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Lawyer who helped quash convictions of former sub-postmasters hopes TV drama ‘Mr Bates vs The Post Office’ leads to more seeking justice


Dr Neil Hudgell

Executive Chairman

4 min read time
19 Dec 2023

Starting on New Year’s Day, a new four-part ITV drama, ‘Mr Bates vs The Post Office’, is set to tell the incredible story of how 736 former sub-postmasters were wrongfully convicted – some sent to prison – for crimes they hadn’t committed.

The Post Office used evidence from its Horizon accounting system to prosecute over branch shortfalls – a system ultimately found to have been faulty and unreliable, causing discrepancies in the accounts.

People were told to plead guilty to crimes or face prison. They lost their jobs, their homes, and their lifesavings as they were forced to pay the Post Office money it claimed had gone missing. Families were torn apart, reputations were destroyed.

In 2020, Hudgell Solicitors took up the fight to overturn their criminal convictions and clear the names of those affected, and to pursue full and fair compensation for all affected.

In our exclusive Podcast Series, solicitor Neil Hudgell, discusses the case, the fight for justice, why Hudgells is proud to represent and help those affected and why Neil believes so many others are yet to come forward.

  • Podcast 1 – A scandal so ‘unbelieveable’
  • Podcast 2 – The impact on sub-postmasters’ lives
  • Podcast 3 – The key players in pursuit of justice
  • Podcast 4 – The £600,000 compensation offer
  • Podcast 5 – What next? The fight for justice & accountability continues

Legal proceedings have established routes to appeal and compensation

In September 2023, the Post Office announced it would pay a minimum of £600,000 to all former sub-postmasters who have their convictions quashed.

Yet, despite this significant breakthrough, Mr Hudgell remains frustrated that there are still more than 600 people yet to come forward and seek justice.

If you’ve suffered as a result of the post office scandal and want to speak to us, request a call back from our Horizon team today.

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Cast of ITV drama ‘Mr Bates vs Post Office (ITV photo)

“One of the frustrations over the past few years has been the huge numbers we know were prosecuted but have not come forward for help. I believe there are a raft of reasons for that,” he said.

Just recently our legal team was contacted by a former sub-postmistress who had been convicted and contacted twice by the Post Office to say she would be able to clear her name.

She has only just come forward now as she feared the process, and thought it would cost her money, which is not the case as the costs are covered either by Legal Aid or the Post Office themselves.

We’ve an established process in place which means we are in great position now to help, much better than three years ago when we were beginning the process of challenging convictions.

Hudgell Solicitors are one of the legal firms at the forefront of the continuing fight for justice for former Sub-postmasters who were victims of what is now recognised to have been the biggest miscarriage of justice in UK legal history.

If you are interested in following updates on the post office scandal, the ongoing public inquiry and compensation schemes, sign up to our newsletter here

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Watch: ‘Two Decades – The Fight For Justice’

Our documentary film tells the story of the Post Office scandal through the eyes of the victims fighting to overturn their wrongful convictions.

Read more: Post Office Horizon Legal Representation

Appeal verdict for Postmasters at Royal Courts of Justice (Court of Appeal) for Hudgell Law

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Lawyer who helped quash convictions of former sub-postmasters hopes TV drama ‘Mr Bates vs The Post Office’ leads to more seeking justice

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