A FLIXTON school principal has spoken of her shock after it was revealed that the bomber who killed 22 people and injured many more is a former pupil.

Salman Abedi, who died in last Monday's bomb attack on the Manchester Arena, attended the school then called Wellacre Technology College, now known as Wellacre Academy, when he was 11.

In a statement issued by the academy head Melanie Wicks, she said every body was shocked and saddened by the events at the arena and her thoughts and prayers and those of the academy were with all those involved.

Abedi, who was 22, was born of Libyan parents, had attended a number of schools in the Manchester area.

Ms Wicks said: "We can confirm that Salman Abedi attended Wellacre from September 2007. He left Wellacre in January 2009 when he was in Year 9 to continue his high school education at another school(Burnage Academy for Boys)."

She added: "As a school community we all feel the pain that this atrocity has bestowed upon Manchester and as a school we stand shoulder to shoulder with schools and communities up and down the country, against terrorism in its entirety.

"We are requesting that the media considers the impact that this incident is having on students, not only at Wellacre, but across the whole of Greater Manchester.

"As this is an ongoing police investigation, the school cannot provide any further information at this time."

In a statement released by Greater Manchester Police searches of properties took place over the weekend in Old Trafford, Whalley Range, Moss Side, Rusholme, Gorton, Chester and Shoreham-by-Sea.

A spokesman said: "As it stands 16 people in total have been arrested in connection with the investigation, of which two people have since been released without charge. A total of 14 men remain in custody for questioning.

Anyone with information should call the Anti-Terrorist Hotline in confidence on 0800 789321. If you have any images or footage that you believe can assist us then upload them to Ukpoliceimageappeal.co.uk or Ukpoliceimageappeal.com