This year’s anniversary of the Hillsborough disaster will be very different, but no less significant as we remember the 96 Liverpool fans who lost their lives on 15 April 1989.
Here at the Museum of Liverpool, our collections tell the stories and experiences of local people. Hillsborough has long been a focus of our collecting; responding to the tragedy as it unfolded in 1989 and how it continues to affect our communities today.
We are sharing the stories behind a small number of those items below to remember and reflect on the disaster. #JFT96.
A proud LFC fan emblazoned this butcher’s coat during the tenure of legendary manager Bob Paisley. 'Paisley's Red Army', 'Kings of Europe' and ‘Anfield Aces’, along with embroidered signatures and hand-drawn trophies cover every surface.
This is one of many hundreds of treasured items left as tributes on the pitch at Anfield following the Hillsborough disaster. This coat, along with scarves, hats and pennants were kindly donated to the Museum by the Liverpool Football Supporters Club to help commemorate the tragedy.
We don’t know who made it or left it at Anfield but we would love to know more. Please contact us if you have any further information.
Many people across the world showed their support and solidarity by purchasing this charity single, ‘Ferry ‘Cross the Mersey’. Featuring Liverpool artists, The Christians, Holly Johnson, Paul McCartney and Gerry Marsden it was released in May 1989 to raise money for the Hillsborough disaster fund. It stayed at number one for three weeks. Abide with Me by Liverpool Metropolitan Cathedral Choir featured on the B side.
© Catherine Marcangeli/Adrian Henri Estate
The Kop, filled with thousands of Liverpool fans is captured in this painting by life-long Liverpool Football Club fan, Adrian Henri.
Poet and artist Henri painted a series of paintings, ‘The last day of the Kop’, marking the change from standing to all-seater stadium in 1994. This change was implemented following an inquiry into the Hillsborough Stadium Disaster which recommended that all grounds in the First and Second Divisions of the Football League be all-seated.
Immediately after the Hillsborough disaster Henri also composed a poem and painting mourning the death of the 96 Liverpool fans.
This poignant match ticket for the semi-final, Liverpool v Nottingham Forest at Hillsborough Stadium, Saturday 15th April 1989 belonged to Andrew Sefton.
Andrew, who was 23 and had recently become engaged, drove to Sheffield that day with four of his friends. He went into pen three - one of the fenced standing enclosures at the Leppings Lane end. Very sadly he lost his life.
Andrew’s mother, Therese became secretary of Hillsborough Family Support Group.
We are very grateful to Andrew’s family for donating his ticket to the Museum of Liverpool.
On 15 April, 2013 the city marked the Anniversary of the Hillsborough disaster with a number of commemorative events. The Museum of Liverpool displayed artworks dedicated to the memory of the 96 including this mosaic artwork, ‘United in Justice’. Made by local artist Alan Wynne and donated to the Museum by the Hillsborough Family Support Group, it was displayed in the Wondrous Place gallery as a thank you to the people of Liverpool for their help and support during the campaign for justice.
The mosaic features an iconic image which was taken during Everton Football Club’s tribute to the 96 at their home game against Newcastle on Monday 17 September 2012, following the release of the Hillsborough Independent Panel’s report findings. The artwork depicts eight-year-old Liverpool fan Michael Clarke holding the hand of 11-year-old Evertonian Beth Garner-Watt on the pitch at Goodison.
Linda Whitfield from Ellesmere Port made this patchwork quilt from donated Liverpool Football Club shirts. It took her four months to create. The quilt includes 96 Liver Birds, to represent each of the lives lost, with the children poignantly remembered by a smaller Liver Bird from a child's shirt. The quilt also includes each of the victims’ names, with those who went to the match together kept close together on the quilt.
The Hillsborough Justice Campaign shop has been an essential source of advice, comfort and support for many people over the years.
The shop (at its second location) 178 Walton Breck Road, Anfield was demolished in January this year along with other shops in the block. Just before demolition the committee got in touch to ask if the Museum of Liverpool could take any of the shop’s fixtures and fittings. We were privileged to save these key items for the city and to tell the story of the resilience and determination of the campaigners.
This remarkable portrait of actress Sue Johnston, by Sky Arts Portrait of the Year Christian Hook, is entitled 'You’ll Never Walk Alone'. It was inspired by her campaigning work with the Hillsborough Family Support Group.
Christian painted Sue at first as a conventional black and white portrait, before ‘deconstructing’ the image using his feet, while listening to the Liverpool FC anthem. This short video reveals how Christian created the image.
It was kindly donated to the collections of the Museum of Liverpool in 2016 by the artist.
Here at the Museum of Liverpool, we continually add new material to represent issues and events affecting people in the city today. Hillsborough has been a focus of our collecting; responding to the tragedy as it unfolded in 1989, and also how it continues to affect our communities. The high-profile campaign against The Sun newspaper, which disgracefully lied about Liverpool fans that day, represents the ongoing repercussions and search for justice.