source: Express & Star
published: 26 September 2016
Relatives bereaved by the 1974 terror attacks had asked Home Secretary Amber Rudd to establish a fund similar to that created for the families represented at the Hillsborough stadium disaster inquests.
Ms Rudd has turned down the request, made by nine of the families, but said she supports their application for legal aid funding through the conventional route of the independent Legal Aid Agency (LAA). The families’ lawyers have been working pro bono to date.
Twenty-one people were killed and 182 injured when suspected IRA bombs exploded in two city centre pubs on November 21 1974.
Six men wrongly convicted of the murders – the Birmingham Six – were released in 1991 after their convictions were overturned by the Court of Appeal.
An inquest opened days after the bombings was closed without hearing evidence in 1975 in response to the guilty verdicts. Relatives campaigned for years for the inquest to be reopened to probe what they said was a litany of unanswered questions, including claims that police failed to act on intelligence that could have prevented the attacks.