Joan Humble MP responds to Blake Review

The following is a press release which I’ve received today from Joan Humble MP on the Government’s response to the Blake Review of the army deaths at Deepcut:

“As chair of the Parliamentary All-Party Group on non-combat Army Deaths, I welcome positive proposals for change, but express disappointment that the Minister has not recognised the scale of the problem beyond the perimeter fence of Deepcut barracks and not responded to the calls for a public inquiry.

“Surrey Police recommended a “broader inquiry” and the Surrey Coroner proposed “an Inquiry held in public”. Both were seeking to fulfil their obligations under the Human rights Act and in international law to provide for an open, independent and effective investigation into suspicious deaths.

“The Deepcut & Beyond families group are campaigning for truth, justice and change. I stand with them in my belief that these objectives can only be achieved by means of a public inquiry. The Inquiry we need to restore confidence in the Army must fully involve the families of the victims; it must be independent in character, judicial in authority and open to the public.”

“I urged the Minister to examine the proposals for a system of independent oversight. This should include retrospective powers to examine past cases so that families outside of Deepcut can also have a full investigation.”

4.00pm Wednesday 29 March 2006


(1)  According to MoD figures 1,760 soldiers died in non-combat situations between 1994 and 2002. In that period 200 died of gunshot wounds. The Army say 200 died in apparent suicides. More recent statistics are not available. 

(2) Early Day Motions
More than 200 MPs of all parties representing all parts of the United Kingdom have called for a public inquiry into all non-combat deaths in the Armed Forces.

(3) All Party Parliamentary Group on Army Deaths
Formed February 2006. Aim.  “To focus on non-combat deaths in the Armed Forces and support the Deepcut & Beyond families’ group in securing truth, justice and change”

Chair:                Joan Humble MP (Lab)
Secretary          The Lord Ashley  (Lab)
Treasurer          Jim Dobbin MP (Lab)
Vice Chairs       Peter Bottomley MP (C), Lembit Opik MP (Lib Dem), Lady Sylvia Hermon MP (UUP), Mark Durkan (SDLP), Hwyel Williams MP (PC), Peter Wishart (SNP), Iris Robinson MP (DUP)






Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *