Orgreave campaigners at Westminster as fight for Hillsborough-style inquiry continues

The Battle of Orgreave.
The Battle of Orgreave.
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Campaigners from South Yorkshire are attending a conference in London today as they continue to fight for a Hillsborough-style inquiry into the infamous ‘Battle of Orgreave.’

They were invited to the event at the Palace of Westminster by Shadow Home Secretary Andy Burnham.

A spokesman for the Orgreave Truth and Justice Campaign said: “This conference will highlight the current position for the campaign and enables campaigners to talk to a range of MPs and peers from all parties.”

This afternoon’s ‘Campaigning for Justice Conference’ comes after the group handed a legal submission to Home Secretary Theresa May in December.

Campaigners want her either to establish an independent panel, similar to the one that looked into the Hillsborough disaster, or to order a public inquiry.

A spokesman said: “We are currently seeking a second follow-up meeting with Theresa May.

“Home Office officials are undertaking an initial review of our Orgreave submission which raises ‘extensive and detailed issues’, which need to be thoroughly analysed.”

A Home Office spokesman said: “The Home Secretary is considering a submission from the Orgreave Truth and Justice Campaign on the need for an inquiry relating to events at Orgreave.

“She will set out the Government’s position in due course.”

Campaigners were left disappointed last June after the Independent Police Complaints Commission announced it would not investigate alleged police misconduct surrounding the miners’ strike.

Ninety-five people were arrested in the clash between picketing miners and police in June 1984, during the national Miners’ Strike.

When the cases came to court, all were abandoned due to unreliable evidence and later South Yorkshire Police paid out £425,000 in out-of-court settlements to 39 pickets.

The IPCC said it would not investigate Orgreave due to the passage of time making it unable to pursue allegations. IPCC deputy chair Sarah Green said at the time: “Because the miners arrested at Orgreave were acquitted or no evidence offered, there are no miscarriages of justice due to alleged police failures for the IPCC to investigate.”