The UK Air Accidents Investigation Branch (AAIB) is responsible for the investigation of civil aircraft accidents and serious incidents within the UK and its overseas territories. It is part of the Department for Transport. Content here on the GOV.UK site includes AAIB bulletins and reports of various kinds, guidance documents, regulations and memoranda of understanding.
The Al-Sweady Public Inquiry, chaired by former High Court judge Sir Thayne Forbes, was an inquiry into allegations that British soldiers mistreated and murdered Iraqi detainees in 2004. It was announced in November 2009, began full public hearings on 4 March 2013, and published its report on 17 December 2014. The report, together with transcripts of hearings and other background material, is available here on its archived web site.
This inquiry, chaired by His Honour Peter Fallon QC, investigated allegations by a former patient about misuse of drugs and alcohol, financial irregularities, possible paedophile activity, and the availability of pornographic material on Ashworth Special Hospital’s Personality Disorder Unit. The full text of the inquiry’s report, published January 1999, is available here on the GOV.UK site.
Azelle Rodney died in north London on 30 April 2005 following an operation by the Metropolitan Police. In June 2010 Sir Christopher Holland, a retired High Court judge, was appointed to chair an inquiry into Azelle Rodney’s death. The inquiry’s web site, now archived here by the National Archives, has the report, published 5 July 2013, together with transcripts, key documents and other background information.
Baha Mousa was an Iraqi civilian who died in Iraq in September 2003 while in the custody of British soldiers. A public inquiry into the circumstances surrounding the death of Baha Mousa and the treatment of other Iraqi citizens who were detained with him in Basra was chaired by Sir William Gage. Documents on the site, now archived in the UK Government Web Archive, include transcripts of hearings, evidence, key documents, FAQs, press notices, and the inquiry’s report, published 8 September 2011. (The report is also available on the GOV.UK site.)
Following the conviction of Ian Huntley for the murder of Holly Wells and Jessica Chapman at Soham in 2003, an inquiry chaired by Sir Michael Bichard examined the manner in which the police had handled intelligence about Huntley’s past, and the vetting processes that had failed to prevent his employment in a school. The Bichard Inquiry Report is available here, as archived by the Institute of Education’s Digital Education Resource Archive.
A public inquiry, chaired by Lord MacLean, into the death of William Stephen (Billy) Wright at the Maze prison, Northern Ireland, on 27 December 1997, was announced in November 2004. The inquiry’s site, now archived by the National Archives, includes evidence, transcripts, key documents, press notices, rulings, and a link to the full text on TSO’s Official Documents site of the Inquiry’s report, published 14 September 2010.
Official site of the inquiry chaired by Lord Saville of Newdigate into the events in Londonderry, Northern Ireland, on Sunday 30 January 1972, which came to be known as Bloody Sunday. The site, now archived by the National Archives, has the final report, published 15 June 2010, together with extensive documentation on proceedings, including hearing transcripts, rulings, press notices and witness statements. The report is also available on the GOV.UK site.
An Inquiry Panel, chaired by Professor Ian Kennedy, was appointed in June 1998 to inquire into children’s heart surgery at Bristol Royal Infirmary from 1984 to 1985. Information and documentation on the site, now archived by the National Archives, includes evidence, the interim report of May 2000, and the final report published July 2001.
The archived official site of the Inquiry into BSE (Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy) and vCJD (variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease) in the United Kingdom is accessible here on the National Archives site. It includes the full report of the Inquiry (published October 2000), documentary evidence submitted and transcripts of oral hearings.
The inquest into the death of Jean Charles de Menezes, at Stockwell underground station on 22 July 2005, was held from 22 September 2008 to 12 December 2008. This official site, now archived by the National Archives, includes hearing transcripts, documentary evidence, the coroner’s rulings, press notices and background information. Documents added since the close of the inquest include the coroner’s report, dated 6 January 2009, made under Rule 43 of the Coroners Rules 1984 (as amended), and the responses to that report of the Metropolitan Police Commissioner and the Metropolitan Police Authority. These are all in the “Hearing Transcripts” section.
The inquests into the deaths of Diana, Princess of Wales and Mr Dodi Al Fayed, in Paris on 31 August 1997, were opened in January 2004 and concluded on 7 April 2008 when the jury returned its verdict. The coroner during the public hearings (succeeding Lady Butler-Sloss from June 2007) was Lord Justice Scott Baker. The web site, now archived, provides background information, details of sittings, directions and procedural decisions, transcripts of proceedings, and documentary evidence seen by the jury.
Lady Justice Hallett was appointed in November 2009 to conduct the inquests into the deaths resulting from the London bombings on 7 July 2005 (often referred to as the 7/7 bombings). Hearings were concluded on 11 March 2011 and the verdicts and concluding remarks were delivered on 6 May 2011. This official site, now archived by the National Archives, includes hearing transcripts, documentary evidence, procedural decisions, press notices, FAQs, and the Coroner’s Rule 43 Report.
Peter Cory, a retired Canadian Supreme Court judge, was appointed in 2002 to investigate allegations of collusion between British and Irish security forces and paramilitaries in six high profile cases, four of which related to the deaths in Northern Ireland of Pat Finucane, Robert Hamill, Rosemary Nelson and Billy Wright. All four reports, which were published by the Stationery Office on 1 April 2004, may be downloaded from this Collusion section of the University of Ulster’s CAIN web site. Several related inquiry reports and other documents are also available.
The GOV.UK portal hosts this report of the inquiry by His Honour Gerald Butler QC, originally published 11 August 1999.
A review of the circumstances surrounding the deaths of four soldiers at Princess Royal Barracks, Deepcut, between 1995 and 2002 was carried out by Nicholas Blake QC (later Mr Justice Blake). The full text of his report, published 29 March 2006, is available here on the GOV.UK web site.
EPC (Emergency Planning College) is an organisation which provides emergency planning and crisis management training as part of the Cabinet Office’s Civil Contingencies Secretariat. Documents available for download from its Document Hub (this requires registration to access) include more than thirty “Inquiry Reports and Lessons Identified”. Amongst these are reports relating to the 2005 London Bombings (2011), Foot and Mouth Disease (2001 and 2007), the sinking of the Herald of Free Enterprise (1987), the Hillsborough Stadium Disaster Inquiry (the Taylor Report, 1990), the King’s Cross Underground Fire (1988), Ladbroke Grove Rail Enquiry (2000), and the Marchioness Disaster (1990 and 2000).
The Fingerprint Inquiry arose out of concerns about the identification and verification of fingerprints in the Scottish case of HM Advocate v McKie in 1999. It was announced in March 2008, was chaired by Sir Anthony Campbell, a former judge of the Court of Appeal in Northern Ireland, and reported on 14 December 2011. Besides inquiring into and reporting on the facts of the McKie case itself, the Inquiry also set out to “… make recommendations as to what measures might now be introduced … to ensure that any shortcomings are avoided in the future”. The Inquiry’s web site, now archived by the UK Web Archive, includes transcripts of hearings, evidence and other documentation in addition to the full text (pdf) of its report. Part 6 of the report comprises four chapters on the law and practice of fingerprints in Scotland.
The Hull-based stern trawler F.V. Gaul was lost in very bad weather in Arctic waters, with all 36 crew members, in February 1974. This site, now archived by the National Archives, has information and documentation, including hearing transcripts and reports, relating both to the original formal investigation in 1974 and to the reopened formal investigation in 2004, which followed discovery of the wreck in 1997 and underwater surveys carried out in 1998 and 2002.
The Grenfell Tower Inquiry was set up to examine the circumstances leading up to and surrounding the fire at the Grenfell Tower block of public housing flats in west London on 14 June 2017. It is chaired by Sir Martin Moore-Bick, a former Lord Justice of Appeal, and was formally opened on 14 September 2017. Site content includes the inquiry’s terms of reference, transcripts and videos of proceedings, key documents and FAQs.
The Hillsborough Independent Panel was appointed by the government in January 2010 to oversee full public disclosure of relevant government and local information relating to the Hillsborugh Disaster of 15 April 1989, and to publish a report. This official web site, containing the Panel’s report and all of the disclosed material, has been temporarily taken down while legal proceedings are ongoing, but the report, published 12 September 2012, remains available here on the GOV.UK site.
On 12 December 2012 the High Court ordered that new inquests should be held into the deaths of 96 people in the Hillsborough Stadium disaster of 15 April 1989. Full hearings began on 31 March 2014 and the jury gave its verdict on 26 April 2016. Site content includes transcripts of hearings, documents, rulings and contact details.
Lord Hutton was appointed by the government to investigate the circumstances surrounding the death of Dr David Kelly in July 2003. The Inquiry’s web site (now archived) provides information on hearing dates and transcripts, press notices, rulings, and the full text of Lord Hutton’s report, published January 2004.
The Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA), chaired by Professor Alexis Jay, is investigating the extent to which institutions in England and Wales failed to protect children from sexual abuse. Established in 2014 originally as a panel inquiry, IICSA was reconstituted in 2015 as an independent statutory inquiry. Site content includes terms of reference, details of current investigations, key documents, reports published to date, and a timetable of hearings.
This independent non-statutory inquiry, chaired by the Right Reverend Graham Jones, Lord Bishop of Norwich, was announced on 7 December 2017 and formally established in January 2018. It will examine issues raised by the malpractice of convicted surgeon Ian Paterson, with the aim of learning lessons from the case, especially for the independent healthcare sector. It is due to report in summer 2019.
The Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) oversees the police complaints system and investigates the most serious incidents and complaints involving the police. It replaced the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) on 8 January 2018. Investigations into the most serious and sensitive matters (e.g. those involving deaths in custody) which are conducted by the IOPC itself are termed “independent investigations”. The IOPC’s web site includes details of complaint and appeal procedures, statutory guidance, investigation summaries and reports, and links to relevant legislation.
The Iraq Inquiry, by a committee of Privy Counsellors chaired by Sir John Chilcot, was officially launched on 30 July 2009. Its purpose was to identify lessons that could be learned from the Iraq conflict, including the run-up period from summer 2001 onwards, the conflict itself, and the reconstruction period to the end of July 2009. Its web site, now archived, includes background information, evidence, key documents and FAQs. The Inquiry’s full 12-volume report, published on 6 July 2016, and an Executive Summary, are both free to download from the site.
Following the death of Cyril Isaacs on 26 February 1987, and a post mortem examination at Prestwich Hospital mortuary the following day, Mr Isaacs’s brain was retained for research at Manchester University without the knowledge of his relatives. The full text of the report (published 12 May 2003) of the investigation into these events, which was carried out by HM Inspector of Anatomy, Dr Jeremy S. Metters, is available here within the UK Government Web Archive.
John Barrett was convicted in February 2005 of the manslaughter of Denis Finnegan on 2 September 2004, during a period when he had been receiving support from psychiatric and social services in south west London. An independent inquiry into his care and treatment, chaired by Robert Robinson, a solicitor, was commissioned by South West London Strategic Health Authority. Its report, published November 2006, may be downloaded here from the archived web site of the Authority’s successor, NHS London. Several other reports of inquiries into mental health homicides in London are also available here.
The Kerr/Haslam inquiry was concerned with the sexual abuse of psychiatric patients. Chaired by Nigel Pleming QC, it inquired into how NHS services in Yorkshire dealt with concerns raised about two consultant psychiatrists, Dr William Kerr and Mr Michael Haslam. The full report of the inquiry, published 18 July 2005, is accessible here on the GOV.UK web site.
Lord Justice Leveson was appointed in July 2011, following developments in the News International phone hacking scandal, to chair an inquiry into the culture, practices and ethics of the British press. Its report, published on 29 November 2012, may be accessed either on the GOV.UK web site or here on the inquiry’s official site, now archived by the UK Government Web Archive. Additional material on the inquiry’s site includes transcripts of hearings, evidence, the chairman’s rulings and key documents.
Lost in Care is the report of the tribunal of inquiry into the abuse of children in care in the former county council areas of Gwynedd and Clwyd between 1974 and 1990. The tribunal was appointed in 1996 and chaired by Sir Ronald Waterhouse, a retired High Court judge. Its report, published in February 2000, is accessible here within the UK Government Web Archive.
The Macur Review was an independent review of the tribunal of inquiry (the Waterhouse “Lost in Care” Inquiry) into the abuse of children in care in the former county council areas of Gwynedd and Clwyd in North Wales since 1974. A redacted version of its report, which was published in March 2016, is available here on the GOV.UK site.
The Marine Accident Investigation Branch (MAIB), an independent unit within the Department for Transport, examines and investigates all types of marine accidents to or on board UK vessels worldwide, and all vessels in UK territorial waters. All published MAIB investigation reports to date are available here on the GOV.UK web site. These include the 2001 report on the Marchioness-Bowbelle collision of August 1989. The MAIB was formed in 1989 following the formal investigation into the accident in March 1987 involving the passenger ferry Herald of Free Enterprise. The Herald of Free Enterprise report is also available here.
Michael Stone, who had a history of mental disorder, drug abuse and violence, was convicted in October 1998 of the murder of Lin and Megan Russell and the serious wounding of Josie Russell, on 9 July 1996. An independent inquiry into his care and treatment, chaired by Robert Francis QC, was completed in November 2000 but not published until September 2006. Its report (pdf) is available here on the archived NHS South of England web site.
An independent inquiry, chaired by Robert Francis QC, into care provided by Mid Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust between January 2005 and March 2009 was announced in July 2009 and produced its report on 24 February 2010. The report is available for download either from the GOV.UK web site or from this page of the former Department of Health web site, archived in the UK Government Web Archive. The latter source includes some additional background information and documents.
Following an earlier independent inquiry into the provision of care by Mid Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust (the Mid Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust Inquiry) this was a full public inquiry into the role of the commissioning, supervisory and regulatory bodies in the monitoring of that NHS Trust. It was announced in June 2010 and chaired by Robert Francis QC. Its official web site, now archived, includes FAQs; terms of reference and other key documents; transcripts of hearings; evidence; and the final report, published 6 February 2013.
Service Inquiries (SI) are internal inquiries by the Armed Forces into military incidents which have resulted in death or serious injury. The present SI system was introduced in 2008, replacing various other types of formal inquiry including Boards of Inquiry (BOI). The Ministry of Defence provides access here on the GOV.UK site to all Service Inquiry reports published to date, a number of BOI reports, Military Aircraft Accident Summaries (MAAS) and other inquiry reports. A link is provided to the Manual of Service Law.
The Morris Inquiry, chaired by Sir Bill Morris, was an independent inquiry appointed by the Metropolitan Police Authority (MPA) to inquire into professional standards and employment matters in the Metropolitan Police Service. The Inquiry’s report, The Case for Change, published December 2004, is available for download from this page of the archived MPA web site.
Operation Paget was the code name of the inquiry into the allegation that the deaths of Diana, Princess of Wales, and Mr Dodi Al Fayed on 31 August 1997 were the result of a conspiracy to murder. It was initiated in January 2004 by Michael Burgess, the Coroner of the Queen’s Household, and led by Lord Stevens of Kirkwhelpington, then head of the Metropolitan Police Service. The inquiry’s report, published 14 December 2006, is available here as a pdf document on the BBC web site.
A review by Sir Desmond de Silva QC of state involvement in the murder of Belfast solicitor Patrick Finucane on 12 February 1989 was announced by the Government in October 2011. Sir Desmond’s report, published 12 December 2012, is available here on the GOV.UK site.
Interim Report (pdf), presented to Parliament in July 1985, of the Committee of Inquiry into Crowd Safety and Control at Sports Grounds, Cmnd. 9585 (the Popplewell Inquiry). The inquiry, chaired by Mr Justice Popplewell, was established following two major incidents, which both occurred on 11 May 1885, in Bradford (the Bradford City stadium fire) and Birmingham (serious crowd disorder at Birmingham City football ground).
The Rail Accident Investigation Branch (RAIB) became operational in October 2005 as the independent railway accident investigation organisation for the UK. Content here on the GOV.UK site includes investigation reports and bulletins, all annual reports to date, and links to UK and EU legislation.
An inquiry into human tissue analysis in UK nuclear facilities was announced by the government on 18 April 2007 and conducted by Michael Redfern QC. Documents on the inquiry’s site, now archived by the National Archives, include terms of reference and the final report, which was delivered to Parliament on 16 November 2010. The report is also available on the GOV.UK web site.
A review of intelligence on weapons of mass destruction programmes in countries of concern, particularly intelligence on Iraqi WMD up to March 2003, was conducted in 2004 by Lord Butler and four other Privy Counsellors. The full text of the Review’s report is available here on the Butler Review’s web site, archived in the UK Government Web Archive.
Inquiry, chaired by Sir Edwin Jowitt, into the death of Robert Hamill, which followed an incident in Portadown, Northern Ireland, on 27 April 1997. Site content includes press notices, timetables, transcripts and evidence. Public hearings were completed in December 2009. The Inquiry’s report was completed in February 2011 and will be published once legal proceedings against three individuals have been concluded.
Inquiry, chaired by Sir Michael Morland, into the circumstances which led to the murder of the lawyer Rosemary Nelson in Lurgan, Northern Ireland, in March 1999, and into the police investigation which followed it. Documentation on the site, now archived in the UK Government Web Archive, includes timetables, press notices, transcripts, evidence, and procedural updates. The Inquiry’s report was published on 23 May 2011 and is accessible via a link to the archived Official Documents web site.
An Inquiry Panel, chaired by Michael Redfern QC, was appointed in December 1999 to investigate the removal, retention and disposal of human organs and tissues following post mortem examination at the Royal Liverpool Children’s Hospital (Alder Hey Children’s Hospital). Both the Summary and Recommendations and the full report of the Inquiry, published in January 2001, may be downloaded either from the GOV.UK web site or from this web page in the UK Government Web Archive.
The Scottish Child Abuse Inquiry, chaired by Lady Anne Smith, was established on 1 October 2015 to inquire into the abuse of children in care in Scotland and to make recommendations to Scottish ministers for any changes to practices, policies and the law that it considers are required for the protection of children in the future. Hearings began on 31 May 2017 and transcripts are published on the inquiry’s site.
Harold Shipman, a former doctor, was sentenced to life imprisonment in 2000 for the murder of fifteen of his patients, and died in prison 13 January 2004. Following allegations that he may have murdered many more, a public inquiry was set up under the chairmanship of Dame Janet Smith DBE. The inquiry web site, now archived by the National Archives, provides full documentation including the six reports published between July 2002 and January 2005.
Mark Ellison QC was asked by the Home Secretary in July 2012 to lead an independent review of possible corruption and the role of undercover policing in the Stephen Lawrence case. His report was presented to Parliament on 6 March 2014 and is available here on the GOV.UK site.
Report, published February 1999, of the inquiry chaired by Sir William MacPherson of Cluny into matters arising from the death of Stephen Lawrence on 22 April 1993. Its chief aim was “to identify the lessons to be learned for the investigation and prosecution of racially motivated crimes”.
Alphabetically arranged links are provided here to archived web sites of about 50 major public inquiries, inquests, Royal Commissions, reviews and investigations conducted during the ten to fifteen years up to June 2017.
The Undercover Policing Inquiry is an independent public inquiry into the conduct of undercover policing in England and Wales since 1968. It was established by the Home Secretary on 12 March 2015, chaired initially by Sir Christopher Pitchford and since 25 July 2017 by Sir John Mitting. Content on its official site includes contact details, terms of reference, FAQs, transcripts of hearings, updates, directions, rulings and orders.
This was an independent inquiry set up to investigate the circumstances leading to the death of Victoria Climbié, aged 8, while in the care of her aunt and her aunt’s lover. The final report by Lord Laming, published January 2003, is available here on the GOV.UK site.
A non-statutory public inquiry, chaired by Mr Justice Keith, was held into the murder of Zahid Mubarek at Feltham Young Offender Institution on 21 March 2000. Its report was published on 29 June 2006 and is available here on the GOV.UK web site.