Newspaper article Manchester Evening News

Arena Heroes Who Rushed in to Help

Newspaper article Manchester Evening News

Arena Heroes Who Rushed in to Help

Article excerpt

THE brave men and women who were first on the scene in the immediate aftermath of the Manchester Arena bombing will remember that day forever.

Now, the courageous British Transport Police officers and staff, as well as workers from Northern Rail and Carlisle Support Services, have been formally recognised for their response on the night of May 22.

Pc Jessica Bullough, PCSO Mark Renshaw, PCSO Jon Morrey and PCSO Lewis Brown were the first officers at the scene.

All four have been highly commended by BTP chief constable Paul Crowther for their efforts that night and were presented with their awards during a moving ceremony at Manchester Town Hall yesterday.

Jess had been working in the job less than a year when she and Mark, 24, ran towards the scene of devastation without hesitation.

"There's a guy I know who has been 30 years on the job and he said he had never experienced anything like it." said 21-year-old Jess. "Experience counts for nothing in that situation."

Jess and Mark were on duty together outside the Arena when they heard a 'piercing' explosion just after 10.30pm.

She said: "We were just chatting and we heard a massive explosion. We both went into it not realising what we were going into.

"As we were walking in we saw people on the floor and I remember the smell. The smell will stay with us forever. It was like gunpowder.

"People were screaming. We looked at each other and thought 'this is serious.'" ."

Jess administered CPR to a woman but had to deliver the devastating news to her loved ones that she had not survived.

Meanwhile, Mark ran to get first aid packs before returning to the scene.

At that point a little girl tugged at his clothing and asked: 'Can you help my mummy?' Though there was nothing he could do to save the mother, Mark stayed with the little girl until he could leave her in the safe hands of a police officer.

He then walked back up the stairs and tried to resuscitate two people, who both died, before helping a badly injured 12-year-old girl.

"It was horrific," he said. "It really shook me up but I did all I could to assist the victims on the night."

PCSOs Jon Morrey and Lewis Brown were also two of the first officers on the scene. …

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