The Inquiries Act 2005: post-legislative scrutiny - Select Committee on the Inquiries Act 2005 Contents


Inquiry Chair Legislation Duration Cost Purpose
Inquiry into the supervision of the Bank of Credit and Commerce International, HM Treasury Lord Bingham Non-statutoryJuly 1991-October 1992 £600kTo enquire into the supervision of BCCI under the Banking Acts; [and] to consider whether the action taken by all the UK authorities was appropriate and timely.
Investigation into the flotation of Mirror Group Newspapers plc,[459] Department of Trade and Industry Two inspectors, (Sir Roger Thomas, Raymond Turner) Companies Act 1985 s.432(2) and s.442 June 1992-March 2001 £8.6mTo investigate the affairs of Mirror Group Newspapers (and to have particular regard to its flotation on the London Stock Market) and also to investigate the membership of the company for the purpose of determining those persons interested in its success or failure.
Inquiry into the Exports of Defence Equipment and Dual-use Goods into Iraq and Related Prosecutions,[460] Department of Trade and Industry Lord Justice Scott, now Lord Scott of Foscote Non-statutoryNovember 1992-February 1996 Not availableTo investigate reports of arms sales from the UK to Iraq in 1980s.
The Allitt Inquiry, Department of Health Sir Cecil Clothier NHS Act 1977, s.2 May 1993-February 1994Not available The circumstances surrounding the murder by Beverly Allitt of four children and the injuring of nine others in the children's ward of Grantham and Kesteven general hospital in 1991.
Shootings at Dunblane Primary School,[461] Scottish Office Lord Cullen of Whitekirk Tribunals of Inquiry (Evidence) Act 1921 March 1996-October 1996 Not availableThe circumstances leading up to and surrounding the events at Dunblane Primary School on Wednesday 13 March 1996, which resulted in the deaths of 18 people.
North Wales Child Abuse Inquiry,[462] Welsh Office Sir Ronald Waterhouse Tribunals of Inquiry (Evidence) Act 1921 June 1996-February 2000 £13m (est)The physical and sexual abuse of children in care homes in the counties of Clwyd and Gwynedd.
Ashworth Special Hospital Inquiry, Department of Health His Honour Peter Fallon QC NHS Act 1977, s.84 February 1997-January 1999 £7.5mTo investigate the functioning of the Personality Disorder Unit at Ashworth Hospital following allegations about misuse of drugs and alcohol, financial irregularities, possible paedophile activity and the availability of pornographic material within the Personality Disorder Unit.
Stephen Lawrence Inquiry,[463] Home Office
Sir William MacPherson Police Act 1996, s.49 July 1997-February 1999 (Costs published: National Archives ref NT 3/24) Matters arising from the death of Stephen Lawrence on 22 April 1993 to date, in order particularly to identify the lessons to be learned for the investigation and prosecution of racially motivated crimes.
BSE Inquiry,[464] Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food Lord Phillips of Worth Matravers Non-statutoryJanuary 1998-October 2000 £26mTo establish and review the history of the emergence and identification of BSE and new variant CJD in the United Kingdom, and of the action taken in response to it up to 20 March 1996.
Bloody Sunday Inquiry,[465] Northern Ireland Office Lord Saville of Newdigate Tribunals of Inquiry (Evidence) Act 1921 January 1998-June 2010 £191.5mThe events on Sunday 30 January 1972 which led to loss of life in connection with the procession in Londonderry on that day, taking account of any new information relevant to events on that day.
Southall Rail Accident Inquiry,[466]
Health and Safety Commission
Professor John Uff QC Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974, s.14(2)(b) February 1998-February 2000 £2.25mWhy the accident happened, and in particular to ascertain the cause or causes, to identify any lessons which have relevance for those with responsibilities for securing railway safety and to make recommendations. [The accident at Southall occurred on 19 September 1997 when a high speed train travelling from Swansea to Paddington collided with an empty freight train; seven people were killed and 147 people taken to hospital.]
Sierra Leone Arms Investigation,[467]
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Sir Thomas Legg and Sir Robin Ibbs Non-statutoryMay 1998-July 1998 Not availableTo conduct an investigation in the light of recent allegations about Government involvement with the supply of arms to Sierra Leone by UK citizens or firms with a view to establishing what was known by government officials (including military personnel) and Ministers about plans to supply arms to Sierra Leone after 8 October 1997; whether any official encouragement or approval was given to such plans or such supply; and, if so, on what authority.
Bristol Royal Infirmary Inquiry Department of Health Professor Sir 
Ian Kennedy
NHS Act 1977,s84June 1998-July 2001 £14m (est)The management of the care of children receiving complex cardiac surgical services at the Bristol Royal Infirmary between 1984 and 1995.
Thames Safety Inquiry (into the Marchioness-Bowbell disaster), Department for the Environment, Transport and the Regions Lord Justice Clarke Non-statutoryAugust 1999-January 2000 See March- ioness Inquiry To review the responsibilities of Government Departments, the Port of London Authority and any other persons or bodies for promoting safety on the River Thames (the River) and advise on specific issues, including whether there is a case for a further investigation or inquiry into the circumstances surrounding the Marchioness disaster and its causes on 20th August 1989.
Royal Liverpool Children's Hospital Inquiry, Department of Health Mr Michael Redfern QC NHS Act 1977, s.2 February 2000-January 2001 £3.5mTo inquire into the circumstances leading to the removal, retention and disposal of human tissue, including organs and body parts, from children at the Royal Liverpool Children's NHS Trust (and its predecessor NHS organisations) who have undergone post mortem.
MV Derbyshire Inquiry, Department for the Environment, Transport and the Regions Mr Justice Colman Merchant Shipping Act 1995, s.269 April 2000-November 2000 £11mCause of the sinking of the Derbyshire in September 1980 without trace in the Pacific about 350 miles south east of Japan. All those on board perished—42 members of crew and two of their wives. She was the largest British ship ever lost at sea. (Cost includes underwater survey costs and implementation of recommendations.)
Ladbroke Grove Inquiry, Health and Safety Commission Lord Cullen of Whitekirk Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974, s.14(2)(b) May 2000-September 2001 £8.6mTo inquire into, and draw lessons from, the accident near Paddington Station on 5.10.99, taking account of the findings of the HSE's investigations into immediate causes. To consider general experience derived from relevant accidents on the railway since the Hidden Inquiry, with a view to drawing conclusions about: (a) factors which affect safety management (b) the appropriateness of the current regulatory regime.
Joint Inquiry into Train Protection Systems,[468] Health and Safety Commission Lord Cullen of Whitekirk and Professor John Uff QC Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974, s.14(2)(b) September 2000-October 2000 £1.2mTo consider the following:

(i)  Train Protection and Warning Systems;

(ii)  future application of Automatic Train Protection Systems

(iii)  SPAD prevention measures taking account in particular of the Southall accident on 19 September 1997; the rail accident at Ladbroke Grove Junction on 5 October 1999; the technical assessment for the Deputy Prime Minister of Rail Safety Systems by Sir David Davies.

Marchioness Inquiry, Department for the Environment, Transport and the Regions Lord Justice Clarke Merchant Shipping Act 1995, s.268 October 2000- March 2001 £6.3m(The £6.3m includes cost of inquiries into Victim Identification and Thames Safety Inquiries.)
Inquiry into issues arising out of the identification of the victims following major transport accidents, Department for the Environment, Transport and the Regions Lord Justice Clarke Non-statutoryNovember 2000-March 2001 See March-ioness Inquiry
Shipman Inquiry,[469] Department of Health Dame Janet Smith Tribunals of Inquiry (Evidence) Act 1921 January 2001-January 2005 £21mTo enquire into the actions of the statutory bodies, authorities, other organisations and responsible individuals concerned in the procedures and investigations which followed the deaths of those of Harold Shipman's patients who died in unlawful or suspicious circumstances.
Foot and Mouth Disease 2001: Lessons to be Learned Inquiry,[470] DEFRA Dr Iain Anderson Non-statutoryApril 2001-July 2002 Not availableTo make recommendations for the way in which the Government should handle any future major animal disease outbreak, in the light of the lessons identified from the handling of the 2001 Foot and Mouth Disease outbreak in Great Britain.
Victoria Climbié Inquiry,[471] Department of Health Lord LamingChildren Act 1989, s.81, NHS Act 1977, s.84
Police Act 1996, s.49
May 2001-January 2003 £3.8mTo establish the circumstances leading to and surrounding the death of Victoria Climbié.
Equitable Life Inquiry, HM Treasury Lord Penrose Non-statutoryAugust 2001-March 2004 £2.5m To enquire into the circumstances leading to the current situation of the Equitable Life Assurance Society, taking account of relevant life market background; [and] to identify any lessons to be learnt for the conduct, administration and regulation of life assurance business.
"The Three Inquiries":[472] Ayling, Neale, Kerr/Haslam. Department of Health Anna Pauffley QC, Suzan Matthews QC and Nigel Pleming QC Originally s.2 of the NHS Act 1977. All three subsequently reconstituted under s.84 NHS Act 1977 April 2003-July 2004 £5m (est)To assess the appropriateness and effectiveness of the procedures operated in the local health services
(a) for enabling health service users to raise issues of legitimate concern relating to the conduct of health service employees and professionals; (b) for ensuring that such complaints are effectively considered; and (c) for ensuring that appropriate remedial action is taken in the particular case and generally.
Holyrood Inquiry,[473] Scottish Parliament
Lord Fraser of Carmyllie Non-statutoryJune 2003-September 2004 £717,000To review the policy decisions in relation to the Holyrood Project taken prior to its transfer to the Scottish Parliamentary Corporate Body on 1st June 1999 and subsequently.
Investigation surrounding the death of Dr David Kelly,[474] Department for Constitutional Affairs Lord HuttonNon-statutory July 2003-January 2004 £1.68mCircumstances surrounding the death of Dr Kelly.
Soham murders,[475] Home Office Sir Michael Bichard (now Lord Bichard) Non-statutoryDecember 2003-June 2004 £1.9mUrgently enquire into child protection procedures in Humberside Police and Cambridgeshire Constabulary in the light of the recent trial and conviction of Ian Huntley for the murder of Jessica Chapman and Holly Wells. In particular to assess the effectiveness of the relevant intelligence-based record keeping, the vetting practices in those forces since 1995 and information sharing with other agencies, and to report to the Home Secretary on matters of local and national relevance and make recommendations as appropriate.
FV Gaul Inquiry, Department for the Environment, Transport and the Regions Mr Justice David Steel, (Wreck Com- missioner) Merchant Shipping Act 1995, s.269 January 2004-December 2004 £6m (est)
Review of intelligence on weapons of mass destruction, Foreign and Commonwealth Office Lord Butler of Brockwell Non-statutory February 2004-July 2004 Not availableTo investigate the intelligence coverage available in respect of WMD programmes in countries of concern and on the global trade in WMD, taking into account what is now known about these programmes; as part of this work, to investigate the accuracy of intelligence on Iraqi WMD up to March 2003,and to examine any discrepancies between the intelligence gathered, evaluated and used by the Government before the conflict, and between that intelligence and what has been discovered by the Iraq survey group since the end of the conflict; and to make recommendations to the Prime Minister for the future on the gathering, evaluation and use of intelligence on WMD, in the light of the difficulties of operating in countries of concern.
Zahid Mubarek Inquiry,[476] Home Office Mr Justice Keith Non-statutoryApril 2004-June 2006 £4.2mIn the light of the House of Lords judgment in the case of Regina v. Secretary of State for the Home Department ex parte Amin, to investigate and report to the Home Secretary on the death of Zahid Mubarek, and the events leading up to the attack on him, and make recommendations about the prevention of such attacks in the future, taking into account the investigations that have already taken place - in particular, those by the Prison Service and the Commission for Racial Equality.
Rosemary Nelson Inquiry,[477] Northern Ireland Office Sir Michael Morland Section 44 of the Police (Northern Ireland) Act 2005 November 2004-May 2011 £46mTo inquire into the death of Rosemary Nelson with a view to determining whether any wrongful act or omission by or within the Royal Ulster Constabulary, Northern Ireland Office, Army or other state agency facilitated her death or obstructed the investigation of it, or whether attempts were made to do so; whether any such act or omission was intentional or negligent; whether the investigation of her death was carried out with due diligence; and to make recommendations.
Contaminated Blood and Blood Products Inquiry,[478] Department of Health Lord Archer of Sandwell Non-statutoryMarch 2007-February 2009 £75,000To investigate the circumstances surrounding the supply to patients of contaminated NHS blood and blood products; its consequences for the haemophilia community and others afflicted; and suggest further steps to address both their problems and needs and those of bereaved families.
Human Tissue Analysis in UK Nuclear Facilities,[479] DTI / DECC
Michael Redfern QC Non-statutoryApril 2007-November 2010 Not availableThe circumstances in which, between 1961 and 1992, organs/tissue were removed from 65 individuals, and were sent to and analysed at Sellafield. Revised Terms of Reference: The circumstances in which, from 1955, organs/tissue were removed from individuals at NHS or other facilities, and sent to and analysed at nuclear laboratory facilities.
The Iraq Inquiry,[480] Cabinet Office, FCO, DfID Sir John Chilcot Non-statutory June 2009-present £7.5m to end March 2013 The period from the summer of 2001 to the end of July 2009, embracing the run-up to the conflict in Iraq, the military action and its aftermath. The UK's involvement in Iraq, including the way decisions were made and actions taken.
FV Trident, Department for Transport, Local Government and the Regions[481]
Sir Stephen Young Merchant Shipping Act 1995, s.269 October 2009-February 2011 £6mWhy the Trident fishing vessel sank with the loss of seven lives in 1974.
The Detainee Inquiry,[482] Cabinet Office Sir Peter Gibson, retired Court of Appeal judge Non-statutory March 2010-June 2012; report published December 2013 £2.3m to end Oct 2013 (exc VAT) Whether Britain was implicated in the improper treatment of detainees, held by other countries, that may have occurred in the aftermath of 9/11.
Office of Inquiry into Child Sexual Exploitation in Gangs and Groups Sue Berelowitz, Deputy Children's Commissioner for England Children Act 2004, s.3 November 2011-November 2013
Inquiry into Historical Institutional Abuse 1922 to 1995,[483] NI Executive Sir Anthony Hart, retired NI High Court judge Inquiry into Historical Institutional Abuse Act (Northern Ireland) 2013 May 2012 (Non-statutory part)

January 2013 (statutory part)-present

Estimated £7.5m to £9m To examine if there were systemic failings in Northern Ireland by institutions or the state in their duties towards those children in their care between the years of 1922-1995.
The Morecambe Bay Investigation, Department of Health Dr Bill Kirkup CBE Non-statutorySeptember 2013-present To examine the management, delivery and outcomes of care provided by the Maternity and Neonatal services of UHMBT from January 2004 - June 2013
Independent review of self-inflicted deaths of young adults in custody aged between 18 and 24, Ministry of Justice Lord Harris of Haringey Non-statutoryFebruary 2014-Report by Spring 2015 To learn lessons from self-inflicted deaths of young adults in custody aged between 18 and 24 and to identify actions to prevent further deaths.

459   Report available at:,_1992. Back

460   ReportoftheInquiryintotheExportofDefenceEquipmentandDual-useGoodstoIraqandRelatedProsecutions, HC 115,TheStationeryOffice,1996Back

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462   LostinCare-ReportofInquiryintotheAbuseofChildreninCareintheFormerCountyCouncilAreasofGwyneddandClwydsince1974,HC 201,TheStationeryOffice,2000Back

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