Manchester Arena braced for the performance of Ariana Grande
6pm: Doors open at Manchester Arena in the north of the city centre. US pop singer Ariana Grande is on the bill for a sell-out concert. Fans, many of them teenage girls, excitedly share selfies as they wait for the show to begin. The 21,000-capacity venue, which is the biggest indoor arena in the UK and the second larges in Europe, was sold out.
7.30pm: The show gets underway with a support act BIA, an American rapper, taking the stage. Fans wait patiently for the main event – American superstar Ariana Grande.
9pm: Ariana Grande arrives on stage to the delight of the thousands of fans who have travelled the globe to watch her perform her hits which include Problem, Bang Bang and Break Free.
10.30pm: The star leaves the show and thousands of gleeful fans begin to file out of the arena’s four exits. With the huge venue only half-empty, the horrifying sound of the booming bomb reverberates around the arena. Witnesses describe being knocked from their feet by an explosion and seeing dozens of injured, possibly dead, people including children lying on the floor. Others describe panic as concert-goers run for exits.
10.33pm: Greater Manchester Police (GMP) are called to reports of an explosion at Manchester Arena. Dozens of emergency services vehicles stream into the area and the emergency is confirmed two minutes later.
10.46pm: The North West Ambulance Service are called to the scene. They send 60 ambulances to Manchester Arena where victims have been maimed with shrapnel including nails and metal nuts from a bomb.
This graphic shows where the explosion took place, in the foyer area, leading towards Victoria railway station
The bomber is believed to have entered a foyer area of the venue through doors opened to allow young music fans to leave
10.55pm: Police urge people to stay away from the area as responders deal with a ‘serious incident’. A huge police cordon is set up surrounding the building and roads are closed to the public as fans flee the massacre.
11.46pm: Police confirm there have been a number fatalities, but cannot confirm the figure.
1.10am: Nineteen people are confirmed dead and around 50 others injured following the suspected explosion police say is being treated as a terrorist incident.
1.35am: A controlled explosion is carried out on a suspicious item in the Cathedral Gardens area near Manchester Arena. It is later confirmed to be abandoned clothing.
2.15am: Prime Minister Theresa May says her thoughts are with the victims and families of those affected in ‘what is being treated by the police as an appalling terrorist attack’.
3.51am: Shortly before 4am Ariana Grande tweets that she is ‘broken’, adding: ‘From the bottom of my heart, I am so so sorry.’
7am: GMP Chief Constable Ian Hopkins gives a statement. He says the death toll has risen to 22, including children, with 59 injured. He confirms police are treating the attack as a terrorist incident and believe it was carried out by a suicide bomber detonating an improvised explosive device.
9.02am: US President Donald Trump expresses his ‘deepest condolences’ and calls those responsible ‘evil losers’.
9.30am: The first victim of the atrocity is named as Georgina Callander. Miss Callander, 18, had posted a picture of herself with Ariana Grande at the same venue two years ago, captioning it: ‘My meet and greet photos came through, she was so cute and lovely, I hugged her so tight and she said she loved my bow. I can’t get over this, I never will.’
10.30am: GMP says it has arrested a 23-year-old man in South Manchester in connection with the incident. Footage shows officers leading the handcuffed 23-year-old to a police van outside a Morrisons supermarket in Chorlton-Cum-Hardy, south Manchester at about 10.30am this morning. Witnesses said the man was ordered to ‘get on the ground’ and that he was seen smiling at one point as a team of officers, who had arrived in a black Mercedes, made the arrest.
Armed officers arrested a man in south Manchester today with police saying the action was linked to the attack
11am: After chairing a Cobra meeting, Mrs May says the attacker has been identified by security services, but does not release details. She says the ‘callous’ attack was ‘among the worst terrorism we have experienced in the United Kingdom’.
11.30am: The ambulance service confirm the number of people injured has reached at least 119. Of those hurt, 59 were taken to eight different hospitals in the Manchester area while around 60 were treated at the scene as walking wounded. The trust’s chief executive Derek Cartwright admitted nothing could prepare his staff for a moment like this.
12.12pm: The Queen releases a statement expressing her ‘deepest sympathy’ to all those affected by the explosion, adding that the whole nation had been shocked by the ‘death and injury’.
12.41pm: Islamic State claims responsibility for the atrocity. The extremists were quick to call the killer one of their soldiers, as has become the trend in the wake of many recent attacks in Europe. According to the SITE Intel Group, which monitors jihadist groups, the IS statement described the explosion as having taken place at a ‘shameless concert arena’.
1.37pm: Saffie Roussos, 8, is confirmed as the youngest named victim of the terror attack. She has been described as ‘simply beautiful’. Chris Upton, the headteacher of her school, Tarleton Community Primary, said: ‘The thought that anyone could go out to a concert and not come home is heartbreaking.’ Minutes later, the third victim was named – 26-year-old John Atkinson from Radcliffe who was leaving the concert. Friends and family have paid their respects online, describing him as an ‘amazing young man’.
2.02pm: GMP say they have executed warrants at addresses in Whalley Range, and one in Fallowfield where they carried out a controlled explosion.
4.30pm: Attacker named as Salman Abedi. Abedi, a 23-year-old British man of Libyan origin, detonated a deadly explosive that ripped through crowds leaving an Ariana Grande concert at 10.30pm. Police are trying to determine whether Abedi acted alone or was part of a wider terror cell.