Shoreham Airshow disaster pilot to stand trial accused of causing 11 deaths

Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. The pilot accused of killing 11 people in the Shoreham Airshow disaster will stand trial for manslaughter next January.Andy Hill, 54, was performing a loop-the-loop stunt when the 1955 Hawker Hunter jet crashed onto the A27 in West Sussex, killing 11 men and injuring 13 people.The trained Royal Air Force instructor was thrown from the aircraft as it landed on the dual carriageway.He suffered serious injuries and was placed in an induced coma before eventually being discharged from hospital.Hill appeared at the Old Bailey on Tuesday wearing a dark grey suit over a white shirt and dark tie. He pleaded not guilty to 11 counts of gross negligence manslaughter and one of endangering an aircraft.Gross negligence manslaughter carries a maximum penalty of life imprisonment, and Judge Richard Marks QC set a trial date of 14 January 2019.The Shoreham Airshow has not been staged again since the disaster on August 22, 2015, out of respect for the families of the men who died.The decision to charge Hill was announced to the relatives in a private meeting at Sussex Police’s Lewes headquarters back in March.According to the charges, the 11 who died were wedding chauffeur Maurice Abrahams, 76, from Brighton; retired engineer James Mallinson, 72, from Newick, near Lewes; window cleaner and builder Mark Trussler, 54, from Worthing; cycling friends Dylan Archer, 42, from Brighton, and Richard Smith, 26, from Hove. The others were NHS manager Tony Brightwell, 53, from Hove; grandfather Mark Reeves, 53, from Seaford; Worthing United footballers Matthew Grimstone and Jacob Schilt, both 23; personal trainer Matt Jones, 24; and Daniele Polito, 23, from Worthing.Hill, of Sandon, West Sussex, remains on bail ahead of his Old Bailey trial which is expected to last up to seven weeks. read more