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    Post Office appoints new director to oversee historical remediation programmes

    Ben Tidswell

    Post Office has appointed Ben Tidswell as a new non-executive director to head the newly established board sub-committee for historical remediation programmes.

    The Historical Remediation Committee will direct actions to address past failures, and the committee’s remit includes overseeing Post Office schemes providing compensation for postmasters affected.

    Last year, Post Office established the Historical Shortfalls Scheme (HSS) for postmasters who may have experienced shortfalls related to previous versions of Horizon. The scheme has received around 2,500 applications with around 450 claims settled.

    A Freedom of Information request has revealed that Post Office is facing £311 million in claims as part of the scheme.

    Separately, the government has announced funding support to expedite interim payments of up to £100,000 for individuals whose convictions have been overturned in Horizon cases. Post Office said the committee will also decide its position in future appeals by people seeking to have convictions overturned in the courts.

    Tidswell retired from legal firm Ashurst in July, serving 21 years as a partner and the last eight years as the firm’s global chairman. He will have a three-year term at Post Office board.

    “I am delighted to welcome Ben to the Post Office Board. The depth of his legal experience, including the resolution of disputes, will help Post Office to deliver fair redress efficiently as we compensate those impacted by historical failures,” Tim Parker, Post Office chairman, said.

    Commenting on his appointment, Tidswell said: “I am pleased to have been appointed to the board as the Post Office implements its strategy to become a commercially sustainable and sought-after franchise with Postmasters at the centre of its business. For this to happen, it must fairly and transparently resolve issues of the past and I am looking forward to playing my part in helping Post Office to achieve this.”

    Alongside Tidswell, Zarin Patel and Tom Cooper are part of the Historical Remediation Committee.

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