London Bridge terror victim Jack Merritt had been working at Suffolk jail
PUBLISHED: 08:22 01 December 2019 | UPDATED: 14:10 01 December 2019
Suffolk lawyers have paid tribute to Jack Merritt, the 25-year-old victim of the London Bridge terror attack, who had worked on a project at one of the county's prisons.
Tributes have flooded in for the University of Cambridge graduate, who was stabbed to death in Friday's attack.
Solicitor Audrey Ludwig, of the Suffolk Law Centre, joined barrister Tim Storrie in paying tribute to the law and criminology graduate - tweeting that she "admired his work hugely".
"I knew Jack although only over the last 12 months as we discussed possible collaboration," she wrote.
"I visited one of his prison projects and his deep commitment to prisoner education and rehabilitation was deeply impressive. I send condolences to his family, colleagues and the prisoners group.
"I did not know Jack for long, but admired his work hugely."
She added: "Jack was a really nice young man, very bright and passionate about this work. I was very shocked to hear that he had been caught up in this attack. Only a few months ago we had discussed a collaboration.
"He invited me along to Warren Hill prison in Hollesley where I got to see the project he was taking part in.
"The impression I got about the sort of work he was involved in, was that it was ambitious, and forward-thinking, it gave the prisoners a level of education and responsibility they are not used to having.
"I remember him telling me his thesis was about the disproportionality of prisoners and their ethnic backgrounds."
Mr Merritt was among a group of Anglia Ruskin and University of Cambridge students taking part in the project at HMP Warren Hill.
According to the initiative's website, it provided both prisoners and law students with an opportunity to discuss and exchange ideas among a group of people with different backgrounds and perspectives.
Prison overcrowding, Northern Ireland and segregation were among topics discussed.
Writing on Twitter, Mr Merritt's father David said he was a "beautiful spirit who always took the side of the underdog".
One friend wrote on Facebook: "This man was truly a blessing on this earth. One of the nicest people I had the pleasure of knowing. He worked on a project that is so worthwhile for people who really do deserve it. Please, let's not let his death be in vain. He worked for, and believed in something, that will one day change how we see the world. RIP Jack, you were always too good for this world."
Mr Storrie, who also met Mr Merritt at HMP Warren Hill in Hollesley, Suffolk, said: "His open heartedness, his drive and his faith in the redemption of prisoners through education shone out."
Kevin Quinton added: "I met him briefly at Warren Hill and he truly was a deeply committed young man, who wanted to work with the prisoners.
"He was a ball of energy making this project work. It is so deeply sad his life ended this way. May he be at peace, and never forgotten."
Joshua Rozenberg, a BBC journalist who previously trained as a lawyer, interviewed Mr Merritt in February while he was working with Learning Together at the Suffolk prison.
Mr Rozenberg described him as "a fine young man, dedicated to improving people's lives".