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Manchester Arena Inquiry: Music ‘was Olivia Campbell-Hardy’s life’


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Manchester Arena Inquiry: Music ‘was Olivia Campbell-Hardy’s life’

Publishedduration48 minutes agoimage copyrightFamily handoutimage captionOlivia Campbell-Hardy had “a smile which could cheer anyone up”, her father saidA teenager killed in the Manchester Arena bombing wanted to be a music teacher as “music was her life”, the inquiry into the attack has heard.Olivia Campbell-Hardy, 15, from Bury, Greater Manchester, loved singing and dancing, was “boisterous…

Manchester Arena Inquiry: Music ‘was Olivia Campbell-Hardy’s life’

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image copyrightFamily handout

image captionOlivia Campbell-Hardy had “a smile which could cheer anyone up”, her father said

A teenager killed in the Manchester Arena bombing wanted to be a music teacher as “music was her life”, the inquiry into the attack has heard.

Olivia Campbell-Hardy, 15, from Bury, Greater Manchester, loved singing and dancing, was “boisterous and loud” but also “gentle”, her grandfather said.

Steve Goodman said without Olivia the “void in their lives is immense” and life had “changed forever”.

Families are presenting “pen portraits” at the inquiry for the final day.

The portraits are designed to give an insight into the lives of those who died.

A slideshow of photographs documenting Olivia’s life was also shown on a screen while songs featuring Olivia herself singing were played at the hearing at Manchester Magistrates’ Court.

Twenty-two people were killed in the bombing at an Ariana Grande concert in May 2017.

Mr Goodman told the inquiry how Olivia had been excited about the possibility of going to see Ariana Grande’s show because a friend at school had a spare ticket and she was “with three others, in the running”.

He said he knew she would get the ticket as she was “a determined young lady”.

He said Olivia had not always been well-behaved but managed to “turn it around with her humour”.

image copyrightFamily handouts

image captionTwenty-two people were killed in the Manchester Arena bombing

The court heard how Olivia had enjoyed “hanging out with her grandparents”.

He said she had changed her plans so she could go on holiday with them but instead Mr Goodman had identified her body that week.

Olivia was known for singing at large family gatherings and loved musicals, he said.

‘Always gave 100%’

He said he was “proud to be her Papa” and “our lives have changed forever”.

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Mr Goodman also read a tribute from Olivia’s father Andrew Hardy who, the court heard, was watching from an annexe alone.

He said she “always gave 100%”, had a wonderful sense of humour, and was “full-on” from the moment she woke up until she went to sleep.

She had been dancing since the age of three and had sung at the Manchester Arena with Bury Young Voices singing group.

Olivia was a “loving child who liked to help people” and had “a smile which could cheer anyone up”, the court heard.

Inquiry chairman Sir John Saunders, said: “You’ve lost someone who had great potential – but more than that, she was obviously very precious to her family and friends, and if I may say so you were right to be proud of her.”

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