Legal bid submitted for ‘Hillsborough-style’ inquiry into Orgreave

Orgreave campaigners are submitting legal papers to Home Secretary Theresa May today as they push for a ‘Hillsborough-style’ public inquiry.

The Battle of Orgreave unfolds in 1984. Campaigners are now calling for a public inquiry.
The Battle of Orgreave unfolds in 1984. Campaigners are now calling for a public inquiry.

The Orgreave Truth and Justice Campaign have also created a video about the events of the infamous Battle of Orgreave as they push for an independent panel to be set up to examine what happened.

The current ongoing Hillsborough inquests, investigating the deaths of 96 football fans at the ground in 1989, came about after an independent panel was created.

The Orgreave campaign is being supported by Michael Mansfield QC, who said the events surrounding it represent ‘one of the worst cases of collusion and corruption’ in recent history.

Campaigners were left disappointed in 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.

Mr Mansfield said a ‘disclosure exercise’ of documents related to Orgreave may help the understanding of what happened.

He said: “When you look at Orgreave, it is too important to be brushed aside.

“It has undermined faith not only in the police but in the political system itself to allow the prosecution of so many people quite wrongly to acquittal and compensation of a kind. But there has been no accountability, no authority of any kind ever brought to book over this.

“Looking back over the last 50 years, it is one of the worst cases of collusion and corruption. Until this boil is lanced, none of us should rest happily.”

Former miner John Dunn said: “It is the anger at the injustices that were dealt to hard-working people who were called by the Prime Minster of the day ‘The Enemy Within’.”

The IPCC said it would not investigate Orgreave due to the passage of time making it unable to pursue allegations.