Coronavirus: Final Hillsborough memorial service postponed

The final memorial service for the victims of the 1989 Hillsborough disaster has been postponed due to the coronavirus outbreak, Liverpool FC said on Tuesday.

Liverpool and AFC Bournemouth players paid tribute to the victims of the Hillsborough disaster last year.   -  Getty Images

The final memorial service for the victims of the 1989 Hillsborough disaster has been postponed due to the coronavirus outbreak, Liverpool Football Club announced on Tuesday.

Britain’s worst sporting tragedy, at Hillsborough Stadium in Sheffield on April 15, 1989, had an eventual death toll of 96. Fans were crushed to death on the standing terraces.

“The Hillsborough memorial service planned to take place at Anfield on Wednesday April 15, 2020 to mark the 31st anniversary of the Hillsborough disaster has been postponed,” said a statement on Liverpool’s website.

Margaret Aspinall, who chairs the Hillsborough Family Support Group, said she hoped people would say a prayer for the families and the victims.

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“In light of recent events, a decision was made collectively by the families to postpone our final memorial service at Anfield,” she said in the statement.

“We wish to keep as many people safe as possible and we believe this is the right approach.” She said the plan was to hold the event at a later date.

More than 1,500 cases of coronavirus have been confirmed in Britain and more than 50 people have died. But health officials said last week the number of infections could be as high as 10,000.

Britain on Monday stepped up its response to the crisis, recommending household isolation, home-working and an end to mass gatherings.

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