Great Britain

Manchester Arena inquiry LIVE updates as evidence on three victims of the terrorist bombing due to be heard

Today's proceedings open with evidence relating to Kelly Brewster

Kelly Brewster (Image: Arena Inquiry)

Good morning.

The inquiry is hearing evidence relating to Kelly Brewster.

Kelly was 32 and from Sheffield.

Her mother and father, sister Claire Booth, brother Adam and niece, Hollie Booth, are in court.

She died as she tried to protect her sister Claire and Hollie, her family have said previously.

A statement is now being read out from the family.

She was a funny, intelligent and very opinionated woman, who 'knew what she wanted and had a thirst for life'.

"She was fiercely independent and private, but always remained a home bird."

Kelly was qualified in accountancy, the inquiry is told, and worked in insurance.

She's described as a 'pocket-rocket' because of her size.

"Her family meant the world to her.

"She adored her nieces and they spent lots of time together.

"Kelly was passionate about travel. Her adventurous spirit also saw her travelling around Australia and America."

Kelly met her partner, Ian, at her 30th birthday and they were 'soul mates', the inquiry is told.

They had had an offer accepted on a new home on the morning of the bombing atrocity.

"It was where they were to build their future and start their new family. Kelly was so excited about her future. Her family remember it was the happiest she had ever been."

Kelly was excited about her new house

Sophie Cartwright QC, counsel to the inquiry, says Kelly went to the concert with her sister Claire and Claire's daughter Hollie, who was 12.

They drove together and listened to Ariana Grande's latest album.

Kelly was 'excited about the house' and shared photographs of it.

The three had a meal and went to the Arena at around 5pm.

The inquiry is told they bought drinks, watched the support acts and chatted.

"The concert was really good. They were singing along and taking photographs and videos."

The inquiry is told Claire started to feel unwell with a headache and as she was the driver, she asked Kelly and Hollie to get ready to leave immediately after the last song.

The inquiry is told they entered the City Room at 10.30pm.

Hollie was walking in the middle of the two.

Claire, in her witness statement, recalled a 'huge yellow flash'.

Kelly and Hollie were both on the floor, the inquiry is told.

"Claire picked Hollie up and shouted at Kelly to run. Claire stopped when she realised that Hollie was bleeding and Kelly was not behind them.

"Claire was able to find Kelly and went to her. She noticed that her eyes were closed but she did not look injured or hurt. She looked like she was asleep."

The inquiry is told Claire began kicking at her legs and shouting at her to get up, but she didn't respond.

She went back to Hollie and called Hollie's dad.

"Claire recalls of being in the impossible position of needing to care for both her child and her sister in the City Room.

"Claire was herself seriously injured."

The inquiry is told Claire went to Kelly for a second time, but she had not moved.

She screamed her name then realised that she herself was injured, Ms Cartwright says.

A member of the public came to Claire and Hollie's assistance and someone else went to check on Kelly.

That person checked her pulse and moved her from her side onto her back, the inquiry is told.

A police officer also checked on Kelly.

The inquiry is told Arena medics went to Kelly to check on her.

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