Two care workers pleaded not guilty today to wilfully neglecting Bradford City fire hero David Hustler, a patient in their care.

Margaret Shires, 62, of Thoresby Drive, Gomersal, and Kaniz Rashid, 50, of Clarkson Avenue, Heckmondwike, are accused of neglecting David Hustler, 76, who died on October 28, 2015.

Mr Hustler was awarded the Queen’s Gallantry Medal after he rescued two people during the Bradford City stadium fire which claimed the lives of 56 people on May 11, 1985.

Shires and Rashid are charged with the “wilful neglect of an individual by a care worker” on October 19, 2015, at the Meadow Green residential home in Heckmondwike, where Mr Hustler was a resident and living with vascular dementia.

The women both pleaded not guilty to one count of wilful neglect during a short twenty minute hearing at Leeds Crown Court on Friday.

The pair spoke only to confirm their ages, names and nationalities.

Shires, dressed in a blouse and blazer, and Rashid, who wore a floral dress, both sat motionless throughout the proceedings.

They are now set to stand trial on Monday, April 8, 2019.

Addressing the pair, Judge Guy Kearl QC said: “The trial will be on the eighth of April.

“You must attend. It would be a breach of the terms of your bail if you fail to attend.”

Both defendants were released on bail by Judge Kearl.

David Hustler was at the match on May 11, 1985, to watch Bradford City take on Lincoln City, in what was supposed to be a day of celebration marking Bradford’s promotion from Division 3, when the dreadful fire happened.

Mr Hustler, formerly of Shipley, saved two people - Kathleen Kelly and Matthew Wildman - from the fire.

He had already escaped the fire when he ran back into the burning stand to rescue Mr Wildman, who was 17 at the time, and is disabled.

He put his arms round Mr Wildman, who was on fire, to put out the flames, and when Mr Wildman fell from a stretcher being carried over people’s head, Mr Hustler was on hand to save him again.

Mr Wildman suffered 50 per cent burns to his body and face, said he “owes his life” to Mr Hustler, who also sustained serious burns during his brave acts.

When Mr Hustler died, he said: “David is a hero in the truest sense of the word and, as such, will remain in the history of Bradford City forever.

“David suffered severe burns as he rescued me. The stand became engulfed with flames.

“He was a wonderful man and leaves a big loss.”

Mr Hustler was featured in the documentary ‘One Day in May’ about the fire, and the book ‘Four minutes to Hell’.

Author Paul Firth called Mr Hustler a “modest hero”, and said he was someone he was “proud to call my friend and a true hero”.

Throughout his life, Mr Hustler, a lifelong Bradford City supporter, helped to raise money for the Plastic Surgery and Burns Research Unit at the University of Bradford.

He was also a regular volunteer with the special needs group The Wednesday Leisure Club, a volunteer carer and coach for the Great Britain Special Olympic ten-pin bowling team, and was honorary chairman of Great Horton Church Cricket Club.