Joy after a 27-year battle for the truth

Liverpool fan, David Leedham, who was in the crowd at the Hillsborough disaster.
Liverpool fan, David Leedham, who was in the crowd at the Hillsborough disaster.
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A Hillsborough survivor has spoken out after an inquest into the football tragedy ruled the 96 victims were unlawfully killed after a catalogue of police blunders.

Liverpool fan David Leedham, 62, from Halifax, said he was delighted with the outcome for the comfort it would bring to those who had battled for the truth for 27 years.

Families of the 96 victims that died at the Hillsborough disaster on the 15th April 1989 celebrate the verdict given at Birchwood coroners court in Birchwood, Mersey., as they finally leave for the final day. A jury found that the 96 fans were unlawfully killed.

Families of the 96 victims that died at the Hillsborough disaster on the 15th April 1989 celebrate the verdict given at Birchwood coroners court in Birchwood, Mersey., as they finally leave for the final day. A jury found that the 96 fans were unlawfully killed.

“It’s absolutely brilliant, I am just so happy for those people who lost loved ones and I think it will bring comfort for people,” he said.

“Its taken 27 years to prove their innocence. I hoped this day would come, but I didn’t think it would. It has been a long time.

“It was such an emotional moment and I cried when I heard the news, I just feel for those people because they have gone through so much. The working man has got power in his hands if you stick together and I’m so happy that the working class people have done this.”

Mr Leedham travelled to Sheffield on what he describes as a “lovely day” and spoke of his turmoil over the events which unfolded in front of his eyes.

He said: “You could see that people were getting crushed, it just went on and on and I had to turn away. It will never, ever, leave my head.”

Families of the 96 Liverpool fans who died in the Hillsborough disaster declared that justice had finally been done as an inquest jury ruled the victims had been unlawfully killed.Lawyers acting for the families said the conclusions, at the end of the longest jury case in British legal history, had completely vindicated their tireless battle for the truth. The deaths were ruled accidental at the end of the original 1991 inquest.

But those verdicts were quashed following the 2012 Hillsborough Independent Panel report, which concluded that a major cover-up had taken place in an effort by police and others to avoid the blame for what happened.