Burnley Hillsborough disaster survivor slams Home Office for launching new review

An east Lancashire man who survived the Hillsborough disaster has criticized the Home Office for failing to inform families of the re-examination due to take place.

The review will examine what went wrong with the original pathology reports into the deaths of 97 Liverpool fans in the 1989 FA Cup semi-final.

It will also aim to ensure that similar mistakes are not made in the future.

Christopher Whittle of Burnley, who survived the disaster, said it was “disgusting” that families were not told about the new review and had to find out via social media.

He said: ‘I think it’s disgusting and absolutely shocking that they don’t inform family members.

“They definitely need to consult with them before this happens.

“The fact that the bereaved families and survivors were not even contacted or informed speaks volumes. [about those holding the review].”

Hillsborough disaster survivor slams Home Office for launching new review Christopher Whittle

The original inquests, which were quashed by the High Court in 2012, heard no evidence after 3.15pm on the day of the disaster.

The decision was based on pathological evidence that all of the victims had suffered the injuries that caused their deaths before that date.

However, the Hillsborough Independent Panel concluded that the evidence was flawed and that it was highly likely that what happened after 3.15pm – the time the first ambulance arrived on the grounds – was material to determine if the victims could have survived.

Christoper, who was 28 at the time, suffered broken ribs and permanent chest damage in the disaster.

He now suffers from PTSD after surviving the incident and said he now distrusts the government and those responsible for their handling of the disaster.

The 61-year-old said: “97 people have been killed and no one has been held accountable, it’s outrageous.

“We had to wait years for investigations and reports from independent groups. There have been some closures but not enough.

“I’m not very happy that another review is taking place – I just don’t know why they want to have another one.

“[I am worried] it will be another smokescreen and an attempt to try to demonize [the fans] Again.

“We’re all trying to get through disaster [and put it behind us] ourselves and now they are going to release a new survey. It’s just not on.

Christopher is not alone in criticizing the home office.

Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham said: ‘It is simply appalling that the Home Office has launched a pathology review of those who died in Hillsborough without telling their families.

“We are considering the next steps.”

Steve Rotheram, Liverpool City Area Mayor, said: ‘It is thoughtless and insensitive to hear that the Home Office has announced a review of pathology failures at Hillsborough’s initial investigations without informing or talking about it. first to families.

“We’ll have more to say on that.”

Christopher has published a book “At the End of the Storm There Are Golden Skies” detailing his experience during the disaster.

He also shared his honest views and opinions on the ensuing investigations.

He said: “I wanted to write an update on the last few years with regard to surveys and independent panels, as well as my own experiences.

“I mentioned that it’s therapeutic and cathartic to write about it now that I’ve had therapy.”

A spokesman for the Home Office said: ‘The legacy of the Hillsborough disaster continues to affect us deeply, and the families of the 97 people who lost their lives showed a strength and a immense courage.

“We apologize to the families for not being informed in advance of the announcement of this review. This review is one of the recommendations of Bishop James Jones’ report.

“We are committed to responding to the Bishop’s report as soon as possible and will be engaging with the families during the process.”

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