Into the Horizone
Good morning secret emailers
I had just about run out of gas yesterday evening when a secret emailer contacted and me and noted I hadn’t written anything about what she considered the biggest revelation of the day. She was completely right. In my defence I did tweet it when it came up, but tweets are far more transient.
So I present to you – finished at around 2am this morning: Miscarriages of Justice – a report on what happened during a key moment in court yesterday. If anything needs to be read widely of all the material we have heard so far it is this. If Eleanor hadn’t reminded me about it this article wouldn’t exist. Enjoy.
It has come at the cost of a few hours sleep which doesn’t bode well for my live tweeting today, but in for a penny…
Finally a minister actually says something potentially useful
This just in – the minister for postal services, Kelly Tolhurst, has written to MPs. This is from her letter:
“This first judgment deals with the contractual relationship between the Post Office and postmasters. It is important to note that it does not deal with matters of breach or liability. The judge has, however, been highly critical of the Post Office’s handling of the case and finds that over the long period of time addressed by the judgment, there have been times when Post Office’s conduct in its dealings with the lead claimant postmasters have been heavy-handed, some of its operations insufficiently transparent, and its procedures and processes lacking in consistency and professionalism.
The judgement is complex and lengthy and the Post Office will need time to consider in detail, including whether it has a case for appeal. However, having spoken over the weekend with the Chairman of POL, I am assured they have acknowledged the criticism, are taking it very seriously, and will be taking appropriate action where necessary.Legal proceedings in this case are currently scheduled to continue until at least March 2020. While this dispute remains a matter for the courts, it is clearly not appropriate for Government to comment further. However, I will be remaining in close contact with the Post Office over the coming weeks and months as they deliver on their commitments to improve.”
Fine words so far, but you wouldn’t even get that from successive postal ministers throughout this scandal.
There is some gossip flying round. One nibble is that a director of the Post Office resigned yesterday, and the second is that a short notice meeting called by Julie Thomas, the Post Office’s Network Operations Director has been called at Chesterfield today. The email calling the meeting has stated it should be prioritised above everything else.
The rest of yesterday’s reports are below with the added extra bonus material of Angela van den Bogerd’s witness statement.
And the Post Office has agreed to release more documents to me and the witness statements electronically.
There’s a change a comin’…
Please feel free to forward this email. The more people who read it, the more people find out about what is the biggest trial going through the UK courts right now.