Home Entertainment Alan Bates ‘turned down offer to open Glastonbury’ as former subpostmaster leading...

Alan Bates ‘turned down offer to open Glastonbury’ as former subpostmaster leading fight against the Post Office ‘can’t be bought’

15
0


The former subpostmaster leading the fight against the Post Office has ‘turned down an offer to open Glastonbury’, the actor who plays him in the ITV drama Mr Bates vs the Post Office has revealed.

Toby Jones starred as prominent campaigner Alan Bates in the hit show, which told the story of the hundreds of subpostmasters wrongly accused of stealing money from the Post Office in the Horrizon IT scandal.

Glitches in the computer system used by the Post Office meant money looked as if it was missing from many branch accounts, when in fact it was not.

Bates, now 68, founded the Justice for Subpostmasters Alliance, and led a group of 555 subpostmasters who took the Post Office to the High Court.

The scandal is seen as one of the UK’s biggest miscarriages of justice and Jones said he had ‘played a hero’ in the four-part series.

Speaking at the Hay Festival, Jones said: ‘I get to play a hero. Really, someone who I think of as a hero. Someone in the culture who just doesn’t seem to be subject to the same forces that we all are.’

Alan Bates (pictured outside the Post Office Horizon IT Inquiry) founded the Justice for Subpostmasters Alliance, and led a group of 555 subpostmasters who took the Post Office to the High Court

Alan Bates (pictured outside the Post Office Horizon IT Inquiry) founded the Justice for Subpostmasters Alliance, and led a group of 555 subpostmasters who took the Post Office to the High Court

Jones starred as the prominent campaigner in the hit ITV show Mr Bates vs the Post Office

Jones starred as the prominent campaigner in the hit ITV show Mr Bates vs the Post Office

Jones revealed that Bates had been offered the chance to open Glastonbury, but the former subpostmaster had turned it down (file image of Glastonbury's pyramid stage)

Jones revealed that Bates had been offered the chance to open Glastonbury, but the former subpostmaster had turned it down (file image of Glastonbury’s pyramid stage) 

Jones also claimed Bates ‘can’t be bought’ and believes the former subpostmaster  will not stop until justice is served.

Jones said: ‘He can’t be bought. He’s asked to open Glastonbury. “No, thank you”. He’s asked to do these things, he doesn’t want to do any of that. He says, “I’ve got work to do”, which is to get that stuff done.’

The scandal, which was ongoing from 1999 until 2015, has seen more than 100 subpostmasters have their convictions quashed by the Court of Appeal.

Last week, Former Post Office boss Paula Vennells cried as she gave evidence during three days of questioning at a public inquiry into the scandal.

The shamed 65-year-old also told the hearing in London that there are ‘no words’ that will make the ‘sorrow and what people have gone through any better’.

Earlier this year, ITV bosses announced the first episode of Mr Bates vs. the Post Office had been watched by 9.2million viewers, with the four episodes being the most watched programmes on any channel so far this year. The series, including the documentary, has now reached 14.8million people.

When asked about why the ITV drama was such a success, Jones said: ‘There’s a feeling of outrage, justly, and the story is told very clearly, and it’s by no means obvious.

‘Computer software malfunction is not an obvious thing to make a drama about.’

Bates, now 68, was a key figure in exposing one of the UK's widest miscarriages of justice

 Bates, now 68, was a key figure in exposing one of the UK’s widest miscarriages of justice

The campaigner was famously played by Toby Jones, centre, in an ITV TV drama

The campaigner was famously played by Toby Jones, centre, in an ITV TV drama

Paula Vennells was the CEO of the Post Office between 2012 and 2019, while the firm was falsely prosecuting subpostmasters on the basis of poor data from the Horizon IT system

Paula Vennells was the CEO of the Post Office between 2012 and 2019, while the firm was falsely prosecuting subpostmasters on the basis of poor data from the Horizon IT system

The ITV drama highlighted the Horizon IT scandal causing significant public outrage

In May, Bates said he would reject compensation over the scandal for the second time after the Government offered just under a third of what he has requested.

He revealed he was offered just 30 per cent of what he believes he is owed.

This was the second offer that Mr Bates had rejected, the first offer in January was around 16 per cent and he described it as ‘cruel, offensive and derisory’.

Mr Bates was sacked from his Llandudno branch in 2003, when he refused to accept blame for shortfalls on his account.

After years of campaigning against this decision, he would uncover that he was just one of around 900 sub-postmasters who were wrongly prosecuted over the software issues.

Some of these people were sent to prison after being convicted of false accounting and theft, some had their finances left in tatters and some will never see justice as they have since died.

The Government set up a compensation scheme for these postmasters called the Group Litigation Order (GLO), that opened last year to ensure the claimants received extra money to reflect the gravity of their situations.

Applicants in this scheme can also opt to settle their claims on a full and final basis for a total fixed sum of £75,000, inclusive of interest, instead of making a claim for their individual losses.



Source link

Previous articleNow Luke Littler turns to after-dinner speaking: Teen darts ace, 17, could earn ‘up to £10k-a-night’ speaking at glitzy events as he looks to cash in on meteoric rise to fame by trademarking famous nickname
Next articleMiss Universe’s transgender co-owner is caught saying ‘trans women, married women and divorced women’ can compete in beauty pageant but CANNOT win, in bombshell leaked video

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here