A BBC London poll carried out by ComRes suggests that half of Londoners living in areas that were most affected by the riots do not feel safe in their boroughs. The statement was phrased so:
“There is part of my local area I do not feel safe going to.”
- 50% agree, 48% disagree
This was one of seven statements posed in the survey, which was taken around Croydon, Greenwich, Hackney, Haringey and Southwark. In none of the questions, however, is there an allusion to the summer riots. Other questions focused on local relationships with the Metropolitan Police and local government. These figures, when looked at independently of any other statistics, surely offer no insight into the impact of the riots. If a similar survey was available to us from before the riots, or we could see results from boroughs unaffected by the disturbances, then the comparison could be illuminating.
The survey was released a day after the naming of a teenage boy who was responsible for the only unlawful death during the summer riots. The 17 year old was publically named by Mr Justice Saunders despite his status as a minor. The prosecution secured a guilty plea in the charge of manslaughter and have decided not to pursue a murder charge. The death of Richard Mannington Bowes came after he was punched while intervening in violence during last summer’s disturbances. The impact of the fall led to his death. It is an unusual measure to reveal the name of a minor in a case of accidental killing but Mr Justice Saunders believed that after the guilty plea to manslaughter, “the public had a right to know his name”.
Image of the Croydon riots aftermath by McTumshie in the Londonist Flickr pool.