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Summary

  1. 96 Hillsborough fans unlawfully killed, inquests conclude
  2. The jury had to answer 14 questions about the cause of the 1989 disaster
  3. Jurors answered "yes" when asked whether any police error caused or contributed to a dangerous situation
  4. The behaviour of Liverpool fans did not contribute to the dangerous situation at the turnstiles
  5. South Yorkshire Police Chief Constable David Crompton apologises "unreservedly" to the families and says his force accepts jury's conclusion

Live Reporting

By Jenny Coleman and Emma Stanley

All times stated are UK

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Goodnight - and thank you for joining us

This marks the end of the BBC's live coverage of the conclusion of the Hillsborough inquests. Please go to the BBC News homepage for the latest developments in the story, comprehensive analysis, and full reaction. 

Who were the 96 football fans fatally injured at Hillsborough?

Hillsborough: The truth

Former Koppite and player toasts Hillsborough families

Ex-Liverpool player and coach Phil Thompson adds his voice to the chorus of former Reds' stars.

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Justice must follow, say church leaders

Liverpool’s church leaders have said the journey for justice continues.

The Rt Rev Paul Bayes, Anglican Bishop of Liverpool said: "The families have always said that they seek truth and justice, and the inquests have worked longer than any in British legal history to uncover the truth. Now justice must follow. 

The leader of the city’s Roman Catholics Archbishop Malcolm McMahon added: “I hope that the acknowledgement that those who died were unlawfully killed will bring comfort to the survivors and the families of the 96.”

Coming up: Hillsborough - the families' story

BBC Radio Merseyside follows the families of the 96 through the two years of the Hillsborough inquests, narrated by survivor  Neil Fitzmaurice.

Listen live at 19:00.

Badges worn by families
PA

Coroner pays tribute to Hillsborough families

The coroner at the Hillsborough Inquests has praised the families of the 96 who died as a result of the tragedy.

Sir John Goldring
Getty Images

Coroner Sir John Goldring said the families "had done your duty" by their loved ones.

Coroner praises jury for 'public service of highest order'

Coroner Sir John Goldring closed the inquests by telling the jury that sitting "for this length of time in such a demanding and at times deeply moving case is to perform a public service of the highest order".

He said he hopes the families "will now have gained some comfort".

"I will ask... for the last time for us all to stand... and I will adjourn finally. Members of the jury thank you once again".

Liverpool welcome jury's decision

Liverpool FC welcomed the jury's decision, saying its conclusions confirmed "what the families always believed – their loved ones were unlawfully killed."

A statement from Ian Ayre (pictured), the club's chief executive said: "We will always remember the selfless bravery and heroism of the many fans that helped their fellow supporters in the most harrowing of circumstances that day. 

Ian Ayre
Getty Images

"We praise those who, since the beginning of the inquest, have had to find the courage and strength to re-live what they went through."

He said the solidarity shown by fans "encapsulates the unique character of both the club and city", adding that the club was "hugely thankful for the unwavering support the wider football community has so generously shown these past 27 years".

Conclusion reinforces the jury system - Mike Mansfield QC

A barrister for some of the Hillsborough families has said the inquests' conclusions have "reinforced the value of the jury system".

Mike Mansfield
Getty

Mike Mansfield said the inquests were "remarkable and historic", adding "the families were hoping for an unlawful killing conclusion but you just don't know".

Mr Mansfield criticised the "ambivalent" attitude of the South Yorkshire Police which had apologised before the inquests but in court had sought to blame the fans when "we thought that had been put to bed by the Hillsborough Independent Panel".

Hillsborough: How the disaster unfolded

Yorkshire Ambulance Service chief 'truly sorry'

The current head of Yorkshire ambulance service said he is "truly sorry" for what happened at Hillsborough and admits lives could have been saved if the ambulance service's response had been different.

Rod Barnes said the service fully accepted the jury's conclusions and extended his "deepest sympathy" to the bereaved families. 

He said "a huge amount has been learned from Hillsborough" and the service has "changed a great deal in the last 27 years".

Head of St John Ambulance says Hillsborough 'will stay with our organisation forever'

St John Ambulance chief executive Sue Killen said her organisation's volunteers "acted as best they could under extremely difficult circumstances" and their experience "will stay with our organisation forever".

Ambulance at Hillsborough disaster
Hillsborough Inquests

"Our thoughts are with everyone who has been affected by what happened on that day... It's clear from the testimonies that our volunteers acted as best they could under extremely difficult circumstances, and we are grateful to them for all they did," she said.

David Whitmore, an expert in pre-hospital care, had told the inquests that while the South Yorkshire Metropolitan Ambulance Service response was delayed, volunteers from St John Ambulance "behaved better" than their counterparts by starting to help victims immediately.

'I lost my love of football at Hillsborough'

BBC Newsbeat

Julie Craven, who was 16 when she attended the Liverpool v Nottingham Forest FA Cup Semi-Final in 1989, recalls the crush in the Leppings Lane terrace.

Julie Craven
BBC

Hillsborough commemoration

There will be a special event on Wednesday to commemorate the conclusion of the inquests.

It will be held on St George's Plateau, opposite Lime Street railway station, from 17:45.

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Coming up: The Williams family's journey through the Hillsborough inquests

The BBC's Inside Out North West team followed the family of the late Hillsborough campaigner Anne Williams throughout the two year inquests. 

You can watch it on the BBC News Channel at 20:00.

If you're in the North West of England you can also see it on BBC One at 22:45.  

Anne Williams billing
BBC

BBC World Have Your Say - live now in Liverpool

Hillsborough inquests: The role of police chief David Duckenfield

BBC News England

Inquests into the 96 football fans who died in the 1989 Hillsborough disaster have concluded they were unlawfully killed, with the jury finding match commander - former Ch Supt David Duckenfield - "responsible for manslaughter by gross negligence" due to a breach of his duty of care.  

David Duckenfield
Reuters

Mr Duckenfield (pictured below in 1989) said in the pressure of the day he froze and did not consider the consequences of his actions.

"I think it's fair to say that it is arguably one of the biggest regrets of my life, that I did not foresee where fans would go when they came in through the gates," he said.

He also admitted to a "terrible lie". "Everybody knew the truth, the fans and police knew the truth that we'd opened the gates," he said.  

David Duckenfield, pictured in 1989
PA

When asked if his "negligence" caused the disaster he told the inquest: "I wouldn't use the word negligence sir. Mistake. Oversight... I did my very best on the day."  

Read more about his role on the day, here.

ICYMI: Justice has finally been done, says jury

  • Families say "justice has finally been done" after an inquest jury concluded their loved ones had been unlawfully killed
  • Campaigner Margaret Aspinall, whose 18-year-old son James was one of the 96 victims, said: "Everything was against us. The only people that weren't against us was our own city."
  • Another campaigner Trevor Hicks, lost his teenage daughters Vicki and Sarah. He said he could now properly grieve

ICYMI: Hillsborough police errors highlighted by jury

  • Police errors also added to a dangerous situation at the Liverpool v Nottingham Forest FA Cup semi-final on 15 April 1989
  • Failures by commanding officers caused a crush on the terraces
  • There were mistakes in the police control box over the order to open exit gates
  • South Yorkshire Police Chief Constable David Crompton said the force "got the policing...catastrophically wrong" and said the force "unequivocally" accepts the "unlawful killing" conclusions

ICYMI: Hillsborough inquests summary

If you're just on your way home from work, here is a quick summary of what has been a momentous day:

  • The 96 football fans who died as a result of the crush at the Hillsborough stadium were unlawfully killed, the inquests jury concluded
  • Match commander Ch Supt David Duckenfield was "responsible for manslaughter by gross negligence" due to a breach of his duty of care, the jury also found
  • Prime Minister David Cameron said the inquests provided "official confirmation" that fans were "utterly blameless". Supporters were also exonerated by the jury

'I can now grieve properly', says Trevor Hicks

Hillsborough campaigner Trevor Hicks lost his two teenage daughters in the tragedy.  He said he had to decide which of his dying daughters he was going to stay with - 19-year-old Sarah in the ambulance, or Vicki, 15, in the stadium.

He said the way the grieving families were treated in the wake of the disaster gave him a reason to carry on.

Now that the new inquests have concluded with "unlawful killing" verdicts, Mr Hicks says he can properly grieve.

He said injustices "chew away at your insides until you can get absolution".

Hillsborough inquests: 'My son was brought in in a black bag'

Barry and Jacqueline Devonside lost their son Christopher in the 1989 Hillsborough disaster. 

Barry kept a video diary throughout the two years of the inquests.

Watch: Hillsborough memorial in Sheffield

Andy Kershaw

BBC Radio Sheffield News

I'm at Hillsborough football ground this afternoon, where tributes have been left in memory of the 96 who were 'unlawfully killed'.

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Hillsborough referee's memories of stopping the match

The referee who halted the 1989 Liverpool v Nottingham Forest FA Cup semi-final at Hillsborough has said he told the teams: "The police reckon that we could sort of be back in 10 minutes."

But Ray Lewis told BBC 5 Live he told the players about half an hour later: "By 15:40 I was in there saying the game has been abandoned."

The moment the referee halted the match on police orders
Hillsborough Inquests

Mr Lewis, who said it was not until 15:40 "did someone sort of identify that they're had been a fatality."

He added: "We just gave our dressing room up as a first aid room. In the corridors where the dressing rooms were people who had been injured had come in, it was more like a hospital there.”

'Official confirmation that Liverpool fans were utterly blameless', says Cameron

Prime Minister David Cameron said the findings of the inquests were "official confirmation that Liverpool fans were utterly blameless" for the disaster.

He earlier called it a "landmark day" that "provides long overdue justice".

Hillsborough coroner thanks jury for 'remarkable commitment'

The jury have returned to the court for concluding remarks and coroner Sir John Goldring has told them their "commitment and diligence has been remarkable".

It prompted standing applause from people in the public gallery.

South Yorkshire Police 'unequivocally' accept jury's conclusions

South Yorkshire Chief Constable David Crompton said: "Very many lessons have been learned in the way major sporting events are policed."

Chief Constable David Crompton says the police "unequivocally accept" the verdicts

It has been a momentous day, says MP Steve Rotheram

An MP who attended Hillsborough on the day of the tragedy as a fan has called the inquest conclusions a "momentous day".

Steve Rotheram attends the inquests
Getty

Steve Rotheram, MP for Liverpool Walton, said: "I have waited 27 years for this moment. But I know it comes too late for many. 

"I was there on the day and saw the horror unfold before my very eyes."

He added: "Justice has been served by the verdicts and now it is about accountability."

Floral tributes are being laid at Anfield following the Hillsborough inquest findings

Floral tribute at Anfield
BBC

Hillsborough justice hashtag #JFT96 trends on twitter

The hashtag #JFT96 - which stands for Justice For The 96 - has been trending on twitter as people used the social network to react to the inquest verdicts. 

trends
bbc

This afternoon, 187,000 tweets had been sent using the tag.  You'll Never Walk Alone was included in 15,400 tweets.

Rafa Benitez praises families' 'dignity'

Former Liverpool manager Rafa Benitez said he was "really pleased to see the verdict... which confirms what we have been saying for a long time.

Rafa Benitez
Getty Images

"I am especially pleased for the families of the 96 who have sought justice for so long and with such dignity, as well as for the people of Liverpool and for football fans in general. Hopefully this verdict today will ensure that this kind of tragedy can never happen again.”

Police 'tried to deflect blame'

Barry Devonside, whose son Christopher died in the disaster, told a press conference with the families that South Yorkshire Police "tried to deflect blame" onto supporters and "any other convenient organisation".

Barry Devonside
BBC

Stephen Wright, whose brother Graham was one of the 96, said today's conclusions "put the serious failures" of the police "centre stage", saying primary responsibility "lies at their door... and in particular at the feet of Mr Duckenfield".

He said police legal teams continued to pursue "the denials of the past, blaming mythical, late, drunken ticketless fans for the deaths of their loved ones," and called for the immediate resignation of Chief Constable David Crompton.

Familes' video diaries

The Hillsborough inquests took two years to hear evidence on the stadium disaster that killed 96 football fans in 1989. 

Many of the victims' relatives watched proceedings from the public gallery. 

The BBC asked some to record their thoughts and feelings as they relived painful memories of that day. 

Hillsborough inquests: Families' video diaries

Bernard Ingham still refuses to say sorry for blaming Liverpool fans despite inquest verdicts

Liverpool Echo

Margaret Thatcher's former chief press secretary Sir Bernard Ingham once again refused to apologise for blaming Liverpool FC fans for the Hillsborough disaster.

Service marks end of the inquests

A special commemoration marking the end of the Hillsborough inquest is to take place at Liverpool’s St George’s Hall plateau at 17:45 on Wednesday.

St George's Hall
PA

The names and ages of the dead will be read out and displayed on large screens at the event. There will also be speeches by civic leaders, with BBC Radio Merseyside's Roger Philips acting as compere.

South Yorkshire Police Federation: 'Today's policing standards... were not in place 27 years ago'

Andy Kershaw

BBC Radio Sheffield News

South Yorkshire Police Federation Chairman Neil Bowles has given a press conference responding to the inquest conclusions of the Hillsborough disaster:

Neil Bowles
BBC
Statement from SYP Federation
BBC / South Yorkshire Police

Our members did their best on that day and followed orders"

Neil BowlesChair South Yorkshire Police Federation

Andy Burnham: the 'greatest miscarriage of justice of our times'

Labour MP Andy Burnham has called Hillsborough "the greatest miscarriage of justice of our times."

Andy Burnham
Getty Images

Mr Burnham, who was instrumental in calling for the second Hillsborough inquests, added: "But, finally, it is over. After 27 long years,  

"The survivors of this tragedy can finally be remembered for what they were on that day - the heroes of Hillsborough who tried to help their fellow fans."

Five key mistakes at Hillsborough

Richard Turner

Senior reporter, BBC News Online

Ninety-six fans died in the Hillsborough disaster but the inquests heard their deaths could have been prevented if authorities had not made a number of mistakes. BBC News takes a look at some of the key decisions and failures.

Supt Roger Greenwood
Hillsborough Inquests

We will continue to 'recognise, remember and learn', says the FA

The Football Association has just released a statement:

"Our sincere condolences remain with the families and friends of the victims. They have conducted themselves with great dignity throughout these Inquests, during which there has been an exhaustive investigation of the horrific circumstances that took place 27 years ago.

"Ultimately, the Inquests stand as testament to the struggle undertaken by the families so the truth might be brought to light.

"While much has changed since 1989, the FA and English football in general must continue to recognise, remember and learn from the tragedy. In looking forward, it is important we never forget.

"Given the ongoing criminal investigations, there are limitations to what we can say. It is in the interests of all concerned that further consideration of the disaster by the relevant authorities must be allowed to take its course."