London's burning

Posted on: 09 August 2011 by Rhian Mainwaring

The morning after the night before

London riots (flickr gwydionwilliams)

Watching the news unfold over the past 24 hours has been sobering to say the least. Last night from a flat in East London I watched with trepidation, the mob descending down every street corner, watching news 24 to see if they were edging closer to me or towards you, your flat, your car or if you were around Londonfields, your bike.

It was scary, almost apocalyptic, but with a vast city such as London, it was surreal to think this was going on in your neighbourhood. Had it not been for the constant news updates and the sound of sirens (which is pretty usual in London) you’d have no idea, unless you were on one of the badly hit areas. And perhaps if it hadn’t been for social networking sites, Blackberry messaging and mobile technology it would never have got to such a grand scale.

As it is pretty obvious what everyone thinks of the thugs rampaging the streets, we thought we’d take a look at the heroes of the August riots and what is being said online.

London riots

We love this amazing video of a Hackney woman telling the rioters what she thinks of them – incredible! (WARNING: Contains strong language)

The Turkish community and shop owners take to the streets to protect their own shops on Kingsland High Street, East London.

There's also a clean up mission for London communities is headed up on Twitter by @Riotcleanup. Shop owners and locals can tweet in to let users know where they are needed. This is then organised online and those ready to volunteer will be alerted where they are needed. Volunteers are becoming known as 'wombles' and the movement is nationwide.

The there are the police officers, bravely taking to the streets to protect our city, while, as always, becoming the scape goats for the violence. It is very clear that this isn’t an anti police rally, but a group of bored, angry teenagers taking advantage of a situation and jumping on the band wagon. You can show your support for the met police on Facebook. To read more about the Met police officers visit Guardian online.

We’d love to hear your thoughts on the violence throughout the UK, if you have any more stories of the general public rising up against the rioters we’d love to hear about it below. Alternatively join our forum on the topic and have your say.

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