Clarence Road street party succeeds: ‘Let’s have more’ say Pembury residents

THE Clarence Road street party to counter the criminal and social damage of the Hackney riot last week is to be followed by other community events.

Ian Rathbone, a Hackney councillor and one of the tea party organisers, told Loving Dalston: “We will be looking to further events to help us to move on. Lots of Hackney people are coming forward to help.”

Steve Lord, who chairs Pembury Tenants and Residents Association at the nearby housing estate, said: “Let’s have more street parties.”

Calm has descended on Hackney just over a week after the riots that wrong-footed police and horrified honest local people.

Loving Dalston was the first news outlet to reveal plans for a tea party in Clarence Road, site of some of the worst rioting. This website’s news report attracted reporters and TV crews to Clarence Road from all over the world.

Fortunately, attendance was about 400 people, the hoped-for number rather than so many people that the police would be overwhelmed.

Less happily, arrests continue: the day after the street party, a young man and woman were arrested in a raid on the Pembury over a camera stolen from a journalist during the previous week’s riot.

The street party was organised by residents and four local churches. The Marks & Spencer store in nearby Mare Street donated tea and cakes; other shops boiled urns of hot water for tea and coffee. Hackney council gave permission for Clarence Road to be closed.

Media-wise: children come up with an image irresistible to the photographers at the tea party

Nearly £500 was raised to help the pillaged Clarence Convenience Stores.  Cllr Rathbone says that the Save Siva Fund has raised £22,000 since it was started a week ago.

Rob Wickham, Rector of St-John-at-Hackney, said: “Last week Clarence Road was a place of destruction; this week, I pray, Clarence Road was a place of hopeful healing.”

Steve Lord  said: “We welcome the street party. We have already had events this week on the estate to help people talk to one another and share problems.

“This will help us to build up better relationships in the wider area and support our local shops. They’re the place where people meet.”

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