Responses have ranged from taxi drivers offering free rides to residents giving up beds
MANCHESTER citizens have responded to a suspected suicide bomb attack at Manchester Arena with an outpouring of offers to help.
Overnight, hundreds of people used the hashtag #RoomforManchester to offer a bed or sofa to those stranded after the attack, and Manchester taxi drivers offered free lifts to those in need, as hundreds of emergency service personnel attended the scene of the explosion which has killed 22 and injured a further 59.
A lone male is thought to have detonated an improvised explosive device (IED) at the entrance of the venue at 10:30pm, as young fans of singer Ariana Grande were leaving after a gig.
“I want to thank the people of Manchester. Even in the minutes after the attack, they opened their doors to strangers, and drove them away from danger.” Andy Burnham
In a statement after the attack, Mayor of Greater Manchester Andy Burnham said: “I want to thank the hundreds of police, fire and ambulance staff who worked through the night in the most difficult circumstances imaginable.
“We have messages of support from cities around the country and across the world and we thank them for that.
“But lastly I want to thank the people of Manchester. Even in the minutes after the attack, they opened their doors to strangers, and drove them away from danger. They gave the best possible immediate response to those who seek to divide us. And it will be that spirit of Manchester that will prevail and hold us together.”
Using the hashtag #RoomforManchester, ordinary people and businesses from bars to hotels offered help to those affected.
Manchester taxi drivers, of all faiths and none, turned off their fare meters and began ferrying people away from the venue.
There were even reports of taxi drivers from surrounding towns pitching in to help.
A vigil will be held in Manchester city centre today from 6pm. Solidarity vigils will be held across the UK and the world, including one from 5:30pm in Glasgow’s George Square.
Picture courtesy of Mikey
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