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Liverpool Cathedral reviewing its security after terror explosion

by Donna Birrell

Liverpool Cathedral is reviewing its security after police declared the explosion on Remembrance Sunday a terrorist incident. 

Police have confirmed a taxi passenger appears to have made an explosive device and taken it with him in a cab to Liverpool Women’s Hospital yesterday.

Driver David Perry is believed to have spotted it - and locked the passenger inside.

Dean of Liverpool, Ven Sue Jones was taking part in a memorial service at the cathedral, which is two streets away from the scene, at the time of the explosion.

Speaking to Premier, she said: “It is with sadness that we discovered what happened - we were unaware of it during the service. 

“I first heard about it as I was coming home and it wasn't until later on in the day that we learned that somebody had died. There is a lot of speculation but we need to let the police and the counter-terrorism police do the work that they do to allow them to get to the truth of what actually happened.

“The atmosphere within the cathedral is quite quiet and subdued. I think we are conscious in the cathedral to make sure that people feel safe and are safe. We’ve got our own constables and the health and safety team have assessed the situation. The cathedral is a safe place but it doesn't stop there. I took the dog for a walk this morning, just as dawn was breaking and I did a double take when I saw somebody walking with a backpack, all dressed in black. It’s in your psyche. I wouldn't have thought twice about it yesterday, but today, it is in my head that this has happened and we need to be careful.“

The dean says she is speaking with the cathedral’s security manager to see if they need to introduce extra measures to keep people safe in and around the building. 

She says that if reports of David Perry’s action are confirmed, his actions were courageous.

“I think he's absolutely remarkable. I don't know whether I'd have had the inclination to do what he did on the spur of the moment in a quick and fast moving scenario. If speculation is true, he certainly averted what could have been a very serious incident. But again, we are speculating and our prayers are with him and they are with the police and the counter-terrorism unit as they continue to do the work they need to do.”

Liverpool’s community spirit is renowned and the dean says that while people are shocked, this incident won’t dent the city’s spirit.

“It is with sadness that we hear this because I think Liverpool has come a long way and is a good place to be and will continue to be a good place to be because people will rally to support each other and to look out for each other and pray for each other. 

“But this isn't part of what Liverpool does anymore. It's a long time ago since there was an explosion like this, whether it be through the IRA or through the Brixton riots. So it is very unusual and I think some people are watching each other more carefully now as a result of it.”

Phil Jump, the Minister for the North Western Baptist Association told Premier he agrees.

“Liverpool prides itself on being a city of welcome and refuge. No-one ever need feel an outsider here. So this has come as a real shock to the community.”

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