HJC Details - Who we are & Why we're here

In this section you can read about some of the past and present members of the HJC - mothers, fathers, brothers, survivors and supporters - their stories in their words and why they continue to struggle for Justice.

There are still very many people affected by Hillsborough . If you are a survivor, we can assist in identifying sources of help and provide a space to talk with people who went through the same experiences.

We still need help to continue the legal struggle, some survivors of the disaster may be able to assist as witnesses in up coming court cases. There are many other ways you can help us and we can help with school projects, research etc.

Quick Find - Contact Us

The Hillsborough Justice Campaign
PO Box 1089
178 Walton Breck Road
L69 4WR
Tel / fax : 0151 2605262

email: hjcshop@tiscali.co.uk

The Hillsborough Families Support Group - HFSG

The role that the HFSG has played in policing other families has already been documented in the history section. This section deals specifically with their actions towards the families and survivors of the HJC over a sustained period of time up to and including the private prosecutions.

Differences of opinion within the HFSG, especially those which challenged the prevailing dominance (leadership) were never tolerated and led to some families being expelled. They wouldn't even allow Anne Williams (bereaved mother of Kevin) to join the group. When she contacted Phil Hammond (Secretary) to inquire where her membership was he told her that her application had been rejected and her cheque had been ripped up. When she inquired why she could not join the group, she was told by Trevor Hicks (Chairman) that she had her own solicitor and 'was only interested in her own case'. She asked that this all be put in writing to her but of course that never happened.

This refusal to allow Anne to join goes to the heart of what is wrong with the HFSG. A bereaved mother being denied support because, for whatever reason, they didn't want her to have it. What is particularly cruel in this case is that Anne Williams has been one of the most generous people with any of the information/evidence that she has ever unearthed. Those of us who know her well and have worked with her have long marvelled at her persistence in searching for the truth of what happened to her son. She is an inspiration to anyone seeking truth and justice. She worked so hard not just in finding witnesses but also in trying to get the media interested in Hillsborough.

Of course Kevin was at the forefront of her reasoning –as he should be. However, she always attempted to get the media interested in other families cases. When the Cook Report made a documentary on Kevin it could have been just about Kevin Williams but Anne made the programme makers realise that other families had stories to tell and they too were featured in the programme. She always used any media opportunity to highlight the general injustices around Hillsborough and the positive role played by so many of the survivors.

Anne found out almost everything about Kevin but, by her own admission, she always stated that she was one of the 'lucky ones' – in so much as she had found out the facts. However, it was her sheer hard work (together with a measure of luck) which unearthed the facts.

There is no doubt that the case of Kevin Williams has been very high profile at times within the context of Hillsborough. This is because the nature and extent of the cover up in Kevin's case is massive. Anne has always maintained that there must be other cases where the facts are equally or even more disturbing.

To deny Anne membership to the HFSG beggars belief. One can only speculate that there were some personal jealousies at play or key members did not like the truth that Anne Williams was unearthing. Either way she was treated  cruelly and with a complete lack of compassion.

Whilst the HFSG has always operated along dictatorial and undemocratic lines it became markedly more bureaucratic from 1996. This largely coincided with the making of the Jimmy McGovern documentary. Some might argue that there were those who saw the beginnings of the gravy train and decided to get on board.  In any event a clear filtering process was put into operation and only selective families were given any time by the administrators who had been put in place. The systematic marginalisation and demonising of certain families was, and remains, sustained.

It is true that particular families stand out in this respect. That is however, because they are the very families who are really challenging the cover up surrounding Hillsborough. Families who remain committed to the truth uncompromisingly. John Glover, Dave Church and Anne Williams stand out in this respect. As does Joan McBrien (who represented her family at the inquests).

From the 15th April 1989 John Glover has lived and breathed Hillsborough. He not only lost his son, Ian but saw two other sons return home different people given what they had experienced that day. Sadly Joe is also now dead. John's fight for justice has been relentless. This has long brought him into conflict with the HFSG in particular it's chairman Trevor Hicks. John has attended all the legal proceedings which have followed the disaster for eleven years. There's not much that you can tell John about Hillsborough that he doesn't already know, but if there is then he'll be only too pleased to listen. He's like that you see – always seeking any piece of information that will help. He doesn't think that he knows it all. Nor would he call himself an 'expert' on Hillsborough- he leaves that to liberal academics and others who have decided that they are the authority on 'Hillsborough'.

John and his family have long been vilified by the HFSG for challenging the way things are run and how decisions are made. They have suffered for this. A major turning point was the issue of the SCUM (SUN) newspaper. Trevor Hicks put it to the group that he was going to enter into discussions with the paper. There was an outcry. John Glover was at the forefront of this. Eventually it was put to the vote and Trevor was defeated - the majority of the HFSG did not want any dialogue with that paper. That should have been the end of it but of course it wasn't. Clever Trevor announced that if Trevor Hicks, Chairman, couldn't go, then Trevor Hicks, the Father would go.

It could be argued that that was his democratic right as an individual. However, equally it could be argued that he would be perceived as the representative of the HFSG and  had a responsibility anyway because of his position within the group. When the meeting took place not only Trevor Hicks but also Phil Hammond, Secretary of the group met with representatives of the Sun. Peter Robinson and other officials from Liverpool F.C. were also present. A press statement was released stating indicating that the meeting had been positive. What did they discuss? Well clearly this was the beginning of the bridge building process. Reliable sources (conversation between key member of HFSG and leading journalist) have indicated that ninety six thousand pounds was the figure being discussed. One thousand pound for every victim! No wonder John Glover and others were so angry. Is this what it was all being reduced to?

No money ever came from The Sun to the families.

Things were never the same after this for the Glover family and the HFSG. Subsequently John was instrumental in setting up the Hillsborough Justice Campaign. They were one of several families expelled from the HFSG. A litany of incidents could be recorded here in respect of the treatment metered out to this family. Take for example the time that Joe Glover (now deceased) called at the offices of the HFSG to enquire about a court date and was left outside in the pouring rain. Or the time that Thomas Glover went to press conference at Anfield that had been called by the HFSG in respect of an imminent court decision in London. His mother was in London at the case, he was keen to hear the result. Trevor Hicks would not allow him entrance.

More recently the actions of the HFSG have directly interfered with the civil liberties of others involved in the Hillsborough issue (both bereaved families and survivors).

Earlier this year John Glover and Anne Williams were invited to appear on a T.V. show which had as its theme-grief. All arrangements had been made. Then at the eleventh hour (an increasingly popular ploy of the HFSG), they were informed by the company that they could not now appear as they had received correspondence from the HFSG stating that nothing related to Hillsborough could be discussed in public until after the verdicts in the forthcoming private prosecutions. Of course families felt that once again the HFSG was attempting to control all aspects of Hillsborough.

A letter was sent to the HFSG pointing out that the group did not have the monopoly on grief and requesting that it respect the autonomy of the bereaved families of the HJC. Of course no reply was ever received. When John Glover rang up to complain about this incident he was treated so rudely by a paid official of the HFSG (Ms Kathy Durham - exact role unknown), that it necessitated the HJC writing a formal letter of complaint with regard to her conduct. Again no response.

The Hillsborough Justice Campaign was due to launch this web site on the eleventh anniversary of the disaster this year (i.e. 15th April 2000). We saw it as a way of paying respect to the dead by using this medium to highlight the truth of Hillsborough – told by those who are in the best position to know the truth i.e. the bereaved and survivors.

All was going to plan when on the afternoon of the 13th April the group received a fax from the HFSG which was a copy of a letter sent by Ann Adlington (solicitor to the HFSG) to the Attorney General's Office. The letter brought to the attention of the Attorney General our proposed web site. At 5.45p.m. on the evening of the 13th April a further fax was received stating that Mr Justice Hooper (Judge in the private prosecutions) who had also been informed (by the HFSG), had agreed to hear an application by the HFSG for an Order prohibiting the launch. The hearing was to be the next day at 2 p.m.

So it was that the day before the eleventh anniversary of their sons deaths, two fathers (Dave Church and John Glover together with other members of the HJC), came to be sitting in Leeds Crown Court being threatened with imprisonment if they launched their website. The real sadness in this event is that it was in effect other bereaved families who had brought this action through their representatives. In reality this action was another attempt to achieve control over all aspects of Hillsborough. Those in any doubt need only read the following which is a copy of the order drawn up by the solicitor for the HFSG. It read as follows:


An application was  made today by counsel on behalf of the prosecution to Mr Justice Hooper who heard the application. As a result of the application IT IS ORDERED that until further notice of the court:-

1.Each and every member of an association known as the Hillsborough Justice Campaign is hereby prohibited whether by themselves or otherwise from communicating by the Internet or any other means any material concerning events at Hillsborough football ground on the 15th April 1989 until after the conclusion of the trial of RvDuckenfield and Murray listed to commence at Leeds Crown Court on the 7th June 2000

Had this order been agreed to in reality it meant that the two fathers sitting next to each other could not discuss their dead sons with each other – how else can you interpret: “prohibited …from communicating by the internet or any other means” [emphasis added].

Of course this could not be agreed to as it was outrageous. In any event the HJC agreed to hold off the launch and a compromised order was issued by the judge.

What is important to emphasise here is the fact that the HFSG never communicated with HJC in respect of the website. The first communication was on the 13th April when a fax was received informing the HJC that the HFSG had written to the Attorney General trying to stop the launch.

This begs the question why the HFSG resorted to litigation as a first step. How can they afford to be so liberal with people's money. All they did was put everyone to unnecessary expenses. The HJC agreed to hold off the launch of the website. This was not because of pressure exerted by the court but because they are reasonable people. Sadly the same cannot be said for those running the HFSG. Even as late as the morning of the 14th April before the court hearing in the afternoon, Ann Adlington, HFSG solicitor was contacted and offered a hard copy of the website for her consideration. She declined stating that she did not have time to read it. She was taking the HJC to court for a website, the contents of which she had no knowledge of! Her only knowledge that it would be prejudicial came from (to use her word) “a tip off”. This is an important point to emphasise because it highlights that she could have thwarted the court action and subsequent costs by agreeing to take the copy, read it, and indicate to the group anything prejudicial. At the very least it was obvious from this action that the HJC were prepared to be reasonable by attempting to enter into dialogue. In any event the gesture was rejected.

What was particularly disturbing is that when the web page designer spoke to Ann Adlington on the morning of the 14th, not only did she refuse a copy of the site but she went on to inform them that because of an article in the previous day's edition of the Guardian (which made reference to the launch) that those representing the two police officers were requesting that the judge throw out the private prosecutions. Can you imagine the impact that this information had on the bereaved families? One day before the eleventh anniversary they would be held responsible for ruining the chance to see Duckenfield and Murray (whom many saw as responsible for the disaster) prosecuted. Can you further imagine the response of families when they arrived in Leeds to find that this was a complete untruth. No, lets call it what it was: A LIE.

This scaremongering was to continue throughout the next day even though the HJC had agreed to the order. Quite literally as members of the HJC were walking in a procession to the memorial at Anfield on the eleventh anniversary Kathy Durham (paid official of the HFSG) telephoned the web designer advising that they should get a solicitor that day as one would be needed after reading the fax that was about to be sent. Kathy Durham would not enter into any dialogue on the matter and all that was received on the fax was a copy of the judges ruling from the previous day!

Is nothing sacred?  A couple of hours later the woman who had made that phone call (Kathy Durham) was lighting candles for many of the deceased in the Metropolitan Cathedral. Some of us marvelled at how someone who had displayed such systematic callousness and coldness towards the bereaved could have the temerity to light candles. The intransigence of Ann Adlington in refusing to read the website before the court hearing similarly smacks of something distasteful. Both of these women sat in court in Leeds knowing that they had been the key players in bringing bereaved families to court on the eve of their dead children's anniversaries. Ann Adlington, in particular, knew both of the fathers who attended the court that day that she was prepared to be instrumental in their possible imprisonment speaks volumes.

The HFSG has to take full responsibility for those who act as their agents. The stupidity continued at the trial. The organisation came into being because of the deaths of 96 people. But over time a veritable industry has sprung up. You think we are exaggerating?  Did you know that the Hillsborough Justice Concert was organised by the Hillsborough Justice Concert Limited? The directors of the Hillsborough Justice Concert Limited are: Trevor Hicks, Phil Hammond and Ann Adlington. Watch the stockmarket for possible flotation. Oh By the way if you want to contact the HFSG and don't know their number don't bother ringing directory enquiries – they're not listed!