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Tributes for stabbed hairdresser

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The family of a hairdresser fatally stabbed in a beauty salon last night have paid tribute to their "beautiful, happy and loving girl".

Hollie Gazzard, 20, died following the "vicious" attack at Fringe Benefits and La Bella Beauty, where she worked, in Southgate Street, Gloucester.

Emergency services rushed to the scene, in the city centre, at around 5.50pm, after reports were made that Miss Gazzard was being attacked by a man.

Today, it emerged that during the attack, and as paramedics and police officers desperately tried to save Miss Gazzard's life, bystanders were filming on their mobile phones.

Gloucestershire Police have appealed for anyone with footage of the "horrendous" incident to hand it in to officers and not share it on social networking sites.

Chief Inspector Neil Smith, of Gloucestershire Police, said officers were monitoring social media websites for the footage, which does not yet appear to have been posted online.

"I am told there were member of the public who were videoing on their phones during the incident, especially when the officers were trying to save this lady's life, " Mr Smith said.

"I would like to put in the press very strongly that individuals who took part in any filming do not put this on social media and do not put it on the internet.

"I am sure anyone related to the lady who has died would not like to see this footage uploaded onto social media websites.

"It would not be a respectful thing to do, especially when the family are in mourning. This was a very, very nasty incident."

Officers arrested a 22-year-old man, who remains in custody at Cheltenham police station, at 2.30 this morning on suspicion of murder.

Mr Smith said Miss Gazzard and the suspect were known to each other and had previously been in a relationship.

"I would like to reassure members of this community, both residents and local businesses, that this is an isolated incident," he said.

"These offences don't happen in Gloucester regularly. This incident was very tragic, however; both victim and suspect knew each other.

"They were in a previous relationship. That doesn't lessen this horrific incident but it would be good for us to reassure the local community."

Fringe Benefits and La Bella Beauty, on the city's main shopping street, has been cordoned off by police.

Forensics officers have been inside the beauty salon. Mr Smith would not comment on whether a weapon had been seized from the scene.

"These are still very early days," he said. "That is a part of the ongoing investigation."

Miss Gazzard was taken to Gloucestershire Royal Hospital following the incident, but later died.

The coroner and her family have been informed.

In a tribute issued through Gloucestershire Police, Miss Gazzard's family said "the brightest star" in their lives had gone out.

"Hollie is our daughter and was a beautiful, happy and loving girl," the statement said.

"She was full of life and we are very proud of her. She was at the beginning of her life and to have it taken away in this manner is very hard to bear.

"Everybody she came in contact with loved her, enjoyed her company, her happy nature and her sense of fun. The world has lost a treasure, she was so loved by all her family and friends and the brightest star in their lives has now gone out.

"The only comfort we have at this time is that Hollie is now free and at peace and that no harm can ever come to her as she lives with the angels in heaven.

"We are grateful for all the support of our family and friends and would like to express our thanks to the medical staff who tried so hard to save Hollie and to the police for their sympathetic and understanding care.

"We would ask the media to respect our privacy and allow us time to come to terms with our loss."

On Fringe Benefits' website, Miss Gazzard is described as a hair designer for the salon. An accompanying description, apparently written by Miss Gazzard, states that she began working in the industry aged 16, after being offered an apprenticeship in a Gloucester salon.

The description said: "I have recently worked on a cruise ship which was an enlightening experience but was not for me. I am now back in my home city and very excited to join Fringe Benefits and be part of their lovely team.

"I enjoy spending my free time with friends and family and going on shopping trips. I also like to keep fit and own a Pomeranian which keeps me on my toes."

Floral tributes have been left at the scene of the attack.

One read: "A true friend that was always there. So much fun & laughter that will never be forgotten."

Social media users have also been expressing their sadness at Miss Gazzard's death.

Writing on Twitter, Stephanie Anne wrote: " RIP Hollie Gazzard such a beautiful girl!! Gonna be truly missed babe xxxxxxx."

Shaun James ‏tweeted: " May your soul rest in paradise Hollie Gazzard. Such a beautiful girl. R.I.P x."

Mike Conley wrote: " Life is precious, live every single day to the full. If you love someone tell them. Hollie Gazzard you are beautiful inside and out. RIP."

Stephanie Carter ‏said: " RIP to a beautiful girl. You were truly an amazing person! This world is too cruel."