Leeds & West Yorkshire

Service held for Bradford City fire victims

Fire at Valley Parade and fans on the pitch Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Fifty-four Bradford City fans and two Lincoln City supporters were killed and hundreds more injured

Hundreds of people attended a memorial service to mark the 29th anniversary of the Bradford City football stadium fire, in which 56 people died.

The fire broke out during a match between Bradford and Lincoln at the Valley Parade stadium on 11 May 1985.

The fire is thought to have been started by a lit cigarette dropped under the all-wooden stand, igniting litter underneath the steps.

A 30-minute service was held in the city's Centenary Square at 11:00 BST.

The event, which is held every year, was led by the chaplain to Bradford City, the Reverend Andy Grieff.

Image copyright Bradford City AFC
Image caption Flowers and wreaths were laid at the Memorial Sculpture in Centenary Square
Image caption Hundreds of people gathered at Centenary Square in Bradford for the service

The city hall bells played Abide with Me and You'll Never Walk Alone at the start of the service, which was attended by relatives and friends of those who lost their lives or were injured.

The Lord Mayor of Bradford, Councillor Khadim Hussain, laid a wreath on behalf of the city and district.

People have also been paying tribute on Twitter, including Fifa president Sepp Blatter who tweeted: "My thoughts this morning are with those who lost loved ones in Bradford, 29 years ago today."

The day of the disaster started out as one of celebration as Bradford players paraded the old Division Three championship trophy around the ground before kick-off.

It marked Bradford City's return to the second tier of English football for the first time since before World War Two.

Fifty four Bradford City supporters and two Lincoln City fans lost their lives, with many more injured.

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