The Brick Lane Bomb: 'I saw metal wrapped around a lamp-post. It was devastation'

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The Independent Online
"It looked like a scene from a war zone. I saw a car ablaze with pieces of shrapnel and debris all over the place. Several people had blood from glass injuries on their face. Some people were blown off their feet by the shock of the explosion. It created terrible confusion," Tower Hamlets councillor Raja Miah

"Local people were expecting that something like this might happen. There were anonymous phone calls from Monday onwards to local shops saying there was going to be a bomb," local resident, Dunstan Gunasingha, 60

"We were sitting in Brick Lane and I heard a hollow sound and I said to my friend that it sounded like a bomb. We went down the road and it was filled with thick black smoke. There was a red car that was completely destroyed. It was blackened and looked like the bomb had been inside it. The premises close to the red car were blackened from where the bomb had gone off. This has happened at the same time as last week's bomb in an area where there are not many white European people so it immediately came to my mind," Louise Allan, 29, of New Zealand

"I was in Brixton last Saturday. I heard both bombs go off - they were very different bombs. Last week's in Brixton shook the building. This one in Brick Lane didn't, it sounded more like a gas explosion. The police have got to catch these guys. I saw red metal wrapped around a lamp-post. It was devastation," Marcus Rodgers, 28, a motorcycle courier, of Brixton

"We knew it was going to be here. We have been saying that all week, but we never knew it was going to be that quick. There were rumours it would happen after Brixton - that Brick Lane would be next, then it would be East Ham, then it would be Southall," Ali, a local shopkeeper

Another local, who gave his name as AJ, described seeing a woman in her forties collapse on the floor in front of him.

"We had no warning. It happened in broad daylight in a busy street. We've had our share of racism in the past , we've even had a British National Party councillor in the area but things have been relatively quiet recently. People are frightened - families were out doing their Saturday shopping and now the community feels intimidated. They want reassurance and want to feel that this type of thing couldn't happen. It will leave a scar on the local community," Julia Mainwaring, leader of Tower Hamlets Council

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