Events in Woolwich will unite rather than divide the community. Wednesday was a dark day, but the healing process has begun. Evil came to a neighbourhood determined to leave lasting damage but failed to understand the resolve of ordinary people that are determined to stand up when necessary and lend support and comfort when called upon to do so.
It has been my privilege to represent Woolwich Riverside for the last twenty three years. I never fail to be impressed by the care and compassion that exists across the area. Wednesday was no exception. For a brief period evil came into our midst. The two women that tried to attend to the victim were exceptional and immensely brave. David Dixon, Head of Mulgrave, together with his team got the pupils and parents united providing access away from the school.
I was enormously impressed by the care and attention given to the community by Police Officers offering advise and support and escorting people away from the scene as necessary. The Rector of St Mary Magdelene Church opening the doors for one and all to join and pray together in solidarity.
No good wishes for the community from the EDL and their kind who sought to divide the community and take precious resources of the Police away from the scene of crime. They were in Woolwich to cause division venting their racist beliefs on a community suffering. There is no place for hate wherever it might come from.
Slowly but surely life is getting back to normal. Schools opened their doors and the education of young people continues. There will be questions asked in the classroom and elsewhere as to why this horrendous crime happened in our neighbourhood. We will know in due course but we must all remain vigilant.