Following some of the worst rioting and looting ever witnessed in mainland UK in the past week, hundreds of Inishowen people have been caught up in the violence.
Since the rioting started in London last Sunday spreading throughout the country to Manchester, Liverpool, Birmingham and many other areas, people here in Inishowen have been putting in frantic calls to family members living in England concerned for their safety.
In Manchester, a Carndonagh student, working in the city centre was very close to getting dragged into the riots on Tuesday evening.
“I work in Marks and Spencer on the main Market Street and when we got word there may be trouble in the area, we were sent home really quickly. The bosses wanted to get the shutters down and the shop closed as quick as possible.
“I was leaving the shop and walking down to get the tram when I saw a group of youths running in the direction of Piccadilly Gardens. They were wearing masks and some held weapons, it was a terrifying time. I guess I didn’t appreciate how bad things were until I seen that.”
The Carn girl said a friend of hers from Manchester who had been working in the city centre narrowly escaped injury when a youth throw a glass bottle in her direction.
“I just can’t understand it, I’ve lived in Manchester now for three years and I’ve never seen any trouble, but this was just chaos. The city is just wrecked now, its so upsetting to see the damage caused by these thugs.”
One former Greencastle mother living now living in South London, was shocked and dismayed at how the trouble erupted across the capital in the past week.
“It was horrific, I still can’t believe this has happened to the extent it has, the past week has been unlike any other in all my years in London.
“It all happened so out of the blue and quickly. To me, there is just no sense or logic behind how it has happened. It is just mindless criminality.”
However the former Inishowen women praised the local communities for their response.
“In London often there is a sense that everyone is out for themselves but in the wake of the riots, people have really stuck together.
“The communities are trying to support each other people and hundreds of people have been involved in clean ups around Croydon, Hackney and Tottenham.”