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James Corden used the opening segment of his US chat show to pay a ‘beautiful but heartbreaking’ tribute to Manchester following an attack on the city.

Police have so far confirmed that 22 people have died after a suicide bomber struck at Ariana Grande’s gig at Manchester Arena. The blast occurred around 10.30pm on Monday night as fans – including many children – were leaving the venue.

MORE: Scotty T denies writing THIS insensitive tweet following Ariana Grande Manchester concert explosion

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Just hours later, a sombre James opened his Late Late Show with an emotional speech in which he paid tribute to the ‘spirit’ of the British city.

‘It shocks me every time we hear this sort of news,’ the visibly shaken star started. ‘That attacks like this can happen, but especially when there will be so many children at this concert tonight.’

He continued: ‘Many of you won’t have ever been to Manchester, but you will definitely have heard of it.

‘It’s famous all over the world for so many wonderful things. Great football teams like Man City and Man United. It’s famous for incredible music: Oasis and Joy Division. It was the birth place of the leader of the suffragettes. It’s the home of the inventor of the first computer.

‘It’s a place full of comedy, and curries, and character.’

‘But when I think of Manchester, the place that I know, I think of the spirit of the people there. And I’m telling you, a more tight-knit people you will be hard pressed to find; strong, proud, caring people with community at their core.

‘And if it’s even possible, the spirit of Manchester will grow even stronger this evening.

‘My thoughts and prayers are with everyone in Manchester tonight.’

He went on to send his love to everyone involved in the incident, including staff at the arena, the emergency services, and Ariana and her team.

James finished with the moving words: ‘We’ll all go to bed holding our little ones even tighter this evening.’

The Gavin and Stacey star won praise for his moving words on Twitter, with one fan commenting: ‘Such a beautiful but heartbreaking message, everyone there and their loved ones are in my thoughts x’

Another wrote: ‘I was moved to tears by your heartfelt response to the news of the tragic incident. My heart goes out to everyone affected by this tragedy.’

Following the horrific attack, a ‘broken’ Ariana posted on Twitter: ‘From the bottom of my heart, i am so so sorry. i don’t have words.’

The thoughts of everyone at Now are with the people of Manchester. Anyone caught up in the attack can contact the emergency helpline on 0161 856 9400. You can also use the hashtag #missinginmanchester to help locate anyone still missing.