I am very pleased to inform you that David Conn has confirmed attendance at the next Ripon Branch meeting on Tuesday 13th December at St John the Baptist chapel, Bondgate, Ripon, from 7.30pm. His talk will focus around the verdicts of the Hillsborough inquests in April and the government’s recent decision not to hold an enquiry on the Orgreave scandals, after 16 months of giving the impression that they would. This promises to be an interesting and topical talk from a very engaging and knowledgeable speaker, so please do come along if you can. For further information, please see David’s biog and links to some of his articles below. All CLP members welcome. As this is our last meeting before Christmas, light refreshments will also be provided and please feel free to bring a bottle!
David Conn is a multi-award-winning journalist for the Guardian newspaper, widely respected as one of the foremost investigative writers on Hillsborough, Orgreave, the business of football, Fifa, and other social and financial issues. He has been awarded the UK’s sports news reporter of the year a record three times, in 2004, 2009 and 2013, and sports journalist of the year in the British Journalism Awards in 2013. Last month he was awarded North West football journalist of the year 2016 for his “stand out investigative work” on the Hillsborough disaster and inquests. He has three times been named football writer of the year by the Football Supporters Federation.
He is the author of three acclaimed books critically investigating and chronicling English football’s commercial transformation since the formation of the Premier League, and including chapters on Hillsborough: The Football Business (1997), The Beautiful Game?: Searching For The Soul Of Football (2004), and Richer Than God: Manchester City, Modern Football And Growing Up (2012). David’s latest book is an in-depth account of the corruption scandals at Fifa, football’s world governing body, which is due to be published by Penguin / Random House in May 2017.
His 2009 article for the Guardian detailing the bereaved Hillsborough families’ continuing campaign for justice prompted the then Labour ministers Andy Burnham and Maria Eagle to press for all official documents relating to the disaster to be released. That led to the report of the Hillsborough Independent Panel in 2012, the quashing of the first inquest the same year, and holding of new inquests which reached a verdict in April 2016 of unlawful killing and exonerated Liverpool supporters of any misbehaviour causing the disaster, as persistently claimed by South Yorkshire police. David covered the two-year long new inquests extensively for the Guardian and was widely acclaimed for his in-depth coverage and analysis following the conclusion of the proceedings and verdicts of unlawful killing.
In 2012 he first made the link with Hillsborough and South Yorkshire police brutality, alleged fabrication of evidence and perjury at Orgreave during the 1984-85 miners strike, leading to the campaign for an inquiry which the Conservative government finally turned down last month.
Article in 2009 about the enduring injustice and campaign by bereaved Hillsborough families which led Andy Burnham and Maria Eagle to call for all documents to be disclosed and reviewed:
https://www.theguardian.com/ football/2009/apr/13/ hillsborough-disaster-police- south-yorkshire-liverpool
2012 Article raising Orgreave as an issue of remaining injustice, highlighting South Yorkshire police malpractice in 1984-85, still in place when the 1989 semi final took place at Hillsborough:
2012 Article when the Hillsborough Independent Panel produced its report:
April 2016 Hillsborough Inquests Unlawful Killing verdicts: in-depth read on the disaster, police alleged cover up blaming innocent victims, and the families’ suffering and campaign:
https://www.theguardian.com/ football/2016/apr/26/ hillsborough-disaster-deadly- mistakes-and-lies-that-lasted- decades
April 2016 film made following the inquests verdicts (11 minutes, succinct summary of all the issues and history):
https://www.theguardian.com/ uk-news/video/2016/apr/26/ hillsborough-inquiry-anatomy- of-a-disaster-video
October 2016 Piece on the Conservative Government turning down inquiry into Orgreave after all: