To be in Liverpool yesterday was to witness something remarkable. The most outrageous wrong righted after 23 years. The truth revealed, but justice still to be done. Proof that if you believe in what you’re doing, you should keep fighting, even when the whole world appears to be against you, determined to keep secrets under wraps.
Seeing people standing around TV screens in cafes which are normally just background noise, nodding, wiping tears from their eyes as David Cameron issued a national apology. Seeing a city stop for two minutes at 3.06pm to remember the 96 who died.
I was lucky enough to work in the Liverpool Echo and Daily Post newsroom for three years, and still work closely with the digital team there. There was never any doubt that the newsroom would do a brilliant job in print and online – covering the latest chapter in arguably the biggest news story to ever involve the city. And they did.
I’ve seen several emails and messages from people thanking the Echo for its coverage of the story as it unfolded via a liveblog, and for the in-depth coverage which continued late into the evening. Yesterday was one of those days which makes you proud to be a regional journalist.
A lot has been written about the front page of The Sun today – what else could the paper have done? Roy Greenslade has blogged about how the national newspapers covered the report. (As an aside, I’d urge everyone to read this piece by the Mirror’s Brian Reade – not because I work for Trinity Mirror but because it is one of the most powerful things I’ve ever read).
As Ed Miliband reminded us yesterday, it is the Liverpool ECHO which has stood by fans since 1989. Starting off with the ECHO, here is how the regional press covered the biggest police cover up of all time:
The ECHO’s overnight edition included an exclusive interview with the Bishop of Liverpool on leading the inquiry. The later edition was held back until 5pm to enable full coverage of the inquiry findings:
Today, Hillsborough remained on the front page of the ECHO, reflecting the prevailing opinion that the truth had been revealed, now justice must be served:
The Liverpool Post – now published on Thursdays, used an image from the vigil held on Wednesday evening to lead its front page:
It was, of course, also of huge significance in Sheffield, where The Star focused on the man behind the cover up:
It was also on the front page of the weekly Sheffield Telegraph:
I also found two weekly newspapers which splashed on the consequences of the tragedy. Both the Chester Chronicle and Crosby Herald had local people to their area involved in the tragedy:
The report also dominated front pages elsewhere in the UK this morning – including the Belfast News Letter, Daily Record (not strictly a regional, I know) Northern Echo (read editor Peter Baron’s blog on choosing a front page here) and the Western Mail:
And, as has been noted on Hold the Front Page, the initial findings were out in time for the Shropshire Star and Wolverhampton Express and Star on Wednesday – both papers retain early afternoon print slots: