Petition to strip ex-Post Office chief and former Bedford School governor of CBE hits a million

Even the PM Rishi Sunak has weighed into the debate
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Calls are growing for former Post Office CEO Paula Vennells – who lives at Kempston West End – to be stripped of her CBE with over one million people so far signing a petition.

The move comes following the four-part ITV drama into the scandal, Mr Bates vs The Post Office, which aired last week.

Starring Toby Jones, it showed how 550 former subpostmasters and subpostmistresses were held liable by the Post Office for financial discrepancies – with some jailed, left bankrupt or even taking their own lives. But in actual fact, none of the staff had taken money and instead, the discrepancies were due to a faulty software system called Horizon.

Paula VennellsPaula Vennells
Paula Vennells

38 Degrees – the campaign group behind the petition – is calling for the former Bedford School governor and former minister at St Owen’s, Bromham, to be stripped of her CBE, which she was awarded in the 2019 New Year Honours.

Even PM Rishi Sunak has suggested he would "strongly support" the Honours Forfeiture Committee if it decided to revoke her CBE which she was given “for services to the Post Office”.