A victim of the Manchester Arena bombing from Radcliffe who suffered a cardiac arrest at the scene would have had a “high” chance of survival if he had reached hospital before his heart stopped, an inquiry has heard.

John Atkinson, 28, was one of 22 people killed in the explosion in the City Room foyer of the venue at the end of an Ariana Grande concert on May 22 2017.

The healthcare worker went into cardiac arrest one hour and 16 minutes after the blast, following significant blood loss from injuries to his legs, the public inquiry into the atrocity has been told.

A panel of blast wave experts say Mr Atkinson could have potentially survived with the timely medical intervention of applying effective bi-lateral tourniquets.

Member of the public Ronald Blake called 999 shortly after the bombing and, following advice, he tied a belt around Mr Atkinson’s right leg, which slowed down the bleeding.

However his left leg continued to bleed out with a “very large” pool visible to his side in the City Room some 30 minutes after the explosion, the inquiry heard.

On Tuesday, panel expert Professor Jonathan Clasper told the hearing that stopping or slowing the bleeding at an early stage would have delayed or even prevented cardiac arrest.

The retired colonel said there was a window of “up to about 40 minutes” after the incident, where such an intervention would have made a difference to Mr Atkinson’s survivability.

Counsel to the inquiry Paul Greaney QC asked him: “If John had reached hospital in a state where he was not in cardiac arrest, would that have made a difference?”

Prof Clasper replied: “Yes. He had other severe injuries but I think if he had got to hospital without having had a cardiac arrest, given that the (trauma) team were prepared for him, I think there is a high chance he would have survived.

“I can’t give you an estimate of exactly how high, but I think it’s a high chance.”

The witness praised Mr Blake for “brilliantly” holding the makeshift tourniquet to Mr Atkinson’s right leg for nearly an hour.

Mr Atkinson lay in agony on the foyer floor for 47 minutes before he was carried downstairs by police on a makeshift stretcher to a casualty clearing area at Victoria railway station.

He had been conscious and talking but went into cardiac arrest at 11.47pm and was taken by ambulance to Manchester Royal Infirmary at midnight.

A full trauma team of clinicians were waiting when he arrived six minutes later but Mr Atkinson was pronounced dead at 12.24am on May 23.

The inquiry heard that North West Ambulance Service (NWAS) will argue it was impossible, in practical terms, to get casualties to hospital any quicker than they did on the night.

Only three paramedics from NWAS entered the City Room – two of them just a few minutes before Mr Atkinson was evacuated.

Mr Atkinson’s family say he was “badly let down” and that “precious time” was allowed to ebb away while he needed urgent hospital treatment.

The inquiry was adjourned until Thursday.