Entertainment Manchester Arena set for emotional reopening after Ariana Grande concert terror attack
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Manchester Arena set for emotional reopening after Ariana Grande concert terror attack

Noel Gallagher Manchester
Noel Gallagher of Oasis is set to perform at the reopening of Manchester Arena. t Photo: Getty
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The long-dormant Manchester Arena will reopen its doors for a special benefit concert on Sunday (local time) after the venue’s deadly terrorist attack in May.

Extra security measures are in place for the first event at the venue since the bomb attack at an Ariana Grande concert that killed 22 people – including seven children – and left more than 220 people injured.

Suicide bomber Salman Adedi detonated a device as people began leaving Grande’s show at Manchester Arena on May 22.

Noel Gallagher will headline the ‘We are Manchester’ show at the venue alongside bands and artist the Courteneers and Blossoms, Rick Astley and poet Tony Walsh.

On Thursday, survivors and families of the victims made a private visit to the arena ahead of the opening. Relatives of those killed will also be among the audience of the show.

The arena confirmed to the BBC doors will open at 5pm (local time) and people arriving will be required to go through additional security and screening.

No backpacks or bags larger than 35cm x 40xm x 19cm will be allowed inside the venue.

The arena’s general manager, James Allen, told the BBC the event would be “emotional for everybody”.

“Not only will we have staff here, we will have people who were here on the night and have bought a ticket to come back. We will have people who have bought a ticket because they want to be here,” Mr Allen said.

Mr Allen said he hoped to give people confidence to come back to the arena and stressed there would be a lot more security, especially outside the building.

“What we’re hoping to do is give people confidence to come back to the arena,” he said. “Not just for (tonight), but going forward and finding that they will have a safe environment to come into.”

While the ‘We are Manchester’ concert is the first event at Manchester Arena since the bombing, it is not the first event to recognise the attack.

Some 60,000 fans flocked to the Ariana Grande-organised One Love Manchester concert in June at the Old Trafford cricket ground.

Grande performed with big names including Katy Perry, Miley Cyrus, Take That, Robbie Williams and Coldplay at the charity event.

The singer became an honorary citizen of Manchester after organising the concert to raise funds for the victims of the attacks. Proceeds of the concert were donated to assist victims of the attack

The ‘We are Manchester’ concert will be broadcast live on three radio stations on Sunday.