NI Legacy Update 8 – July 20


On 20 March 2020 as part of their measures to combat Corvid 19, the government directed courts to adjourn all non-urgent business.  The legacy inquests were adjourned until further notice.

In March 2020 the Presiding Coroner for NI, Mrs Justice Keegan published an update on the situation as it was currently stood and promised a review at the end of June.  The June review can be read in full here.  The summary is as follows:

          a.            The first three inquests listed in quarter one of the first year of the five-year programme cannot proceed due to corvid 19 restrictions.

          b.            A new start date for these three inquests is pushed back until Oct 20 at the earliest and the date for the 2nd tranche of the year one inquests which is now due will be reviewed at a later date.

          c.            The Legacy Inquest Unit who provide investigative and administrative to the legacy coroners have increased their capacity to work in alternative ways and can now accept physical disclosure allowing inquest preparation to continue. 

          d.            All stakeholders are asked to be proactive in finding constructive and practical ways in which to take witness statements from witnesses in a court setting.  This includes giving statement by live link while acknowledging that these could possibly be open to challenge at a later date should the case come to court.

          d.            Mrs Justice Keegan is handing over the office of Presiding Coroner to Mr Justice Huddleston.

Please let RHQ know if you are contacted by anyone about legacy investigations so that we can help, not only to you, but also to others caught up in these difficult and stressful inquires.

RHQ staff are working from home so contact details for legacy matters are as follows: 

Letters: NI Legacy Officer, RHQ PARA, Merville Barracks, Colchester CO2 7UT.

Telephone communications to: 07967492254

Email to: