5th December 2020

Statement from leader Sir Richard Leese re: Manchester Arena attacks

Statement from leader Sir Richard Leese re: Manchester Arena attacks


Note: Floral tributes in connection with the Manchester Arena attack are being respectfully and sensitively relocated from Albert Square to St Ann’s Square. The following statement has been issued.


I just want to say a few words about the last couple of days.

There has been a tremendous outpouring of grief, solidarity and support for everyone affected by this week’s tragic events and for this great city of Manchester.

We have been touched by messages of goodwill from people of all ages, races, religions and from all around the world.

There have been countless examples of the generosity of Manchester’s spirit – from those giving to charitable funds such as the We Love Manchester charity to people queueing up to donate blood.

Not least we have seen last night’s moving vigil here in this very Square and seen people continuing to come here to lay floral tributes to those who have lost their lives in this atrocity.

Albert Square is going to be the venue for the pole vault and long jump events in this weekend’s Great City Games and we need to begin the build so this can happen.

This means we will now be need to respectfully and sensitively relocate to those floral tributes to St Ann’s Square. We recognise that there are people who will still wish to leave floral tributes and would invite them to take these to St Ann’s Square.

There is no more defiant message that we can send to terrorists than carrying on with our everyday lives and the Great City Games will be a powerful symbol of that resilience.

We will not let those who want to sow fear and division win. This is Manchester and we do things differently here. 

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