Jump to content

About the panel

The Hillsborough Independent Panel was appointed by government in January 2010 to ensure the maximum possible disclosure of documents relating to the 1989 Hillsborough disaster. It will make recommendations to government concerning the creation of and access to a permanent archive of the documents.

Central to the panel’s work is to prepare and publish a comprehensive report based on in-depth research into the documents to add to public understanding of the tragedy, its circumstances and its aftermath.

While there have been police investigations, a public inquiry, civil court actions, a judicial scrutiny and a private prosecution, controversy about the circumstances and aftermath of the disaster has persisted.

Government documents and those from public bodies, including the South Yorkshire Police, Sheffield City Council, the South Yorkshire Coroner and the fire and ambulance services, will be released. This will occur initially to the bereaved families, and will then be made publicly available.

The Hillsborough Independent Panel is chaired by the Right Reverend James Jones, Bishop of Liverpool, and consists of eight other members whose diverse professional experience and expertise covers all aspects of the Panel’s complex work.

Work of the panel

The panel meets monthly to review progress and each member has responsibilities for the panel’s work that reflects their expertise and knowledge. Panel sub-groups meet regularly and are responsible for particular areas of work. These include:

  • communication and liaison with bereaved families
  • working with the full-time researchers and preparing the report
  • overseeing the work of the full-time archivists
  • communication with the media

The panel’s work is also supported by a full-time secretariat.

A steering group comprised of key organisations meets regularly to assist the panel’s work and is committed to the principle of maximum public disclosure.

Records relating to Hillsborough

The range of material relating to Hillsborough is extensive and includes:

  • paper documents, correspondence, statements and photographs
  • files from over 50 organisations
  • CCTV, audio and media coverage