Their fees, which have not been revealed, are subject to final assessment by the Legal Aid Agency (LAA) in a process which could take six months. It will be less than 10 per cent of the coroner’s total, the Telegraph understands.
Ms Hambleton said: “I was appalled when I saw these figures.
“There appears to be no accountability for this expenditure – no tendering process for legal services, no overview of accounting, no justification for PR firm (which from our point of view was employed to brief against the relatives).”
“What we wanted – and what many others forced into the coronial process want –is parity and equality of arms.”
A Ministry of Justice spokesperson said: “Our thoughts are with the families of those who died during this horrific attack.
“Legal aid is available for inquests in exceptional cases, which is why we funded the families throughout this inquest.
“While our review of legal aid showed that legal representation is not necessary for the vast majority of inquests, we are making a number of changes to ensure there’s more support for bereaved families.”