I am from Tottenham, born and raised there, was educated there and it funded my university education. As I meet people whether from other parts of London or other parts of the country or other parts of the world, I am expected to give an explanation
for what happened Saturday night. But I’m afraid I cannot only but feel bad for all what has happened.
The looting and criminal acts were horrific and to a certain extent quite frightening. I hate that the area has been cordoned off; a listed building is now in ruins (alongside
other buildings) and that hard working people have lost their homes and businesses. Tottenham has somehow been able to get away with not becoming gentrified and hang on to its individuality but there is no question that it is a desperate place and you walk around hoping to see something different, something new but that hardly happens.
Although it did happen with the Tottenham Retail Park (that is just about a year old!)but now the majority of the businesses are ruins. But given all that has happened- presently and back in 1985 – I am not ashamed of coming from the area, it certainly was a safe haven for my parents when they came here in the late 50s. Opportunists
and thugs are just taking advantage we are told; there is nothing happening in their boring lives so they do this they also say. Maybe there is a grain of truth in these comments, but surely the recession and ‘mad’ unemployment are some of the factors needed to be looked at as possible contributory reasons.
In general, Tottenhamites are friendly people and hate, as much as anyone, what is happening to their area and community. A final point, the day after the riot, I went
out as usual to buy the Sunday Times but was told by three newsagents that there was no delivery of these papers and that we would have to go outside the area to buy as they refused to come to the area. Yesterday, Monday, I went out to buy the Guardian, again, the same problem. I just hope that we are not going to see anymore of this.