Vigils held as Lancaster shows its compassion

The vigil in Dalton Square after the Manchester terror attack. Photo by Cat Smith.
The vigil in Dalton Square after the Manchester terror attack. Photo by Cat Smith.

Crowds gathered in Lancaster’s Dalton Square on Tuesday evening for a vigil to show support for Manchester in the wake of Monday night’s terror attack.

Numerous people turned out to light candles, pray and write messages of love and compassion for the city.

Dozens of lanterns were left alight on the steps of the Queen Victoria statue after the service.

It was a scene which was seen in towns and cities across the country as thousands came together to condemn the attack.

A second vigil was also held at Lancaster University Chaplaincy on Wednesday evening.

Cat Smith, Labour parliamentary candidate for Lancaster and Fleetwood, attended Tuesday’s vigil.

She said: “When hate strikes we will drown it out with love. So much love, hugs and solidarity with Manchester tonight.

“Thank you everyone for supporting one another, especially thinking of those who were at the arena.”

Suicide bomber Salman Abedi killed 22 and injured 64 (12 aged under 16) when he blew himself up at the end of an Ariana Grande concert at Manchester Arena on Monday night – 20 people were still in critical care as the Guardian went to press.

The UK terror threat level has now been been raised to its highest level of “critical”, meaning more attacks may be imminent.

It means military personnel are now being deployed to protect key sites.

General election campaigning was suspended in the immediate aftermath of the attack, and many entertainment venues also postponed events.

Four of the victims are known to be eight-year-old Saffie Rose Rousses, Olivia Campbell, 15, John Atkinson, 28, and Georgina Callander, 18. Two Polish people who went missing after the attack are also believed to be among those killed.