There is another chance to hear the extraordinary story of Jo Berry, who befriended the IRA man who killed her father, when she speaks at a meeting hosted by Police and Crime Commissioner Angus Macpherson in Devizes on Wednesday 8 June.
Mr Macpherson is seeking volunteers willing to be trained to bring victims of crime and offenders together in a process known as restorative justice.
He said: “People who heard Jo Berry describing her experience on TV and radio, or who were at our first meeting in Swindon, will tell you that she spoke very movingly.
“Anyone interested in finding out about the benefits of restorative justice and hearing Jo Berry speak is invited to come along to Wiltshire Police headquarters.”
Ms Berry’s father, Sir Anthony Berry was an MP in Margaret Thatcher’s government. He was one of five people killed in the 1984 attack on the Grand Hotel in Brighton during the party conference. More than 30 others were injured.
Pat Magee served 14 years in jail for the bombing before being released early under the Good Friday agreement in 1999.
He agreed to meet Ms Berry – at her request – the following year. Since then they have become friends and shared platforms more than 150 times to speak about reconciliation.
On the 25th anniversary of the bombing Ms Berry launched Building Bridges for Peace, a not-for-profit organisation which promotes peace and conflict resolution.
Mr Macpherson is setting up a new service called Restorative Together – Wiltshire and Swindon.
Restorative justice puts those harmed by crime or conflict and those responsible for the harm in contact, enabling everyone affected to play a part in repairing the harm and finding a positive way forward.
It is part of a wider approach known as restorative practice which can be used anywhere to prevent conflict, build relationships and repair harm by enabling people to communicate effectively and positively.
This approach is increasingly being used in schools, children’s services, workplaces, hospitals, communities and the criminal justice system.
Mr Macpherson is looking for volunteers to become restorative justice facilitators and Ms Berry has agreed to sign up to be trained. He said: “Jo Berry has dedicated herself to conflict resolution and has shown extraordinary courage to meet and then become friends with the man who killed her father.
“She has a remarkable story to tell and I hope that people who believe they could fit the bill as restorative justice facilitators, or who simply are interested in the concept, will come along to hear Jo Berry speak and to find out more about our plans.”
Mr Macpherson says the ideal people for the role are non-judgmental and fair minded with excellent listening skills who want to make a positive contribution to their community.”
After completing a three-day training course, it’s likely that the volunteers will be asked to take on up to three cases a year. Each case would involve about six to 15 hours spread over a number of weeks.
Volunteers will need to be 18 or over and to have excellent communication skills; willing to go through police vetting; able to remain impartial and to have the time available and be flexible enough to attend training and supervision as needed.
The meeting is at Wiltshire Police HQ, London Road, Devizes, SN10 2DN on Wednesday 8 June at 7 pm.
Apply to become a restorative justice facilitator via www.wiltshire-pcc.gov.uk/Volunteering and select restorative justice facilitator from the drop-down menu.
Email your completed form to: email@example.com Or post it to Volunteer Co-ordinator, Wiltshire Police, London Road, Devizes SN10 2DN.
For general information about restorative justice, go to restorativejustice.org.uk
Pictured top from left, Inger Lowater (restorative justice co-ordinator), Jo Berry, Charlotte Calkin (restorative justice trainer) and PCC Angus Macpherson