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Summary

  1. Hillsborough fans unlawfully killed, inquests conclude
  2. News, sport, travel and weather updates resume at 08:00 on Wednesday
  3. Updates on Tuesday 26 April 2016

Live Reporting

By Jenny Cork

All times stated are UK

Get involved

Good evening: Your Live coverage across the day

Jenny Cork

BBC Sheffield news

Scroll down the page for full coverage of the Hillsborough inquests on what's been a very difficult day for authorities in South Yorkshire.   

Flowers and tributes continue to be laid at the football stadium in Sheffield.

Floral tribute at Hillsborough
BBC

Today's momentous verdict belongs to the 96 men, women and children who were 'unlawfully killed' at the disaster at Sheffield Wednesday's ground on 15 April 1989.  

All 96 are profiled on special BBC News page.

96 victims of Hillsborough disaster
Other

Justice for the 96 and their families, but with news the Crown Prosecution Service will now begin considering criminal charges over Hillsborough, the story's far from over.

We'll be back from 08:00 on Wednesday with the latest news, sport, weather and travel updates from across the county.  

Hillsborough inquests summary: The main points

Jenny Cork

BBC Sheffield news

Here are some of the main points raised in what's been a momentus day for Liverpool campaigners and a very difficult day for authorities in South Yorkshire    

  • 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

Watch: What happened at Hillsborough?

BBC News England

Details of how the days events unfolded and resulted in the biggest sporting disaster the country's ever seen:

View more on twitter

BBC Look North prepares for a Hillsborough special from 18:30 BBC1

Hillsborough inquests summary: The main points

Jenny Cork

BBC Sheffield news

Here are some of the main points raised in what's been a momentus day for Liverpool campaigners and a very difficult day for authorities in South Yorkshire  

  • 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
  • Victims' relatives have called for the immediate resignation of South Yorkshire's chief constable and head of Yorkshire Ambulance Service. 

Watch: Hillsborough campaigner Trevor Hicks - 'I lost everything that day'

Jenny Cork

BBC Sheffield news

Trevor Hicks lost his two teenage daughters, Sarah: 

Sarah Hicks
Trevor Hicks

And Vicki, in the‪ #‎Hillsborough‬ disaster. 

Vicki Hicks
Trevor Hicks

He was involved in desperate efforts on the pitch to save his girls and since that terrible day, he's campaigned for the truth:  

BBC Look North Live from Hillsborough 18:30 BBC1

BBC Look North, Yorkshire

It's been described as "the greatest injustice ever".

The longest inquest in legal history has finally given justice to the 96 fans who perished at Hillsborough.

We're live at the stadium in Sheffield this evening for a very special edition of BBC Look North.

Harry Gration
BBC

The disaster was 27 years ago and it's taken decades of campaigning to get to the truth and to reveal the failings of the emergency services. We now know that there was a cover up involving senior police officers.

More on the verdicts, the cover-ups and all the analysis, this evening from 18:30 on BBC1. 

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.

Hillsborough inquest verdicts spur Orgreave Truth and Justice Campaign

Jenny Cork

BBC Sheffield news

The Orgreave Truth and Justice Campaign (OTJC) have released a statement paying tribute to the dedication and tireless commitment of the 'formidable' Hillsborough campaigners. 

They've said the victory of Hillsborough campaigners has motivated them further to demand a full public inquiry into the policing at Orgreave.

About 10,000 miners and 5,000 police officers were involved in the confrontation at Orgreave on 18 June 1984, known as the Battle of Orgreave.  

The battle of Orgreave
Getty Images

I am overjoyed that justice has finally been done for the Hillsborough families. The verdicts demonstrate that with the determination and public support campaigners can overturn miscarriages of justice. The verdicts will spur on the OTJC and its demand for a full public inquiry into the policing at Orgreave on 18 June 1984."

Joe RollinOTJC Chair

Sheffield City Council: "15th April 1989 a dark day in Sheffield and Liverpool's history'

Jenny Cork

BBC Sheffield news

Sheffield City Council has released the following statement following the Hillsborough inquests:  

We welcome the conclusion of the inquests with the announcement of the jury’s formal findings. I very much hope that these findings will bring some peace to the families of the 96 people who tragically died that day. The fifteenth of April 1989 is a dark day in the history of both Sheffield and Liverpool and we are truly sorry for the losses the families have endured. As always our thoughts and sympathies are with them above all. We have always accepted and continue to accept our errors in the safety certification of Hillsborough Stadium in 1989. We unreservedly apologised for those failings and we repeat that apology.”

John MothersoleChief Executive of Sheffield City Council

Hillsborough Football Ground: Tributes for the 96

Andy Kershaw

BBC Radio Sheffield News

Following the verdicts today, people have been leaving these tributes for the 96 victims of the Hillsborough disaster at the football ground in Sheffield.

Hillsborough floral tribute for the 96
BBC
Tributes for the 96 at Hillsborough
BBC
Tributes for the 96 at Hillsborough football ground
BBC
Tributes at Hillsborough football ground
BBC

Watch: South Yorkshire Police 'unequivocally' accept jury's conclusions

Jenny Cork

BBC Sheffield news

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

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.

'Official confirmation that Liverpool fans were utterly blameless', says Prime Minister

Jenny Coleman

Reporter, BBC Local Live

Prime Minister David Cameron has 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 inquests: 'Sole focus' on criminal inquiry

Emma Stanley

Reporter, BBC News Online

The man in charge of the criminal inquiry into the Hillsborough disaster has said his "sole focus" is now on completing the investigation, hopefully by the end of the year.

Assistant Commissioner Jon Stoddart, who is leading Operation Resolve, said his investigators had supported Coroner Sir John Goldring by providing him with thousands of documents, witness statements and reports alongside the criminal investigation.

He said the Crown Prosecution Service will then consider the evidence and decide whether any individual or organisation should face criminal prosecution.

Your views: Hillsborough verdicts

Jenny Cork

BBC Sheffield news

Following the verdicts at the Hillsborough inquest, you've been sharing some of your thoughts on our Facebook page:

Campaigners celebrate verdict
Reuters

Justice"

Leonora Ann Richardson

The people that ordered the cover up should face prosecution."

Jason Paul Lawrence

So glad they got the justice but how terrible it's been having to wait for 27 years to get the right outcome. May all the 96 now rest in peace. You'll never be forgotten xx."

Emm Watson

27 years before they had justice

Ruth Heggarty

Bet not one copper is ever jailed for it."

Mark Conner

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'.

View more on twitter

Police 'tried to deflect blame' say victims' families

Jenny Coleman

Reporter, BBC Local Live

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.

Calls for justice following Hillsborough verdicts

Jenny Cork

BBC Sheffield news

Jurors at the Hillsborough inquest have reached a majority 7 - 2 verdict that the 96 were unlawfully killed.

There have been calls for those responsible to now be brought to justice.  

Including this from The Times' chief football writer:

View more on twitter
View more on twitter

BreakingVictims' families call for resignation of chief constable and head of Yorkshire ambulance service

Gina Bolton

BBC Radio Sheffield

Families of the victims called for the Chief Constable of South Yorkshire Police and the head of the county's ambulance service to resign immediately. 

At a press conference following the verdicts of the two-year inquest, which recorded a decision of unlawful killing of the 96 Liverpool fans, the families of the Hillsborough Justice Campaign made the calls.

Your comments: Family and friends of 96 victims celebrate inquest verdicts

BBC Look North, Yorkshire

Following the verdicts of the inquests into the 96 deaths at Hillsborough, families and relatives sang "You'll Never Walk Alone" outside the court.

The song has long been associated with Liverpool Football Club and has also come to symbolise the families' campaign for fresh inquests.

You've been leaving your reaction to this video and the verdicts on our Facebook page

They never gave up, Well done Liverpool fans and Families, Justice for the 96, You'll Never Walk Alone."

Gray Howden

The emotion of the families here is amazing If not for the determination of these brave family members The whitewash would have remained Shame on the police Shame on the establishment ."

Steve Parkin

Horrified that this has taken so long, and uncovered too much atrocious behaviour from people and institutions that we should be able to trust. At least some form of justice has finally been served, but at what cost!"

Tim Walton

Respect to the families for their determination , respect to the people of Liverpool for their support and damnation to all those who lied and tried to hide the truth."

Darren Ward

Hard to believe there could have been any other verdict - 96 people went to a football match and never came home, today their families have got justice."

Geraldine Shepherd

I just want to say well done to the family's who have never given up and got justice for their loved ones after 27 years its been a long time coming I feel ashamed that its took this long how these family's have suffered and the loved ones that died were made out to be the ones at fault ....god bless all those family's and now there loved one can finally rest in peace xx"

Michelle Sullivan

Cost of the Hillsborough inquests to South Yorkshire PCC reach £25m

Liz Roberts

Political Reporter, BBC Radio Sheffield

The office of the Police and Crime Commissioner has detailed the cost of the Hillsborough inquests to the South Yorkshire Police budget:

Incurred costs to the total of £24.7m up to 31 March 2016. Special Grant funding of £20.4m was secured from the Home Office, leaving a net cost to the PCC of £4.3m. The costs for 2016/17 are yet to be invoiced and these are estimated to be in the region of £0.4m."

Lawyers: 'Catastrophic human failure' and 'culture of denial'

Emma Stanley

Reporter, BBC News Online

Lawyers who led the legal team representing some of the families said the disaster was "entirely avoidable"; it was "no accident" and "no natural phenomenon" but was "caused by catastrophic human failure" - above all by the police.  

Legal team representing the families of the 96
BBC

The families were then subjected to lies by senior officers covering up their role, vile abuse in parts of the media, and a campaign to blame supporters. What we have witnessed is public authorities led by people who put defence of the institution over the truth, over learning for the future and over serving the public. We have witnessed a 'culture of denial' writ large."

StatementLegal team on behalf of the families of the 96

In quotes: Key moments in evidence given to Hillsborough inquests

Jenny Cork

BBC Sheffield news

Richard Chester, Sheffield Wednesday club secretary from 1984 to 1986, explaining why he secretly took out 250 away Leppings Lane tickets for sale at two all-ticket matches in the 1984/85 season:

I wanted a little bit of protection and a little bit of back-up. You appreciate that if you have taken an area of terracing out that is not available, then logically you cannot have the same number of people."

Richard ChesterSheffield Wednesday club secretary (1984-86)
Leppings Lane street sign
Getty Images

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

Jenny Cork

BBC Sheffield news

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."

The Football Association

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

Watch: Chair of South Yorkshire Police Federation responds to Hillsborough verdicts

South Yorkshire Police Federation: 'Our officers did their best'

Ed Thomas

BBC News

In light of the conclusions at the Hillsborough inquests, South Yorkshire Police Federation have made the following statement:

Federation statement
BBC / South Yorkshire Police Federation

Our members - ordinary officers - went to work on that day in 1989 expecting a normal day, policing a football match, but walked into an unfolding disaster. They did their best."

South Yorkshire Police Federation

Hillsborough inquests: 'I do not accept your apology, Mr Duckenfield'

Jenny Cork

BBC Sheffield news

Charlotte Hennessy's father James Hennessy was killed in the 1989 Hillsborough stadium disaster. She kept a video diary throughout the two years of the inquests.  

Families' concerns over Freemasons membership examined

Jenny Cork

BBC Sheffield news

The question of whether Freemasons membership influenced decision-making over the Hillsborough disaster has been investigated by the police watchdog. 

Match commander Chief Supt David Duckenfield told the fresh inquests he had been a Freemason since 1975 and became head of his local lodge - a worshipful master - the year after the 1989 disaster. 

David Duckenfield
Reuters

The Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) has examined concerns from the Hillsborough families over Freemason membership.

It says the United Grand Lodge of England provided information, including attendance records, which enabled investigators to assess whether there may be some correlation with individuals involved in decision-making around Hillsborough.

Coroner and jury return briefly to court

The jury were called back into court to sign the 96 records of the inquest.

The coroner asks that only the seven jurors who were in agreement in respect of question 6 - the unlawful killing question - should sign them.

Court is then adjourned until 16:00, with the coroner adding: "I anticipate you will not be kept very long thereafter."

South Yorkshire Police Federation to comment shortly

Following the statement by the Chief Constable, the rank-and-file police officer's union, the Police Federation, is to make a statement shortly.

Hillsborough lawyers say families 'deserved better'

Jenny Coleman

Reporter, BBC Local Live

Lawyers representing some of the families of the Hillsborough disaster said it was caused by failure "of [Sheffield Wednesday FC], the engineers and the licensing authorities" to ensure a safe stadium, "failure of the ambulance service to react competently" and above all "catastrophic policing failure".

"The families and all of us in the general public deserved better", said Marcia Stewart, who led the legal team, adding: "We hope the conduct of the public authorities will be given the greatest scrutiny in the coming days and weeks."

'I do not accept the police apology', says victim's mother

Emma Stanley

Reporter, BBC News Online

The mother of a 17-year-old Hillsborough victim says she does not accept the apology from South Yorkshire Police.

Mary Corrigan
PA

Mary Corrigan, whose son Keith McGrath was one of the 96 who died in the disaster, said: "They have had 27 years to tell us the truth.and to say what happened.

"We have had to fight so many lies and they have the nerve to say they apologise today."

Watch: South Yorkshire force's policing at Hillsborough 'catastrophically wrong'

Ed Thomas

BBC News

Trevor Hicks gives a thumbs up outside court

Trevor Hicks, whose daughters Sarah and Vicki died at Hillsborough, gives a thumbs up after hearing the unlawful killing verdict at the inquest at the court in Warrington.  

Trevor Hicks
European Photo Press Agency

Listen: South Yorkshire Police say 'many lessons have been learned'

Andy Kershaw

BBC Radio Sheffield News

I'm at the Police Headquarters for South Yorkshire Police in Carbrook House, Sheffield.

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

Listen to the full statement here: 

Hillsborough families sing after unlawful killing conclusion

Jenny Cork

BBC Sheffield news

These were the celebrations outside the court in Warrington a little earlier after the jury concluded the 96 Hillsborough victims were unlawfully killed.

You've been giving your reaction to the verdicts on our Facebook page:

About time .... terrible!"

Julie Thurman

Justice for the 96 good people."

Chris White

At last justice !!!

Alison Green

Finally justice for the 96 and their families."

Andrea Blunt

BreakingSouth Yorkshire Police 'unequivocally accept verdict of unlawful killing'

Andy Kershaw

BBC Radio Sheffield News

South Yorkshire Police says it "unequivocally accepts the verdict of unlawful killing".

Statement
BBC / South Yorkshire Police

The Independent Complaints Commission: What happens now?

Jenny Cork

BBC Sheffield news

The Hillsborough investigations are the biggest undertaking ever for the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC). 

Following the conclusions by the jury at the Hillsborough inquiry, the IPCC has released a blog to explain a little about what we can expect now:   

IPCC logo
IPCC

At this stage it is important to understand that the conclusions of the inquests are not the end of the process. Both criminal investigations – the IPCC and Operation Resolve – will remain ongoing following the jury’s conclusions. While the inquests have proceeded we have been working to supply both the coroner with the information he has needed to complete the inquests, but also to progress our criminal investigations. Now that our role in relation to the inquests has ended, our priority is concluding our criminal investigations and ensuring the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) has comprehensive files of evidence to allow charging decisions to be made. It is important to remember that the CPS will make these decisions independently."

IPCC