Walking round Ealing Green, smoke still in the air from the fire, crowds of people from all over stand behind the police lines, bewildered, shocked and amazed at what they see before them.
TV crews from around the world frame the scene, ABC, Sky and probably others show the mindless destruction around the world, scarcely believing that the senseless orgy of violence, looting and theft has descended on a fairly well off suburb. Ealing is nothing like Tottenham, or Hackney, but has more in common with Croydon, if anything.
Thankfully the cleanup campaign, spreading across Twitter like the fires overnight, has begun; people coming from miles around to reclaim the town, the community standing up to say that the disgraceful action of a few dozen people will not be allowed to blight the shops and streets they love.
Road crews are working quickly and carefully to repair and replace the road surface damaged and weakened by burnt out cars. Fire crews and police are still in evidence from the Broadway to Ealing Green and beyond, maintaining the order that collapsed for a short while last night.
Wanton damage and destruction can be found throughout both major shopping centres; copycat actions aimed at jewellers, electrical stores and phone shops, just as in other parts of London’s boroughs, but the most senseless action was the damage caused to shops selling baby clothes and equipment, dressmakers shops and estate agents. For much of the evening, Twitter was rampant with statements of Nando’s burning down, or the shopping entre was in flames, but the cold light of the morning showed these wild comments were baseless.
Ealing is now taking stock of last night’s shocking events, but as with the rest of London, we wait to see what tonight will bring, deserted streets or damaged property. It’s hard to tell what may happen, and its even harder to see how the recalled Parliament can retake the control, but it must happen, and soon, or where is next?