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Vigil for victims of terror attack in Forbury Gardens Reading

Event being held to bring #ReadingTogether

John Herring

John Herring


01635 886633

Reading hosting virtual vigil for Forbury Gardens terror attack victims

A VIRTUAL VIGIL will be held in honour of the victims of the Forbury Gardens attacks tonight to remember the three people who died one week on.

An online vigil will be held at 7pm, the time of the attacks last Saturday, which aims to bring people together by asking them to light a candle on their doorstep or put a light or candle in their window and to stand in solidarity with #ReadingTogether.

Counter Terrorism Policing South East (CTPSE) confirmed yesterday the post-mortem examination results of the three men who were killed. 

David Wails, aged 49, Joseph Ritchie-Bennett, 39, and James Furlong, 36, each died of a single stab wound.

Three other victims sustained stab injuries. They were taken to hospital for treatment and have since been discharged.

The attacks have been declared a terrorism incident and a 25-year-old man from Reading remains in police custody.

Reading Borough Council said tonight's vigil would allow people to show solidarity and pay their respects in lockdown until a fitting event could be held in Reading.

The online vigil can be joined via a live stream on Reading Borough Council’s Facebook page

The Mayor of Reading will say a few words on behalf of community leaders and groups across the town, followed by the lighting of a remembrance candle.

The council said: "Reading will never forget James Furlong, Joe Ritchie-Bennett and David Wails. Everybody’s thoughts and prayers remain with the family and close friends of all three. We also stand together with all those who have been harmed by the attacks – whether physically or mentally.

"Saturday’s vigil is one of a number of ways the council is working to support all those harmed by the attacks and to remember the victims, working alongside community organisations, partners and Thames Valley Police, in collaboration with family liaison officers and the families of the victims."

These include creating a permanent memorial where people can pay their respects to those who lost their lives.

Reading Borough Council leader Jason Brock said: "There is an overwhelming sense of grief within the Reading community about last Saturday’s tragic events. The council and public are united in their desire to mourn the victims and appropriately remember them. We are encouraging people to pay their respects with us online on Saturday evening, and also to mourn and contribute via the book of condolence and supporting the #ReadingTogether fund”.

Chief Constable of Thames Valley Police, John Campbell added: “A week on from the tragic incident in Reading, Thames Valley Police is proud to be coming together in solidarity with the community to remember the three innocent men, David, James and Joseph, who lost their lives.

“In times of such tragedy, we often see the best of our communities and that has certainly been the case in Reading.

“I know it will take time for everyone to heal but we stand alongside you and will do all that we can to support you, as your Police.”

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