On the evening of Monday the 8th of August, violence and disorder came to Croydon in a fireball frenzy of violence and looting. There were many large fires and buildings destroyed. Tesco, Somerfields, Lidl and Rockbottom guitar shop were all ransacked. Looting had been going on for several hours before police arrived. The small force had been occupied defending Croydon Whitgift Shopping Centre and there were no resources to tackle the unabated crime wave going on outside the central precinct.
In Purley Way, stores including Currys and PC World were all ransacked with looters seen loading wide screen televisions into their cars. This raid on Croydon was orchestrated and fires outside the centre has been set to try and draw police from the town shopping centre to leave it undefended.
The corner at the bottom of Church Street suffered the worst fires as the furniture shop Reeves, that has been a family business for 147 years went up in flames. Several adjacent buildings were also destroyed.
There was complete lawlessness on the streets as the authorities were outnumbered. These photographs represent just a small fraction of the arson, thieving and mayhem that took place on that frightful and shocking night.
My son Adam took many photographs of the action taking place, and along with Adam I covered the aftermath from 5:00am in the morning. I have now published a book of our photographs.
Check out a preview of our book here.
You can also order the book or preview it here…