Ex-Post Office chief and former Bedford School governor formally stripped of CBE by King

It follows the fallout from the ITV drama about the scandal
Paula VennellsPaula Vennells
Paula Vennells

Paula Vennells, the former chief executive of the Post Office, has had her CBE formally revoked by the King for “bringing the honours system into disrepute”, according to a list published on the Cabinet Office website today (Friday).

The former Bedford School governor and former minister at St Owen’s, Bromham received the honour in 2019 but agreed to hand it back following growing pressure in light of the ITV drama Mr Bates vs The Post Office in January.

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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.

During her time at the Post Office, Ms Vennells – who lives at Kempston West End – routinely denied there was a problem with the system.