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Manchester Arena Inquiry statement: Time has come to hold organisations to account over shocking failings

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Dr Neil Hudgell

Executive Chairman

3 min read time
03 Nov 2022

Hudgell Solicitors represents the families of Sorrell Leczkowski, 14, and Philip Tron, 32, who were killed, and also more than 150 injured survivors of the 2017 Manchester Arena Bombing.

Following today’s publication of the second volume of findings at the Manchester Arena Inquiry, by Chairman Sir John Saunders, Solicitor Neil Hudgell, of Hudgell Solicitors, said:

“This is the second set of findings from this Inquiry which has identified and highlighted shocking failings.

“The chairman previously identified major shortcomings by the organisations responsible for the arena security, and now shortcomings in the emergency response have been clearly outlined.

“When the bomb was detonated, a well-organised, reactive, properly co-ordinated, decisive and brave response was needed at speed. Those injured sadly got an emergency response which was completely under-planned and ill-prepared, which was chaotically led, hesitant, and fearful.

“It left seriously injured people feeling abandoned and alone during the most terrifying moments of their lives, denying some the chance of coming away from the attack with their lives intact. The response was simply shameful.

“There was no clear communication across emergency services to enable decisive decision-making to be made. This ultimately resulted in the rescue of people from inside the area not being made the number one priority. How can that be the basis of any major incident response, where it is known there have been multiple life-threatening injuries and deaths?

“People who could potentially have been saved lost their lives whilst emergency crews were held outside for their own safety. It was therefore left to ordinary members of the public, many badly injured themselves, to help others.

“In representing families who lost loved ones and more than 150 injured survivors of this horrific event, we know how many have been left forever physically injured and mentally scarred.

“Our clients have already had to wait close to five-and-a-half years to reach the point we are at now, and have understandably found the process hugely frustrating. They have not yet been able to seek any form of legal redress for the failings on that night which proved so devastatingly costly.

“However, when this inquiry concludes, Hudgell Solicitors, together with a number of other firms, will be holding organisations to account and pursuing damages to reflect the lives lost, the life-changing physical and psychological injuries caused, to recover loss of earnings suffered by so many families and importantly to cover the costs of much needed ongoing treatment, and future rehabilitation and care.

“Obviously there were a catalogue of failings on the evening of the attack and we are considering all potential courses of action and not ruling any parties out in relation to civil claims at this time.”

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Manchester Arena Inquiry statement: Time has come to hold organisations to account over shocking failings

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