LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Thursday, September 22, 2016: Margret Aspinall and Kenny Dalglish with their medals before a Conferment of the Freedom of the City of Liverpool for the 96 Victims of the Hillsborough Stadium Disaster at the St. George's Hall. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Hillsborough families fold support group – “Time for us to be able to move on”

Margaret Aspinall, former chair of the Hillsborough Family Support Group, confirms the group has now folded and has urged fans to no longer provide financial support. 

Next Thursday marks the 32nd anniversary of the Hillsborough disaster, but there will be no public service to remember the 96 due to lockdown measures.

Instead, families, survivors and well-wishers will pay their respects in private, with Aspinall among those to have been directly affected by the tragedy in Sheffield in 1989.

Aspinall has campaigned tirelessly for justice in the years since, which led to an inquest verdict in 2016 that ruled the 96 supporters to have lost their lives to have been unlawfully killed.

The Hillsborough Family Support Group (HFSG) was founded in 1989 and, for over 30 years, has provided support for those left bereaved following the disaster, with the backing of supporters.

And in an interview with LFCTV, Aspinall – who served as chair of HFSG – has confirmed that “the group has now folded.”

“It’s a very sad thing to say, after 30-odd years together, that we’ve folded it,” she said.

“But I think it is time now, for families to move on, but also those survivors to be able to move on.

“And the city – because, you know, we’ve had Hillsborough thrown at us now for all of those years.

“I think people need peace in their lives, and to start trying to just reflect and remember the 96 on the anniversary.

“To me, that will be just enough for everybody, and for people to be able to have some time with their families now – that is so important.”

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Wednesday, April 27, 2016: xxxx. (Pic by Propaganda) Margaret Aspinall, the chair of the Hillsborough Family Support Group talks outside St George's Hall in remembrance of those who died at the Hillsborough disaster, a day after after a court delivered the unlawful killing verdict at the Hillsborough inquest .

Elsewhere in the interview, Aspinall reflected on the difficulty of her life as chair, and the impact of the 2016 inquest on her personally, as she learned details of her son James’ death, 27 years on.

While she insisted she is not the type of person to step away from activity entirely, she looks forward to spending more time with her family, without the responsibility of campaigning and raising funds for HFSG.

To that point, Aspinall has called for fundraising efforts for the Hillsborough families to stop.

“As everybody must know, we were doing a lot of fundraising at the time. We don’t need to do that now. The fundraising part is over,” he stressed.

“If anybody starts asking for things for Hillsborough, to help the families, please don’t give.

“Because the families don’t need anything else now. We don’t need to ask anybody for anything.

“We’ve gone as far as we could come, and without your support of that fundraising, we wouldn’t have achieved the unlawfully killed [verdict].

“So you’ve done a great job, and please no more now. Any fundraising now has got to be for the good of others – they’ve helped us enough.”