Mayor of Greater Manchester Andy Burnham sent a message of support to London as he addressed crowds at the One Love Manchester concert.
Speaking on stage at the event at Lancashire Cricket Club’s Old Trafford ground, Mr Burnham said: “We have received so many messages in recent days, so tonight, Manchester, let’s send our own to our friends in London who are going through the same as we were going through.
“We know how you are feeling but we will stand with you and we will get through this together.”
Mr Burnham thanked Ariana Grande and the other acts performing in the concert, being held to raise funds to support grieving families and victims of the Manchester Arena attack.
He told the crowds: “On days like today it’s hard to find words to express how we’re feeling.
“The simple fact is your presence here tonight says more than 1,000 words ever could, so a huge thank you to you all for being here.”
Mr Burnham appeared on stage with representatives of political parties, religions and both of the city’s football clubs.
Greater Manchester Police Chief Constable Ian Hopkins also appeared on the stage and the crowd applauded as Mr Burnham thanked the police for their efforts following the May 22 attack.
Bishop of Manchester David Walker led the crowd in a minute’s silence for the victims of the bombing.
Mumford and Sons frontman Marcus Mumford sang “you are not alone in this” as he performed an acoustic version of the band’s hit Timshel to open the One Love Manchester benefit concert.
The singer took to the stage after a one-minute silence for the 22 victims who lost their lives in the bombing at the Ariana Grande concert at Manchester Arena.
Mumford then welcomed Take That to the stage to open their set with their crowd-pleasing song Let It Shine.
In between renditions of Giants and Rule The World, Gary Barlow told the crowd: “Thank you everybody for coming out tonight, thank you for everybody watching at home, thanks to Ariana for inviting us tonight.
“Our thoughts are with everyone that’s been affected by this.
“We want to stand strong, look at the sky and sing loud and proud.”
Concert-goers began queueing outside Lancashire Cricket Club’s Old Trafford ground from 8.30am ahead of the One Love Manchester gig.
The event will see the US popstar return to the stage for the first time since suicide bomber Salman Abedi detonated a device, killing 22 of her fans and parents as they left her show at the Manchester Arena.
All Grande fans who attended the gig on May 22 were offered free passes to the benefit concert.
Barlow welcomed former Take That bandmate Robbie Williams to the stage as “our friend, our brother,” before the foursome took a bow together and Williams led the crowd in a singalong to his hit Strong, with the lyrics changed to ‘Manchester, we’re strong, we’re strong, we’re strong, we’re still singing our songs.”
Williams, who appeared to be wearing a sweatshirt from Justin Bieber’s Purpose world tour, then treated the audience to his anthem Angels.
Ahead of the concert Grande’s fans who were caught up in the Manchester bombing have said they were nervous to return to a concert so soon after recent terror attacks but determined to carry on to show solidarity with the victims.
Proceeds from the concert will go towards the We Love Manchester Emergency Fund, set up by Manchester City Council in partnership with the British Red Cross, to support grieving families and victims of the bombing.
U2 frontman Bono sent a video message to the concert, telling the crowds: “All our hearts are with you, all our hearts are with Manchester and with the UK.
“So many of our friends are in this great city.
“We’re broken-hearted for parents who’ve lost their children and children who’ve lost their parents in this senseless, senseless horror.
“There is no end to grief and that’s how we know there is no end to life.”
Pharrell Williams then opened his performance with a rendition of Get Lucky, his hit with Daft Punk, before Miley Cyrus joined him on stage to perform Williams’ hit Happy.
Before welcoming Cyrus to perform Happy, Williams said: “You know why I’m bowing, I’m bowing because despite all the things that have been going on in this place, I don’t feel or hear or see any fear in this building.
“All we feel here tonight is love, resilience and positivity and you know what, I hate to be corny, but it makes me ... “
After Williams left the stage Cyrus performed her song Inspired, after telling the crowd: “Manchester I just had to take a second to look around at all of you. I’d like to wrap my arms around each and every one of you and tell you thank you from the bottom of our hearts for having us.
“I’m so honoured to be at this incredible event surrounded by all you amazing people.
“The most important responsibility we have on this entire planet is to take care of one another.”
She continued: “I’ve always loved Manchester and not just tonight, it’s always felt like a home away from home to me.”
One Direction star Niall Horan performed his hit Slow Hands before dedicating song This Town to Manchester, saying: “I just want to say I’ve been lucky enough to travel all over the world and every time I come back to Manchester I’m addicted to this place.
“When I seen you guys all rallying together last week it was a sight to behold, it was incredible.
“We love you, we’re with you.
Grande’s manager Scooter Braun appeared on stage wearing a black One Love Manchester baseball cap with the pink logo for the concert on the front to introduce the singer on her return to the city less than two weeks after she said she was “broken” by the attack.
Grande came out dressed in an oversized white One Love Manchester sweatshirt, ripped jeans and high-heeled black boots accompanied by a company of dancers wearing the same sweatshirts in black.
She performed her hits Be Alright and Break Free, shouting: “Manchester make some noise!” before pink streamers rained down on the crowd.
Little Mix took to the stage after Grande, and Jade Thirlwall said: “We are so, so happy to be part of this incredible day, thank you.”
Introducing the group’s track Wings, she said: “The song we have chosen to do for you guys we wrote together a few years ago in the hope it would empower people to stand together and to not let anything bring them down.”
Grande later appeared with Victoria Monet to sing their duet Better Days and then joined Black Eyed Peas to perform their hit Where Is The Love?