Shame on Amber Rudd – refusal to open an Orgreave inquiry sends a grave message

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Tuesday 01 November 2016 13:48
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Amber Rudd
Amber Rudd

Amber Rudd’s decision not to hold an inquiry into the events at Orgreave, the violent confrontation between police and striking miners in 1984, is shameful and her reasons are shocking. She explains her reasoning by stating that “ultimately there were no deaths or wrongful convictions”. So the police can behave as they please so long as they are careful not to kill anyone, and they can make wrongful arrests so long as they don't lead to convictions?

Rudd also says that because policing has changed since the time of Orgreave there are no lessons to be learned. One obvious lesson that should be learned is that possible wrongdoings by the police will be fully investigated, however long ago they occurred, regardless of whether anyone died, and regardless of whether there were any wrongful convictions. Shame on the Home Secretary.

Beryl Wall

London W4

Congratulations to cartoonist Dave Brown for his brilliant use of a memorable image from the troubled time of the miners’ strikes.

If our Home Secretary can look at it and not wonder why she is in politics, then one must speculate at the capacity of our leaders to feel any sort of shame or remorse for her and her colleagues in denying the hearing so needed to lance the boil from this episode in our recent history.

Mike Flisher

Northumberland

The Orgreave non-inquiry epitomises the May administration. This is not the open, plural leadership that a modern democracy deserves. Instead we have an introverted, unelected prime minister doing business behind closed doors. Her colleagues, with the exception of Boris Johson, are non-entities that make even Hillary Clinton look interesting. And they are dragging the country into a future they have no mandate for.

Mark Grey

London WC2

More consistency from Brexiteers, please

I have been struck by the furore over Mark Carney’s role as Governor of the Bank of England and speculation that he will depart the post earlier than anticipated (1 November).

A number of Tory Brexiteers, such as Jacob Rees-Mogg, a member of the Treasury Select Committee, Lord Lawson, the former Chancellor, and Daniel Hannan MEP believe that the Governor should resign immediately.

The reason given for this is the so-called “political interventions” he made in the run-up to the EU referendum.

This is intriguing given that Carney’s comments on the UK and the EU were a lot less forthright than those he made in the run-up to the Scottish independence referendum, when he questioned the compatibility of a currency union with sovereignty.

It is rather puzzling that these same individuals so critical of Carney’s “political” intervention in the EU debate were so quiet when it came to the Scottish independence referendum.

Alex Orr

Edinburgh

While I am pleased to note that the Government is giving assurances to Nissan, surely even Theresa May must see the irony in effectively protecting from the risks of Brexit, potentially at taxpayers' expense, a local population that voted overwhelmingly for Brexit.

I draw a company pension that is only inflation-protected to a limited percentage, as opposed to the safeguard provided by many public service pensions, including those of MPs. So will the Government give myself and others in a similar position an assurance that if, as a result of Brexit, the rate of inflation climbs above that level of protection, my fellow taxpayers will make up the difference?

Brian Phillips

Address supplied

A novel solution to the London airport expansion row

Those of us outside the London bubble can see numerous solutions to the UK’s airport expansion problem, currently a squabble between Heathrow and Gatwick. As a non-Nimby, I offer two examples close to home.

Cranfield Airport, on the eastern edge of Milton Keynes, is situated in a sparsely populated area and could be expanded to the size of a new Heathrow. It’s close to the M1, with potentially, at modest expense, easy access to the M40, A1, M6 and A14, and right on the main rail link between London, Birmingham, Manchester and Glasgow. Existing rail links west and east to Oxford, Cambridge and beyond could be upgraded relatively cheaply.

Unwilling to knock down the villages east of Cranfield? Another viable option nearby is Stewartby, southwest of Bedford in the middle of an unattractive area pockmarked by gravel pits, old brick works and landfill sites, with the benefit of already being on the rail line connecting the East Midlands not only to St Pancras for Europe, but also to the newly enlarged Farringdon Crossrail, providing super-fast links to Heathrow, Reading and East London. Happily there's also already a direct line to Luton and Gatwick airports.

I cannot see why these alternatives, and others, are apparently not even being discussed or assessed. Perhaps it's time for the blinkers to come off so that the UK can, without further delay, climb out of the political gridlock and legal minefield it's in.

Kim Thonger

Rushden, Northamptonshire

Research shows veganism is best for all

World Vegan Day is 1 November. If you want to help stop animal suffering, combat climate change, and improve your health, then eat tasty vegan meals today and all year round.

Studies show that people who eat plant-based foods are less likely to suffer from heart disease, diabetes, and cancer than their meat-eating counterparts and that vegans are responsible for two and a half times fewer food-related greenhouse-gas emissions. Researchers with the Institute of Social Ecology in Vienna believe that the only way to meet the expected global food demand in the year 2050 – without sacrificing any forests – is for everyone to go vegan.

Research also shows each vegan spares approximately 100 animals every year the terror of the abattoir.

Let's do our part to help animals and the environment – and reduce our risk of developing life-threatening diseases – by eating vegan foods instead of animal-based ones.

Jennifer White

Peta UK

London N1

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