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Royals visit site of Manchester bomb atrocity

By Pat Hurst

The Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall have visited some of the arena staff who were on duty during the night of the Manchester bombing and praised their response to the attack.

Both royals stood in the foyer area of the building, the glass panels above blown out, to view the spot where the carnage unfolded on May 22.

They stood in silence as they were shown the spot on the tiled floor, now deeply pockmarked, where Salman Abedi detonated a suicide bomb, killing 22 people at the end of the Ariana Grande concert.

They spent around 10 minutes in the foyer as Bob Gallagher, forensic manager for the North West Counter Terrorism Unit, talked them through what had happened.

Just yards away, gaping, ragged holes made by flying shrapnel of nuts and bolts still marked the walls and exit doors while huge reinforced glass panels, shattered by the blast, have been replaced by wooden hoardings.

Meanwhile, a Canadian soldier has spoken of her pride at becoming the first female officer to command troops guarding the Queen at Buckingham Palace.

Captain Megan Couto (24) of the Second Battalion, Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry, has been given the prestigious role of captain of the Queen's Guard and said she would just focus on doing her job to the best of her ability.

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