Leader of Leeds City Council Councillor Judith Blake said:
“This is awful and tragic news that a 14-year-old girl from Leeds, Sorrell Leczkowski, was killed in the horrific attack in Manchester on Monday night. For a young life to be taken away like this at what should have been an evening of entertainment and fun is truly heartbreaking. Our thoughts are with Sorrell’s family and friends as it is with all those affected by the attack, and we are working with Allerton High School as we are with those across the city offering guidance to our young people who are trying to come to terms with what has happened.
“As has been widely reported in the news since last night, the UK terror threat level has been raised to critical following the attack. Leeds City Council is working as part of a multi-agency approach with the government, the emergency services and partners to implement the plans around this, with the most visible sign being an increased security presence and processes being in place in public spaces, buildings and at all major public events and activities in the coming days in towns and cities all over the country. While we would encourage people to go about their daily lives as normal, we would ask please for patience and understanding in following any such increased security measures. Public safety is of paramount importance and we would like to reassure people everything possible is being done to keep them safe, but we would also ask for vigilance and for anything suspicious to be reported to the authorities.
“In Leeds we are working with community leaders across the city focusing on reassurance, resilience and solidarity, strengthening our bonds and rejecting the messages or actions of those who wish to divide us through harm or fear. The universal condemnation of this heinous act and the outpouring of support from Leeds and around the world to the people of Manchester has made clear once again that understanding and compassion will always overcome hate, and that will continue to be the message from Leeds as a welcoming multi-cultural city which celebrates the strength of its diversity.”
Notes to editors:
The Anti-Terrorist Hotline can be called on 0800 789 321 or to contact the police dial 999.
All council buildings in Leeds will observe the national minute’s silence to be held at 11am on Thursday (25 May), with a focal point in the city centre being on Victoria Gardens.
The Union Flag will continue to fly at half-mast at Leeds Civic Hall and Leeds Town Hall as a mark of respect to those affected by the attack in Manchester.
To contact Greater Manchester Police for anyone concerned about loved ones the emergency contact number is 0161 856 9400.
A book of condolence can be signed at the Portland Crescent entrance of the Civic Hall.
For media enquiries contact:
Leeds City Council communications team on 0113 3786007