MPs and activists stepped up their campaign for justice yesterday after demanding the government release the remaining secret papers on the Shrewsbury pickets.
Shrewsbury 24 campaigners joined MPs and trade unionists calling for the release of the documents on the pickets - who were convicted under a near-100-year-old law following a building strike in 1972 - after former justice secretary Kenneth Clarke said papers on the controversial case won't be released until 2021 on grounds of national security.
The 24 building trade unionists were charged with criminal offences in 1972 in what supporters believe was a direct ploy by the Tory government to intimidate an increasingly vocal and militant labour movement at the time.
A year after the strike ended they were put on trial in Shrewsbury after being charged under the 1875 Conspiracy Act.
Ricky Tomlinson and Des Warren were imprisoned.
It has been described as the biggest miscarriage of justice to the trade union movement of the last century.
Mr Warren, who died in 2004, put forward his version of events in his autobiography The Key To My Cell and his death has been linked with long-term effects of the treatment he received during his incarceration.
Construction union Ucatt general secretary Steve Murphy and MPs David Hanson, John McDonnell and Tom Watson will hold a press conference in Parliament tomorrow calling the government to reverse the decision.
Filmmaker Ken Loach, TUC general secretary Frances O'Grady, Unite general secretary Len McCluskey and Mr Tomlinson will also attend.
Mr Murphy said: "News that the government papers will not be published for another 10 years is appalling.
"What it is hiding is a massive government conspiracy, which shows that Robert Carr - the then home secretary - connived with police and security forces at the behest of construction companies to make an example of ordinary construction workers."
The publication delay and the possibility that this could hold up the fight for justice for the pickets is particularly controversial given the age of the surviving pickets - the oldest picket is 84 and the youngest is 64.
For years there has been a determined campaign to reverse the verdicts on appeal to the criminal cases review commission.
Mr Tomlinson tabled an online petition last month demanding full disclosure.
Mr Murphy said: "There are many things this government has done which are evil and this is the latest. It knows the pickets are elderly.
"But in order to avoid the truth of what that Conservative government did it is trying to bury those papers in the hope that all the pickets will be dead and that no-one will be campaigning for the truth."
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