Third Reading attack victim named as David Wails

The third victim of the mass stabbing in Reading has been named as David Wails.

Mr Wails is understood to have been a senior scientist at a global chemicals company.

Michael Main, a friend of Mr Wails and the other two victims, told the BBC he knew him as a regular at The Blagrave Arms pub.

He said: ‘I drank with David probably every day. Every time I was in there, he was in there. We’d have a lot of banter. He was a banter person. He’s the one that hits me the most because I know him more and it’s just sad to know he’s gone so early.’

He was killed alongside history teacher James Furlong and Mr Furlong’s friend Joe Ritchie-Bennett.

The men were stabbed to death when a knifeman suddenly began attacking people enjoying a sunny Saturday evening in Forbury Gardens, Reading.

Three others were seriously injured. Two of them have now been discharged from hospital, while the third is said to be in a stable condition and remains under observation.

Police have said they are investigating terrorism as a motive for the attack.

American Joe Ritchie-Bennett, 39, moved to England 15 years ago and previously worked for a law firm, before moving to a Dutch pharmaceutical company.

His brother Robert Ritchie told reporters from the Philadelphia Inquirer that their family has been left ‘heartbroken and beside ourselves’ after hearing of Mr Ritchie-Bennett’s death. He said: ‘I love him. I always have. I always will. He was a great guy. He was four years younger than me. I had a paper route at 12 and he helped me every day.

His friend and fellow victim teacher James Furlong, 36, worked at The Holt School in Wokingham.

Conservative former minister Sir John Redwood, MP for Wokingham, said he was ‘by all accounts an inspirational teacher who always went the extra distance for his pupils and was a very kind man’.

He told the Commons: ‘He will be sorely missed. The community is very shaken today by this news.’

A note inside the heart-shaped floral tribute, placed outside of the Blagrave Arms pub in Reading town centre, said: ‘Our hearts are broken.’

A group of people have gathered outside of the pub, putting down flowers next to the doors.

The note, signed ‘The Blagrave’ said: ‘Our hearts are broken and our thoughts go out to their families and friends; also to the other victims of this disgusting vicious attack.

‘Our friends were the kindest, most genuine, and most loveliest people in our community that we had the pleasure in knowing.

‘They’ll be forever in our thoughts.’