Key Documents

This page contains the key documents produced during the statutory phase of the inquiry as well as a list of archived documents from the non-statutory phase.

Terms of Reference and List of Issues

Terms of Reference

This document outlines the updated Terms of Reference for the Inquiry after it was converted to a statutory inquiry. Published 1 June 2021.

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List of Issues

This is the completed List of Issues for the Inquiry following a process of consultation with core participants and other interested persons. Published 17 November 2021.

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Written Submissions for the Preliminary Hearing on 8 November 2021

Written submissions received by the Inquiry ahead of the Preliminary Hearing on 8 November 2021.

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Protocol for Warning Letters

This document sets out a Protocol for Warning Letters pursuant to The Inquiry Rules 2006.

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Protocol for Providing Oral Evidence at Hearings

This Protocol sets out how the Inquiry will approach oral hearings and the questioning of witnesses.

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Core Participants to the Inquiry were notified on 28 March 2024, of the Chair’s intentions regarding the questioning of witnesses in forthcoming hearings in Phases 5 and 6 of the Inquiry.  This document “Minded to” was shared with Recognised Legal Representatives of Core Participants, with a request that any objections be submitted to the Inquiry by 4pm on 4 April 2024.

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Protocol on Witness Statements

UPDATED on 24/01/23: This Protocol sets out the approach that will be taken by the Post Office Horizon IT Inquiry to the taking of witness statements.

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Protocol on Redaction, Anonymity and Restriction Orders

UPDATED on 21/09/21: This protocol sets out the approach that will be taken by the Inquiry to redaction of information from documents, anonymity and Restriction Orders.

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Core Participant Protocol

This document explains what a Core Participant is and the rules governing applications to be designated a Core Participant in this Inquiry.

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Protocol on the disclosure of documents

This Protocol sets out the approach that will be taken by the Inquiry to the disclosure of documents to the Inquiry.

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Protocol on the role of the assessors

This document describes the role of an assessor and the powers of the Chair in relation to the appointment of assessors.

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Costs protocol relating to legal representation at public expense

This document sets out regulations around costs, expenses and funding for the Inquiry.

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UPDATED on 02/12: Notice on recording, live broadcasting and the use of electronic equipment

A notice setting out what kind of recordings and equipment will be allowed during Inquiry hearings.

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Notice of Preliminary Hearing

Notice of Preliminary Hearing on 8 November 2021, 11:00 – 4:00 Venue: to be confirmed

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Statement of Approach 004

This document provides updates and information regarding the conversion of the Inquiry to a statutory inquiry under s.15 of the Inquiries Act 2005.

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Restriction Orders

Restriction Order - 19 April 2023

A Restriction Order following an application from the Metropolitan Police Service to restrict access to a small number of documents.

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Restriction Order - 4 November 2022

A Restriction Order relating to the redaction of evidence provided to the Inquiry by a Phase 2 witness.

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Restriction Order - 3 February 2022 - as varied 15 June 2022

An order granting anonymity to certain individuals designated as Core Participants to the Inquiry.

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General Restriction Order - 24 November 2021 - as varied 16 June 2023

A general restriction order relating to the disclosure or publication of any evidence or documents given, produced or provided to the Inquiry.

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UPDATED on 02/12: Restriction Order - 2 November 2021

This order by the Chair of the Inquiry will ensure that evidence given to the Inquiry in oral hearings remains confidential until published by the Inquiry.

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Expenses Guidance

This document outlines what expenses participants can claim for when attending the Inquiry hearings and how to submit a claim.

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Appropriate Policy

This document outlines how the Inquiry will protect special category and criminal convictions personal data.

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Core Participants

Named Core Participants and their recognised legal representatives

This document outlines the named core participants and their recognised legal representatives.

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Become a Core Participant

Sir Wyn can appoint Core Participants at any stage during the Inquiry, and this may be something you wish to consider. Information about how to become a Core Participant to the Inquiry is available here.

Information is also available here about applying for legal representation in the Inquiry at public expense.

Phases of the Inquiry

In his announcement published 21 December 2021, the Chair confirmed that the Inquiry would be approaching the hearings in phases.  Since that announcement, the Inquiry has commenced hearings relating to the human impact of the Horizon IT System (Horizon).

The Inquiry confirms that it will approach its work according to the phases outlined below:

Phase 1 Human Impact: the human impact suffered by those adversely affected by Horizon.

Phase 2 Horizon IT System: procurement, design, pilot, roll out and modifications.

Phase 3 Operation: training, assistance, resolution of disputes, knowledge and rectification of errors in the system.

Phase 4 Action against Sub-postmasters and others: policy making, audits and investigations, civil and criminal proceedings, knowledge of and responsibility for failures in investigation and disclosure.

Phase 5 Redress: access to justice, Second Sight, Complaint Review and Mediation Scheme, conduct of the group litigation, responding to the scandal and compensation schemes.

Phase 6 Governance: monitoring of Horizon, contractual arrangements, internal and external audit, technical competence, stakeholder engagement, oversight and whistleblowing.

Phase 7 Current practice and procedure and recommendations for the future.


5 May 2023 - Correspondence with Post Office Limited regarding POL's Annual Report 2021/22

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12 August 2022 - Correspondence with Post Office Limited clarifying disclosure to the Inquiry

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27 September 2022 - Inquiry publishes submissions on its Terms of Reference on behalf of Core Participants Nichola Arch, Lee Castleton, Tracy Felstead, Seema Misra and Janet Skinner, together with the Inquiry’s response

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Memoranda of Understanding

Memorandum of Understanding between the Post Office Horizon IT Inquiry and the Metropolitan Police Service

This formalises the arrangement for how the Inquiry will work with the police with respect to their own investigations which are being conducted independently and under separate legal powers. 

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Archived Documents

This section contains documents created and published when the inquiry was in the non-statutory phase (29 September 2020 - 31 May 2021). These documents are kept for historical relevance. Information and documentation about the statutory phase of the inquiry is found at the top of this page.

Statement of Approach 001 - participant engagement methods

Statement of Approach 002 - information handling and publication approach

Statement of Approach 003 - the people surveys, independent adviser appointment, and updates to information handling and publication

Statement from the Chair, 19 May 2021

Archived GOV.UK webpages and documents