Saturday, December 17, 2011

Justice for the 96

I was going to post another picture today of my recent forays round Combe Gibbet but after attending the Liverpool v Norwich game yesterday, I was emotionally blown away by the mosaic the Kop end presented prior to the game in marking the recent announcement that the government will release all files relating to the Hillsborough disaster to the investigation committee. For those unfamiliar with the Hillsborough disaster this was a tragic event that took place on 15th April 1989 where 96 Liverpool FC fans were crushed to death. The game being played was a semi final FA cup tie between Liverpool and Nottingham Forest at the neutral ground of Hillsborough, where Sheffield Wednesday FC play. The game was stopped after 6 minutes as it was clear that a terrible event was occurring in the stands, as too many supporters were being let into the ground and this was creating a crush of fans already in the stands. 

I was only 7 years old at the time of the tragedy but the memory is very vivid to me. I had family attending the game at Hillsborough and luckily they were ok but what also sticks in my mind was the reaction by everyone as they gradually learnt what was going on. I was at a football game myself that day, Luton Town v Coventry City and the memories of people talking about what was happening at Hillsborough at half time and when the reality really sunk in to people at full time will always be prominent in my mind.

On a photographic note though, I was delighted of course to see this scene. I always take my camera to football games now and after doing the usual shots in and outside the ground, I had put my camera away waiting for the game to begin. After the thanks that were given for all the work by the people who have campaigned for years to get justice for the victims of this disaster, this huge mosaic was presented and I quickly got out my camera and took some more shots. I didn’t know it was going to happen and felt very fortunate to be in such a position to get a picture like this. The game yesterday ended up 1-1 but I honestly felt afterwards that I was so glad to have gone up and been there and wouldn’t let the results of yesterday’s game bother me that much

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