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Daily gives over front page in tribute to arena bomb’s youngest victim

A regional daily gave over its front page in tribute to the youngest victim of the Manchester Arena terror attack.

The Lancashire Post stripped yesterday’s front cover of all advertising and plugs after it covered the funeral of eight-year-old Saffie Rose Roussos.

The Post was invited by Saffie’s family to cover the funeral, which was held at Manchester Cathedral on Wednesday.

Five pages in the paper were dedicated to Saffie, who came from Leyland, in Lancashire.

LEP Saffie

The Post’s reporting team included Megan Titley, Rhoda Morrison and Neil Cross in and around the cathedral, supported by its digital team Colin Ainscough, Iain Lynn and Daria Neklesa, and Emma Pearson and Jenny Simpson on the newsdesk.

Meanwhile reporter Natalie Walker reported from a parallel celebration of Saffie’s life in the village of Tarleton, where she went to school.

Last month the Post covered the funeral of 18-year-old Georgina Callander from Leyland, who also died in the atrocity – running a yellow front page tribute to her.

Deputy editor Nicola Adam praised the newspaper’s journalists for producing “touching, thoughtful and comprehensive coverage” in digital and print.

She said: “The Manchester bombings and the loss of life, including little Saffie, has had a profound impact on the people of Lancashire. We wanted our coverage to reflect that depth of feeling as well as the the character of a young girl who, had she lived, would have loved to see her name and picture on the front of a newspaper.

“Her family’s wish for their daughter was that she go out with dramatic flair that she lived her life – they wanted her image and legacy front and centre as they said goodbye.

“They were incredibly open about the funeral and we were personally invited despite the incredibly difficult personal circumstances.”

Nicola added: “We wanted the front page to reflect the emotion of the day and we stripped off all advertising and plugs to make way for a lovely piece of design by Guy Raynor.

“We hope we served Saffie well and that the newspaper and website reflected the emotions and high regard with which this little girl was held.”