THE HUSBAND of an MP shot dead in Birstall has issued a heartbreaking statement.

Batley and Spen Labour MP Jo Cox was left lying in a pool of blood on the pavement after her assailant struck.

The mother of two children aged three and five was attacked by a man reportedly shouting "Britain first" and was pronounced dead at 1.48pm.

it is understood she was shot in the face and repeatedly stabbed.

Her husband Brendan said: "Today is the beginning of a new chapter in our lives. More difficult, more painful, less joyful, less full of love.

"I and Jo's friends and family are going to work every moment of our lives to love and nurture our kids and to fight against the hate that killed Jo.

"Jo believed in a better world and she fought for it everyday of her life with an energy, and a zest for life that would exhaust most people.

"She would have wanted two things above all else to happen now, one that our precious children are bathed in love and two, that we all unite to fight against the hatred that killed her.

"Hate doesn't have a creed, race or religion, it is poisonous.

"Jo would have no regrets about her life, she lived every day of it to the full."

At a press conference that started at about 5pm, police revealed that the shooting had proved fatal, with Ms Cox being pronounced dead by a doctor at 1.48pm today.

Speaking to the media gathering at the Force's headquarters in Wakefield, Temporary Chief Constable Dee Collins said: "I am now very sad to have to report that she has died as a result of her injuries.

"Jo was attacked by a man who inflicted serious and sadly fatal injuries."

Bradford Telegraph and Argus:

News of Ms Cox's death is delivered to the media at the press conference

She said there was a further attack on a 77-year-old man nearby whose injuries are not life-threatening.

The alleged gunman has been named locally as Tommy Mair, 52, who neighbours have described as "a loner".

Video from the press conference

Chf Con Collins said: "A man was arrested nearby by local uniformed officers. We are not looking for anyone else in connection with investigation."

Weapons including a firearm have beer recovered by police.

Mair's house was sealed off by police who were guarding the property as forensic officers worked in the garden.

Bradford Telegraph and Argus:

Police guard the house in Lowood Lane where Tommy Mair, the suspect arrested over the shooting of Labour MP Jo Cox, lives in Birstall

Neighbours said he had lived there for more than 30 years - on his own for the last two decades since the deaths of his mother and grandmother.

They did not think he had a job or drove a car and described how he would do gardening chores for local people.

One neighbour, David Pickles, said: "He's lived there longer than me and I've lived here since 1975.

"I still can't believe it. He's the last guy I would have thought of.

"He's just quiet. He kept himself to himself.

"He lived by himself. He's been on his own for about 20 years.

"I've never seen a lot of people visiting or anything like that, but he likes gardening.

"He did a lot of people's gardens round here. But he did it quietly."

Video from the scene of the shooting in Birstall

Officers were seen searching his house in Birstall, near the scene of the brutal attack.

There were reports that a man had also been injured.

Hichem Ben Abdallah saw the attack on Ms Cox and said: "He was kicking her as she was lying on the floor."

He said that after a bystander intervened, the attacker produced a gun, stepped back and shot her twice.

The 41-year-old mother of two was attacked near the town's library where she was holding an advice surgery today.

At least a dozen police vehicles circled the roads into Market Street with at least 20 police officers manning the baracades.

The mood in the town is one of shock and bewilderment.

Bradford Telegraph and Argus:

Witness Scott Thurman

Scott Thurman, 23, owner of nearby Ice Boutique told the Telegraph & Argus he saw Ms Cox on the ground.

"It was around 1.30pm and I was going to go and get my hair cut. I'd just got to the corner at the top of Market Street and heard a shot.

I saw a man running off down the road and heard another shot. I then saw a woman lying on the ground.

"Suddenly there were loads of people around. A woman held the head of the victim on the ground and then paramedics arrived. It was really frightening.

"No-one had a clue what was happening or if there would be any more shots. I didn't arry on to the barbers and came back to my shop. No one can believe this has happened in Birstall."

Bradford Telegraph and Argus:

Hithem Ben Abdallah, 56, was in the cafe next door to the library shortly after 1pm when he heard screaming and went outside.

He said: "There was a guy who was being very brave and another guy with a white baseball cap who he was trying to control and the man in the baseball cap suddenly pulled a gun from his bag."

After a brief scuffle, he said the man stepped back and the MP became involved.

Bradford Telegraph and Argus:

He added: "He was fighting with her and wrestling with her and then the gun went off twice and then she fell between two cars and I came and saw her bleeding on the floor."

After about 15 minutes, the shop owner said emergency services arrived and tended to her with a drip.

Ms Cox was elected to the seat of Batley and Spen at the last general election in 2015.

West Yorkshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner, Mark Burns Williamson, said: “My thoughts and prayers are with Jo’s family at this time.

“I have worked closely with Jo since she was elected and I am deeply shocked that such a talented young woman has been senselessly attacked and killed whilst working in her constituency and serving her community.

“This is a truly shocking incident but I want to reassure communities that our information is that this is a localised incident, albeit one that has a much wider impact.

“I must stress that investigations are ongoing, a man has been arrested, and we need to let the police do their job in understanding exactly what has happened that led up to this hugely tragic incident and channel all our thoughts into supporting the families and communities affected.”

Bradford Telegraph and Argus:

Councillor David Hall (Conservative, Liversedge and Gomersal) is an LEA Appointed Governor at Heckmondwike Grammar School.

He said: “I was in the same class as Jo when we were at Heckmondwike together. I knew Jo for 31 years.

“She was the model student, she was funny, attractive, sporty, and had a good brain which got her to Cambridge University.

“She was always popular, and was voted head girl by her peers in sixth form; she was the kind of person everyone liked.

“I feel quite hollow at the moment and very sad, I knew her for so long and I know her mum and dad who are constituents of mine.

“The whole community will be in mourning for Jo for some time, she made her mark in the short time she was in office, but will also be shocked something like this can happen on our doorsteps.”

Prime Minister David Cameron said the death was a "tragedy" and described her as a dedicated and "caring member of parliament."

Mr Cameron said his thoughts were with Ms Cox's family, adding that it was "dreadful, dreadful news."

He said: "This is absolutely tragic and dreadful, my thoughts are with her husband Brendan, her children and her wider family who have lost a great star.

“People are going to be very, very sad at what has happened.

“I know she was a very strong campaigning MP, and took a big interest in how we could look after Syrian refugees, and she had a great heart and she was a bright star in her party and in the house.

“We have lost a star and I am thinking about her family and constituents who are feeling a great loss tonight."

Bradford Telegraph and Argus:

A forensics officer looks at a ladies shoe at the scene in Birstall

Bradford East MP Imran Hussain said: “I’m devastated that Jo Cox has passed away.

“She was a great MP and a great person. I can’t begin to imagine what heartbreak her family are going through. My thoughts and prayers are with her family.”

Bradford West MP Naz Shah, who was also elected last year, paid an emotional tribute to her Labour colleague.

She said: "She was an amazing woman.

"She worked really, really hard and was a committed constituency MP.

"She was very popular in and outside of Westminster.

"She brought with her a reality, as she had worked for Oxfam.

"Jo really brought things home and made things clear. She cycled to worked and was full of energy. She had a fire in her belly.

"She was excellent at what she did.

"She is a huge loss for her constituency and her family. My heart bleeds for her her family now.

"She was an absolutely inspiring woman.

"She is a huge loss to democracy and to Parliament. We are all absolutely numb."

Shipley MP Philip Davies said: "I'm in a complete state of shock.

"She was a lovely, lovely person.

"Jo had only been in Parliament for a year or so.

"She always had a smile on her face.

"My heart goes out to her husband and her children. I can't think what they are going through.

"To be killed in that way, for being a dedicated MP and doing your job, is just awful."

Keighley and Ilkley MP Kris Hopkins said: "It is absolutely terrible news. I'm speechless.

"Jo was only in Parliament for 12 months but she made a huge contribution on a wide range of different issues.

"She was a young person as well."

Baroness Kath Pinnock, a Liberal Democrat peer and councillor for Cleckheaton on Kirklees Council, said she had been due to meet Ms Cox at 2pm today to campaign jointly for Britain to remain in the European Union.

She said the two parties locally had been campaigning together very closely.

She said: “We were going to campaign together for the European referendum and we had made arrangements to meet up in Birstall market square to do some campaigning together.

“I then had a call from their office to say there had been an incident, she had been attacked and obviously it was off.

“Then the news starts filtering through – it’s terrible.

“We have run street stalls in Cleckheaton together and we had planned to do one in Birstall and one in Heckmondwike to show people this is not a party-political thing.

“She is very open and friendly. Obviously I have different views on life than she does, in terms of politics, but we get on fine.

“I can’t believe something as dreadful as that has happened on our doorstep, and to somebody who has been elected to represent us makes it worse because it is an attack on democracy.”

Pudsey Tory MP Stuart Andrew said: "I am absolutely devastated by the news that Jo Cox was tragically murdered carrying out her duties as an MP.

"I had only known her since she was elected, but she made such a huge impression on me and on MPs across all parties. She was devoted to her constituents and her family, and always made me smile whenever I bumped into her. Parliament will be a poorer place without her, and my thoughts are with her family and staff at this awful time."

Bradford Telegraph and Argus:

Conservative MPs Kris Hopkins and Philip Davies both closed their constituency offices for the day as a precaution.

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn said: "Utterly shocked by the news of the attack on Jo Cox."

Labour's Yvette Cooper said: "Terrible, terrible news."

Conservative MP Sir Eric Pickles, a former leader of Bradford Council, said he was "very shocked".

Tory Steve Baker said: "Utterly appalling news."

Labour's Lucy Powell said: "Dreadful, dreadful news coming in about my good friend Jo Cox."

Vote Leave has suspended battle bus campaigning for the day in light of the attack on Ms Cox.

Boris Johnson, who was out campaigning on the bus in East Anglia, said: "Just heard the absolutely horrific news about the attack on Jo Cox MP."

Nearby Birstall Primary Academy was put on lockdown after the shooting. A message from the school to parents assured them that children and staff were all safe.

The latest message to parents via Twitter was that "Access to school is restricted. Pupils will be leaving school through School Street gate only."