Robert Hampton

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15th April 2014

96 – 25
Posted by at 10.07pm | In the News | No responses

There’s been only one thing on the minds of most people in Liverpool today – the 25th anniversary of the Hillsborough Disaster. The memorial service was, as ever, a profoundly moving event.

At the inquest, “pen portraits” have been read out; moving personal testimonies from relatives of those who died. Click on over to the Liverpool Echo‘s web site to read the accounts from day four, day five, day six, day seven and day eight.

What comes across loud and clear is the sense of loss that is still keenly felt. Families lost brothers, fathers, sons, mothers, daughters, sisters amidst chaos and confusion.

With the inquests just getting under way in Warrington, there is a new sense of hope for the families. They are ordinary people who have found themselves in an extraordinary situation, and they have handled it with immense dignity. I don’t know how they do it, but I am willing them to maintain that strength through to the end of the inquests when, hopefully, they will get the closure they have been denied for so long.

13th September 2012

Panel Game

"We Never Walk Alone" bannerYesterday was a momentous day for Liverpool as the Hillsborough Independent Panel delivered its final report. Shortly afterwards, David Cameron made a statement to the House of Commons, in a very subdued atmosphere – the only noise from MPs being the occasional gasp of astonishment as the revelations came tumbling out.

Regular readers of this blog (both of them) will know I’m not a fan of football. For me, however, the Hillsborough disaster transcends sport and is about wider issues. It’s about a disaster which could have been avoided, or at the very least reduced in magnitude, had the people in charge done their jobs properly. About victims and their families denied a proper account of what happened. About a complete failure of the government and judicial process to hold anyone accountable.

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10th April 2012


Alan Davies is in trouble after making comments about the Hillsborough disaster on a podcast. He criticised Liverpool for refusing to play matches on the anniversary of the tragedy. A clip is on YouTube here, if you want to judge his choice of words.

I don’t for a second think that Alan Davies is an offensive person. But get a man to talk about football, and for some reason common sense goes out the window and angry nonsense seems to be the default level of conversation (check out the comments on the YouTube video I linked to, which make normal YouTube comments look like the Frost/Nixon interview).

I kind of get the nation’s obsession with football, but there are lots of things I don’t get. For example, I don’t understand why rivalries get so nasty and personal. I don’t understand why Liverpool and Everton fans are such a volatile mix that police feel it necessary to enforce segregated pubs in London for the FA Cup semi-final on Saturday.

I don’t understand how a stall in Clayton Square Shopping Centre thinks it’s amusing to sell baby-grows that say (paraphrased) “I’ve only just been born but I hate the red shite”.

I blame Sky Sports for hyping up every match they show as being the most important event in the world ever (clip below is a David Mitchell spoof, but scarily close to the real thing).

I don’t understand. Someone explain it to me.

15th December 2009

When there was only one set of footprints, it was then that I Carragher’d you
Posted by at 9.06am | In the News | 1 response

Today’s Metro carries the story that Liverpool FC’s Jamie Carragher prays before every match for success.

As a match-winning tactic it’s not brilliant. For starters, what if the other team start praying too? Then you’re relying on God being a Liverpool fan.

Taking into account Liverpool’s recent results, can we conclude, therefore, that God doesn’t exist? Not necessarily: I actually think that He is just being vengeful and punishing Carragher for his sins. WHAT HAVE YOU DONE TO INCUR THE LORD’S WRATH, CARRAGHER?!