'We are united': tributes paid to Manchester terror attack victims at Northampton town centre vigil

A vigil was held on the steps of Northampton's All Saints Church yesterday evening.
A vigil was held on the steps of Northampton's All Saints Church yesterday evening.
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A candlelit vigil and a minute's silence was held in Northampton town centre yesterday in honour of the victims of the Manchester terror attack.

An explosion at a pop concert in Manchester on Monday (May 22) killed 22 people, including a number of children, and injured 59 others.

Over 100 people gathered to pay tribute to the victims of the Manchester terror attacks.

Over 100 people gathered to pay tribute to the victims of the Manchester terror attacks.

Last night, over 100 people gathered outside All Saints Church, in George Row, Northampton, at 7.30pm for prayers and tributes led by representatives from the town's religious faiths.

William Duncan, chair of the Northampton Inter Faith Forum, said: "Our thoughts and prayers go out to the victims and their families."

"We want to make clear that one man's act of appalling violence has no place in any of the faiths. We must not let a tiny minority create blame by association and damage good relations that have developed between different faiths.

"As in Manchester, the Northampton Inter Faith Forum shares the same good relations between the different faith communities. We are united. We also share a commitment with the police for a peaceful, just and safe society."

Prayers and tributes were read out on the steps of the church.

Prayers and tributes were read out on the steps of the church.

Candles were lit and a minute's silence was held as representatives from Northampton's Sikh, Jewish, Muslim and Christian communities led the tributes, along with chiefs from Northamptonshire Police and Northampton Borough councillors.

Leader of Northampton Borough Council Jonathan Nunn: "Few of us can imagine the unbearable pain of those caught in [Monday's] attack. We stand here today to show them that we care and that we offer them our full and wholehearted support.

"To those who feel motivated to carry out these atrocities, I say to them that you will not succeed if you think that threats of terror and that taking what is so precious to us will not bring credit or creditability to your purpose. You only cause us to unify, as you can see in Northampton today."

The 30-minute vigil was organised by deputy coroner for Northamptonshire Hassan Shah and Father Oliver Coss, rector of All Saints Church.

A little girl lights a candle at the vigil.

A little girl lights a candle at the vigil.

Following the attacks, the Government has raised the UK terror threat level to 'critical'.

Chief inspector of crime and local policing for Northamptonshire Police Lara Alexander-Lloyd said: "My thoughts and those of Northamptonshire police go out to everyone affected by the devasting and tragic incident in Manchester. At such a time, I would ask that all the communities in Northamptonshire stand together against such acts of hate and terror.

"I would like to reassure the communities of Northamptonshire that we will have an enhanced level of security and police presence to help you feel safe."

A 23-year-old man has been arrested in connection with the attack.

The vigil was led by representatives of Northampton's religious faiths and Northampton Borough Council.

The vigil was led by representatives of Northampton's religious faiths and Northampton Borough Council.

Flowers and memorials were left on the stairs.

Flowers and memorials were left on the stairs.