The former chief executive of the Post Office, Paula Vennells, has had her CBE award formally stripped from her.

This was due to "bringing the honours system into disrepute" following the fallout from the Horizon Post Office scandal.

Ms Vennells received the CBE in 2019 but was widely criticised, and earlier this year said she would give up the honour.

The issue of the Post Office scandal was brought to wide attention with the airing of the ITV drama Mr Bates vs The Post Office back in January.

A petition was launched shortly afterwards to have Vennells' honour stripped, with it having attracted more than one million signatures.

What was the Post Office Horizon scandal?

More than 700 sub-postmasters and mistresses had their reputations ruined by allegations of theft and false accounting, with many left bankrupt or in prison, as a result of a computer system called Horizon, Sky News reports.

Between 1999 and 2015, many people who ran branches were found guilty, and despite years of campaigning, only a small number of them had their convictions quashed.

The government has since pledged to exonerate those who were wrongly convicted.

Paula Vennells and her role at the Post Office

Paula Vennells is an ex-businesswoman who worked for the likes of L'Oréal, Dixons Retail, Argos, and Whitbread before working at the Post Office.

She joined them as a group network director in 2007, then became managing director in 2010 before getting the position of CEO in 2012.

After seven years as CEO of the Post Office, she stepped down in February 2019 and then took over as chair of Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust in April of the same year.

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In December 2019, a group of post office operators won a high court case in which their convictions were ruled wrongful and the Horizon IT system was ruled to be at fault.

Then in 2021, the ruling was upheld on appeal, quashing the convictions of some workers who were wrongly accused of committing crimes, paving the way for compensation.

Following that ruling Vennells stepped down from a number of positions, including at the NHS and as a minister with the Church of England.

Vennells was heavily criticised following the ending of the High Court case.