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Conwy councillor speaks of family's traumatic experience of the Manchester terror attack

Published date: 24 May 2017 |
Published by: James Wilde 
Read more articles by James Wilde  Email reporter


 

A Conwy councillor has spoken of his family's traumatic experience of the Manchester terror attack.

Cllr Ronnie Hughes' daughter was waiting in the foyer of the Manchester Arena to pick up her two children, aged 7 and 17, from the Ariana Grande concert when the bomb went off just metres away from her.

Cllr Hughes said: "My daughter was 10 metres away from the bomb when it went off - it pushed her off her feet.

"She said as soon as the singer (Ariana Grande) said 'Goodnight Manchester' the bomb went off.

"My daughter was originally closer to the bomb but moved further away to rest against a bollard. Moving away and the bollard may have saved her life."

The sound of the bomb left Cllr Hughes' daughter unable to hear anything but luckily she was spotted by her two daughters.

"My granddaughters spotted my daughter and they ran to her. My older granddaughter put her jacket over the face of her sister to stop her seeing what was going on around her." Cllr Hughes added.

All three then quickly evacuated the building and drove home to Llandudno. 

The first Cllr Hughes heard of the incident was at about 10.40pm.

He said: "I was just about to go to bed when one of my other daughter's rang and spoke to my wife to say that she had spoken to my daughter, who was at the arena, and that she was covered in blood. 

"My wife told her go to a hotel but she insisted on driving home. I don't know how she did it."

After dropping off the seven-year-old grandchild at home, the older grandchild and her mother came to Cllr Hughes' house in Llandudno at about 1.30 am with blood all over her feet.

Cllr Hughes said:"My wife washed her feet. My daughter was just devastated in shock."

Speaking about the incident, Cllr Hughes was a mixture of relief and confusion.

"I'm trying to come back to reality, you never think this will happen. We as a family were lucky. It was a miracle my daughter survived. 

"I still can't understand how a human being can hurt children. How can a person go to this level? It's disgusting." he said.

With the youngest granddaughter back at school, Cllr Hughes will be meeting with his family later today.

He said: "I'll be doing my job as a dad and grandad and supporting them. It's all I can do."

For more news from across the region visit newsnorthwales.co.uk

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