The London Riots in August 2011 shocked and appalled everyone in Enfield.

Nick stood with residents in Enfield Town on Sunday 7 August and saw for himself what happened. Writing on this website the day after, he said, "I was in Enfield Town from about 6pm yesterday evening. The scenes that residents and I witnessed of people with their faces covered, intent on attacking the police and local shops were as shocking as they were surprising".

He added, "The vast majority of these people were not from Enfield. This was organised criminal activity. People had come from other parts of London and elsewhere after being co-ordinated via social media and mobile phone. The police acted in a controlled and very professional manner which dispersed a large crowd of people, making many arrests. It was telling that vandals fleeing from the police would run back through side streets to get into their suped-up cars and leave to meet up elsewhere. It is difficult to see how anyone could argue this was some kind of uprising from a frustrated, deprived underclass. The fact that these people have gone out to commit criminal acts on an organised day using social media and phoning their friends in a concerted effort to just move trouble up and capitalise on those awful events at the weekend is deplorable."

Nick welcomed the comments of Enfield Council Leader Cllr Doug Taylor, who said, "There's simply no place for this sort of action. It's got nothing to do with the shooting in Tottenham, we're a different borough".

Nick paid tribute to the bravery of the police and called for Parliament to discuss the events in due course, and spoke in the debate when it was held on 11 August:

 


12 AUG 2011

Home Secretary visits Enfield Lock

Home Secretary Theresa May has visited Enfield Lock to thank firefighters and police officers that have dealt with the warehouse fire at Innova Park.

Accompanied by Enfield North MP Nick de Bois, the Home Secretary saw first hand the damage done to the Sony distribution warehouse, which was started deliberately late on Monday night. The blaze at the 20,000 square metre warerhouse was brought under control by Tuesday morning, with 55 firefighters using eleven fire engines.

Local and national media were there to cover the visit, drawing attention to the fact that the distribution centre employs 200 people. Nick said, "the fire has been devastating for Enfield Lock. We will be doing everything we can - from me as the local MP through to the Mayor of London and the Prime Minister, to ensure Sony stays in Enfield and re-builds".

Fast Signs, a printers on Southbury Road, have started a morale boosting campaign in Enfield Town by giving away free "We love Enfield" signs. Shops across Enfield have been displaying them in their windows to show they are getting back on their feet and are open for business. 

Nick, Theresa and Enfield council leader Doug Taylor all welcomed the idea, which is being seen as another sign of people in the borough coming together to find something positive among the dreadful events of the past week. 

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11 AUG 2011

Nick questions the PM on identifying culprits

During the emergency recall of Parliament today, Nick asked the Prime Minister to ensure that every step was taken to track down those criminals involved in the recent riots across London. Specifically, he asked the PM to consider getting the police to work with schools to help identify those of school age that were recorded by CCTV or appearing in YouTube videos.  

 See the full text of Nick's question below:

 

Nick de Bois (Enfield North) (Con): My constituents and I witnessed shocking events in Enfield on Sunday and Monday. What was particularly shocking was the age of a number of the culprits. Will the Prime Minister ask the police authorities to work with the education authorities to identify the many secondary school children who were out there causing these crimes?

The Prime Minister: That is certainly a sensible suggestion. Over and above that, we must recognise that the responsibility for the fact that some of these children—I use the word "children" advisedly—are out on the streets rests with their parents. We need parents to take more responsibility for their children, teach them the difference between right and wrong, and point out that this sort of behaviour is completely unacceptable.

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11 AUG 2011

Nick speaks in the House of Commons debate on Public Disorder

Following the Prime Minister's statement in the House of Commons today, Nick made a contribution to the debate on Public Disorder, which was led by the Home Secretary. This was a good chance to raise the concerns voiced by so many constituents over the past few days about these appalling events.

You can read his speech here (which then continues after interventions here and here).

After Nick's contribution, the Secretary of State for Education, Rt Hon Michael Gove MP, commented on the impact of the disturbances on Enfield.

'My hon. Friend Nick de Bois drew a vivid and affecting picture of how one of London's most attractive suburbs could be convulsed by violence, as individuals intent on wrongdoing took to the streets in the most wicked of ways. He asked detailed and constructive questions about the roles that the local authority, schools and TFL can play in making sure that our response to future events is sharper. We will write to him to ensure that his constituents' concerns are addressed.'

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10 AUG 2011

London Mayor visits Enfield

London Mayor Boris Johnson visited Enfield Town this afternoon to talk to shopkeepers and residents affected by the violence and looting of Sunday night.

 

Accompanied by Enfield North MP Nick de Bois, who has called for the Government to consider calling in the military to protect fire crews dealing with burning buildings, Boris said he was impressed with how quickly Enfield was bouncing back.

 

 

Nick said, "I'm pleased the Mayor was able to visit Enfield and call into businesses such as G Mantella, to see first hand the way local shops here have suffered from the events of Sunday night".

 

The Mayor attracted a crowd of around 150 people which followed his progress around the town centre, with television crews and reporters covering what was a well-received visit.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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09 AUG 2011

Warehouse fire in Enfield Lock

According to the Enfield Independent, it has now become clear the fire at the Sony distribution warehouse at Innova Park is related to the violence we saw on Enfield's streets on Sunday night.

Reporter David Hardiman writes:

Large clouds of smoke are still billowing from the Sony warehouse in Enfield, after reports of teenagers with petrol cans attacking it last night.

The fire at the huge building, in Innova Park, Solar Way, was started at around midnight. People are saying a group of teenagers with petrol cans set fire to the building after stealing computer games, DVDs and CDs. The majority of the building has been destroyed. Metal walls have melted and folded in on themselves.

Firefighters continue to battle with the smouldering building this morning.

Guests have been evacuated from the nearby hotel just after midnight and said they were shocked at what they had seen in London over the past few nights.

Nick de Bois said, "We cannot allow these criminals to take control of our neighbourhoods. The scenes in Enfield Town and now the reports coming in regarding Enfield Lock are of immense concern to residents and business owners".

He added, "Given the way our police force in London is clearly over-stretched and struggling to contend with the unprecedented levels of violence, I have called publicly for the Government to bring in the military to protect our fire services so they can deal with burning buildings without fear of attack, and for water cannon to be made available".

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08 AUG 2011

Violence in Enfield Town

I was in Enfield Town from about 6pm yesterday evening. The scenes that residents and I witnessed of people with their faces covered, intent on attacking the police and local shops were as shocking as they were surprising.

The vast majority of these people were not from Enfield. This was organised criminal activity. People had come from other parts of London and elsewhere after being co-ordinated via social media and mobile phone. The police acted in a controlled and very professional manner which dispersed a large crowd of people, making many arrests. It was telling that vandals fleeing from the police would run back through side streets to get into their suped-up cars and leave to meet up elsewhere. It is difficult to see how anyone could argue this was some kind of uprising from a frustrated, deprived underclass. The fact that these people have gone out to commit criminal acts on an organised day using social media and phoning their friends in a concerted effort to just move trouble up and capitalise on those awful events at the weekend is deplorable.

I welcome the comments of Enfield council leader Doug Taylor who said, "There's simply no place for this sort of action. It's got nothing to do with the shooting in Tottenham, we're a different borough".

I want to pay tribute again to the bravery and professionalism of the police, who did and will no doubt continue to do a superb job in minimising the damage to our neighbourhoods. It could have been much worse. There have been many arrests and I'm sure there will be many more. I am adamant that people convicted of the crimes committed should be given custodial sentences to send a clear message that this type of organised violence does not go unpunished.

These events need to have their day being discussed in Parliament, not least so the frustrations and fears of residents affected by these dreadful events can be heard. We also need to ensure that the lessons from what has happened in Tottenham and Enfield Town are learned, and for the record to state that what has occurred is organised criminal behaviour and should not be tolerated.

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Nick speaks in Public Disorder Debate

Nick asks question of PM following London Riots

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