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15 April 1989

By David B (legacy user)10/4/2014 12:29Thu Apr 10 12:29:43 2014In response to Re: Thanks Steve

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On the day of the Hillsborough tragedy, the score at Claremont Road was Hendon 2, Dulwich Hamlet 1. This was a match that paled into insignificance as the news from Sheffield filtered down the airwaves to the Claremont Road terraces. I never asked any of the players if they knew what had happened in Sheffield as the match was in progress, but the game was passionless for most of the second half. I do remember staying behind after the game and spending about 5 hours in the Claremont Road bar getting absolutely blasted with two or three Hamlet fans, but it was drinking for drinking's sake in a maudlin way.

I have also spoken to the match referee at Hillsborough and he was hugely critical of the authorities for not keeping him aware of the things going on. He stopped the match because of fans on the pitch, thinking it was a violent incident, and didn't know of the tragedy until a little later. Had he been even remotely aware of the crush, he would never have kicked-off.

All football fans were affected by the tragedy, but I do agree that forcing clubs to kick-off seven minutes after the scheduled time is not the way to do it. If clubs wish to something, that is up to them. Of course, there are quite a large number of clubs – four of the highest-profile being AFC Wimbledon, Enfield Town, FC United of Manchester and Hayes & Yeading United - which weren't even in existence in 1989 but will be kicking-off late.