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Families of Birmingham pub bombing victims slam lack of funds

By Jemma Crew

Published 06/09/2016

Meeting: Amber Rudd
Meeting: Amber Rudd

Families of some of the Birmingham pub bombings victims said they feel frustrated and disappointed after a meeting with Home Secretary Amber Rudd to secure legal funding did not produce "the expected results".

Families of nine of the 21 victims met with the Home Secretary on Monday following senior coroner for Birmingham and Solihull Louise Hunt's landmark decision in June that fresh inquests should take place into the deadly blasts.

Legal representatives have so far been working pro bono, but the families say funding is urgently needed for their upcoming legal bid for answers.

Julie Hambleton (53) of the Justice4the21 campaign, lost her 18-year-old sister Maxine in the bombings at the Mulberry Bush and Tavern In The Town pubs on November 21, 1974.

She said of the meeting with Ms Rudd: "Obviously we are frustrated and disappointed.

"The meeting did not produce the expected results, but she listened to us and she listened to the reasons why we want funding and why we need to be legally represented at those forthcoming inquests.

"A line of communication has now been opened where she has informed us that she will make a decision by no later than the end of this month."

Mrs Hambleton added: "Our legal team are still waiting in the wings in limbo while they need to be sifting documentation."

A pre-inquest review into the bombings is due to be held in October but a full inquest is not expected to get under way until next year.

A Home Office spokeswoman said: "A decision will be announced in due course."

A representative of KRW Law, representing the families, said it would continue for as long as was sustainable.

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