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SHREWSBURY 24 picket campaigners have won a “momentous victory” by winning the right to a judicial review of their cases.
The 24 were construction workers involved in the industry’s first national strike in 1972, which resulted in a substantial pay rise.
However, weeks after it ended police began arresting construction workers who had taken part.
Mr Justice Jay, sitting in the Administrative Court in Birmingham, has now given permission for the pickets’ application for a judicial review to proceed to a full hearing.
Picket Terry Renshaw said: “It is a momentous victory for the campaign. When we left the court we were delighted with the decision and felt a great sense of achievement after campaigning for the past 12 years to overturn this miscarriage of justice. We are nearly there.”
The judicial review is likely to take place in spring and will look at whether the destruction of original witness statements by the police, which was concealed from the defence and court by the prosecution, amounted to an abuse of process.
It will also consider whether the broadcasting by ITV of a documentary titled The Red Under the Bed during the trial was highly prejudicial to the pickets’ case and should have led to the halting of the trial.
Campaign chairman Harry Chadwick said: “I want to thank our trade-union supporters for the unwavering backing that they have given to us, as we would not have got this far without it.
“The fight is not over yet. We need your continued support to raise funds for the forthcoming hearing.”
The campaign is backed by 21 trade unions.
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