‘Love, hope and peace. Never forgotten’

Vendors react to the Manchester Arena attack

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I’m a bit sad at the moment, like everybody is. But we’ve just got to try and keep going at the moment. I’m planning to go down with some flowers and put them with the others. I’ve also got a card and I’ve written the message “Love, hope and peace. Always remembered, never forgot. Always in our hearts. God bless to all.” I was born in Birmingham but I was brought to Manchester when I was six years old and I’m 49 now, so I’ve been here a long time. What do I love about the city? The people. There are good people out there. What can we do? We’ve just got to be vigilant and look out for each other.
Cornerhouse and Home, Manchester

I don’t know what to say. But these people aren’t going to scare us away. We’re Mancunians.
Tommy, King Street, Manchester

I am very sad. Very sad. So sorry. It’s a big tragedy. I sell the magazine at Victoria train station and I was there on Monday evening until about 7pm. I saw people arriving for the concert. The Islamic State is responsible for this. This boy was brainwashed by them. Now he will go down into the inferno. And the people he killed will go to God because they are martyrs. All the armies should come together and finish IS. They are no good. No good for the world.
Stefan, Manchester Victoria

I was gutted but basically that’s the way life goes. Sometimes you’ve got to take the good and the bad. I feel sorry for the people, for the people who’ve been injured and the ones who have been killed. It’s not fair.
Alan, Sheffield

My thoughts are with the families and victims – particularly the two girls from York who lost their parents. I’ve been really affected by what’s happened. It feels like I’m back in Northern Ireland – everyone scared. I can feel it. The only good to come out of this senseless act is the show of humanity – people pulling together to help however they can.
Liam Hughes, Marks and Spencer, York

My heart goes out to those affected by the Manchester bombing – what happened really is beyond me. So sad.
Howard Newton, Leeds Train Station

Heartfelt condolences to all affected. To the homeless man Stephen – get him the help he rightly deserves.”
Tim Fisher, WH Smith, Ilkley

It’s like closing the gate when the horse has already bolted. It goes in cycles. A terror attack happens, we have more police on the street for a while, then the fear subsides and they go. You’ve got cuts to the police; you’ve got cuts to the army. Then another terror attack happens and it’s too little too late.
Anonymous Sheffield vendor

Sending all my love and thoughts to all those who have suffered in the Manchester attack.
Mark Simon, Waterstones, Leeds

The 22 victims of the Manchester Arena attack, left to right: Georgina Callander (with Ariana Grande), 18, Lancashire; Saffie Rose Roussos, 8, Tarleton, Lancashire; John Atkinson, 28, Bury; Megan Hurley, 15, Liverpool; Olivia Campbell, 15, Bury; Alison Howe, 45, Royton; Lisa Lees, 43 , Royton, Oldham; Angelika and Marcin Klis, York; Martyn Hett, 29, Stockport; Kelly Brewster, 32, Sheffield; Jane Tweddle-Taylor, Blackpool; Nell Jones, 14, Goostrey, Cheshire; Michelle Kiss, 45, Whalley, Lancashire; Philip Tron, 32, Gateshead; Sorrell Leczkowski, 14, Leeds; Liam Curry, 19, and Chloe Rutherford, 17, South Shields; Wendy Fawell, 50, Otley; Eilidh MacLeod, 14, Barra, Scotland; Courtney Boyle, 19, Gateshead; Elaine McIver, 43, Ellesmere Port

I was horrified by what happened. I am sorry the authorities knew this person was linked to Islamic State and did not detain them, so as to prevent what happened. Anyone involved in terrorist organisations should be imprisoned or deported. Encourage people to inform on individuals they feel concerned about. Intelligence gathering is the key.
Michael, Liverpool One

Smurf: “violence isn’t the answer – talking is the answer. For me personally, it’s just accepting everybody for who they are”

I was absolutely horrified that somebody could use religion to do such an absolutely devastatingly awful thing to kids. They were just kids going to see a concert and somebody has used religion as a way of saying follow us and we’re going to do this, which is absolutely disgusting and wrong. I’d like to say that my heart goes out to everybody who was affected in any way and that any support that Big Issue North vendors can offer we will gladly do, because at the end of the day we’re there as part of the community. Even though a lot of people look down on us we still keep our eye out for everybody and for anything. I don’t know what we can do to prevent such things. Violence isn’t the answer – talking is the answer. For me personally, it’s just accepting everybody for who they are. For whatever race, religion, colour, creed – it doesn’t really matter. We’re all one species living on one planet. We’re all just people.
Smurf, Perfect Home, Sheffield

Main photo: memorial to the victims, St Ann’s Square

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