A FRESH inquest into the deaths of 96 football supporters who died in the Hillsborough disaster – including a fan from East Lancashire – has begun.
Lord Justice Goldring, the coroner who will oversee the year-long hearing in Warrington, said the events of April 15, 1989, which also led to 400 being injured as the result of a severe crush at the Sheffield stadium, were ‘seared into the memories’ of everyone affected by them.
Barry Glover, 27, of Garnett Street, Ramsbottom, had attended the Liverpool vs Nottingham Forest FA Cup semi-final with his father George and friends Jeffrey Collinge, Peter Rodgers and Ian Tyson.
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Mr Glover’s father became separated from his son, a self-employed greengrocer, at the gates of the Leppings Lane terrace and never saw him alive again.
An inquest in May 1990, by Sheffield coroner Dr Stefan Popper, was told that after the crush developed Barry was seen lying on the pitch to the right of the terrace and had been taken on a hoarding to the opposite end of the ground. Later a police officer spotted a doctor attempting to resuscitate Barry. But after a few minutes he was declared dead.
Verdicts of accidental death by Dr Popper on the 96 were quashed in December 2012 after a long-running campaign by victims’ families.
The coroner said: “A new inquiry was needed, we are conducting the new or fresh inquiry. In doing so we are not concerned with whether what was decided at the previous inquiries was right or wrong.”
He told the hearing that South Yorkshire Police’s plan for the semi-final had been modelled on a fixture between the two teams at the same stadium 12 months before. Fans later gave accounts of crush injuries, after the 1988 game, but there were no injuries.
Lord Justice Goldring said it would be for the jury to decide whether this, and the decision to appoint Chief Supt David Duckenfield, who specialised in criminal rather than public order matters, as the match commander, was correct.