HUNDREDS of people attended a church service on the first anniversary of a firefighter’s death yesterday.

On July 13 last year, a fire broke out at Paul’s Hair World in Manchester city centre, and Stephen Hunt, of New Road, Radcliffe, above, died in hospital after getting into difficulty tackling the blaze.

The 38-year-old former soldier was based at Manchester’s Philips Park Fire Station and was fighting the fire with about 60 colleagues.

An investigation into the incident is ongoing.

Friends and family gathered at a packed-out St Ann’s Church in Manchester for the service and others gathered in the square outside to listen to it through speakers.

County Fire Officer Steve McGuirk unveiled a plaque paying tribute to Mr Hunt at the scene of the fire in May.

Mr McGuirk said: “Stephen died protecting the community he loved.

“The support we have received from the people of Greater Manchester since Stephen’s death has been overwhelming.”