At last night's vigil, Manchester stood strong and defiant

At last night's vigil, Manchester stood strong and defiant

A city mourns — Last night thousands of people gathered in Manchester city centre to remember those killed and injured in Monday's attack. Mancunian photographer Olivier Richomme headed down.

Manchester’s Albert Square was packed by 5:30pm last night, as thousands gathered to remember the at least 22 killed, and 59 injured, in Monday night’s horrific suicide attack in the city.

While politicians and religious leaders took to a stage – Manchester’s new Mayor Andy Burnham and Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn among them – thousands gathered in the evening sun to stand in solidarity, in defiance, and in strength. As the events of the last two days have shown to the world, the spirit of the city lives on.


2A sombre atmosphere initially, emotions clearly ran high as television crews from around the world descended. Many of those caught up in the attack are still missing, tears flowed as strangers embraced each other.

“This is a place that has been through some hard times/ Depressions, recessions, represssions and dark times/But we keep fighting back with Greater Manchester spirit, northern grit, Greater Manchester lyrics,” spoke poet Tony Walsh down the microphone, intensely. “And it’s hard times again in these streets of our city/ But we won’t take defeat and we don’t want your pity because this is the place where we stand strong together with a smile on our face, Mancunians forever.”

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17The vigil continued into the night, with those gathered sharing food and drinks, ensuring those around them had all they needed. It was a sad night, one that should never have happened, the start of a grieving process that won’t be over for years to come. But last night, Manchester once again stood united.

We sent Manchester photographer Olivier Richomme to capture the evening.

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