28 years on, Cathedral holds low-key memorial for Hillsborough victims

Everton and Burnley players observe a minutes applause for the victims of the Hillsborough Disaster during the Premier League match at Goodison Park, Liverpool.

Everton and Burnley players observe a minutes applause for the victims of the Hillsborough Disaster during the Premier League match at Goodison Park, Liverpool.

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A LOW-KEY memorial service has taken place to mark the 28th anniversary of the Hillsborough tragedy in Sheffield.

Annual services at Liverpool FC’s Anfield stadium to remember the 96 Liverpool fans who died in Britain’s worst sporting disaster are no longer being held, at the request of the families belonging to the Hillsborough Family Support Group (HFSG) who organised them.

From this year the city’s two cathedrals are taking it in turn to host simple commemorations in an initiative from the Bishop of Liverpool, the Right Reverend Paul Bayes, and the Archbishop of Liverpool, the Most Reverend Malcolm McMahon, in liaison with Mayor of Liverpool Joe Anderson.

The half-hour service at Liverpool Anglican Cathedral maintained the minute’s silence at 3.06pm - when the fateful 1989 FA Cup semi-final between Liverpool and Nottingham Forest was stopped at Hillsborough stadium.

It included simple prayers and time for silent reflection but no sermons or other words beyond the simple prayers on the service sheet.

The Bishop of Liverpool said: “On behalf of all the churches we count it a great privilege to offer this brief and simple service.

“We will remember the 96 before God, and pray for their families, for the survivors and for all those who remain deeply affected by the tragedy.

“Our cathedrals are here for the people and we are proud and glad to offer the opportunity on April 15 to reflect and to pray in peace.”

Media were asked not to attend the Hillsborough service as it is “a private act of worship”.

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