'Inappropriate' Hillsborough musical withdrawn in Liverpool

Liverpool fans holding Hillsborough scarves
Image caption Their Scarves Were Red was withdrawn amid concerns over the timing of the production and concerns raised in Liverpool

A Liverpool theatre has pulled a musical about Hillsborough after deciding it was "inappropriate" to host the production.

The Unity Theatre decided not to stage Their Scarves Were Red, which was due to begin in April.

The play, which follows two fictional fans travelling to Sheffield, had been likened to Blood Brothers.

Concerns expressed by the community in Liverpool "about the nature and timing of the production" led to the decision.

In a statement, the Unity Theatre's spokesman said the show was intended to be a "thought-provoking and moving tribute to those who died" as a result of the stadium disaster in 1989.

'Sincere apologies'

"[It] was brought to our attention by a reputable producer alongside the Hillsborough Families Support Group to coincide with the 25th anniversary of the Hillsborough disaster," he added.

"Following the announcement of the project, Unity Theatre has come to the decision that, given the ongoing inquests into the tragedy and the strong feelings of our audience and local community about the nature and timing of this production, that it would be inappropriate to host the show.

"We would like to offer our sincere apologies to those who were offended or upset by our announcement and to the families and survivors of the tragedy for our misjudgement."

An inquest into the deaths of the 96 fans who died as a result of Hillsborough is due to begin by 31 March.

Hillsborough relatives are meeting the senior prosecutor for England and Wales and the head of the police watchdog over concerns about the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) investigation.

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