MPs in the North East and North Yorkshire have voiced their horror in the wake of a drama series illuminating  "the biggest miscarriage of justice in the country". 

Mr Bates vs. The Post Office has enraptured the nation this week, retelling the story of the British Post Office, where a faulty IT system, Horizon, led to life-devastating prosecutions of fraud, theft and false accounting for postmasters. 

Years on, 2,417 postmasters that claimed through the original Horizon Shortfall Scheme have had offers of compensation, totalling £87million. Tragically, many died before receiving payouts, with the scandal linked to at least four suicides."

Postmasters were "specifically lied to and misled" about issues with the Horizon accountancy system.

Kevin Hollindrake, MP for Thirsk, and Postal Services minister in his role in the business department, called for the ex-Post Office boss Paula Vennells to hand back her CBE. 

She worked as the chief executive of the service from 2012 to 2019 and saw postmasters wrongly jailed during her tenure. 

He told Good Morning Britain: "Paula Vennells has got her CBE for services to the Post Office I think that matter needs to be looked into.

"Ultimately you’ve got responsibility for what happened here, you’re the chief executive. If I was Paula Vennells I would seriously consider handing that back voluntarily. 

He added: "Absolutely I support [criminal prosecutions] if there is evidence there that people are guilty of a crime who worked for the Post Office at whatever level. 

"It is not for me to judge what the police should take forward as a prosecution or not as an independent part of a system, but I would welcome it.

"But we've got an inquiry, looking at all the evidence, and that will identify who is responsible in the post office, or indeed in Fujitsu and those people will be held to account."

Kevan Jones, Labour MP for North Durham, has been a vocal campaigner for postmasters in his patch since the scandal broke nearly a decade ago, and had written to the Honours Committee calling for Paula Vennells to be stripped of her CBE. 

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He said: "I was first alerted to this scandal over a decade ago by my constituent who had his life ruined by the Post Office.

"I have been campaigning for justice for subpostmasters ever since and I pay tribute to the tireless work of Alan Bates and so many others who continue to fight for proper compensation and redress.

"Along with compensation for all the victims, we need to see justice. Those who were responsible for the wrongs inflicted on subpostmasters, and the biggest miscarriage of justice in our country, must be held to account."