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Tottenham: The morning after the night before

THE NORTH London community of Tottenham is counting the cost of a night of rioting that has left several police officers injured and businesses and homes gutted.

The rioting started after a protest march over the police shooting on Thursday of local man, Mark Duggan.

During a night of rioting that left eight police officers in hospital, rioters set on fire shops, homes, three police cars and a bus.

This morning the fire brigade were still putting out the smouldering flames that left the local Aldi store a shell. Many other shops, including a large Carpet Right branch, small businesses and flats were burnt out.

Away from the High Road where the police station became the epicentre of the rioting, the Tottenham Hale Retail Park was extensively looted and fires started.

The cost of the damage is likely to run into the millions, but the cost to the reputation of the area will be much greater.

For Haringey Council and others trying to bring investment into the area, the PR damage done to Tottenham is going to extensive and long lasting.

One local man told how he had fled from his flat with his family last night and returned this morning to find it a burnt out shell. All his possessions were gone.

Local MP David Lammy this morning issued a statement saying: 'The scenes currently taking place in our community are not representative of the vast majority of people in Tottenham. Those who remember the destructive conflicts of the past will be determined not to go back to them.'

'We already have one grieving family in our community and further violence will not heal that pain.
True justice can only follow a thorough investigation of the facts.'

'The Tottenham community and Mark Duggan's family and friends need to understand what happened on Thursday evening when Mark lost his life. To understand those facts, we must have calm.'

One local woman who The Voice spoke to, and who asked not to be named, said she was hopeful that there would be no lasting reputation damage after the riot.

''There is a lot of good will in the community, it will go back to how things were. People will work to repair the damage and while there will be some stigma, there is a lot community good will, so things will be sorted out.'' She said.

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