Home Office: Amber Rudd never committed to set up Orgreave inquiry

The Home Office has rejected suggestions that Home Secretary Amber Rudd made any commitment to campaigners to establish an inquiry into the 1984 clash between police and miners at Orgreave.

Ms Rudd announced on Monday that there would be no statutory inquiry or independent review into the confrontation at the Rotherham coking plant, which saw violent scenes involving thousands of police and striking miners.

The decision came as a shock to many who had campaigned for a full public inquiry as they said they had been given the impression that some kind of review would be established.

On Tuesday, a Home Office spokesman said: "The Home Secretary met the campaign and their supporters on 13 September to hear their concerns in person.

"The Home Secretary has told the Orgreave Truth and Justice Campaign (OTJC) that she considered a range of options in reaching her decision but at no point did she ever commit to establishing any form of inquiry."

The OTJC and the National Union of Mineworkers is to hold a news conference in Barnsley to respond in detail to Ms Rudd's decision.

Michael Mansfield QC says Orgreave campaigners are considering a judicial review. Credit: Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire

The campaigners will study a six-page letter from the Home Secretary before deciding their next steps, although Michael Mansfield QC, who acted for some miners involved in failed prosecutions following the 1984 clash, said a judicial review was being "actively considered".

He said Ms Rudd's meeting with campaigners earlier this year had been "disrespectful".

He told the BBC Radio 4 Today programme: "I thought it was a meeting which was disrespectful to the families. There were questions asked which plainly showed she hadn't been properly briefed and, more importantly, she had, I think, made a decision then."

Ms Rudd said she made the "difficult decision", supported by Prime Minister Theresa May, because "ultimately there were no deaths or wrongful convictions" resulting from the conduct of South Yorkshire Police.