More than a dozen Ribble Valley school pupils at Manchester bomb attack gig

Police outside the MEN arena this morning.
Police outside the MEN arena this morning.

A local headteacher has confirmed that more than a dozen of his pupils were at the MEN arena last night when the devastating bomb attack happened.

Mr Michael Wright, who is headteacher at St Augustine's RC High School at Billington, told the Clitheroe Advertiser that a total of 13 pupils from the school were at the arena for American singer Ariana Grande's concert when the explosion happened.

It is also believed that a pupil of St James' CE Primary School, Clitheroe, accompanied by a parent were at the concert, but are safe and well.

The suspected terror attack, which has killed around 22 people, many of them children, has sent shock waves through the local community.

Ribble Valley Borough Council is flying the Union Jack flag on Clitheroe Castle keep at half mast in honour of those killed and injured during yesterday's deadly bombing.

And Britain's Got Talent star Ella Shaw, who performed at the Manchester Arena in February, has said she is heartbroken.

The singer from Langho said: “I woke up in tears this morning.

“Last week I posted a video of my performance at the arena with the Young Voices Choir and thinking about it happening at that concert with so many young people. It is horrible.

“From Ariana Grande’s point of view – I can’t imagine how she is feeling. I heard on the radio she had done one extra song and if she had not a lot more people would have been leaving at that time.

“Manchester is my second home. You just don’t think something like that is going to happen.

“I have performed there twice before and would do again. We should not be scared away. I would still go to the Trafford Centre at Christmas. A lot of people would be reluctant but we have to put a brave face on it and keep going."