It’s been almost five years exactly since Manchester was shaken to its very core by the tragic events that took place at Manchester Arena on May 22nd, 2017. But to this day and for the many, many years that will follow, Manchester still remembers. As residents and the wider community prepare to commemorate the date this weekend, we’ve put together a guide of ways that you can remember the 22 that lost their lives this weekend, with an array of heartfelt vigils and silences planned across the city.
1. Glade of Light memorial
The Glade of Light memorial was officially opened by The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge earlier this month, as flowers were laid in preparation for this weekend’s remembrance. There, Mancs will be able to pay their respects, in a space that has been specifically dedicated to the 22 that lost their lives. The marble halo bench boasts the names of the victims, and a living garden has been planted, too.
2. Candlelight vigils at Manchester Cathedral
Manchester Cathedral will host a number of sessions on the day, where visitors will be able to pay their respects through prayer and a moment of silence. Visitors will also be able to light candles in remembrance. Sessions will take place at 8.45am, 10.30am and 5.30pm. Bells will also ring at 10.31pm to mark the exact time of the bombing.
3. The Great Manchester Run
This year’s Great Manchester Run will take place on the day of the anniversary, and will include a one-minute applause at the start of each wave of the run in remembrance of those who died that day.
4. Tributes at Manchester Victoria Station
Tributes will take place at Manchester Victoria Station this Sunday, below the foyer where the attack took place five years ago. Flowers will be laid to pay respects, and there will also be a memory book that the public will be able to write in to commemorate the day with any thoughts, feelings or memories of the event.
Additionally, a moment of silence will take place at both noon and 10.31pm, which will be preceded by a reading of the names of the victims by the station announcer.
5. A moment of reflection with Lord Mayor of Manchester, Cllr Donna Ludford
Donna Ludford will pay respects on behalf of the city this Sunday by attending the 5.30pm prayers at the Cathedral. Following that, the Lord Mayor is set to pay her respects at the Glade of Light memorial, where she will lay flowers for the victims.
Councillor Bev Craig, Leader of Manchester City Council, said: “22 May 2017 is one of the darkest days in this city’s history. It’s hard to believe that five years has passed since those terrible events. We will never forget those whose lives were so cruelly taken, or those whose lives were changed forever that day. But nor should we forget the remarkable spirit shown in the aftermath of the attack as the city came together in solidarity, compassion and a refusal to give in to hatred and fear. Love proved stronger.
“The fifth anniversary of the attack will have a personal meaning for every one of us. Our thoughts remain with all those who were impacted by that evil act. But however they wish to do so I would encourage everyone in the city to take some time out during the day to remember and reflect.”