Police forces across England and Wales have been told to review security at major events after a terror attack left at least 84 people dead in southern France.
It comes as French detectives try to piece together the circumstances after a terrorist deliberately drove a lorry into Bastille Day revellers in Nice on Thursday night, before being shot dead in a stand-off with armed police.
Prime Minister Theresa May has said that Britain must redouble its efforts to defeat “brutal” terrorist “murderers”.
She called a meeting of senior officials in the Government’s emergency Cobra committee as the country stands “shoulder to shoulder” with France while looking into whether UK security needs to be stepped up.
London Mayor Sadiq Khan said he would be meeting with Met Police officials to review the capital’s safety arrangements as further details emerged of the man behind the Nice massacre.
Police have identified the suspected attacker as Mohamed Lahouaiej Bouhlel – 31-year-old Nice resident who was known to police for delinquency and domestic violence but was not on a list of radicalised people. Chief prosecutor Francois Molins told reporters Bouhlel’s estranged wife was arrested and his former homes were searched yesterday.
Mrs May, who explained that security services and police in the UK would undertake reviews, said: “If, as we fear, this was a terrorist attack then we must redouble our efforts to defeat these brutal murderers who want to destroy our way of life.
“We must work with France and our partners around the world to stand up for our values and for our freedom.”
Meanwhile the Queen paid her own respects to the dead and injured last night, sending a message to French president Francois Hollande.
She said: “I was deeply shocked and saddened to hear of the terrible loss of life in Nice.
“Prince Philip and I would like to offer our most sincere condolences to you, the families of those who have died and the French people.”
French authorities have confirmed that along with the 84 people who have died, 202 were wounded, 25 of whom are on life support and 52 are in a critical condition. It is thought a “small number” of Britons were injured.
Revellers in Nice initially thought the commotion was part of a celebratory firework display, but then saw the lorry and assumed the driver had lost control. Eyewitnesses then saw the driver weaving along the promenade hitting as many pedestrians as possible.
Barman Robert Greene, from Dublin, was around three metres from the carnage and spoke of the devastation. He told the Press Association: “I saw this truck and he cut through three or four people, he was already missing the bumper. It was horrific.
“A woman dropped to her knees; someone in her family had been killed, just lying there. There was not even a thing anyone could do; there was no CPR, bits of him were lying around. It was horrific.”