Wednesday, 12 September 2012


Sorry this is still not the last post.

The Hillsborough tragedy might be one best left off topic for many but I will say my piece regarding the Bishop of Liverpool's report.

I can understand the demand from the families of victims that they want answers as to how their loved ones died. I can understand that they want to apportion blame. Personally, I don't doubt those that died were totally blameless. They would almost certainly have been in the ground some time before the crush started.

I can understand the concerns about the safety of the ground before the match. I can understand the concerns regarding the emergency response after the crush. To hear that many victims might have survived had they had better medical care must be distressing. I can understand concerns that police officers statements were amended to remove criticism of the police management of the response.

What I do not accept is the key finding of the report that Liverpool fans were not the cause of the disaster. The quest for the truth regarding this incident has now reached Orwellian proportions. It now appears there were no drunken fans: no ticket less fans and the fans have no responsibility for using so much force to push their way into the ground that nearly 100 people were crushed to death.

A society where individuals have no responsibility for their actions and where authorities are now routinely blamed for failing to prevent or manage those actions is a very unhealthy society.


  1. Replies
    1. Really then do tell why 14 Liverpool fans were found guilty of man slaughter a few years earlier and why was English football banned from Europe for 5 years because of the actions of Liverpool fans and tell how Liverpool fans managed to kill 39 fans by crushing them against a wall and then it collapsing at Heysel in 1985. Expect that was the police as well..

    2. Did south Yorkshire police police the Heysel stadium. And don't give me that crap about it being unsafe a car is unsafe it you drive like a twat

    3. The shame lies with a hand full of so called Liverpool fans who in their stupidity could not conduct themselves properly ..people do not crush themselves someone has to start to push and God and they know who they are

  2. Interesting that this inquest has coincided with the most recent government assault on the police service. It strikes me as very convenient for Mr Cameron to be able to offer such a heartfelt apology whilst at the same making plain his intent to punish the police for his own embarrassment at the failure of the Scarman report.

  3. Well said.
    It's about time someone had some guts and spoke the truth.

  4. I remember watching the original story unfold as a youngster.

    I remember my family, who were football nuts, being heartbroken at the sight.

    I do remember seeing the photos in the sun and some of the TV footage.

    The conduct of some of the fans was horrific- the violent way they were pushing forward- almost as if they were frenzied was frightening.

    I never understood that mentality- no matter how much you wanted to see your team.

    I recall asking my relatives why they didnt just hit the fire alarm? Why didnt the police use more force to repel the ones pushing?

    Anyway, the poor victims- such an awful way to meets ones end- those pictures of the faces against the railings are about the worst I have seen my whole life.

    For me, its seems an unusual, almost bizarre occurrence. The police and ground management no doubt have some degree of responsibility perhaps, but a fraction, a tiny fraction of the responsibility compared to that borne by the aggressive idiots doing the pushing.


  5. Regardless of the 'truth' of Hillsborough (whatever that may be) a police denial of responsibility is worth almost zero by virtue of its new status as a reflex characteristic of police procedure.

    To make matters worse....and more often than not, responsibility is avoided in a manner which is both dishonest and cowardly. The days when police could bank upon the benefit of any doubt, are thus long gone.

    And any forthcoming sympathy will be from your own camp, lex.

  6. As with the Bloody Sunday enquiry this one has found what was wanted by the interested parties.
    Undoubtedly mistakes of grand proportion were made, i am unsure where the allegations of perjury are proven but hey.
    Only one question; If the fans were so well behaved, sober and not to blame why did the match commander make the decision to open gates to try and prevent a crush outside the ground.
    It would appear to be easier to put the thing to bed by sacrificing retired old bill.
    It is also inappropriate to apply today's standards to something so long ago, consider instead in light of the massive football violence issues prevalent then and the governments of the 70's and 80's insistence on 'sorting out' football violence

    1. Maybe because there was no filtering system put in place long before you approached the turnstiles as there had been in the other semi's at that ground. Maybe that was the first mistake, maybe just maybe Dunkenfield got it wrong from the start. Know your facts before you spout rubbish!

  7. @ anonymous 2115 - 'Shame on you.' Why? Explain yourself.

    melv - I am not looking for sympathy. I am sure there were police failures but did the police push these fans into the ground? The officer in charge ordered gates to be opened to prevent a crush at that point. With hindsight that was not the right decision. He did what he thought was best at the time.

    My point is, obviously, how have the facts now altered to such an extent that the fans bear no responsibility for the events of that day at all?

  8. Perhaps you need a hand to see why you need to give this some more thought, and why the conclusions of the panel are so disturbing:

    1. Problems with overcrowding and crushes at Hillsborough were well known but ignored by authorities.

    2. A total of 116 of 164 police statements were amended to "remove or alter comments unfavorable to" South Yorkshire Police, while the South Yorkshire Metropolitan Ambulance Service also tampered with statements.

    3. Police and ambulance staff were slow to act and interpreted crowd unrest as a prelude to a riot rather than a sign of distress.

    4. The senior police officer at the stadium falsely told his superiors that Liverpool fans had broken into the stadium and caused the fatal crush, while then-Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher was told by police that drunkenness and violent crowd behavior were to blame.

    Get yourself a copy of 'Willful Blindness' by Margaret Heffernan.

  9. To anonymous at 23.09

    If we are to assume all of what you say is accurate.... may I ask why you think the 'pushing' fans are not culpable?


  10. Anonymous 2309 - I have read the report. I am aware of all the allegations in the report. I found the report biased but then you may say I would.
    I have no doubt that there were failings on the part of the police and other authorities. I have no doubt police managers tried to negate those failures, but did the club, the police and ambulance service cause this masacre?
    We have become a society where no one has responsibility for their actions.

  11. The Police opened the gates to hell and hearded death from one area to another, I still have my ticket I wasn't drunk and lucky I went in 88

  12. "What I do not accept is the key finding of the report that Liverpool fans were not the cause of the disaster."

    That was the finding in the 1990 report. That is the finding in the latest report. Every single shred of evidence, both the limited amount available in 1990 and the evidence made available since, shows that Liverpool fans were not the cause of the disaster. There has never been anything to indicate that the fans caused it, except police reports that we always suspected and now unquestionably know, were fabricated.

    At least you admit there's something Orwellian in your desire to ignore the reality and pretend the fans were drunk and ticketless and pushed too hard. I can respect your impulse towards solidarity with other officers, but not when it brings with it a denial of the facts (as you put it, your refusal to accept the truth). Is such an attitude really appropriate for someone in the police force?

  13. "may I ask why you think the 'pushing' fans are not culpable?"

    In the absence of overhead drones communicating to them via their non-existent smartphones, the absence of effective communication from the authorities in charge, the automatic assumptions of the authorities at the time being that if there's trouble in a crowd then they're up to no good, and a systemic pattern of delay and failure in communication to crowds during disasters in those days (Kings Cross, for example), the fans had no idea they were crushing people further in?

    If the fault lay so much with the fans, then the only necessary modifications to stadiums would have been louder tannoys, surely?

    However, none of that addresses statements being altered. That has nothing to do with witch-hunts, it's to do with the rule of law and how evidence may have been tampered with to deceive future investigations: in this instance to deflect as much responsibility as possible from the authorities, resulting in blame being placed on the victims which still lingers to this day as seen at this blog. There is also evidence that the Police National Computer was (possibly illegally) accessed to smear the deceased and portray them as criminals.

  14. Reading over the comments, I see there are people who seem to think that the fans were the cause. It simply isn't true, no matter how much you want it to be.

    The cause was police incompetence. I don't see how there is any room to dispute or even doubt that. I can understand the mistaken decision to put the Liverpool fans in the smaller of the two stadiums (because that was nearer to where travellers from Liverpool would arrive), given the history of hooliganism in English football; but the decision to open the exit gates and let fans in to relieve the crush outside, had two staggering problems.

    Firstly, the standard practice in such situations was to delay kick-off and tell waiting fans that it was delayed (which stopped them pushing to get in). Why was this practice ignored in favour of opening the exit gates? Secondly, the gates were opened without police officers and stewards being posted inside to direct the entering fans. That is crucial. The disaster happened because so many followed the signs into the central pens and took them over capacity (estimates of 6000 fans in the two pens, which had a combined capacity of 4000). If officers or stewards had been stationed at the end of the exit tunnel to direct the entering fans into the side pens (still well under capacity), the disaster would not have happened.

    Fundamentally, if opening the gates was the right decision then why did the officer who made that decision immediately lie about it? Why did he claim (within minutes of opening those gates) that it hadn't been his decision, but that fans had forced them open? He knew full well that what he was doing was wrong while he was doing it.

    None of this is new information - it came out in the course of previous reports, inquiries and court cases. What is new in this report is the extent of the cover-up of what happened after the disaster - the failure of both police and ambulance services to deal effectively with the situation once it had reached crisis, and the smear tactics used to make it look like fans caused the disaster and not police incompetence. What really needs to happen now is a new inquest. The reason that those responsible beforehand have never been held to account, and that it's taken so long for the cover-up of subsequent failures to come out, is because the original inquest prematurely ruled the deaths as accidental.

    1. There are some Liverpool fans who were there on that sad day with no ticket and had no intention of ever getting one who pushed. It was a known tactic that many of the old firm hooligans used following LFC around Europe and the UK. The findings will show that the police and Thatcher covered this up and the genuine fans there will feel exonerated after being accused of wrong doing. However, there will be an element of the fans who will have to live with the fact that they pushed and kept pushing to get in for nothing. Every time they look in the mirror all they will see is someone with no ticket pushing and stamping to get in for nothing. I wouldn't to live with the fact that deep down, I am just as guilty as the authorities who fucked up on that dreadful day.

  15. Worshipful Bro Norman George Bettison must look for consolation in the lack of direct mention of his unaccountable, aproned partners and the influential part they continue to play behind the flimsy scenery of democracy.

  16. A considered, honest and brave view. We are certainly a society that struggles to accept the full picture, and much prefers to demonise only one side or the other.
    I would love to hear first hand from one of those who pushed from the back, what their state of mind was at the time, and how they feel now.
    Even acknowledging the dreadful mistakes (and cover-ups) on the part of the authorities, how can culpability on all levels be ignored.

  17. Let's face it...there were faults on both sides. (The football/Police authorities and the fans). If we are honest, then we will see that is so.
    However, I do think that where most members of the public - including the relatives of the unfortunate victims - are now deeply shocked, is in learning of the totally unacceptable actions of the very senior police officers in their cover-up attempts. Despite the informed comments from the likes of Inspector Gadget, most mop's STILL believe that ACPO ranks are honest people!!!!
    It would have taken a brave officer to have refused to delete/alter something in his Statement when directed to by such a senior officer, especially when the officer was only giving an OPINION, e.g.'There was no leadership', bearing in mind that there were Sergeants and Inspectors at the scene.
    All very tragic.

  18. to anon at 7.46.

    You seem to have side stepped the question.

    I again ask why you think the fans that pushed are not culpable?

    The fans that did no pushing are clearly innocent.

    The fans that did push, I believe, are at least as guilty, in fact more so, than the groundsmen or policemen present.

    Put it this way- if that stadium had been full of identical Jess's (lots of me's - lovely eh) not a single casualty would have occurred.

    Because when I am in a crowd I don't lean on the person in front of me. Nor push them. Not lay a finger on them in fact. I can be pretty close to people, like on the Tube, but theres no need to push.

    So Im sorry, some fans, including Liverpool ones, have been guilty of terrible conduct in the past, we have all seen it on the telly.

    "The Sun" may have made up a bunch of lies and some cops may have tried to hide any incompetence to protect their pensions or their friends and colleagues etc. And thats all very disconcerting- BUT that does not absolve those who pushed.

    The 'pushers' are guilty of manslaughter, not the guy who opened the gate, or the guy who thought it was the safest thing to do at the time.

    This does not mean the pushers 'wanted' to kill people. Im sure in their maturer years they feel guilt and remorse. They may have over excited, or aggressive, or drunk, or whatever.

    But they ARE responsible.

    Its not PC to say it, and its very inconvenient of course as it impossible to detect those that pushed.. but nonetheless it should be recognised.


  19. Jess

    When Police pervert the course of justice - its not 'disconcerting' - it's fucking illegal.

    The fans that pushed at the back did so for a variety of reasons - none of which is criminal or illegal and only led to deaths because of police incompetence and misconduct.

    That's a FACT. You perpetuate the lie that they were drunk. You perpetuate the lie that they were fighting. Both of these found to be LIES put forward by the police.

    To call you uninformed would be to credit you with thought.

    Please take your lies and go fuck yourself with them. And as for the plod who wrote this bilge. Indicative of why so many in the public revile the police. We have good reason. Time and again you've been found to be liars and corrupt.

    Please don't kid yourself you occupy some moral highground and are privy to some truth people are afraid to speak. You're not. You're simply wrong. And you're repeating lies in an attempt to deflect attention from the people at fault. The police and the emergency services.

    1. You hate the police. All of them? I've been a copper for years and done some great things. Never lied in statements, caught burglars red handed, locked up scores of thieves, taken loads of uninsured cars off the road (each costs you £50 a year!). Someone even tried to kill me with a knife once. The police of the 80's and 90's are a world away from those of today, just as football supporters and ground management is compared to then. The scandals you hear about concerning the police even today are a tiny fraction of the incidents dealt with.
      If these pleadings are falling on dear ears, you are in a sad position as your attitude will via yourself or others like you meet a police officer, who will in turn hate you back for the undeserved personal bile. And so the cycle goes on.
      Don't forget the police recruit from society, not another planet. So bent coppers are just bent people that haven't been found out and kicked out yet. I'd waste no time getting rid of a wrong 'un.
      You'll probably tell me to go fuck myself. No problem. i'm used to it.

  20. Just stumbled on this site. I just cannot believe that a day following the damning report, comments from some people, particularly the author and Jess. The police that falsified statements should be prosecuted and imprisoned. Losing their pensions should be the least of their worries

  21. Have none of you been in a queue at a bus stop with gangs of school kids - they push - it is human nature not manslaughter. This blog is a disgrace - continue to delude yourselves if you want. A massive cover-up - lets hope justice comes knocking on your doors.

    1. If someone falls in front of a train because somebody further back in the queue pushed forward and created a domino effect, is the person that pushed blameless?

  22. Anon at 1802 And you're repeating lies in an attempt to deflect attention from the people at fault. The police and the emergency services.

    And SWFC, the safety engineers Eastwood & Partners and Sheffield City Council all of whom were sued civilly.

    As regards drunkeness and ticketlessness the report found that there were not "EXCEPTIONAL" levels of that. Which for a game in the eighties amidst a culture of hooliganism suggests that there was some.

    Personally I think I don't think the fans at the stadium had any personal responsibilty for the deaths.

    However the prevailing culture of football supporters in the Eighties definetly had an impact on the tragedy. Why else where there pens? Why else was the primary police plan designed to tackle disorder rather than crowd safety? Why were we banned from Europe?

    As for the alterations of statements and similar. Yes it was scandalous. Yes it wouldn't happen now - but the statements altered were accounts of the incident made by officers NOT under CJA rules with the alterations occuring when they were recorded on to CJA forms.
    SOME (but by no means all) of the changes were removing of hearsay, jargon and opinion.
    Some of the statements also recorded crowd behaviour as not being particularly friendly but that element is only noted in passing - as in "opinion was allowed to remain about the crowd, but not about the senior officers".

    I reiterate that my view is the victims were not to blame. There appears to have been some level of cover up by police senior management and solicitors (as already revealed in the Taylor report)and slurs on the victims by police at the time.
    I am sympathetic towards the victims and angry at the post incident behaviour in the police - particularly the management.

    I was not a police officer at the time. I don't recognise in my actions and experience the allegations that are currently being levelled against the police.


  23. Tang0,

    Your statement is fair and its sincerity would be beyond doubt, were you to paste it to Gadget's blog on the topic.

  24. To various anon,

    18.02: You call it 'fing illegal', I call it disconcerting- as it may have been simply the removal of unsubstatianted opinion- or worse- I can quite see the dynamic occurring in a large institution- it doesn't excuse it but its irrelevant to the issue of whether fans bear responsibility.

    Its interesting that you admit that the fans at the back pushed, yet seem to think they had their reasons and that they were not responsible! - incredible!

    I didnt say specific fans were drunk or were fighting-I put these forward as 'possible' causes of the pushing at the back. They are plausible given fan conduct generally speaking at the time.

    Its a pity you aren't willing to accept that those that pushed have blood on their hands. And do try not to stoop to profanity- it does little to inspire confidence in your opinion or stance.

    18.39 The verdict was yesterday so we were bound to be talking about it. Did you hear LBC today? Most, but not all, callers thought the fans had some blame.

    18.51 When kids push each over in the playground and at bus queues- guess who is to blame? THEY ARE!

    Tango- all good points. There is reason why those blue guards were penning them in-such a indictment of humanity- its a sport for goodness sake!

    I agree the victims, who were mostly at the front, were not to blame. It was the pushing fans at the back who are chiefly at fault.


  25. Are Scousers now un-criticisable? (Is that a word I have just made up?)

    The fans outside tried to push their way in,drunk or not.The police panicked.Tragedy for the innocent people at the front who got there in time.

    Why were the fences there in the first place? Hooliganism was rife.Remember Heysel?

  26. Excellent, Jaded. This highly sensitive topic needed your delicate touch.

  27. Scousers have been stigmatised for years. The families have remained dignified despite this. Now its your turn South Yorkshire Police - Liars Liars Liars Liars Liars Liars Liars.............

  28. Excellent Melvin,this highly sensitive topic needs your sneering,pompous,celebratory touch.

  29. The police are corrupt, cowardly, mendacious murderers. This is not news. Anyone with an IQ of higher than 65 knew years back the truth about Hillsbourough. Now ***k off and arrest some human rights activists.

    1. Are you a Liverpudnian?
      31 per cent of Liverpool’s 160,000 houses are effectively ‘jobless’, Official figure. You're great city has the highest unemployment in the UK.
      Now ***k off and get a job.

  30. The crush outside the ground was because there were thousands of people trying to get through a tiny number of turnstiles. The Leppings Lane area outside those turnstiles was a cul-de-sac into which the fans were shepherded by the police who esorted them from the station and from the coaches. It was inevitable that a crush was going to happen because there was no organisation to slow down the arrival of the fans into the area outside the ground (as had been the case the year before). So blaming the fans for following the police directions and going to the area where they should have been let into the ground is rediculous.

    Once inside the ground - the fans had to go down a tunnel (at a 1 in 6 gradient downwards - which doesn't meet safety standards now, and is debatable whether it did at the time given the similarities with the Ibrox disaster) to get to the stands. Once you got into the ground, the tunnel was the fastest/shortest way to see the pitch, and the match had started. So fans went down the tunnel, and once they had gone down that tunnel, there was no way out the other end. Blaming people for rushing down a tunnel to get to see the game is disingenuous in the extreme.

    If the police inside the ground had been directed to close the gates to the tunnel, then the fans would have gone into the side pens, and there would have been no disaster.

  31. Accidentally posted prior to finishing.

    The litany of failure starts with the selection of the ground, and the refusal of the FA to change it to Old Trafford as requested by Liverpool Football Club. But there were key decisions made by the police in their management of the disaster that resulted in so many deaths. There have been 2 serious enquiries into it, and both this report and the Taylor report concluded that the fans were not to blame. How long can you spout the lies propagated by those protecting themselves?

    That the police were concocting their cover-up while the relatives were identifying their loved ones' bodies in the gymnasium (and taking blood alcohol measurements from a dead 10 year old boy), is a scandal and a disgrace, and all involved in that (including Bettinson) should be charged with perverting the course of justice.

    The report told us The Truth.
    Now, we need justice to be done, and to be seen to be done.


  32. Superb, Anonymous 17:30 and 17:38.

    It's amazing how powerful a cogent, clear and fair response to the bile spouted by the author of this post can be. Well done.

    There you go. The chain of events. Laid out in front of you. The evidence, before your eyes. It's such a shame that yours appear to be closed.

  33. This comment has been removed by the author.

  34. Seems many people still want to blame fans despite the report.

    Crowds dont control themselves. Thats why people trust the police.

    People blaming the fans here, with your "neutral" view, who do you support? Thought so.

    This is more than rivalry. Trying to accuse of murder is despicable.

  35. Sigh,

    How disappointing.

    I don't really know how to begin in the face of such wilful ignorance and stubbornness.

    If I was in a tunnel, even a tunnel on a slope, even in a rush to see my fave pop star or my fave team, I believe that, I, me, myself, Jess, an individual, has NO right to push the person in front of me.

    And if someone pushed me from behind I would politely but firmly ask them to take a step back.

    Are you seriously saying the slope was at a an such angle and perhaps covered in some low friction slime causing people at the back to innocently slide into the people in front of them? If so I think I must have missed that in both reports! A 1 in 6 slope wouldn't cause me to do so and I'm no spring chicken.

    Excessive crowds may have formed at various points in the area- and this may be due to well meaning but incorrect decisions at the time. But this does not in may way take responsibility from the fans that chose to push.

    None of the people here have explained why the fans that pushed are somehow innocent of any wrongdoing when the pressure they exerted resulted in the deaths of nearly 100 innocent fellow fans.

    Are you not interested in genuine fact based justice?


  36. I think you are in a tunnel Jess.

    I genuinely feel sorry for you.

    But most of all I'm glad I'm not in it with you.

    God bless you.

  37. Broxted-or whatever name the voices in your head are saying-repeating yourself on every blog does not make you right.Even using clever words like mendacious.
    Are you on bail at the moment?

  38. Espandole,

    Well sir... what can I say..

    a bad point, poorly made?

    good to see you engaging with the details of the case rather than making insipid, dumb comments. Nice one.


  39. Hillsborough Resident15 September, 2012 02:50

    I lived near the ground in 1989. Many people saw what was going on. Statements were taken from householders regarding criminal damage and violent behaviour by Liverpool fans - what happened to these statements? They certainly weren't lying in them.

    What happened was appalling from start to finish but not all policmen were guilty of a cover up, And not all fans were innocent- the innocent ones died but there must be guilty ones still walking around.

    The match should not have been played there, the ground was not up to standard even for 1989 and Liverpool fans were notorious. A horrible combination of circumstances for which everybody involved must bear some of the responsibility.

    1. Well put.
      The more people who accept responsibility the less likely this horrible incident occurs again.
      R.I.P. the 96

  40. This notion that dozens of police officers have lied in their statements and need to be brought to justice is pure bunkum. Nearly all the amended statements simply removed officer's opinion regarding the management of the police response. Police managers would have asked that these opinions be removed. They would have felt justified in doing so as the officers were not qualified to give such opinion. Of course, we understand why they would not want those comments made.
    I have made it clear that the police response had shortcomings. I have made it clear that the fans that died were innocent and any moves to suggest otherwise were disgraceful. If the police tried to overstate the poor behaviour of Liverpool fans that too was appalling.
    I said this case had now reached Orwellian proportions because the facts have now been distorted against the police. How can the events of that day be the entire responsibility of the police?
    There were some drunken fans at the match. There was violence before the match. There were some fans without tickets.
    If the ground was safe; if the police had managed this crowd better, then this crush might not have happened. If Liverpool fans were not pushing and shoving to get in, the crush would not have happened.
    How is it that Liverpool fans now apparently have no culpability for events of that day?

  41. Dear Broxted,
    Unfortunately on the one occasion you might actually be able to correctly use the word "mendacious" you are utterly undermined by your posting history.
    Your previous over use of the word robs it of any potency, whilst your previous approach to facts and evidence would indicate that you know little to nothing about the circumstances you are commenting on and almost certainly haven't even read the report.

    As such your comment as usual just blends in to your normal background bleating.


  42. Dear Hillsborough Resident,
    I quite agree. My family are all football fanatics (though not me) and when the disaster, and others, happened, they always said it amazed them it hadn't happened earlier or more often such was the behaviour of many fans in the 70s and 80s.

    The pushing, shoving and fighting used to scare them and they were seasoned ticket holders that used to travel all over the country.

    Once, they saw 'fans' rip out seats from the concrete and use them as missiles!!!

    Its rather saddening that official reports can be such poor quality. I must say in the last 3 days I have not met a soul who concurs with the reports findings. Its just so self evidently illogical. It wasn't gravity that caused the deaths- it was idiots pushing.


  43. Health and Safety Law dictates that once an incident occurs, or almost occurs – a so called ‘near miss’, it must be recorded. The larger number of people this could potentially affect, the more critical this becomes.

    In the case of the Hillsborough disaster, there had been several ‘near misses’ in previous FA Cup ties held at this venue.

    This was in spite of the ‘safety plan’ which had been used on several occasions previously at this location, and involved a ‘slowing down’ of the crowds whilst tickets where checked, to stop the build up of fans at the turnstiles.

    About 20 odd years ago, I did a Health and Safety course (NEBOSH?) to support the work I was involved in.

    I clearly remember one of our lecturers telling us

    ‘Once you learn something relating to H & S, it can’t be unlearned’

    There was ABSOLUTELY AND CATEGORICALLY no reason why the previously ‘successful’ safety plan – flawed as it was due to the near misses – should not have been adhered to as the absolute minimum at that game.

    I don’t know if I recall correctly – and I’m sure Chris will confirm the veracity of this – but wasn’t someone prosecuted following the Heysel tradgedy under similar circumstances, ie the ‘knowledge’ that the stadium was not fit for purpose?

    For me it beggars belief that those in charge at tHillsborough were not brought to book under these terms alone.

    And 'Jess' - somehow I just cannot believe you are female - but I still feel sorry for you.

    Bless you.

  44. Espandole,

    Interesting... a 'bless you', followed by a gender based insult. Once again....nice.

    I'm going to try again, and see if I fare better... I can accept there may be safety design deficiencies, decision error, eventual attempts at cover ups that may have been technically illegal and tabloid lies about fan conduct. I am willing to accept all of that.

    But you UNDERSTAND and ACCEPT, surely, that the fans pushing in the stadium are STILL RESPONSIBLE for the death of the 100?

    Now you can debate the ratio of blame sure...

    Is it 10% police? 10% FA 80% pushing fans?

    Or vice versa? Thats the debate to be had.

    But to say the fans that pushed have no blame at all- (because someone pushed- you cannot deny that)- is nonsensical.

    And that is why most of the public, outside Liverpool, wont accept the report.

    eg if the courts let a murderer off who then goes and murders a 2nd victim, whilst its true the courts have a degree of blame of course, you cannot say the guy who commits the murder is blameless.

    I'm not saying the pushing fans are guilty of murder obviously!!- Im sure not a single one realised the full extent of the consequences of their actions till later, but they are still guilty of manslaughter though their misconduct.

    That fact that such misconduct was commonplace may be a factor for mitigation for the fans but its not an excuse.

    Jeff, ...opps... I mean Jess

  45. Shanky here.

    Erm, Jess…I don’t think “Espandole” was making a gender biased statement towards you. I think he/she was making a statement about your astonishing lack of empathy. As empathy is a characteristic often unfairly associated with females due to their widely perceived nurturing role in family life, I read the remark concerning your gender as an obvious nod to this general lack of empathy which you expound so unremittingly, although I would go much further in criticising the likes of you, Ferenda, Jaded and Tang0, because you all lack HUMANITY in a pretty fundamental and obvious way. And “Tang0” – mendacious means “given to telling lies.” I too am sad that Broxted has to use the word so often. I wish he didn’t have to use it at all in reference to the police. But as the days pass and the evidence mounts up, he becomes more right in his use of language just as you become ever more…erm…retarded?

    Anyway, what can I say about Hillsborough? The institutions which the general public look to to protect them, to save them, to uphold justice and to see justice served aligned themselves to an industrial inter-departmental conspiracy and covered-up their own criminal negligence with government sanction on a quid pro quo. The only good I can see coming from this, the most disgraceful chapter in the history of British policing (so far…), is that the general public now have a poignant touchstone epitomising the true face of policing in this country. Collectively, the police are now essentially Dorian Grey: the trouble is is that we’ve all seen what’s going on with the group portrait in the attic.

    As this has yet to be said, I’ll say it: to the families of the deceased who fought on despite carrying an open wound so senselessly inflicted upon them for twenty-three years, I thank you. I salute both your courage and your persistence, and I’m not usually a saluting type of guy…

  46. 'I’m not usually a saluting type of guy…'

  47. I make it known that the latent talents of Brontosaurus the Mendacious, include the hereditary ability to render his wit invisible.

  48. Shanky,
    I think you are reading what you want to see rather than what I have actually written.
    I wouldn't have expected anything more of you.


  49. Shanky,

    I think you may have missed the point somewhat.

    Its not inhumane to correctly attribute blame is it?

    In fact its the polar opposite.

    I think the police and organisers do have a degree of blame and that part of the report I support.

    But to say that pushing fans have no blame- thats self evidently untrue.

    It would be an insult to the dead to deny this, and more importantly, would be unhelpful to operational decisions going forward.

    Its the humane thing to recognise the pushing fans do have responsibility in the death of 100 innocent people.


  50. Shanky’s back.

    Jess, I don’t miss points: I score them. You assume that you apportion blame correctly by suggesting that the pushing occurred by some force of malice and had nothing to do with the dynamics of a large crowd that should never have been allowed to build up in the first place. The deaths were caused by the weight of numbers resulting in a crush. There were plenty of people on the ground that day in charge of managing the numbers. If the numbers had been managed properly then there would not have been a crush. And do you want to know who was pushing the hardest that day? Do you, Jess? The ones who pushed hardest were the one’s who died and the one’s who almost died: they were pushing back against a weight of humanity bearing down upon them in a mortified attempt at saving their own lives, you catastrophic moron. If you leave your bath running and it floods your house, I guess you’d blame the water for the way it behaves. You disgust me.

    To Tang0, I’m sorry you thought I was referring to your comment on Hillsborough as being my reason for attacking your demonstrable lack of humanity. It was more to do with your general history of comment-making on a variety of subjects, and I stand by my criticism of you, but I’m sorry I wasn’t clearer.

    To Brontosaurus, this one’s for you: as always, pay attention to the lyrics…

  51. Dear Shanky,
    Thanks for your unreserved apology for failing to make a coherent argument about what I have actually written.
    I look forward to you providing an example of one of my comments that demonstrates I have a lack of humanity.
    Until then your posts will be filed in the category of verbose, unsubstantiated drivel in the section next to Broxted.


  52. You exhibit an impressive immunity to that long established police tactic of making a critic lose his temper, Shanky.

    If you can maintain that steadfast civility under a barrage of abuse; you can also develop the strength to withstand years of persistent smearing by police.

    A good cause beckons. You are a witty, bright writer and you may be in a position to comment under your real identity. Give long and serious consideration to it. Use that decent grey matter to deliberate how much less of a personal risk it is to do so and the new potency this will impart to your comments.

  53. Dear Melv,
    If you find that written criticism on the internet is sufficient to cause you to lose your temper, whilst perusing comments at leisure in your own time, then perhaps you should reconsider your campaign about police incivility.

    Alternatively, maybe you just need to get out more. I hope you enjoyed your doughnut in York!


  54. Dear Shanky,

    Double sigh...

    Whilst I commend your new policy of normal communication (ie minus the sound effects etc) I'm afraid you really have missed the point.

    I have already addressed the issue of crowd dynamics in detail in the previous posts.

    If the crowd had been standing close together- but not touching- please explain how anyone would have been crushed?

    For the crushing to be sustained as it was, people were pushing- hard- the people in front of them.

    I have already said there is likely an absence of genuine malice (hence manslaughter not murder).

    More a male lack of civility and general aggressiveness and lack of consideration from the 'pushers' at the back.

    Quite simply, had that crowd been full of my friends and I, and people like us, NOT A SINGLE PERSON WOULD HAVE PERISHED.

    My family, and extended family, are big into football and have been to 100s, nay 1000s of matches and have long lamented the behaviour of football crowds.

    As a girl I was banned from coming along as it was 'too dangerous'. There were some grounds they would avoid full stop.

    You act as if once in a crowd you lose sanity, morality, sense, decency, responsibility! I have been in a crowd many a time, on demonstrations, shopping, tube etc and never did I think it was ok to lean or push people around me. It would be understandable if a crowd were escaping a fire or bullets in a badly designed building- but there was no fire- there was a sporting event on.

    You should reserve your disgust for yourself if you are prepared to ignore the truth when considering the contributory factors leading to the avoidable deaths of 100 innocent souls.


  55. Good evening, Tang0

    I don't understand how it was possible for you to acquire the notion 'criticism on the internet is sufficient to cause me to lose my temper'. Hey...there I go again...forgetting that paucity of evidence is irrelevant to contemporary policing.

    I did enjoy my cycle to York but passed on the doughnut, thank you for asking.

  56. Lex you're saying the fans shouldn't have gone into the area? The police directed them into the area you're always saying how we should obay all instructions now you're complaining that the crowd didn't psychically know to ignore the police? They pushed cause they thought there was room, the police told them there was room. And a large codes doesn't really push exactly.

    Opinions of the crowd were allowed to remain. Abd if there was no coverup why has it taken 23yrs for the truth. And what about the coroner?

  57. Anon at 12:19

    What you say makes no sense at all.

    Are you suggesting that if you are led down a corridor in a cinema by a steward and meet a queue of people you aggressively start pushing and leaning on the people in front of you?

    What about queues on the Tube?- do you just wade in there then?

    If you are presented with a mass of people in front of you that are clearly several people deep whats the point in pushing anyway?

    Apart from the fact that its rude, dangerous and completely unacceptable.


  58. Only Tango could support the killing of 96 innocent souls. Now pee off and fit up some passer by. See you in court!

  59. Yikes! The knives are out for Shanky…

    Look Tang0, the comment you wrote on this thread observes the same stylistic principle as the one Ferenda employed in his offensive article on this subject. You both appear to make certain small concessions to the damning findings of the report, but both of you then use those small concessions as a modality or “framing device” to express support for the stench-filled cadaver of your failed and unsupportable institution within your concluding paragraphs (and others). It seems both you and Ferenda decided in your own separate but equally gutless ways to fight a rearguard argument that in part accepts all but the most serious allegations while attempting to run interference on the methodology, the execution and the intent behind the cover-up. In your experience, don’t the guilty tell lies and conceal evidence? Do they blame others and denigrate the integrity of the victim/s? Maybe you don’t know this about me, but I know a lot about the history of propaganda, advertising and public relations (essentially an homogenous triad), and thankfully you, Ferenda and Jess are so amateurish in your own little propagandistic forays that your only success is to make the work Joseph Goebbels seem up to date. You see, there is old saying from the campaign trail that goes something like this: “If you’re known to be in the wrong but you succeed in debating your opponent to a draw, then the draw becomes a win.” The “win” is predicated on the inflation of doubt in the mind of the audience. Like all inflationary bubbles, they pop; they pop because they’re full of nothing but hot air and malice - just like you, Tang0…just like you. You lack humanity because you’re a mechanism, just like Ferenda and Jess. And just as final slap, when you say…

    “I look forward to you providing an example of one of my comments that demonstrates I have a lack of humanity.”

    …I reply: you can’t “have” a lack of humanity, you moron: you lack humanity. You can’t possess a thing you don’t have: it’s a logical absurdity. As I can’t be bothered to sift through your comments, I’ll just pick out an example from your initial comment on this thread that I previously couldn’t be bothered to address due to the compound reasoning expressed in my first paragraph and because contextual analysis tends to get a bit wordy, but hey: you ordered it.

    “However the prevailing culture of football supporters in the Eighties definetly had an impact on the tragedy. Why else where there pens?”

    Cultural prevalence warrants mass arbitrary penning, does it? The Nazi’s had a similar philosophy. And you definitely spelt definitely wrong. I know that there is much better evidence than this in your previous comments on other threads, but I didn’t bother with a cut-and-paste job as I don’t respond well to orders or ultimatums, plus my time is certainly worth a lot more than yours and the thought of wasting it reading a heap of your mindless opinions was frankly a total non-starter.

    (need more space)

  60. To Jess!

    Jess, you have the awareness, enlightenment and grace of a camel’s digestive tract. One day you’ll come to terms with the fact that like everyone else you also have an anus…

    I take it that you never saw the series of documentaries about the staff who work the London Underground. Their major fear was that one day overcrowding (due to weight and flow of numbers) on a platform somewhere on the system would lead a commuter being forced onto the track and under a train. I’d love to debate you point-for-point, but what with your thoughtless mechanical repetition combined with the amalgamated bile of your black and grey propaganda, I see no value in it. I will quote you, though:

    “You should reserve your disgust for yourself if you are prepared to ignore the truth when considering the contributory factors leading to the avoidable deaths of 100 innocent souls.”

    So, that’s just me and the families of the ninety-six, then. Should the rightly dissatisfied relatives of the dead share the burden of self-loathing that you prescribe me to feel? And don’t lecture me on “the truth,” darling: you’ve never encountered it.

    I am Shanky.

  61. Shanky,
    Please reread my post rather than attempting to point score.
    The fans at this game were not to blame.
    The police directions of the crowd led almost inevitably to the tragedy.
    The tragedy was caused by crushing of people in an environment designed to prevent hooliganism - pens, fencing to protect the pitch etc.
    If that demonstrates a lack of humanity then thank god the authorities in charge had a similar lack and these crowd control measures were removed and replaced with all seater stadiums.

    I agree that penning is not a particularly admirable method of crowd control, football had many issues in the eighties, some of which might not have been addressed with the best solutions. To blame the police for causing hooliganism, inventing pens, or to accuse me of lack of humanity for simply stating the environment of the tragedy only demonstrates a lack of comprehension and a blind desire to point score on your part.

    I see that you are unable, just like Broxted, to back up your words with evidence. I do admire your excuse though "I am just too important and busy to look for it".

    Apologies for the typos - smartphone posting.


  62. Am I now to believe that what I was told on a Bramshill course on disaster management, by one of the SIO's of the Hillsborough disaster, that a pub en route to the ground was `steamed and cleared of all its booze by fans heading to the game` didn't happen? Pity I no longer have my notes but then again it was a long while ago, so perhaps I didn't really hear that quite right?


  63. Tango I had to sit in on a false rape allegation recently. "She was raped twice". Oh? The first man was acquitted but plod knew better than the jury. Now I see "Dale Cregan for OBE" has disappeared...

  64. Shanky,

    It seems you may have taken a step backwards in civilised debate- which is a pity, but these things happen I suppose.

    I'm not sure I would agree with your aggressive stance to Tango's phrase "I have a lack of"- isn't that common parlance?

    He/she has a 'deficiency' of vitamin C, or 'has a lack of' vitamin C is just the same as she 'lacks' vitamin C in most peoples books I think.

    But even if its technically a violation of the strictest interpretation of her Majesty's English I thought you enjoyed all sorts of word play, sound effects and unusual style.

    Seems a bit odd to obsess about such matters on a blog?

    Anyhow, your anger and insults do little to impress or persuade- I'd rather hoped you would be able to see that.

    Although I don't agree with Tango about the role/blame of the crowds I agree with his 'pen' comment. The pens were there because of poor crowd conduct. And poor crowd conduct was one of the key factors for the deaths. Hence the clear relevance.

    And why on Earth would you think your time more valuable than anyone else's?

    As to your tube reference I absolutely share the concern of large numbers causing someone to fall off the platform. And Im particularly concerned because the slightest nudge could cause someone to slip and due to the sharp fall and oncoming train, instant death would occur.

    Thus I think the Tube is far more hazardous- due to a tiny error causing certain death.

    But with football pens- it would take sustained aggressive pushing for this to occur. The sort of pushing I would never do (and have never seen) on the Tube.

    As I said before, had all the supporters in the stadium been like myself or my peers not a SINGLE death would have occurred.

    Thus there HAD to be a contributory factor with the crowds- and the factor was poor conduct, all to common at the time.

    I don't really think you quite have the right to align yourself with the families. I made the point that any disgust you feel should be directed at yourself as you appear to be ignoring fairly straight forward and undeniable evidence- and this is not in the interests of truth or justice that you claim to care so much about.


  65. Just a small O/T diversion:
    We have 'wrestled' here for several years and over the same period, the fighting Kavanaghs have spent their joint £3.2 million (gasp) divorce litigation.

    Both are practising solicitors and therefore upright, honest, trustworthy and certainly above suspicion of attempts to deviously syphon unfair shares in the marital nest-egg.

    All that appears to remain are the ashes of two regal lifestyles. Tears are rolling down my cheeks, lex and it may have already crossed your mind to do the decent thing and use your blog to organize a whip-round.

  66. You are a piece of scum Broxted.If you really are standing for police commissioner anywhere-quite possibly you are lying-then I intend to print off your blogs and send them to the the local paper so they can see what you are really like.

  67. ^^^Oh dear, it's ranting and screaming time of the month! Go back on the Pill, dear. It will help level out those yo-yo hormones.

  68. These blog comments go round and round but the simple TRUTH is 96 Liverpool fans were crushed by other Liverpool fans, nobody else crushed them. I'm sure the FA, the stadium design, the police crowd control, the stewards and the ambulance service didn't help matters BUT at the end of the day it was Liverpool fans that crushed Liverpool fans. If this wasn't the case then there would have been crush deaths at the stadium every week.

  69. ^^^ So you know better than the authors of the report who have spent years looking at the deaths do you? There weren't crush deths before because the police didn't overload the pens.

    And let's stop this rubbish about the fans at the mack pushing that was media and/or police lies.

  70. WPC Jade D why are comments on Manchester banned on all MSMs? The police are loved? Puleeze wake up and smell the cawfee;))

  71. I do most of my football watching these days on TV, I have no desire to blow £40 to sit on a plastic seat surrounded by plastic fans eating plastic burgers and I abhor everything about the premier league, however I did go to many games in the 1980's including a few at Hillsborough, my memories of my trips to that ground are being frogmarched from Wadsley Bridge by the old bill, no banter at all, being shephereded into a stadium that for 'one of the best in the country' was in reality falling to bits and being deposited back afterwards, such was being a fan back then, at least it was affordable and we saw some proper football, nowadays it's a completely different world, if you were a football fan 30 years ago, you were regarded as lower than a snakes belly, somewhere between serial killer and mass rapist, therefore this blog doesn't surprise or offend me.

  72. Anon at 7.54

    I don't know if you read any of the posts above but they do address your question.

    Sometimes official reports are twisted by a hidden agenda be it appeasement, dogma or political.

    Sometimes official reports contradict previous official reports (suggesting fallibility)

    Sometimes reports are composed of people with very strong personal grievances or prejudices that can derail panels.

    In short sometimes public enquiries get things wrong.

    This is a classic case of that.

    There absolutely had to be 'pushing fans' otherwise no one would have died. The multiplication of forces on a large crowd can only happen if, in tandem, people are pressing against each other.

    This is not a civil or appropriate way to behave to strangers or even friends.

    You are very likely correct in saying that had the doors not been opened no deaths would have occurred,

    But its also true to say that had it not been 80's style football fans but, say, identical numbers of members of the Woman's Institute, also no deaths would have occurred.

    This means that both the fans conduct and police opening the doors contributed to the tragedy.

    However, whilst one was bad behaviour, the latter was an honest accident/error in judgment.

    This is why in my view the greater share of blame lies with the fans that did the pushing on the day, whatever mitigation one wishes to allow them.


  73. As an independant, ie not being a scouse or old bill it seems to me most of the report and its aftermath seems to focus on what happened after the event and not what led up to it. I have a simple question to which I think there is a one word answer. the question: if everyone stood still instead of trying to force their way in to the ground how many people would have died? the answer 'zero' or is that difficult to understand. You can give excuses like 'that's what it was like at football matches in those days' but that is what they are excuses. Wouldn't it be refreshing to hear one Liverpool fan say, I shoved the people in front of me and I'm very sorry!

  74. Oh Tang0…since you so boldly assert that penning is “not a particularly admirable method of crowd control” then why don’t you work from the inside to persuade your superiors to abandon their kettling policy? That would be the humane thing to do. Words are worthless if not backed up by actions that reflect their sincerity (see the Lib Dem pre-coalition manifesto). Maybe you’re just an order-taking kinda guy…and maybe you ought to get a smarter phone…and my “evidence” is a conflation of your words and my own masterful analysis. If you have a problem with my analysis then why are you incrementally amending your opinions to bring them further (although not entirely) into line with my own? If you don’t mind, I’ll quickly humiliate you (again) with your own words:

    “To blame the police for causing hooliganism, inventing pens, or to accuse me of lack of humanity...”

    That would be “…lacking humanity…” of course, but correct conjugation of verbs implies verboseness in your mind as I recall...and I certainly didn’t mention hooliganism or suggest that police invented pens. Smarten-up.

    Hello Jess, so nice of you to fight Tang0’s battles for him. That’s a sure-fire way to rob him of his masculinity and dignity in a single stroke. Well played. I wonder why you choose to defend someone with whom you claim to disagree on all points save one. That action alone describes a conflicted mind and conflicted minds tend to struggle with the higher concepts like justice, reason and intellectual integrity. For example, you accuse me of obsessing over Tango’s inability to use language coherently, yet you devote more lines to it than I did with your amazingly feckless analysis within which you equate written English to “common parlance.” “Parlance” derives from the dated French term “parler” - meaning “to speak.” You do this again when using the example of “her Majesty’s English” which is an inaccurate term for Received Pronunciation which is (obviously) a type of accent, not a barometer of effectiveness in written English.

    Anyway, I am well aware of why pens were used in football grounds in the bad old days. They are and were always inhumane. Pens are for livestock, not for fans of a game.

    Whether or not you think I have the right to align myself with the families of the departed is irrelevant. The fact of the matter is that the bereaved were dissatisfied with the assertion that the police bore no responsibility for these deaths, and so am I. Therefore we are aligned, in accord, of the same mind: etcetera. Their stake in this is great and mine is small, I just happen to agree with them. That is my right. And as you wear thin that same holier than thou repetition of “had these fans all been like me…” you prove that you have no understanding of the events. The fans saved many lives that day. And what would you have done had you been there: a Sly Stallone impression? “Don’t push me, man! Don’t push me!” You’re a class act. Check the link below. I think you’ll dig the repetition…pay attention to the lyrics…

  75. Anonymous 0647 - show me one report into the disaster at Hillsborough that exonerates the police. The police have always been held accountable for their failings in managing the crowds.
    We have now gone from football fans pushing football fans and the police failing to manage them properly - the truth - to fans bearing no responsibility for their actions and the police being wholly to blame - fiction - but that suits everyone else.

  76. Shanky,
    Such a pity you still cannot relinquish the childish insults and self aggrandisement. Never mind.

    I cant speak for everyone but I do wonder why you feel the need to be so verbose and patronising- do you do this in real ilife? Do people react well to that? Do you think it impresses people? Generally the brightest adults play down their intellect not wear it as a icon of vanity.

    I really don't think anyone else cares if people split infinitives, abbreviate or misuse capitals etc in a blog post- this is not a script for publication.

    Kettling- when crowds start 'misbehaving', this technique seems as good as any for public order and safety. The odd march I have been on over the years didnt need kettling or any strong police action- although I have seen one or two protestors 'go mental' but most of the crowd just ignored them.

    Pens- they do do strike me as inhumane. They strike me as uncivilised. What a pity that back in the day, a proportion of football supporters behaved like animals (perhaps worse than animals) to such an extent that authorities felt pens were needed for safety and order purposes. I feel the fans, not the authorities bear the brunt of the blame on the pen issue.

    I too believe the police did have some responsibility for what happened that day. To that extent I agree with the families of the victims too.

    But I also believe that the FA, stadium designers, safety certificate officers, stadium workers, ambulance teams, and some football fans were also responsible.

    I believe out of all those parties the football fans that behaved badly are the ones mostly to blame. From talking to colleagues, family and friends at the start of the week my views seem universal.

    I also accept that on that day many fans, ambulance workers, and police men/women did fantastic work in saving lives and comforting victims.

    Had I been there I would have done my best to save lives. Im the sort of person who doesn't push or abuse strangers but is quick to help a stranger in need. I was raised that way.

    I would suggest you have no right to be so sanctimonious and others do have just a good understand of the issue as you do.

    Many of my family members were and still are, ticket season holders. They hold my views too. And my assertion that if the crowd had been comprised of different people then no deaths would have occurred may be inconvenient for the members of the panel, and clearly yourself, but is a powerful and irresistible argument suggesting a degree of fan liability.

    None of this suggests (despite your demonisation attempts) that ALL fans behaved badly and NO fans tried to help save lives. Im sure the majority fans are 100% innocent.

    Im afraid your link didn't work.


  77. Shanky here…

    Sorry Ferenda, I intended to prefix the word “responsibility” with the word “criminal.” I had to make amendments to the body of the text before publishing in order to squeak-in under the word limit. It took a little bit of reorganisation and I was already running late for my chemotherapy session. Profuse apologies…my head is hung. Hopefully I have now brought some much needed clarity to the matter. Frankly I’m amazed that my comment wasn’t littered with errors, but I appreciate your interest.

    Jess, you need to copy the link and paste it into the address bar. It will work, but it may be advisable to recruit one of your grandchildren to help you muddle through.

    Anyway, I’m not sure I know what you’re talking about - nor am I sure that you know what you’re talking about, either. You do, however, seem rather adept at projecting your own inadequacies onto me. Don’t you routinely elevate yourself above football fans with the one-eyed religiosity of a stereotypical Daily Mail-reading lower-middle-class hypocrite?

    Your remarks concerning pens particularly disappointed me. You suggest that the inhumane and the uncivilised deserve to be treated in an uncivilised and inhumane way - as well as everyone else around them. As you accuse me of being uncivilised, maybe I would learn better manners if I was tortured by you along with all of my friends? You should move to Saudi Arabia. You’d fit right in.

    It amuses me that you presume to know how the “brightest adults” conduct themselves. Geniuses are few and far between (and I doubt that you have ever encountered one), but they are all individuals who certainly do not conform to falsely projected notions of stereotypical behaviour. I’m no Oscar Wilde, but I guess he was just a childish show-off too.

    If you want to know what my life is like then this song is a very close approximation.

    I am Shanky.

  78. Really? As a survivor of that day, you're still taking this stance? As one of the stretcher bearers I would hope I'm absolved from your twisted logic. But I guess not. Seriously, If you WERE that day, you really need help

  79. Shanky,

    Do I consider myself above a football hooligan?

    Yes, I suppose I do, but then I consider most of humanity above that of a football hooligan.

    As to decent football supporters, thats most of the males in my family- which along with most of the human race are ok by me.

    Its a matter of record that football crowds in the 80/90s had elements of deliberate or casual hooliganism in them.

    As to why some fans pushed oh the fateful day only they will know the reasons behind their actions. I daresay there be a variety of reasons.

    As another poster said earlier, it would be nice if they could apologise for what they did, whatever their mitigation.

    I still believe that the ones that died are innocent- they were at the front so would have had no reason to push forward.

    As to the pens I merely suggested that pens were introduced to reduce violence and disorder, in other words the authorities motives were humane and altruistic. Had the fans behaved correctly they need never had been put in the position of considering pens in the 1st place.

    And why would I wish to torture you or your friends? What an odd comment!

    And did you finish your post by comparing yourself to Oscar Wilde? (allow me to retract any accusations of self aggrandisement levelled by myself towards you!). He must be spinning faster than a 747 jet blade.


  80. And how do you and you alone know the truth Lex? We're you there?

    You directed too many people into too small an area and them lied to cover it up. Fact. Even your fellow police bloggers will agree with me on this.

  81. Anonymous 25th September - the police didn't direct people and signage was appalling, that was part of the problem. Fans were not forced or pushed in by the police. They pushed and forced their way in themselves, crushing people to death. That fact may not suit some but it is a fact.

  82. So going through an open door is forcing your way in? Even Gadget hasn't stooped to defend this.

    Face it Hillsborough was a police screw up but instead of taking the blame your superiors perverted the course of justice and with the help of other officers took part in a 23 yr cover up. Trying to blame the fans the day after they were exonerated wont deflect that. And somehow I doubt that someone who was probably a PC 200 miles away at the time knows better than the report.

  83. Anon at 17:08

    I thought this debate had run its course but STILL you get daft comments like the previous one. Have you even bothered to read the earlier comments?

    I dont know anyone who concurs with the report in my personal life. And when LBC had a debate on it the day after the 2nd report the majority of callers said the fans should share some of the blame.

    "Going through a door" is not the same as "aggressively pushing in a crowd". What an utterly ridiculous comment. And what a partisan, inadequate report.

    One still awaits the apologies from the fans who did the pushing that day.


  84. Cover-ups and smear campaigns need idiots to believe them and this blog seems to harbour quite a collection. The judgemental ignorance present on this blog is simply disgraceful. The notion that the Liverpool fans behaved in any way differently that day to every other football match or heavily attended event has been discredited. Let it go, move on and point your bigotry elsewhere. Truth is here. Justice is coming.YNWA 96.

  85. Cover-ups and smear campaigns need idiots to believe them and this blog seems to harbour quite a collection. The judgemental ignorance present on this blog is simply disgraceful. The notion that the Liverpool fans behaved in any way differently that day to every other football match or heavily attended event has been discredited. Let it go, move on and point your bigotry elsewhere. Truth is here. Justice is coming. YNWA 96.

  86. Anon at 22.02

    You seem to have ignored all the points, both for and against in this thread, to suit your untenable position.

    Its not a 'notion' to suppose that people should not push each other at crowded events.

    I avoid pushing others during the rush hour Tube and countless other high capacity venues.

    If you are saying that appalling and anti-social conduct was so common at football matches that no blame can be attached to those who crushed others to death I think you hold a view that is quite repulsive to most (outside the short sighted report panel).

    Whether you consider it a smear or not, poor behaviour could, at times, be utterly disgraceful at some matches (hence the pens being erected) and (some) Liverpool fans have their own poor track record there in any case.


  87. Sorry Jess but your understanding of crowd dynamics is laughably simplistic. Now the truth is out and accepted the continuing fight is to ensure accountability. In light of this pursuit your 'world is flat!' ignorance is simply irrelevant.

  88. To Jess - First of all, I hope you have read the HIP report before deciding it is biased. Secondly, if you would like to know why the fans were not to blame and pushing was not the issue then try this -

    The simple answer is nobody pushed. The fans at the front simply walked into an empty terrace that gradually filled up behind them. Those responsible for ensuring that terrace did not overfill did not do their jobs properly. The fans who subsequently filled the terrace had no idea that they should not be entering the central pen because they did not have the overview afforded to the SYP command.

    The more complex answer is -

    15 April 1989
    The circumstances
    1.77 Consistent with the Operational Order, many spectators arriving in Sheffield on trains and coaches were escorted by the police from their point of arrival to the stadium. As they approached the stadium there was no filtering of the crowd and the bottleneck at the concourse in front of the turnstiles became tightly packed. With walls, fences or gates to the sides and front of this small area, the only relief was to move backwards. Many more fans arrived, oblivious to the mounting crush at the front, and the situation in the vicinity of the turnstiles soon became critical.

    1.78 As kick-off time approached, the crush worsened, and men, women, children and police officers struggled to breathe. Mounted police officers were trapped in the crowd. In later testimonies police officers stated that the crowd grew ‘unruly’, ‘nasty’ and ‘violent’, but people caught in the crush gave a contrasting account. They felt there had been no attempt to manage the crowd, no filtering and no queuing.

    1.79 The Police Control Box, the centre of the policing operation at the stadium, was positioned inside the ground, elevated above the Leppings Lane terrace, giving a commanding view of the pens below. At 2.30pm the bank of CCTV monitors in the box showed the build-up of fans in Leppings Lane and at the turnstiles.

    1.80 As the crush became critical, C/Supt Duckenfield faced a serious dilemma. The senior officer outside the ground, Superintendent Roger Marshall, radioed that unless the large exit gates were opened to relieve the crush there would be serious injuries, possibly deaths. Hesitating, C/Supt Duckenfield gave the command to open the gates.

    1.81 Gate C was adjacent to the turnstiles and once opened the crowd walked through into the inner concourse behind the Leppings Lane terrace and the North Stand. Fans recalled ‘hanging back’ to wait for the congestion to ease. When Gate C opened they walked onto the inner concourse and down the tunnel.

  89. Part 2

    1.82 The tunnel was directly opposite Gate C and the sign above read: STANDING. The gates at the head of the tunnel were fastened back against the wall. Oblivious to the layout of the terrace, and unable to view the terrace from the tunnel entrance, more than 2,000 fans descended into the already packed central pens.

    1.83 When they arrived at the bottom of the tunnel the central fence forced them left into pen 4 or right into pen 3. There were no stewards at either end of the tunnel. The central pens soon held twice their capacity. There was no respite to the sides or front and the sheer volume ofpeople prevented escape back up the tunnel.

    1.84 As the teams ran onto the pitch for the 3pm kick-off, the crowd cheered but already in the central pens people were screaming. Others fell silent, already unconscious. Survivors described being gradually compressed, unable to move, their heads ‘locked between arms and shoulders ... faces gasping in panic’. They were aware that people were dying and they were helpless to save themselves.

    1.85 In pen 3 the pressure became so severe that the faces of fans at the front were pressed into the perimeter fencing, distorted by the mesh. As fans lost consciousness some slipped to the ground under the feet of others unable to move. Survivors recall the gradual compression on their chests preventing them from breathing.

    1.86 Fans screamed at the police on the perimeter track to open the small gate in each pen onto the pitch, ‘but they just seemed transfixed. They did nothing’. As fans tried to climb the overhanging perimeter fence, officers on the track pushed them back into the crowd.

    1.87 In the Police Control Box, C/Supt Duckenfield and his colleagues had a clear view of the packed central pens and the underpopulated side pens. Having opened the exit gate, he had failed to order the closure of the tunnel. He stated later that he had confidence that officers ‘were patrolling the concourse area’ and acting ‘on their own initiative ... would have taken some action in the tunnel’.

    1.88 From the Police Control Box he watched fans trying to climb from the pens. Subsequently he reflected that it did not occur to him that they were trying to escape a crush. Then he saw a perimeter gate open, apparently without authority. ‘My perception is [sic] … it was a pitch invasion’. 1.89 This was the message transmitted to officers throughout the stadium as they rushed to the Leppings Lane perimeter track. They assumed they were dealing with crowd disorder and a pitch invasion rather than severe crushing. Initially, they responded accordingly.

    The complete answer as far as we currently know it can be found here

    How's that?

  90. Dear Anon at 01:50: pt1

    I appreciated the detailed response. I was aware of most of the detail as my family talked about nothing else when it happened and I have seen many documentaries on it over the years including recently.

    I would absolutely disagree with the comment 'nobody pushed'. That contradicts the video evidence of both TV and CCTV. When the gate was opened there was a sudden surge of fans.

    Further more, my football crazy family informed me that across the country at the time, pushing an crushing was a common (though though constant) feature of watching live football. They used to avoid certain teams and stadiums due to bad experiences. They had said for years there would be fan deaths long before the disaster.

    Its not that every fan was behaving badly- its just that a significant minority would sometimes behave in such a way that pushing, civil disobedience and low level aggression was commonplace.

    In this case there is a litany of issues:

    1. road delays made fans later than usual (although fans arriving 'just in time' anyway was a common problem)
    2. there was a higher attendance than last year
    3. there was a relatively inexperienced officer in charge
    4. no safety certificate
    5. a history of poor behaviour and pitch invasions which led police to misinterpret later events
    6. a history of poor behaviour leading to the installation of side fences creating pens.
    7. poor dispersal of officers with insufficient briefing
    8. too few turnstiles
    9. choosing not to delay kick off
    10. an ethos where rushing, pushing and shoving was commonplace (though not universal) amongst fans.

    In my view 2,3,4, 7, 8, 9 are the fault of the police/FA/HSE

    But 1,5, 6 and 10 are down to 'some' of the fans both on the day or previously.

    Why do I think this?
    And why do so many other people think this?

    Because if I was going to a big event- I set off in time so that even if there is poor traffic, I will be well on time. If there is a massive hold up and Im in an uncomfortable queue I may mutter under my breath, I may even sing "why are we waiting'. BUT I WOULD NOT PUSH ANYONE.

    So had the queue been made up of people like me, all the police errors could still have happened and not one person would have died- not one. Because Im not a body of water that simply follows a gradient or an animal that is not aware of the comfort and safety of others.


  91. pt2

    The lateral forces inside the pens was so strong, some metal elbow rests were bent in half! This takes body to body contact. People must have piled in at the back regardless.

    So why doesnt this happen on the tube? Because its socially unacceptable. When a tube cabin gets too crowded- if some idiot tries to cram themselves on they get short thrift by the others there. If the queue get too dense then they start backing up. But crushing the person in front of you is not required nor expected.

    And that the bit that the general public don't get- how on Earth did these poor innocents die unless people at the back pushed?

    I remember being packed in a crowd trying to leave an Oasis concert at Earls Court and it took nearly 50 mins to get out of a few tiny exits. The crowds kept backing up and backing up. Obviously it was pretty confined, a bit claustrophobic- but civilised conduct meant you sat it out.

    But I also remember being terrified at the Notting Hill Carnival when some the crowds were pretty uncivilised. My friend and I held hands as we were so intimidated (and crushed) but we were ripped apart and we didnt see each other for 3 hours- we thought each other had been trampled to death! At one one point we saw adult guys almost bent double pushing their way through the crowd. They thought it was all jolly fun.

    Crowd conduct makes a difference. I think most people recognise that and hence think the fans must shoulder some blame.

    But let me re-iterate, those that died are innocent. They were on time and could not have been pushing due to their location. They are a victim of the combination of the 10 points listed above. Lets hope we all learn from the tragedy.


  92. To the OP, Jess and all other flat earthers out there - for 23 years an extremely powerful element within the establishment failed to find one shred of evidence to back up the claims you are naively making. For your argument to be credible you have to provide evidence not just your opinion and recollections from events you have attended. Learn about crowd dynamics, read the HIP and Taylor reports. Ask yourself why the entire establishment has finally accepted what has been known on Merseyside for 23 years. Do you seriously think that people like Bettison, Mackenzie, Cameron, Johnson and Middup would have apologised if they had any choice in the face of overwhelming evidence?

  93. Dear 16:05

    You are just resorting to petty insults like 'being naive'.

    Official reports are done by humans and thus contain errors.

    The original official coroners report put the cut off point for evidence submission at 3.15. Would you agree with that offical view? No I didn't think so.

    The latest panel is a perfect example of how to create an inherently partisan and non neutral collection of people.

    It was hosted in a non neutral location and led by... the Bishop of Liverpool! How tenable do you think his job would have been if he had concluded the fans were partly to blame? His church would have been vandalised! the very least.

    As to evidence of pushing- there is CCTV footage, TV footage, evidence from police, Liverpool fans, opposing fans.

    Liverppol fans were at the time banned from Europe and pushing and shoving were commonplace in stadiums back then. Mounted police were not there for decoration purposes you know.

    I welcome the apologies:

    1. The officer in charge deliberately lied.
    2. evidence was doctored in a way which may have been illegal and/or against policy.
    3. had the tunnel been closed prior to the gates opening then the deaths would have been avoided.
    4. The Sun published lies vilifying fans when in fact many fans were heroically saving lives that day.

    All of the above desires a public apology from the authorities.

    But it does not excuse poor fan conduct that contributed to the deaths of their innocent peers.
    Do you see?


  94. Of course I see what you are trying to say and I also believe you think you are being reasonable. You still have not linked to any evidence to back up your finger pointing and you still have not stated whether or not you have read the HIP report (or the Taylor report for that matter).

    Ball in your court.

  95. Dear 20:43

    I have read detailed summaries of both reports from multiple resources.

    Like most people I haven't ploughed through the full pdf.

    If there is a passage in the actual official text you think is valuable regarding pushing and shoving please feel free to post it.

    Neither of them make adequate explanations as to how fans that pushed and shoved are blameless.

    As to further direct evidence look at the numerous You Tube videos showing fan conduct on the day.

    There was shoving on the road, shoving outside the turnstiles, rushing through the open gate, police getting knocked and abused, close angle colour footage of people shoving in a turnstile queue, footage of the shoving inside the central pen from 2 different camera angles. At one point there is a column of people aggressively forcing themselves through from back to front- right then people must have died.

    As to general fan conduct in that decade please refer to any Heysel references or media reports at the time.


  96. First of all the onus of proof is upon you to provide links to back up your argument as I did in both quoting from and providing a link to the HIP report.

    Secondly your assertion that the HIP report is partisan and biased without having read it in full destroys your credibility and proves you have an agenda that will not allow you to view evidence with an open mind.

    Bigotry is the state of mind of a bigot, defined by Merriam-Webster as "a person obstinately or intolerantly devoted to his or her own opinions and prejudices; especially: one who regards or treats the members of a group (as a racial or ethnic group) with hatred and intolerance" Sound familiar?

    I will not be returning to this blog as you have proven that I am wasting my time.

  97. Jess - History will view you and the OP with disgust.

  98. Jess hasn't even read the report - laughable proof of a troll at work.

    Has the OP read it?

  99. Dear 23:00

    Is that the best you can do?

    We have all heard the announcements and most will have read the media summaries in the past week or so.

    Most will not have read the full reports nor indeed the 1000s of evidential documents.

    I have read the summaries from those of both sides of the arguments here and elsewhere.

    If you aware of any relevant bits of 'report' text that undermine my stance, then please, lets have you post them here for us to appraise.

    Rather than insulting bleatings.


  100. Dear 22:45
    You retreating from the blog, having failed to establish your points, is rather indicative of having lost an argument I think.

    You providing a link to the report achieves nothing- we can all download the pdf if we wished to.

    If you are claiming there was no pushing at all (which at a football match in the 80s is quite a claim) then surely you have specific evidence proving that.

    By the way, a line in the report saying, "the panel felt there was no fan blame' is not evidence- thats an opinion.

    Evidence would be "Cameras 4, 7 and 10 showed extensive footage of calm and civil behaviour from 11am to 4pm" But of course there is no such evidence as the footage shows there was indeed shoving.

    Why would my accusation of a partisan panel mean I have a hidden agenda? 5 of the 9 panelists either have direct family links with Liverpool and/or have a professional history of prosecution or investigating the 'state'. This wasn't even close to a neutral panel.
    eg. one of the panelists was part of the fiction-fact dramatisation of the event years before. You think thats neutral?

    And who exactly am I being intolerant of, or prejudiced about? The heroic fans that tried to save lives? The innocent victims? The grieving families?

    I come from a football crazy family. And Im sure, like the guys in my family, most of the "Kop" are decent and well behaved fans.

    This does not mean that some fan behaviour was not a contributory factor to the tragedy.


    ps on a similar vein, at one point the Heysel disaster was originally pinned on 'just' Liverpool supporters. This too was an oversimplification and eventually other factors like poor policing and stadium shortcomings were accepted as partially to blame.

  101. Jess said "Why would my accusation of a partisan panel mean I have a hidden agenda? 5 of the 9 panelists either have direct family links with Liverpool and/or have a professional history of prosecution or investigating the 'state'. This wasn't even close to a neutral panel.
    eg. one of the panelists was part of the fiction-fact dramatisation of the event years before. You think thats neutral?"

    Shouldn't you judge what is being said rather than pre-judging it's relevance and quality based on who is saying it? That is the very definition of prejudice.

  102. Evidence as requested by Jess

    Firstly CCTV and other footage from Hillsborough with interpretation from the HIP report.

    Secondly an independent report on crowd dynamics at Hillsborough from The University of Leeds. See pages 170-178.

    Things to note - a) an awful lot of footage of well behaved fans (as reported by Des Lynam on that evening's MOTD if you care to watch that on You Tube) and b) Decision Making in Crowds from the Leeds Uni report -
     Animals which form groups – such as human crowds – repeatedly have to
    make important consensus decisions concerning the activities they perform,
    the timing and duration of those activities, and their direction of movement
    (e.g., Conradt & Roper, 2003, 2005; Dyer, Ioannou, Morrell, Croft, Couzin,
    Waters & Krause, 2008).
     However, the information required to make these important decisions is often
    only available to few members of the group (e.g., Reebs, 2000; Reader &
    Laland, 2000; Seeley, 2003), most commonly as a result of differences in
    spatial positioning within the group or differences in group members’ learning
    and experience (e.g., Dyer et al., 2008). Couzin, Krause, Franks and Levin,
    (2005), for instance, demonstrated – using computer simulations – that a
    group predominantly comprised of naive individuals can be guided towards a
    target location by only a few informed group members. Moreover, Couzin et
    al. (2005) propose that these few informed individuals are able to reach
    consensus decisions without knowing whether they are in the majority or
    minority, or whether their information conflicts with other informed members of
    the group.
     More specifically, research indicates that the presence of informed individuals
    – i.e., acting as leaders – within the crowd influences both the speed and
    accuracy of crowd movement (Dyer et al., 2008), particularly when their
    spatial positioning is optimal (Aubé & Shield, 2004). More specifically, leaders
    positioned in the core, rather than the periphery, of the crowd – i.e., in close
    proximity to other crowd members – are more likely to influence crowd
    movement (e.g., Leca, Gunst, Thierry & Petit, 2003; Dyer et al., 2008).
     This dominance of informed individuals over crowd movement is likely to be
    particularly important in emergency evacuations, when only a few crowd
    members typically have information about the unfolding situation. Thus, when
    planning a crowd event, careful consideration must be given to the number of
    individuals within the crowd (whether these be stewards or crowd volunteers)
    who should be made aware of the location of emergency exits – i.e., informed
    individuals – and where these informed individuals should be positioned within
    the crowd to most effectively act as leaders in the event of an emergency
    evacuation (Aubé & Shield, 2004; Dyer et al., 2008).
     With regards to communication between informed individuals and the rest of
    the crowd, Dyer et al. (2008) propose that subtle behaviours or cues are
    frequently used to guide the crowd towards a target location. For instance,
    leaders at the front of a crowd will often glance back over their shoulders, to
    ensure they are being followed, or will turn to face the crowd and walk
    backwards towards the target. Alternatively, informed individuals may walk
    back and forth along the edge of the crowd, to check that all crowd members
    are moving in the desired direction. pg.75

    You could of course read both reports in full but that seems unlikely.

    If you do not accept this as enlightening evidence then you will accept nothing.

  103. Dear 0:44

    No its not- its really rather simple.

    1. Some claim that because a panel says something then its beyond contradiction. History says otherwise.

    2. Any panel consisting of 'interested' parties causes conflict of interest issues. Can any of the 5 non- neutral members REALLY claim to be utterly impartial and have no pre-conceived notions or strong prior feelings?

    Many of the panels findings seem pretty straightforward and sensible- I have no problem with that.

    But to suggest that crowd conduct, either on the day or before hand - was of no consequence? thats a flawed judgment.

    And people are perfectly entitled to disagree with that part of the report.

    It doesn't make them closed minded, naive, or ignorant, or 'anti- Scouse' or anything else.


  104. Dear 1:39,

    Your excerpts are a bit more like it; ie trying to properly debate contact dynamics and crowd movements.

    However in response:

    1. There may be TV footage showing moments and/or areas of good crowd conduct (eg You Tube) but there is also footage of shoving and surges. Multiple examples from multiple angles.

    2. The dynamic references you allude to still, in my view do not excuse shoving behaviour in this particular context.

    If you get to the bottom of the tunnel and are faced with dense wall of people, you either:

    force your way between fans, exert pressure on the fan in front or halt.

    Had all the fans halted when it got uncomfortably 'close' then no fan would have needed to touch each other let alone crush each other to death.

    Otherwise such deaths would be common place at every public event. Had this been an academic summit with identical numbers, do you think people would have died?

    I bet some of the fans actually prevented deaths that day by holding pack and acting as a calming influence. I believe some hung back to avoid congestion at times.

    Your (highly valid) references to crowd dynamics do act as a degree of mitigation imo but its inescapable that if the behaviour of the crowd had been less eager/more clam/more considerate/etc then less or no people would have died.

    Therefore the statement of conclusion: 'crowd conduct contributed' is also inescapable.

    This does not suggest that fans broke through gate C because thats an established lie. It doesnt suggest those that died have any blame whatsoever- their location positively exonerates them. Its doesnt even suggest that those that pushed had malice or intent- at worst selfishness, negligence or aggressiveness and at best, over eagerness and short sightedness.


  105. You mention your family are football fans, I hope to God they never find themselves in the situation that the Liverpool crowd did that day and then have to defend themselves against people like you. I wonder if your tune would change then?

  106. Told they killed their friends, fathers, brothers etc.
    Told they urinated on the dead
    Told they stole from the dead
    Told they sexually abused the dead
    Ignored by the justice system
    Many left with PTSD
    Many left with survivor guilt
    Some committed suicide
    23 years of being maligned

    Do you not think this group of people have suffered enough? Do you care that your comments cause further pain?

  107. 12:11,
    My family members HAVE found themselves in similar situations. Most of them were season ticket holders who went over the country most weekends.

    They have many a horror story of crushing, bad stadiums, bad fan conduct.

    They avoided certain teams and certain venues after near death experiences.

    As a girl I was banned from going to matches as they thought it was too risky. I didnt mind much as I have never understood the fascination for the game nor the passions it inspires in (mostly) men.

    I remember my family predicting a crush disaster long before Hillsborough.

    So my 'tune' as you put it wouldnt change much- I dont like to see peoples behaviour put themselves or others at risk.


  108. Dear 13:20
    Do you care that the truth is revealed?
    And that the dynamics of the situation are correctly analysed to avoid this happening to somebody else?

    We tell our kids how to cross the road.
    We tell our kids not to talk to strangers.

    How about we tell kids and supporters that you must never push or lean or surge because it kills people.

    You must never antagonise police or opposing fans because it creates a dangerous culture.

    If you go to a mass event, plan ahead and realise there are inherent risks.

    As to your list I'm not responsible for any lies others have propagated, I have never heard of the claim of sexual abuse either but if thats true then thats an awful fib of course.

    This doesnt mean people cannot have a sensible, humane discussion about the factors that caused the deaths. Indeed its incumbent on us to realistically and honestly appraise the causes for any tragedy.

    And if I was there that day and I didnt push a soul or force my way between people standing shoulder to shoulder I would know I was free of blame - although I quite understand why survivor guilt or even suicide are factors here- and thats a terrible penance- no argument there.


  109. Jess the Inspector Gadget blog will defend any police cock up no matter how bad. It will also defend any bad copper no matter how low they've stooped. (Unless they're Ali Dizzaerali) the fact that he (and his regular commenters) are not defending this tells me all I need to know.

    Btw you've provided no proof about the CCTV. Just saying it exists isn't enough. Do u not think it was poured over by the report. And if the report was so obviously partisan and rubbish why work so hard to suppress it? They could just discredit it.

  110. You're also ignoring the post match coverup. The alcohol lies the statement rigging the coroner lying and saying none could be saved and the police keeping the ambulances out of the grounds.

  111. Dear 23:44,
    If you look on You Tube you will see horses being prodded, policeman being shouted at by fans, a policeman's helmet being knocked off, officers shouting at fans and colleagues to try and control things, pushing in queues, men with their hands on the shoulders of people in front of them.

    I looked at 4 separate films at the top of the You Tube list when typing in Hillsborough Disaster. Im sure others are more than capable of doing so.

    Oh and there were examples of pushing in the clip you provided yesterday too (if you were the Anon).

    Yes there were examples of perfectly orderly conduct by many fans- no one has suggested otherwise. I also saw several examples of fans and police helping each other in a cooperative and decent way.

    I cannot speak for the Gadget blog- but I would be the 1st to criticise bad policing and have my own less than perfect experiences of the police as well as some good ones.

    It seems clear that the lead policeman made a grave error on the day and subsequently lied about it. And it seems some documents were altered and thats being investigated now isn't it?

    My discussion with you has only been specifically about if any fans had any blame whatsoever. The other parts of the report I have no reason to doubt.


    ps my point about the partisan nature of the panel is that even if they privately thought fan conduct was a factor it would have been incredibly unpopular and untenable to mention it in the report.

    pps and if lets say, in another 23 years time, a 3rd report says actually some fans are partially at fault, it still would not let the FA, police, SWFC, HSE, press, coroner etc off the hook!

    1. The same nearly happened in Istanbul when liverpool fans who went with no tickets rushed and overwhelmed the stewards.But of course any ensuing disaster wouldn't have been their fault

  112. The criminals who pushed and pushed then pushed harder and killed the innocent know exactly who they are but will never have the guts to hold their hands up and confess what they did - I see banners saying 'Justice for the 96'
    Yes, give them real justice by finding out who killed their loved ones as it was certainly NOT the police or the authorities fault. Now, before you have a go at me do a simple thing will you....remove your hatred for the police who generally work hard for the honest citizens of this country, don't press the 'make a claim' button and think you can get thousands of pounds in compensation and then lose the stupidity of the tribalism in football and then finally take a deep breath and go out and do something good with your lives!

    Regards, Anon357 - P.S - I wrote the reference number next to 'anon' just in case you don't have a reasoning brain and feel the need to have a go back at me although the vast majority of real citizens of England will totally agree with me!

  113. Hello. And Bye.

  114. Jess, everything you have written is completely correct.
    You will never win this argument with people from Liverpool and I have noticed that your repeated request for these people to answer your question regarding the pushing by fans goes unanswered. Why? Because there is only one answer and they do not want to admit it.
    Yes, the police, the FA, SWFC, ambulance service etc. all made serious errors and are partially to blame. But it is blindingly obvious to any impartial person that none of this would have happened if the fans had not behaved in such a manner and that is a simple fact that cannot ever be denied. They know who they are and they will hopefully carry the guilt of being largely responsible for the deaths of the innocent 96 to their graves.
    We all know that this report will be a way for the government to shut these people up for once and for all, it will not contain the truth, it will just say what the Liverpool fans want to hear. I am sure that compensation will no doubt be paid and then hopefully that will be the last we hear about it. The reason why they have decided to do this now is because after so long, they came blame people who have passed away or retired. Liverpool fans will get their victory but everyone knows how hollow this will be.
    Quite simply, the fans outside heard the game had started and became impatient to get into the ground to watch, they rushed pushed and killed their own. END OF.

  115. Whenever we go through the meaning of the term really like, with relation to a close relationship by using yet another, but being a experiencing that is certainly engendered once you have miltchmonkey a much better marriage yourself too * or maybe as a feeling of more significant oneness household or perhaps humanity , the idea results in being all the more clear that all anyone wants to have is definitely adore.

  116. The thing the I find most disturbing about this is when people talk about 'blaming the fans', its obvious we're talking about the ones pushing and not the dead, the terrible thing is the fact that the dead 96 turned up on time and sober. I have a friends dad in South Yorkshire police and he said that all the crap about the Liverpool fans being drunk etc were true and the thing about the police getting urinated on was also true as he was one of the ones that got urinated on!

    Justice will never be truly given to the 96's families they'll probably just settle for money instead.

    I just don't understand how the independent panel got it so wrong, that said what kind of independent panel goes to see the victims families 1st?

    I'm a keen football supporter and Liverpool has so much history and are a fantastic club, it's a shame out of god knows how many thousand that were there, you never hear of any pushing whatsoever, therefore it can't have happened. So the crush must be in our imagination. I think it says more about the Liverpool people than anything else, such a shame!

  117. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  118. Just remembering as a 15 year old working in a buffet bar in the Archers Road end of the Dell... Had worked in the away end of the old Saints ground many times before.

    A night game against Liverpool will always stick in my mind.

    Working alongside a girl my age, she was subjected to such vile sexual innuendos that she was led away by stewardsin floods of tears. The things I heard that night made me question my biology teacher at school the next day!

    Maybe I'm biased... Maybe it was Chelsea fans who were to blame for Hillsborough just like they were blamed for Heysel.

    Just rememeber that Scousers are the best people in the world.

    Just ask one... And they will tell you.

  119. I went down to help immediately after the disaster started breaking on tv. My first job was to help fans find each other, linking them with hospitals, police, other services etc. Before the severity and scale of the disaster was clear, I met many fans, still in high spirits, who said they'd come without tickets to push from the back. Later on, as the dreadful scale became clear, nobody was saying this. Since then I've also learned of the shameful Police actions in the follow up. In the weeks that followed, as part of my work I met with countless families and friends returning to Hillsborough to grieve, and my heart was, and still is, broken. I don't know how the families can ever recover from the tragedy. I do know that understanding the real truth about that day was, and still is, so important for them. And those who pushed, and those in the services that fell short must also be haunted. They all deserve to know and accept the whole complex tragic picture, and come together in a shared understanding. There is still hope we may all find some peace.

  120. I'm not a football fan, and this is why. It's not the fault of the police or the grounds, just inhumane football thugs pushing people and not caring for who they hurt, just to see a bunch of overpaid actors. you see it sometimes at concerts etc, people just having zero common sense, but nothing like what happened there. The fans that were pushing (they know who they were) need to own up and apologise.

  121. All the "wrongs" done in this tragic episode should never have happened and if anyone lied, no matter what their position then they need to be punished. Going all the way back to the author's original point, if you hadn't been pushing the guy in front of you then the 10th guy in front of him and everyone else you pushed wouldn't have got crushed! RIP 96

  122. The ignorance of the some of the comments above is truly staggering.

    The THATCHER GOVERNMENT appointed Lord Chief Justice Taylor to lead the original inquiry in 1989/90.

    How this comprehensive report, both Interim and Final versions, have been ignored by those here is beyond belief.

    Did he only do half a job?
    Was a secret Liverpool fan?
    Was he born in Liverpool or had family connections to the city?
    Had he once visited the place?
    Was LFC his secret 2nd club?
    Was he anti-Thatcherite?
    Was he anti-Police?

    Gosh - I mean, how on earth could he have come to this conclusion?

    Did he just have a chat with a few of the families? Or maybe he spoke to a few drunken LFC fans and wrote his report around that.

    Amazing isn't it

    For your delight, delectation and above all, education, here is the Interim Report:

    From here:

    "The inquiry into the disaster led by Lord Chief Justice Taylor established that main cause was a failure of police crowd control. "

    "Some of his strongest words were reserved for the police commander, Chief Superintendent David Duckenfield, for "failing to take effective control", and South Yorkshire police, who attempted to blame supporters for the crush by arriving at the ground "late and drunk". "

    An inconvenient truth for many here I suspect.

  123. Well said. I saw the crowd at the back pushing there way in, thinking it was funny while those at the front were screaming for the surge to stop. They were thinking only of themselves and now they take no responsibility and blame the police. I lost my 18 year old son so know of the pain and only have sympathy for the officers who stood in my kitchen and had to make my wife and I come to terms with there presence.

  124. I have always had the greatest sympathy and respect for those who died at Hillsborough - they were innocent and blameless and were killed by other people's actions.
    RIP to the 96.
    Their bereaved families were treated in the most dreadful way by the authorities in the aftermath of the disaster, but they kept their dignity and courage in tact and have kept looking for answers ever since and good for them.
    I would have done the same if it was my son or daughter who had died at a football match.
    But I will now make my point, my long held opinion, that Liverpool fans contributed to the Hillsborough disaster.
    This is not to denigrate the memory of those who died, it is meant to question the actions of the people outside the stadium who in my opinion were a contributing factor to what happened that day.
    South Yorkshire Police made so many terrible errors and lost control of the situation as it unfolded.
    The police failings and subsequent cover-up have now been well documented.
    But, for the ordinary officers outside the Leppings Lane end of the ground (not those in command) what were they faced with? A potentially fatal crush and mayhem outside a football ground.
    Outside a football ground!!
    This has to and can only be caused by people pushing, shoving, and trying to force their way in from the back with absolutely no regard for the safety of other people around them. .
    Drunken-ness and fans without tickets was a factor, not an 'excessive' factor according to the Taylor Report, but still a factor, a significant factor, none the less.
    Not in those who died - but in those arriving late and finding themselves at the back, those doing the pushing and shoving to force people dangerously forward, trying to find a way to bunk in and gain entry for free.
    These people will never own up to this. They can never be counted, interviewed, or be included in any official reports into the disaster. They would never have sent written submissions to the Taylor Enquiry would they?
    After the match they would have driven or taken the train or coach home, they just disappeared, but I hope that to this day they feel guilt for what they did because without the crushing they caused outside the ground this disaster would never have happened.
    Before anyone says there was no pushing and shoving or ticketless or drunken fans at Hillsborough - remember this. Liverpool fans prided themselves and took glory in being able to 'bunk in' to big games at home and abroad without tickets all through the 70s and 80s but at Hillsborough they didn't do it did they because they all acted wonderfully well.
    And when they were pushing, shoving, and trying to force entry and bunk in at Liverpool's last Champions League Final, again, they still can't be questioned or apportioned any blame.
    The failings of South Yorkshire Police were massive. The need for perimeter fences at football grounds, caused by the widespread football hooliganism of the period, was a factor, as was the need to segregate fans.
    Liverpool fans had a notorious reputation after Heysel and had caused all English clubs to be banned from Europe when they arrived at Hillsborough.
    The botched emergency response was a factor, dozens of lives could and should have been saved.
    But for the Hillsborough Independent Panel (HIP) to absolve Liverpool fans of any blame is laughable, for David Cameron to stand in Parliament and say Liverpool fans 'neither caused nor contributed' to the Hillsborough disaster makes it almost politically incorrect to question the 'official' HIP version of Hillsborough.
    There needs to be admissions of culpability on all sides for the debate on this to finally end. South Yorkshire Police are now having to do it. Sheffield Wednesday and Sheffield City Council are re: the lack of safety certificate. And so are the FA for selecting Hillsborough for an FA Cup semi final with it's questionable record on safety.
    Now it's time for Liverpool fans to admit their part in this. I won't hold my breath.

  125. Crushes develop in crowd situations. This a known fact and the police knew the risks and did not manage it. Failing after failing followed by hard faced lies.


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  127. Jess, so the problem is that once there is above a certain volume of people in a fixed space, with a momentum in a particular direction, then the crowd becomes like a fluid, which no individual member within that crowd can resist. The momentum can be provided by people simply walking briskly in a direction and the space they are walking into being restricted. If you look at the video of the event, there was no pushing or shoving.

  128. I barely know where to start with this. I am genuinely stunned and also very, very, angry. You mention 'concerns' a lot. No, sorry, that's the wrong word to use. Try 'proof'. There was outright black and white proof that statements written by officers that criticised the policing of the event on that day were sanitised beyond belief. South Yorkshire police lied by omission. Then there was the total - let me be blunt here, total and utter - failure of crowd control on the part of the police. Yes, the Liverpool fans rushed into the tunnel. Why were they allowed to? Why were the gates to the two central pens, where the deaths occurred, not closed off by the police? Why were the streets leading to Leppings Lane not better policed? Why no pickets to slow the passage of fans?
    Basic failures on the part of Duckenfield caused that disaster. What then followed was beyond a disgrace - the smearing of the dead in a desperate effort to protect the reputation of the South Yorkshire Police force.
    You, sir, are a disgrace to police officers everywhere.