Bankrupt Victim of Post Office Scandal Calls £10k Payout ‘Cruel’


Tony Downey, a former postmaster from the Lake District, is fighting for financial compensation after losing his livelihood and health due to the Horizon Post Office scandal. After selling his post office and shop, Downey declared bankruptcy and moved abroad. He has since received only £10,000 in compensation, far less than his losses. His case is being viewed as a test case by his legal team, who are handling many of the bankruptcy cases in the Horizon compensation scheme.

Downey bought the Hawkshead post office in 2001 and over six years, he and his wife were forced to use £35,000 of their own savings to cover “losses” caused by a faulty computer system called Horizon. After selling the post office and shop, Downey paid off a £60,000 commercial loan but was only awarded £10,000 in damages for personal suffering.

His legal team from Hudgell Solicitors argue that if the Post Office had admitted causing Downey’s bankruptcy, he would have received higher compensation. They are now challenging his offer. There are currently 74 bankruptcy cases in the Horizon Shortfall Compensation Scheme, with the Post Office admitting causation of bankruptcy in 25 of them.

Downey, who now lives in Spain, says he has no career, money, or pension due to the scandal. His old post office has since closed and been let to a nursery. The Post Office has apologized for the lengthy process of compensating victims of the Horizon IT scandal and stated that all offers made under the Horizon Shortfall Scheme are assessed by an independent panel.

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