated as ‘interested persons’.
Home Office officials and the PCC’s staff will work through the details.
Mr Wright said: “I’m grateful to the Home Secretary for supporting my special grant application, although somewhat disappointed with the lack of certainty as to what this means in financial terms.
“The funding of these legal teams is essential to ensure the inquests can properly explore all aspects of the day, its planning and aftermath leaving no stone unturned.
“There are five legal teams representing those designated as ‘interested persons’ for the inquests, which I have to fund.
“These are the current chief constable and four teams of former South Yorkshire Police officers. All of those legal teams come at a cost.
“Refusal to fund the legal representation would likely have led to a judicial review, and potentially a significantly higher cost to the taxpayer.
“Any additional funding from the policing budget, a budget which has already been and continues to be cut significantly, would adversely impact on the safety of people in South Yorkshire.
“This was not an option so I requested support.”