SMG response to the Volume 1 Public Inquiry Report
17th June 2021
Statement from SMG, operators of the Manchester Arena:
“On 22 May 2017, 22 innocent people tragically lost their lives and many others were injured when a terrorist detonated a bomb. The attack shocked the nation and the devastating impact was felt far beyond the City of Manchester.
The impact was also felt across the industry and the environment in which we all operated changed dramatically that evening.
Since the Inquiry began, questions have been asked of SMG and others about the security operations in place that evening. Throughout, we’ve been committed to working with the Inquiry to help the families of victims and survivors better understand the events of that evening, as well as look at the lessons learnt.
During the Inquiry process, the experts stated that they did not see evidence that the security operation in place at Manchester Arena was out of step with the operations being used at other comparable venues. In fact, the standards that we adopted were in line with published industry guidance at the time. However, this doesn’t give us any comfort. Our guests came to the arena to enjoy a show but were met with a horrific tragedy. For that we are truly sorry.
All of us at Manchester Arena have learnt a lot since the events of that night and our security measures continue to evolve to reflect the threats we face today. Since the attack, we have further extended the security perimeter, adopted a more intensive approach to checking and searching including the use of walk through metal detectors and installed a new CCTV and access control system.
However, out of respect for those who tragically lost their lives on the 22nd May 2017, and those whose lives changed forever, we can never be satisfied that we have done enough.
To that end, we will be reviewing the report findings in detail and the recommendations that have been put forward. Any additional actions we should take, we will take as we continuously challenge ourselves to be better.
Finally, we share the Chair’s admiration for those who responded so selflessly and heroically to this atrocity.”