Tuesday, 31 January 2012

Miracle prevents fatalities at collapsed Ilford Church construction site

 The potentially unstable crane deemed serious hazard!

 Fire engines and other rescue services on standby to save potential casualties.

 The mangled infrastructure illustrates the lucky escape.

 Rescue teams awaiting directions- limited information from thermal imaging delayed active response.

The residual infrastructure looks ready for another cave in.

It's a miracle that no-one was seriously hurt!

A five storey church infrastructure build collapsed at 16:30pm today, and miraculously killed no-one.  Around 20 construction workers were still on site and yet none of them suffered major injury.

Firemen and other rescue crew where unable to scour the site for any casualties due to the perceived danger of the site.  Around 30 fire, police and ambulance vehicles still waited along Clements Road, and Winston Way, seeking the go-ahead for a survey of the wrecked construct at around 7pm.

The reason for the collapse has not yet been established but this near miss posed a real threat to local people. Police and fire crew worked together in partnership setting up a safety cordon of around 500m diameter around the site, concerned that the large lifting crane could be unstable.

The building site belongs to City Gates Church a large charismatic Christian group, who intend to build a 5 storey complex, including a large 1000 seater auditorium to serve their larger than normal congregation.   Other rooms would include various meeting rooms and community projects.  The construction project was headed up by Ashe Construction.

Images from the scene of the collapse indicate how close, workers and the public, were to a potentialy fatal incident.

Thick steel girders have been twisted and bent out shape, the concrete floors have been deemed to dangerous for inspection- even obscuring any tangible thermal observation via helicopter.  Fortunately an Evening Standard reporter informed Wilson, that by 8pm it had been established that no serious harm had befallen anyone.  A passing women is said to have exhibited serious symptoms of shock.  Wilson Chowdhry said;

"Being a Christian I am compelled to believe that God had a hand in preventing any loss of life, simply because with the complete collapse of the structure, a more inimical catastrophe should have occurred."  

Local Police working hard to reduce crime but need more community participation.

Report on our recent meeting with Clementswood Safer Neighborhood Team Police 22nd December 2011

Homeless people causing nuisance at the benches near fitness first:

SNT advised us that they had been working with local outreach workers, support and help groups, and care workers to relocate and assist them out of their rough sleeping.  Due to pressure from residents thay had applied to the council to remove the benches.  Local Councillors however, had rejected this course of action.  It was a belief amongst those at the meeting, that removal of the benches would be counter-productive and would probably move the antisocial behaviour associated with this group to more residential areas.

A visitor highlighted the racial abuse that she saw a black lady subjected to by a young mixed race homeless person.  The police conformed that if she had called the police a response would have been forthcoming.  They reminded her that there is a team of police officers dedicated to the town centre, but adjoining team or the mainstream police if available could also have attended.  The SNT also advised that laws against racial prejudice exist and could have been enacted in this incidence.  There are also a number of antisocial and nuisance laws that could have been used to induce an arrest.

A resident advised the police that similar crime was occurring along other roads.


Burglary is still a main priority for local police.  Our SNT handed out burglary advice leaflets at this point.  Wilson Chowdhry advised local people to initiate neighbourhood watches which enable communities to become more vigilant, protecting one another.  a local lady has put herself forward as a potential Neighbourhood Watch Co-ordinator for Stanley Road and is seeking other potential members for her group.  Clementswood Police will deliver letters  with more information to residents of Stanley Road.  There is a dedicated unmarked burglary vehicle that regularly patrols hotspots in the borough.  Three major London Police operations were being used to tackle burglary:

Operation CUBO:  Seizing of uninsured and untaxed vehicles had resulted in a number of cars being crushed, and petty thieves, have also been caught as a consequence.

Operation Bigwig: Known offenders where being watched an monitored to prevent return to criminality.

Operation Hawk:  Hi visibility patrols and unmarked burglary vehicle

Street Begging:

A zero tolerance policy is being enacted by the team towards begging in the town centre.  10 Beggars have been arrested and 1 removed from the borough.  Local police are working with support groups to reduce incidents of begging.

Wilson asked what could be done to eradicate the illegal the windscreen washers at the junction to the A406.  The Local SNT informed the meting that when uniformed police arrived at the scene often the perpetrators had already fled.   It would not be efficient to coordinate a plain-clothes police response.

Cycling through the Town Centre:

Illegal cycling through the town centre is being targeted and £30 fines had been given to over 20 cyclists.

Alcohol drinking in streets:

The police provided us with leaflets on the no-drinking zones introduced to the borough.  I will be uploading an electronic version for your perusal.  Green lane has not been included within the existing plan and Wilson suggested that we hold a future meeting with Sgt Fletcher to see how to gain a wider control order.

A local woman described antisocial behaviour on the streets at the corners of Green Lane and Gordon Road/ Connaught Road and Connaught mews.  Police were aware of the problems and are undertaking patrol to limit nuisance.  The SNT confirmed they would speak to local shopkeepers asking them not to provide plastic cups to drinkers or open bottles.  Also reminding them of their obligation not to provide alcohol to people already over-intoxicated.

They have a no tolerance policy which has resulted in on the spot fines of £50.00 although these are not always enforceable due to itinerants with no fixed abode.


Men clients were being targeted on Ilford Lane and caught via the Borough CCTV system.  Ltters were sent to their homes warning them that their vehicle registrations had been obtained and that they were being monitored.   Many had been caught in sting operations and fined with a section 59 warning for 1 year that could lead to a criminal recorded, for any repeat offence. Some of this crime had moved to Stanley Road.  Prosecutions are also being undertaken on girls soliciting for sex.

Tuesday, 3 January 2012

New years resolution to promote peace almost terminated due to poor weather

 The Redbridge Carnival Mascots and other visitors joined the peace gathering at the peace monument

 Later in the evening a second trip to the monument allowed us to clean the plaques for images.

Hard rainfall that lasted for over 4 hours (from 14:30 -19:00) on New Years Day, almost cancelled our new year mission to bring peace to the borough.   Although many visitors could not make it on a later  minutes silence scheduled for 19:30 those who turned up heard words of hope provided by Father Ackroyd, from Vine United reform church - read out by Wilson Chowdhry.  A minutes silence for all victims of violent crime in the borough created a sombre very sobering atmosphere.  The silence was pierced by the dulcid tones of a bugler playing reveille at the completion of the memorial.  

Our painting competition for mosaic designs to is now open and we will be launching it through local papers, our local media and via local schools, groups and colleges.  

If you would like more information of the painting competition please do make contact.