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Former sub-postmasters awarded honorary degrees by Bangor University

09 Jul 2024 3 minute read
Noel Thomas. Image: Bangor University

Two former sub-postmasters have been honoured by Bangor University for their pivotal roles seeking justice for Post Office managers in the Horizon scandal – considered to be the most extensive miscarriage of justice in UK history.

Bangor University has awarded honorary degrees  to 10 individuals from the worlds of public service, literature, music, science, and sport for their contribution to public life – including two former sub-postmasters, Sir Alan Bates and Noel Thomas

The Graduations, a highlight of the academic year for students, their loved ones and University staff, take place in the University’s historic Prichard-Jones Hall from Monday 8 to Friday 12 July as the university celebrates its 140th anniversary.


Honorary Degrees have been awarded to Sir Alan Bates, a former sub-postmaster from Llandudno who has campaigned for justice for sub-postmasters for two decades, and Noel Thomas, former sub-postmaster from Gaerwen, Ynys Mon.

Mr Thomas was wrongly convicted of false accounting after the Horizon computer system failed.

He successfully appealed his conviction and has since gone on to tell his story as he ‘wanted others who had suffered to come forward and secure justice’.

Alan Bates, former Sub-Postmaster and founder, Justice for Subpostmasters Alliance. Photo credit: Lucy North/PA Wire

Sir Alan Bates, Former Sub-Postmaster, has received an Honorary Doctor of Laws (Hon LLD) for Public Service.

Despite being an unlikely campaigning hero, Sir Alan Bates, a former sub-postmaster from Llandudno, has dedicated two decades to advocating for justice and clearing the names of Post Office managers involved in what is considered to be the most extensive miscarriage of justice in UK history.

Sir Alan founded the Justice for Sub-postmasters Alliance (JSFA) in 2009, playing a leading role in the legal battle to seek justice for those whose lives were adversely affected and to ensure compensation for those wrongly accused.

With five others from the JFSA, he took the Post Office to court on behalf of 555 claimants.


Noel Thomas (main photo) Former Sub-Postmaster also received an Honorary Doctor of Laws (Hon LLD) for Public Service

Noel Thomas, a former sub-postmaster from Ynys Mon, gained recognition for his significant role in addressing the widespread miscarriage of justice known as the Horizon scandal in the UK.

Engaging in a prolonged legal battle, he campaigned alongside others to clear the names of Post Office sub-postmasters who faced criminal convictions due to faulty accounting software.

His commitment to seeking justice for those affected by the scandal exemplifies his resilience and determination to expose the truth.

The other recipients of this year’s Honorary Degrees are Manon Steffan Ros, Linda Gittins, Joan Edwards, Mark Williams, Dr Susan Chomba, Professor E Wynne Jones, Professor John Philip Sumpter and Carl Foulkes.

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