Monday, 20 December 2010

A letter from 20 April 1989


Today I found the copy of a letter that I had hand written on 20 April 1989. I sent the letter to MPs, including Eric Heffer, MP for Walton; Sean Hughes, MP for Knowsley South, who forwarded it to George Howarth MP for Knowsley North.

I have typed it word for word so the grammar and structure may not be the best but as you can imagine it was an emotional time. I also gave evidence to the police and the letter was forwarded to Lord Justice Taylor’s investigation.

With the continuing poor and untrue reporting of the Hillsborough Disaster e.g. the Boston Globe. I thought I would share it on here as it was written at the time with fresh memories of that awful day.

“I feel it is important for as many people as possible who were at Hillsborough to write their version of events down and send them to yourself or other MPs. It is the only way our voices will be heard. My version is below.

I am not in any way anti-police but I feel I am justified in criticising some officers on duty both inside and outside the stadium.
I arrived at the Leppings Lane turnstile area at about 2:30 and the crushing was pretty bad then. The mounted officers however were at the front of queue shouting at fans to stop pushing. Myself and other fans asked them to go further back to ease the crowd and make a barrier with their horses but we were ignored.

Once inside almost everyonemade for the tunnel which leads to the middle section of terrace. In my opinion this is because it is the only clear means of getting to the terrace. (The same happened last year)

The crush on the middle section of terrace was so bad even ten minutes before kick off that a number of us were shouting to the policeman on the perimeter fence to open the gate; He did hear us but refused.
Everybody who was in that section were being pushed in all directions. I was lucky – I went sideways and was able to climb over the railings into the section to the right. Everybody at this stage were helping other fans into this section, over the railings.

I seen none of the game, it didn’t matter we knew something was badly wrong.

I cannot comment on the opening of the gate as I used a turnstile and was inside the ground when I heard it had been opened.
I feel I must point out that possibly a bigger factor than the perimeter fencing was the segregation railings with NO gates to my knowledge, which stopped the sideways flow of fans.
It makes me extremely angry and sad that the police, who have sophisticated crowd surveillance equipment did NOT learn any lessons from last years semi.

Even watching the Match of the Day video from last season you can clearly see space on the outer terraces while the middle terrace, as this year, was clearly over capacity.
What is the use of having all this equipment if it is not used to its full potential?
Please make my views known to those who matter.”

The truth is out there. One day 96 souls will have justice. YNWA

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