City falls silent to mark five-year anniversary of Manchester bombing

A touching tribute was paid to victim Martyn Hett by his boyfriend (Picture: Getty Images/Twitter)

Manchester has fallen silent to remember the victims of a terror attack exactly five years ago.

The city’s Cathedral, which has been open to mourners of the Manchester Arena attack all day, tolled its bells 22 times at 10.31pm.

That marked the moment a bomb was detonated at an Ariana Grande concert on May 22, 2017, killing 22 people.

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Bells had also been rung at midday as the city united to remember the tragedy.

More than 20,000 racers in Sunday’s Great Manchester Run clapped for the victims ahead of the starting pistol in one of a series of memorial events held in the city.

It was the first time in three years that people had been able to commemorate the attack without Covid restrictions.

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It is also the first year that residents have been able to remember the victims at a permanent memorial for them – the Glade of Light Memorial, which was opened by the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge earlier this month.

Meanwhile, the boyfriend of Martyn Hett – who died in the terror attack has posted a touching tribute for him on the anniversary.

Manchester falls silent in touching tribute to arena victims __ The boyfriend of Martyn Hett who died in the Manchester Arena terror attack has posted a touching tribute for him on the fifth anniversary of the bombing. In a social media post addressed to his partner, who was 29 when he died, Russell Hayward has said
The boyfriend of Martyn Hett, Russell Hayward, said ‘my heart will always have a permanent piece missing’ (Picture: Twitter/RussellHayward)

In a social media post addressed to his partner, who was 29 when he died, Russell Hayward said: ‘my heart will always have a permanent piece missing’.

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Martyn, a social media manager and Coronation Street superfan, never came home from the concert.

Mr Hayward shared a photograph of himself and Mr Hett, remembering him as someone ‘with no airs and graces’ who ‘lived life at 100mph’.

He wrote on Instagram: ‘Five years since I’ve seen you. Five years since I’ve held you. I do not feel like it’s been five years. I feel like it’s been 500 years.

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‘I miss going to ridiculously overpriced restaurants with you and me ordering a dessert wine and you asking for a Long Island iced tea,’ he added.

‘You had no airs or graces.

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‘You were a complete one off. And my heart will always have a permanent piece missing.’

The riverside Glade of Light memorial was the setting for a remembrance service for the victims, and quiet crowds laid flowers on the white marble ring in the centre, where the names of the victims are carved in bronze.

Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham and 19-year-old Freya Lewis, who was at the concert five years ago, were among those running the Great Manchester Run.

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Mr Burnham led tributes to the victims on Twitter, saying: ‘Their names forever at the heart of our city.

Mayor of Greater Manchester Andy Burnham shows his Manchester worker bee (symbol of Manchester) tattoo ahead of the Great Manchester Run through Manchester city centre, to mark the five-year anniversary of the Manchester Arena bombing. The day will be the first time in three years that people in Manchester can mark the anniversary free of coronavirus restrictions. Picture date: Sunday May 22, 2022. PA Photo. See PA story ANNIVERSARY Arena. Photo credit should read: Martin Rickett/PA Wire
Mayor of Greater Manchester Andy Burnham shows his Manchester worker bee (the symbol of Manchester) tattoo (Picture: PA)

‘Their families and those affected always in our thoughts.

‘Our thanks for the goodness and strength of the people of Greater Manchester – eternal.’

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He also showed off a Manchester ‘worker bee’ tattoo on his arm – the symbol of the city.

Ms Lewis, who learned to walk again after suffering multiple injuries, fractures and burns at the bombing, ran for the Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital Charity, as staff at the hospital saved her life.

The teenager, who used a wheelchair for three months and whose best friend Nell Jones, then 14, was killed in the attack, has raised more than £67,000 with her family since the attack.

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manchester victims
The terror attack left 22 people dead and injured hundreds (Picture: PA)

Cheshire-raised Ms Lewis said of Manchester to BBC Breakfast: ‘It’s the most incredible city, I’ll always remember the way it came together and took me in as a Mancunian, as one of their own.’

Ariana Grande shared a graphic of 22 bees, each with a victim’s name below, and the words ‘Manchester remembers’ on her Instagram story.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson paid tribute to the victims and said the courage shown by people in Manchester in the days following the attack had ‘touched the world’.

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Along with the 22 bystanders killed five years ago – six of them children – hundreds more were injured.



Remembering the victims of the Manchester Arena terror attack

Those who died in the attack were:

Saffie-Rose Roussos, aged eight, from Preston

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Sorrell Leczkowski, 14, from Leeds

Eilidh MacLeod, 14, from the Isle of Barra

Nell Jones, 14, from Cheshire

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Olivia Campbell-Hardy, 15, from Bury

Megan Hurley, 15, from Liverpool

Georgina Callander, 18, from Hesketh Bank

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Liam Curry, 19, and Chloe Rutherford, 17, both from South Shields

Courtney Boyle, 19, and Philip Tron, 32, from Gateshead

John Atkinson, 28, from Manchester

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Martyn Hett, 29, from Stockport

Kelly Brewster, 32, from Sheffield

Angelika Klis, 39, and Marcin Klis, 42, from York

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Elaine McIver, 43, from Cheshire

Michelle Kiss, 45, from Whalley, Lancs

Alison Howe, 44, and Lisa Lees, 43, both from Oldham

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Wendy Fawell, 50, from Otley and Jane Tweedle, 51, from Blackpool

Get in touch with our news team by emailing us at webnews@metro.co.uk.

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