Leader of Bolton Council, Cllr Cliff Morris, said: "I am horrified by what has happened and my thoughts are with everyone who has been affected, especially those who have lost loved ones or who have been injured in this disgusting, cowardly attack.
"Today Bolton is grieving with Manchester and for everyone who has lost their lives.
“We all stand together with the people of Greater Manchester. Those who perpetrate these atrocities want to divide us and we will never let that happen.
"I must also pay tribute to the fantastic work of the emergency services for their response last night."
A Statement from Bolton Faith Leaders’ Forum on the Manchester Attack:
Today we stand together in prayer and solidarity with the people of Manchester following the shocking attack at the Arena last night. Our thoughts and prayers are with everyone who was present and especially with those who have been injured, endangered or whose whereabouts are still being established. Above all we hold in our prayers all those families who have lost loved ones in this terrible act of violence.
As representatives of all faith communities in Bolton, we condemn wholeheartedly and without reservation the actions of the attacker and whatever ideology drove him to such extremes. We salute the courage and resilience of the first responders, all the emergency services personnel and the people who threw open their doors to welcome strangers into their homes and provide a place of refuge.
Along with leaders across Greater Manchester and our country, we acknowledge that today is a day of sadness and grief, but we also pledge our continuing determination to stand together in the face of evil and to show that our values are stronger. Those who carry out such acts want to spread division and hatred; theirs is a message of suffering and death. We stand for a world united in love, peace, freedom, justice and compassion and today that message is needed more than ever.
We call upon all people of faith to remember in their prayers the families and communities affected by this incident and to continue to show by our everyday lives the values of love, peace and respect for all as a sign of our enduring commitment to a more cohesive town and a more human world.
Canon Matt Thompson
Chair of Bolton Faith Leaders’ Forum