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Hillsborough inquest told to resolve "significant conflict in evidence" about the behaviour of Liverpool fans outside the ground

Sir John Goldring Credit: ITV

The jury in the Hillsborough inquests have been asked to resolve a "significant conflict in evidence" about the behaviour of Liverpool fans outside the ground.

Continuing his summing up, Coroner Sir John Goldring said:

"A number of police officers, not all, who were in the Leppings Lane area give evidence which was critical of the behaviour of the supporters there.

"By contrast, many of the supporters gave evidence to very different effect: that they and their fellow fans behaved normally and sensibly and that their behaviour was no different from that which you would expect at any big football match, but the fans did not contribute to the dangerous situation in any significant way.

"You will have to resolve that conflict."

– Coroner Sir John Goldring

Lawyers acting on behalf of the bereaved families have suggested video footage from the day of the disaster shows no significant misbehaviour by the fans.

The Coroner said the footage may not show everything that happened. He added:

"You will no doubt want to consider the reliability of the evidence from all of those who described events in front of the turnstiles, including police officers, fans and others. Is the evidence reliable? Is it exaggerated? Do you accept it? Do you reject it? These are all matters for you."

– Coroner Sir John Goldring

Coroner in Hillsborough Inquest tells jurors to inspect Sheffield Wednesday's ground layout

Some of the pens at the Leppings Lane end at Hillsborough Stadium in 1989 Credit: Hillsborough Inquests

The coroner in the Hillsborough inquests has told the jury they must decide whether Sheffield Wednesday FC changed the layout of the Leppings Lane end to prevent overcrowding or to segregate fans.

Sir John Goldring is summarising evidence about how pens were divided in 1985 - four years before the disaster.

The court has heard that the club adopted a scheme to keep 23 turnstiles over proposals to increase the number to 34.

The Coroner said:

"Importantly, the schemes [adopted] did not have the sort of dedicated entrances for particular pens that would have allowed the numbers entering each pen to be monitored at the turnstiles.

"Whether it was a scheme to prevent overcrowding as opposed to segregation is a matter for you to consider."

– Coroner, Sir John Goldring

The jury heard that when it was previously suggested that cost was the reason for the change, Dick Chester, the club secretary at the time, told the court that the board was:

"Intent on safety and segregation."

– Dick Chester

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Who helped this man? Latest appeal for Hillsborough witnesses

Concourse area of Leppings Lane Credit: Operation Resolve

A new appeal's been launched to trace people who helped a victim at Hillsborough. An aerial photo shows the concourse area of Leppings Lane where the man appeared to be unconscious and was bare chested. Investigators are asking people who saw or helped him at the three points in the picture to get in touch.

Point A - the concourse entrance to the tunnel under the West Stand Point B - the concourse area Point C - the service road by the River Don

Anyone able to help can contact the investigators through the official appeal website www.operationresolve.co.uk

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Friend held onto victim's hand at Hillsborough

Eric Hughes.

The friend of a man who died in the Hillsborough disaster has revealed he held onto his hand as police tried to revive him.

Stanley Mullin told a jury he had just said to Eric Hughes, 42, that they should move along the terrace when there was a massive surge.

The witness said it was pure chance that he ended up by an exit gate and he did not know what happened to Eric.

But Mr Mullin said he fell out of the gate and saw Eric being carried onto the pitch where two police officers attempted to resuscitate him.

"I held Eric’s hand in the hope that maybe I could feel some response but there was nothing there," he added.

Liverpool fan describes last time he saw friend at Hillsborough

Paul Clark, from Derbyshire, was 18 when he died at Hillsborough.

A football fan has described the last time he saw his teenage friend at Hillsborough.

The inquests heard how Paul Clark, from Derbyshire, died in the 1989 disaster after being "pushed forward" into the crowded pens at Sheffield Wednesday's ground.

Friend Andrew Booth said they got separated as a result of the pressure of numbers in the pen.

The fresh inquest into his death heard Paul, 18, was later carried to a temporary mortuary on an advertising hoarding.

The jury heard his father identified his body after he failed to show up at their agreed meeting point.

Son saw 'sheer terror' on father's face at Hillsborough

Hillsborough victim Mr Baron was a retired postmaster from Preston.

The son of the oldest person to die in the Hillsborough disaster has told a court how he saw "sheer terror" on his father's face during the crush.

Gerard Baron junior said he tried to protect his father as the pressure of bodies became unbearable.

Mr Baron said: "My dad turned around to face me and he had a look of just sheer terror on his face... I just said to him that he would be ok."

The witness, who was 26 at the time of the 1989 disaster, went to the Liverpool match with Gerard Baron senior, a 67 year old retired postmaster from Preston.

Speaking via videolink from his home in Australia, Mr Baron jnr said he lost sight of his father after his arms buckled under the pressure.

The inquest heard a St John Ambulance volunteer tried to put an oxygen pipe through the pen fence into the pensioner's mouth but Mr Baron showed no obvious signs of life.

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