There is a revolution happening in London today and it started at around 7am this morning. Hundreds of people poured out onto the streets wielding not sticks and bricks, but brooms and bags. It has been a strange, unprecedented, unbelievable few days here all around us. Buildings are burning, homes have been destroyed and shops are being looted.
From our shop we can hear sirens and helicopters and the pavements are strangely empty. But around the capital they are teaming with broom-wielders. People from across the community, from across London, from across generations, have organised themselves on Twitter to stage a mass clean-up of our streets. They assembled in Hackney and Enfield, Peckham and Brixton and started moving rubble and re-assembling shop fronts. Local businesses offered them free tea and coffee and food, homeowners flung open their doors. Meanwhile people started gathering clothing and bedding to take to those whose homes have been destroyed.
With Jane, company director here at Stephen Einhorn, we went to Tottenham with three bin bags full of clothes. Our shop has stood in Islington for sixteen years and we are proud of our city and the people in it. We have always supported our local community and at the moment they are supporting each other. And that’s really quite something.
For more information, to help with the clean-up or donate clothes go to www.riotcleanup.com and @riotcleanup and @harringayonline on Twitter. We’re there @stepheneinhorn. Come and say hi. Clothing and bedding should be taken to Tottenham Green Leisure Centre at 1 Philips Lane N15 4JA.