I suffered PTSD after Manchester Arena bombing now I've written a song

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Today marks the seventh anniversary of the Manchester Arena bombing which claimed the lives of 22 people and left hundreds injured after suicide-bomber Salman Abedi detonated a device following an Ariana Grande concert.

One man who attended the event to pick up his daughter and is grateful to still be here is Paul Hargreaves, 50, from Fleetwood who has written a song about his experience.

Paul Hargreaves with his single 'The 22 Bees'.Paul Hargreaves with his single 'The 22 Bees'.
Paul Hargreaves with his single 'The 22 Bees'. | UGC

Paul arrived at the concert to collect his then 12-year-old daughter Ava when tragedy struck.

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The 22 Bees, which has been two years in the making, tells the story through Paul’s eyes and aims to raise money for the PTSD charity.

Paul with his daughter Ava who was at the concert. Paul with his daughter Ava who was at the concert.
Paul with his daughter Ava who was at the concert. | UGC

Join our new WhatsApp Community to get the latest news and top stories from across Lancashire directly to your phone. Sign up for our free newsletters now Recalling the fateful moment that shattered so many lives, he said: “I was there picking my daughter Ava up. I was outside and she was inside when the bomb went off.

“It was a very frightening 10 minutes as I couldn't get hold of her.

“Luckily enough she was okay but I know we both suffered from PTSD after and that's why I'm doing this song with monies going to the PTSD charity.

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“I suffered PTSD after the bombing as did my daughter and now I've written a song about my experience in the hope of raising much needed funds for the PTSD charity.

“The song, which took two years to do as I kept going back to, is written in my eyes. 

“It reflects that I felt happy that we were okay, but guilty that others were not and that upset me and stayed with me for years after.”

The song, which costs 99p and includes lyrics such as “I’m sorry I arrived too late to pick you up from the concert and “I should have been waiting in the foyer for you” is available to purchase on free download sites Apple Music and iTunes.

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Car valeter Paul added that PTSD still has a hold over him and his daughter to this day: “She used to watch City games with me but doesn’t anymore as she hates large, confined spaces.

“I had been late picking her up that evening and she had went to the toilet when the bomb went off - both of these things possibly saved our lives.

“My thoughts are and always will be with those who lost their lives that day.”

Among the 22 victims of the Manchester bomber were, clockwise from top left, Michelle Kiss, Georgina Callendar, Jane Tweddle and Saffie Roussos.Among the 22 victims of the Manchester bomber were, clockwise from top left, Michelle Kiss, Georgina Callendar, Jane Tweddle and Saffie Roussos.
Among the 22 victims of the Manchester bomber were, clockwise from top left, Michelle Kiss, Georgina Callendar, Jane Tweddle and Saffie Roussos. | Submit

Jane Tweddle, 51, Georgina Callander, 18, Michelle Kiss, 45, and Saffie Roussos, eight - all from Lancashire - were among those killed in the terror attack at the end of an Ariana Grande concert on May 22, 2017.

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Martin Hibbert who was at the concert with his daughter Eve was left paralysed from the waist down.Martin Hibbert who was at the concert with his daughter Eve was left paralysed from the waist down.
Martin Hibbert who was at the concert with his daughter Eve was left paralysed from the waist down. | UGC

Martin Hibbert from Chorley who was the closest person to the bomber to survive the attack put on social media platform X: “From a single act of violence, comes a simple act of love.

“We rise, we rise, we rise, we rise, we rise, we rise above.” Today we remember all of the 22 people who lost their lives.

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