Participation

The Inquiry is determined to hear from relevant people, in order to set out a comprehensive record of the failings that occurred and subsequent impacts, whilst ensuring it is able to deliver findings and recommendations in a timely way.

See below for how you might want to get involved with the Inquiry, or be required to do so.

  • Submit formal evidence
  • Listen and learn
  • Become a Core Participant

Submit formal evidence

The Inquiry requests anyone who holds documents relevant to the Inquiry’s Terms of Reference to supply these. If they have not already been contacted, any person in possession of relevant documents should contact Solicitor@postofficehorizoninquiry.org.uk so that necessary arrangements can be made for receipt of those documents.

To provide a witness statement to the Inquiry on matters you feel are relevant to the Inquiry’s List of Issues please contact Solicitor@postofficehorizoninquiry.org.uk. If you provide a witness statement, this does not necessarily mean that you will be called to give oral (sworn) evidence at a hearing, though all witness statements will be treated as evidence and considered by the Chair.

The Inquiry is currently focussed on phases 2 – 7, set out below. More detail on the phases of the Inquiry can be found here and in the List of Issues.

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.


Human Impact Testimony

Between February and May 2022 the Inquiry held public hearings in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland, hearing evidence from more than 70 people, including affected subpostmasters, subpostmistresses, managers or assistants, about the impact the failings surrounding the Horizon system have had on their lives and the lives of their families and others. The Inquiry also held virtual Focus Groups to learn more about these impacts. To date the Inquiry has gathered information about the human cost from almost 200 affected people.

The Inquiry greatly values these contributions which are helping it to develop a comprehensive picture of how the issues it is examining have affected subpostmasters and their families and communities in different ways.

If you missed the Human Impact phase but have evidence you feel is critically important to share with the Inquiry, we are still listening, and may want to consider such evidence as part of further phases of the Inquiry. Please look at the evidence we have already heard, and if you feel that your experiences are significantly different or in contrast, please contact Solicitor@postofficehorizoninquiry.org.uk to discuss how we can accommodate this.

Anonymity: Evidence given to a public inquiry is generally made available to its Core Participants, however there are some circumstances in which the Chair may grant anonymity. If you decide you want to submit a formal witness statement to the Inquiry you can simultaneously apply for anonymity.


Listen and Learn

Much of the Human Impact evidence and experiences that the Inquiry has already heard highlights the negative effects that being accused of wrongdoing had on people's relationships and positions within their communities.

While this may make for difficult listening or reading, the Inquiry considers it important that everyone should be able to hear about the suffering that affected sub-postmasters, sub-postmistresses, and post office workers endured.

We publish witness statements that have been adduced in our public Hearings, as well as transcripts and video recordings of all Hearings and Focus Groups. Please follow the below links to access these:

Witness statements

Recordings and transcripts

 

Please note that these pages contain content which people may find distressing. It is important that anyone visiting this website thinks carefully about the impact that reading or seeing the material might have on them. In the context of the Inquiry’s processes, confidential emotional and psychological support services are available to witnesses, their supporters and Inquiry participants through PAM Wellbeing. Find advice and information on how to access these services here.


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.