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Lord Justice Goldring to act as coroner for Hillsborough inquests

|Media Release

Lord Justice Goldring has been appointed by the Coroners for the South Yorkshire (East) and the West Yorkshire (West) Districts as an Assistant Deputy Coroner for the purpose of conducting the inquests into the deaths of the 96 people in the Hillsborough disaster.

Lord Justice Goldring will decide in due course where the inquests will be held.

He plans to open the inquests as soon as possible.

Notes to Editors:

  1. Lord Justice Goldring was the Senior Presiding Judge of England and Wales from January 2010 until December 2012. He was called to the Bar in 1969 and became a QC in 1987. He was appointed a High Court Judge in December 1999. Between 2002 and 2005 he was Presiding Judge of the Midland Circuit. He was appointed as a judge of the Court of Appeal and Deputy Senior Presiding Judge in October 2008 and Senior Presiding Judge on 1 January 2010.
  1. A photograph can be downloaded from
    Photo credit should read: Judicial Office/Crown Copyright. This photo may only be used in connection with the reporting of the Hillsborough inquests. Re-use of the picture for uses unconnected to the Hillsborough inquests will require the permission of the copyright holder.
  1. The judge will not be giving any media interviews regarding his appointment or in relation to the inquests.
  1. Lord Justice Goldring has been appointed by the South Yorkshire (East) Coroner to conduct the inquests into the 95 deaths at Hillsborough and by the West Yorkshire (West) Coroner to conduct the inquest into the death of Tony Bland who died of injuries he sustained at Hillsborough. It is anticipated the 96 inquests will be heard together.
  1. Previous appointments of serving and retired judges as assistant deputy coroners include: Lord Justice Scott Baker to conduct the inquests into the deaths of Diana, Princess of Wales and Dodi Al Fayed; Lady Justice Hallett to conduct the inquests into the deaths of those killed in the London bombings on 7 July 2005; Sir Michael Wright to conduct the inquest into the death of Jean Charles de Menezes; HHJ Peter Thornton QC to conduct the inquest into the death of Ian Tomlinson in the City of London; and more recently Mr Justice Owen who is conducting the inquest into the death of Alexander Litvinenko; HHJ Frances Kirkham CBE who is conducting the inquests into the deaths in the Lakanal House fire in Camberwell and HHJ Cutler CBE who is conducting the inquest into the death of Mark Duggan. Like these appointees, Lord Justice Goldring will have the same powers as a coroner when conducting the inquests.
  1. Some factual notes on the inquest process are set out below:

• An inquest is a fact-finding inquiry into a violent or unnatural death, a sudden death of unknown cause, or a death which has occurred in prison to establish who has died, and how, when and where the death occurred.

• The inquest is conducted by a coroner, and s/he hears evidence relating to the body and the circumstances of the death of a deceased person.

• The inquest is a form of public inquiry to determine the truth. It is not a trial so there are no formal parties.

• The inquest verdict cannot be framed in such a way as to appear to determine matters of criminal liability on the part of a named person or civil liability.

• Section 8(3) of the 1988 Act sets out the circumstances in which an inquest must be held with a jury.

Press Office contacts for further information:

For information about Lord Justice Goldring, please contact the Judicial Press Office on 020 7073 4852.

For information about coroner policy or the funding arrangements of the inquests please contact the Ministry of Justice Press Office on 020 3334 3536.


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