Intimate memorial service for Saffie Roussos in Tarleton

Dozens of blue and green balloons filled the sky in Tarleton to honour eight-year-old Saffie Roussos.

A smaller, more intimate service of more than 50 people was held at Tarleton Trinity Church, allowing those who could not attend the Manchester celebration the chance to say farewell.

Father David Craven (stood up) leading the memorial service in Mark Square, Tarleton

Father David Craven (stood up) leading the memorial service in Mark Square, Tarleton

Father David Craven led the ceremony, airing an emotional recording of Saffie’s fellow pupils from Tarleton Community Primary School singing Somewhere Over the Rainbow.

Following a reading from the Bible, Fr Craven shared its relevance, saying: “That moment of madness and evil will leave deep scars which may never heal.
“To use a political quote ‘love trumps hate,’ we are in the business of love.”

He then delivered a passage of Waterbugs and Dragonflies by Doris Stickney, helping to explain the tragedy to the young congregation.

As he lit The Paschal candle, representing hope and new beginnings, Saffie’s school friends took to the altar to light their own candle.

The memorial for Manchester bombing victim Saffie Roussos in Mark Square, Tarleton

The memorial for Manchester bombing victim Saffie Roussos in Mark Square, Tarleton

Showing a united front, the colourful congregation, many clutching balloons, heard the Tarleton Community Primary School’s powerful recording of Roar by Katy Perry, followed by Don’t Stop Believing by The Journey.

Well-wishers filed out the church and formed an unofficial procession to Mark Square, where a memorial for Saffie and fellow Tarleton resident Georgina Callander had been created, with photos and ribbons tied to trees.

Candles and flowers were also laid on the floor as a colourful reminder of the two girls.

Fr Craven opened up the tribute saying: “We light candles to symbolise the resurrection of hope. We have brought the light across from The Paschal Candle in the way light spreads out into the community.”

The community pays respects to Saffie Roussos in Mark Square, Tarleton

The community pays respects to Saffie Roussos in Mark Square, Tarleton

The celebration concluded as her friends let go of blue and green balloons in her honour.
The memorial to the two Manchester bombing victims, which was temporarily removed a day before Saffie’s celebration, will remain until September 2.

To view a video of the service in Manchester click here /manchester-arena-bombing-victim-saffie-roussos-bid-farewell-by-tearful-mourners-1-8671098

The memorial for Manchester bombing victims Saffie Roussos and Georgina Callander in Mark Square, Tarleton

The memorial for Manchester bombing victims Saffie Roussos and Georgina Callander in Mark Square, Tarleton