Mr Henning was captured by Islamic State while on an aid mission to Syria

A video that claims to show the beheading of British hostage Alan Henning has been released by the fundamentalist Islamic State terror group.

Authorities are working desperately to verify the video, which follows the same pattern as the executions of US journalists James Foley and Steven Sotloff and British aid worker David Haines.

Alan Henning appears in the video in orange with his executioner dressed all in black and holding a terrifying knife.

Mr Henning, who was 47, was a taxi driver from Eccles in Greater Manchester; he had been held prisoner in Syria for nine months after his capture while on an aid convoy to Syria last Christmas. It is thought that he was help captive by ISIS with up to 20 other Western hostages.

His friends described him as “a big man with a big heart,” and his execution comes only days after his wife and father released messages pleading with Islamic State for his release.