Earlier this year at the Council Meeting of Rotherham Council held on Wednesday 8 March 2017, Rotherham Labour’s Cllr Brian Steele and Cllr John Williams moved a motion calling on the Government to grant a Public Inquiry into Orgreave.
The motion read as follows:
“Rotherham Council condemns Amber Rudd, Home Secretary’s rejection on 31 October 2016 in Parliament of an Orgreave Inquiry as a grave injustice. We believe the events of 18 June 1984 here in Rotherham at Orgreave demand there be an inquiry.
This Council is appalled by the decision not to hold an inquiry into the policing of picket lines at the Orgreave coking plant 18 June 1984 Miners’ Strike. With this ruling, Amber Rudd has shown great contempt for the Orgreave Truth and Justice Campaign, many former miners, their families and communities who for more than 32 years have waited for the truth and who have displayed huge courage and tenacity in trying to hold the authorities to account.
This Council observes that even the Independent Police Complaints Commission said in their redacted report released June 2015 “that there was “evidence of excessive violence by police officers, a false narrative from police exaggerating violence by miners, perjury by officers giving evidence to prosecute the arrested men, and an apparent cover-up of that perjury by senior officers.
This Council is astonished that in the light of such statements Home Secretary Amber Rudd concludes that there are few lessons to be learned by the current police forces from any review of these events, that no one died, there was no miscarriage of justice, no convictions and therefore there will be no inquiry.
This Council notes that 95 miners were arrested and charged with riot offences, but all were later acquitted amid claims that South Yorkshire Police had fabricated evidence. There were also widespread examples of pickets being beaten unconscious by police officers. The miners suffered such treatment simply for exercising their right to protest against the threat to their jobs, their industry and communities.
It is shameful that as yet, no-one has to answer for the events of that day. Monday 31 October 2016 was a bad day for justice. We do however salute the decision of the Orgreave Truth and Justice Campaign to continue with its fight for transparency and a full public inquiry.
This Council will write to the Home Secretary asking that she takes into account the opinion of this Council, accepts that there is wide spread public concern about the events at Orgreave and calls on her to order an inquiry into them.
Proposer:- Councillor Steele Seconder:- Councillor Williams.”
On being put to the vote, the motion was carried by the Council.
You can watch the Orgreave Inquiry motion and the debate at the Council Meeting of Rotherham Council here.