Lucy Letby: Chester Cathedral service to remember babies killed by nurse

Lit candles / stock candle / power cut / blackout.
The vigil will take place at Chester Cathedral

A special service is being held at Chester Cathedral to remember the victims of Lucy Letby.

Candles will be lit and prayers said at the vigil, taking place at 6pm on Sunday, in solidarity with the families of those babies who were murdered or attacked by the nurse.

Letby was jailed for life in August for the murder of seven babies and the attempted murder of six others.

The nurse went on a year-long killing spree at the Countess of Chester Hospital between June 2015 and June 2016. 

After a 10-month trial at Manchester Crown Court, she was convicted on 14 counts of harming infants - making her the most prolific child serial killer in modern British history. 

She was given a whole-life sentence, meaning she will never be released from prison.

Lucy Letby was jailed for life for murdering seven babies and attempting to murder six more Credit: Cheshire Police

The Very Rev'd Dr Tim Stratford, the Dean of Chester Cathedral, said: "I can't begin to imagine what impact it's had on the families who were most involved and those who have lost babies, deep deep grief.

"I can't really begin to imagine how it has been for those who worked alongside Lucy Letby, those who were her friends, those who sought to blow the whistle.

"What I know as a resident in this city and somebody who uses the services of the hospital is a feeling of deep sorrow, how could it happen here, and even shame that such terrible things have happened in this community."

Organisers of the service say it is an opportunity for people "to express their sorrow and solidarity" with the victims' families.

The Dean added: "We want to hold our grief for those babies who have lost their lives in this community and also to hold together our collective sadness for what's happened here, and our prayers and hopes for the future.

Seven candles, for the seven babies who were murdered by Letby, will be lit as prayers are said during the service, as well as candles for "those whose names we don't know, or about whom there is uncertainty", he added.

"Then we will start to look forward with hope and pray for the future of the community and all who work in the hospital.

"It is what we are here for as a cathedral in this city. Those of us who live and work at Chester Cathedral are stewards of the city's ancient, sacred space, and it's really important that we open this space up neighbours and the wider community so that they can come here as part of their own spiritual journey and offer their prayers as they need to."

To help manage numbers, people are being asked to reserve their place with a free ticket which can be booked on the cathedral's website.

As Letby becomes the most prolific serial child killer in modern Britain, we look at how she managed to slip under the radar for so long, carrying out her attacks unchallenged for a year in the latest episode of From the North.