Virgin Atlantic Chief Executive Steve Ridgway said the captain's assessment was that he needed to get the aircraft back to Gatwick Airport as quickly as he could, land the aircraft and deploy the emergency chute and get all the passengers off and that is what he did.
Mr Ridgway said several passengers wanted to thank the captain for what he did and the announcements he made.
More top news
The singer, 31, said on Twitter that she and her partner Jonathan Powell were grieving their loss.
A fine evening ahead to the south with some late sunshine in places.
Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall have visited Manchester Arena, the site of a suicide bombing in May which left 22 people dead.