A Mancunian is being widely praised for his reaction to the terror attack that hit his city this week after telling reporters, “they want us to turn on our neighbours and it’ll never happen”.
The man, identified only as Ian, was being interviewed by BBC Newsnight on Tuesday outside a blood donor centre in Manchester when he made the remarks.
He said he was “devastated” by the news that 22 people had been killed by a bomb blast as fans left Manchester Arena following an Ariana Grande concert on Monday night.
But added that the perpetrators attempts to cause division, would never happen.
The Scotsman, who has lived in Manchester for 17 years, said: “This city is a community.
“I don’t care who you believe in, where you’re from, this city is for everybody and we need to rally round today to show support because they want to divide us, don’t they?
“They want us to turn on our neighbours and it’ll never happen, not here.”
Ian, who used to work at the arena as a bartender, said that he has seen a lot of people turning up at the blood bank, which was “full to the rafters”.
“What can we do? Anything that we can do to show support to one another. That’s all we’ve got to do today.”
He said that he was going to remain in town and smile at people.
“That’s all I can do is just walk about and smile at people, we’ve got to look after each other.”
The video featuring Ian has been retweeted more than 23,000 times and was widely praised on social media.
Amid the tragic events that unfolded on Monday night, there were moments of heroism.
From free taxi rides to offers of cups of tea, Mancunians came out in force to help those injured, lost or stranded in any way possible, with some concerned residents even opening the doors to their homes to strangers.
New details of the bombing suspect and his victims emerged on Wednesday.
Salman Ramadan Abedi was known “up to a point” to the intelligence services, Amber Rudd confirmed, and an imam at his local mosque described him as the “face of hate”.
Rudd told Sky News that the intelligence services had been aware of British-born Abedi, who is reported to have recently returned to the UK from Libya.
Victims of the bombing so far include an auntie who died shielding her niece from the blast, two parents who were picking up their children and a 15-year-old girl.