A GENTLE girl who ‘just loved life’ has inspired her family to keep her legacy alive.

Goostrey schoolgirl Nell Jones was killed in the Manchester Arena terrorist attack on May 22, 2017.

The 14-year-old Holmes Chapel Comprehensive pupil was one of 22 victims who died following an Ariana Grande concert.

Now, seven years on, her family is hosting a ball to celebrate what would have been Nell’s 21st birthday.

Her mum Jayne, 62, said: “We want to keep her legacy going.

“Every day was an adventure for Nell. She just loved life.

“She would have a go at anything.”

Knutsford Guardian: Nell was a pupil at Holmes Chapel Comprehensive Nell was a pupil at Holmes Chapel Comprehensive (Image: Jones family)

The Remembering Nell Foundation, a charity set up in her memory, funds projects to support children.

Every penny raised at the ball will create a new opportunity for a young person.

This year, 21 copies of 21 books will be donated to children who may not have a book of their own at home.

“Nell was a big reader,” said Jayne.

“She was academic, loved to learn and was determined to do well. She just got on with life.

“Nell was always smiling and had a lovely, happy disposition.

“She would help anyone. We want to carry on her personality.”

Knutsford Guardian: Nell was always smilingNell was always smiling (Image: Jones family)

Coping with the sudden loss of Nell is still painful.

“It is difficult,” said Jayne.

“Any parent who goes through the loss of a child, there’s disbelief and it is hard to live with.”

Jayne recalled the last time she saw her precious daughter.

“The night she died I remember saying to her and her friend: ‘Have a lovely time, girls, see you later’, never thinking of what was going to happen.

“It was horrendous.”

Jayne still can’t bear to part with Nell’s personal belongings even though she has moved house.

Knutsford Guardian: Jayne and her precious daughter NellJayne and her precious daughter Nell (Image: Jones family)

“Her room here is exactly the same as it was,” said Jayne.

“Everything is in her wardrobe and drawers, just as she left it.

“It’s my way of dealing with it.

“It’s as if she is still here with us.”

Nell had three older brothers who adored her.

Knutsford Guardian: The last picture of Nell with her three brothersThe last picture of Nell with her three brothers (Image: Jones family)

“Two of her brothers have had children, a girl now 12 months old and a boy, 15 months old,” said Jayne.

“Nell would have loved them.

“Her brothers deal with it in their way. We all miss her but life has to go on.

“We are immensely proud of her. She was loved beyond words.”

The family has been overwhelmed by the support they have received from the community.

“If it wasn’t for local people, we couldn’t have got through this,” she said.

“Knutsford was a place Nell went to a lot.

“The last photo taken with her friends was at Tatton Park.

“On her 14th birthday she went to The Botanist with her friendship group, a few weeks before she died.”

Nell’s Spring Ball is on Saturday, April 27 at De Vere Cranage Hall.

Red carpet and fizz will be served on arrival followed by a three-course dinner, live entertainment and a silent auction.

“Nell was very quiet and didn’t make a fuss about anything,” said Jayne.

“We’re a bit like that. We don’t push hard but this is all about an evening of friendship and fun, what Nell was all about.

“We’re having a game where people can buy little boxes which we all open at the same time.

“One will contain a winning ticket for a Tiffany bracelet.

“Nell loved clothes, make up and all girly things.

“We’d love it if people were kind enough to come along.

“It’s a boost for us. Let’s raise the roof for Nell.”

Tickets priced £60 are available on email from caroline.goodchild@uwclub.net or call 07836 386327.