Pledge to put those affected by Manchester bombing at the heart of review

Mourners at the funeral of Saffie-Rose Roussos
Mourners at the funeral of Saffie-Rose Roussos

People affected by the Manchester bombing attack will be “at the heart” of the independent review of the atrocity, authorities have said.

Lord Bob Kerslake was appointed as chair of the review by the Mayor of Greater Manchester Andy Burnham in July and will lead a panel looking at how prepared the city was and how it responded to the incident.

The attack at the Manchester Arena following an Ariana Grande concert earlier this year killed 22 people including Leyland eight-year-old Saffie-Rose Roussos, whose funeral took place at Manchester Cathedral (right) , and Georgina Callander (18), from Tarleton.

In commissioning the review, the Mayor said: “I set out my intention to put those affected by the attack at the forefront of the review when I appointed Lord Kerslake to lead it and I wholeheartedly believe he has all the right experience and knowledge.

“There were thousands who were affected in some way by this terrible, terrible event. I see that a key part of the role is to make sure that their voices are heard as part of this review. They will have insights and ideas that won’t necessarily be available to the emergency services.”

Lord Kerslake said: “I am determined to put people at the heart of this independent review, it aims to establish exactly what happened on the night and the days that followed.

“There is a separate group focusing on how the city’s recovery was and continues to be managed, but we will look in detail at how prepared the city was for a terrorist attack and how it responded. It is important that anyone who has any information to help us to understand the full picture comes forward to help.”

The full list of panel members is: Lord Kerslake: chair with health sector and local and central government experience; Margareta Wahlstrom: expertise in international disaster risk reduction and the United Nations Making Cities Resilient Campaign; Ven Karen Lund: advocate for local communities with a particular interest in mental health; Alan Goodwin: expertise in humanitarian assistance in emergencies and policing; Hugh Deeming: academic with special interest in community resilience.

Lord Kerslake added: “I am determined to make sure everyone who wishes to contribute information, evidence or comment generally on their experience of that night or the days after is able to.

There will be a number of key lines of enquiry established to help us get to the facts of what happened before we’re able to properly understand how prepared we were and whether we could have done better. If the latter is true it’s important we’re able to make recommendations about lessons that need to be learned for the future.”