Miners strike Orgreave
Police face pickets as they arrive on the hill heading to the Orgreave Coking Plant near Rotherham on 31 May 1984. Home secretary Amber Rudd is set to announce an investigation into how the police acted PA

In another blow to South Yorkshire Police, the home secretary is set to announce an official inquiry into how its officers acted in one of the worst clashes of the miners' strike 32 years ago.

Amber Rudd is expected to appoint a lawyer to review the case of the Battle of Orgreave, in which campaigners allege that the South Yorkshire police sparked the violence with miners and then falsified evidence.

More than 70 officers and 50 strikers were injured during some of the biggest scenes of violence of the miners' strike more than three decades ago.

South Yorkshire Police voluntarily referred the case to the IPCC in 2012 but, in 2015, the watchdog said the passage of time means that allegations could not be pursued.

Rudd met representatives of the Orgreave Truth and Justice Campaign this week with Whitehall sources telling The Times she wanted to ensure the enquiry had the right structure.

"It's a question of ensuring answers that are both complete and timely and not [allowing] something that could drag on for years," one said.

The call for an investigation followed evidence of misconduct and cover-up by South Yorkshire police during the Hillsborough football disaster in which 96 fans died.

Nick Timothy, now the prime minister's chief of staff, said in May on the ConservativeHome website: "The Hillsborough independent panel inquiry showed that sleeping dogs in South Yorkshire police lied, lied and lied again, not just about their own conduct but about the victims and other football supporters."

South Yorkshire police is already heavily discredited by Hillsborough, how it handled child abuse cases in Rotherham and the conduct of the investigation into Sir Cliff Richard. The force's chief constable, David Crompton, has been suspended since the Hillsborough inquests.