Orgreave decision ‘a slap in the face’ for campaigners, says Sheffield MP

Miners Strike 1984'Orgreave Coking Plant'Police with riot gear move pickets - 18 June 1984
Miners Strike 1984'Orgreave Coking Plant'Police with riot gear move pickets - 18 June 1984
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Sheffield MP Louise Haigh has called for a full public inquiry into the Battle of Orgreave after the IPCC refused to investigate allegations of police misconduct.

Miss Haigh, Labour MP for Sheffield Heeley, has written to Home Secretary Theresa May to demand action following the IPCC decision, which Miss Haigh called a ‘slap in the face to the communities who have campaigned tirelessly for an investigation’.

Ninety-five miners were arrested at Orgreave coking plant, on the Sheffield-Rotherham border, on June 18, 1984, after clashes with police during the national miners’ strike.

When the cases against the arrested miners came to court, all were abandoned when it became clear police evidence was unreliable.

The IPCC said the ‘passage of time’ and its impact on an investigation, plus the fact many police officers had now retired so no disciplinary action could be taken, were considered as part of its decision.

Calling for a public enquiry, Miss Haigh said: “Such an investigation would shine a light on the serious allegations of wrongdoing against South Yorkshire Police including perjury, perverting the course of justice, misconduct, and whether the actions of the police were influenced by the highest levels of government.

“All of which the IPCC has concluded there is evidence of.

“The decision not to investigate is an abdication of responsibility.

“I have called on the Government to set up a full public inquiry to consider allegations of misconduct by the force and to establish whether there is evidence of systemic failings or conspiracy to deceive the public and the courts.”