Man quizzed over death of pensioner in riots

A 22-year-old man was being questioned by police today over the murder of a pensioner who was attacked as he tried to stamp out a fire during the London riots.

Richard Mannington Bowes, 68, died in hospital just before midnight on Thursday after he was attacked in Spring Bridge Road in Ealing, west London, on Monday.



The suspect was arrested in west London yesterday on suspicion of murder, rioting and carrying out three burglaries, Scotland Yard said.



Mr Bowes, of Haven Green, Ealing, suffered serious head injuries and was placed on a life-support machine following the attack, which took place at around 10.45pm on Monday as violence spread through the capital.



A witness said rioters attacked the pensioner when he tried to put out a fire started in a supermarket bin near the Arcadia shopping centre.



Mr Bowes's sister Anne Wilderspin, 73, from Derbyshire, who lost touch with him 30 years ago, said she was "shocked" to learn what had happened to her brother.



Speaking before his death, she told ITV News: "It was sort of unreal because you don't think anything like that happens to a relative of yours.



"I mean we've been horrified by the reports of the riots and what's been going on. It was a shock and it's still a bit unreal in a way."



Mrs Wilderspin added: "I'm very sad that we have to see him like this, but in one way I'm very pleased that we could actually make contact again. So I'm mixed."



Scotland Yard said Mr Bowes's family have been informed of his death and a post-mortem examination will be held in due course.



Detective Chief Inspector John McFarlane, of the Metropolitan Police's homicide and serious crime command, said: "This was a brutal incident that resulted in the senseless killing of an innocent man.



"I still need the assistance of the community who may have witnessed the attack on Richard to come forward and provide information or images they may have recorded on mobile devices. This information could be crucial in catching his killer."



Ealing Council said it flew the Union Flag over its town hall at half-mast yesterday as a mark of respect for Mr Bowes.



It is also launching an appeal to help all victims of the riot in the borough in memory of the murdered pensioner, to be called the Richard Mannington Bowes Relief Fund.



Council leader Julian Bell said: "Although I did not know Mr Mannington Bowes, what I know about him I liked and my thoughts are with his family and friends.



"He was out on Monday night trying to protect the area where he lived and standing up for what is right.



"Sadly, someone who will clearly never share these values murdered him as a mob rampaged through our normally quiet streets."



Angie Bray, MP for Ealing Central and Acton, said: "The death of Mr Mannington Bowes is an appalling tragedy, coming as it does as a result of the night of riots in Ealing.



"He was clearly a good neighbour and an upstanding citizen. On the night when he was attacked, he was simply doing his duty as a loyal member of the local community.



"Obviously, our thoughts must be with his family and friends at this sad time, but the whole community has lost a good friend. Society can ill afford to lose decent people like Mr Mannington Bowes. We are all the poorer without him."



Suggested Topics
Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
News
ebookA unique anthology of reporting and analysis of a crucial period of history
Sport
The Queen and the letter sent to Charlie
football
Arts and Entertainment
Eurovision Song Contest 2015
EurovisionGoogle marks the 2015 show
News
Two lesbians hold hands at a gay pride parade.
peopleIrish journalist shares moving story on day of referendum
Arts and Entertainment
<p>
<b>Kathryn Williams</b>
</p>
<p>
When I was supporting Ray La Montagne I was six months pregnant. He had been touring for a year and he was exhausted and full of the cold. I was feeling motherly, so I would leave presents for him and his band: Tunnock's Tea Cakes, cold remedies and proper tea. Ray seemed painfully shy. He hardly spoke, hardly looked at you in the face. I felt like a dick speaking to him, but said "hi" every day. </p>
<p>
He was being courted by the same record company who had signed me and subsequently let me go, and I wanted him to know that there were people around who didn't want anything from him. At the Shepherds Bush Empire in London, on the last night of the tour, Ray stopped in his set to thank me for doing the support. He said I was a really good songwriter and people should buy my stuff. I was taken aback and felt emotionally overwhelmed. Later that year, just before I had my boy Louis, I was l asleep in bed with Radio 4 on when Louis moved around in my belly and woke me up. Ray was doing a session on the World Service. </p>
<p>
I really believe that Louis recognised the music from the tour, and when I gave birth to him at home I played Ray's record as something that he would recognise to come into the world with. </p>
booksKathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath
News
Liz Kendall played a key role in the introduction of the smoking ban
newsLiz Kendall: profile
Life and Style
techPatent specifies 'anthropomorphic device' to control media devices
Voices
The PM proposed 'commonsense restrictions' on migrant benefits
voicesAndrew Grice: Prime Minister can talk 'one nation Conservatism' but putting it into action will be tougher
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Day In a Page

Sun, sex and an anthropological study: One British academic's summer of hell in Magaluf

Sun, sex and an anthropological study

One academic’s summer of hell in Magaluf
From Shakespeare to Rising Damp... to Vicious

Frances de la Tour's 50-year triumph

'Rising Damp' brought De la Tour such recognition that she could be forgiven if she'd never been able to move on. But at 70, she continues to flourish - and to beguile
'That Whitsun, I was late getting away...'

Ian McMillan on the Whitsun Weddings

This weekend is Whitsun, and while the festival may no longer resonate, Larkin's best-loved poem, lives on - along with the train journey at the heart of it
Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath in a new light

Songs from the bell jar

Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath
How one man's day in high heels showed him that Cannes must change its 'no flats' policy

One man's day in high heels

...showed him that Cannes must change its 'flats' policy
Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Dominic Rossi of Fidelity says his pressure on business to control rewards is working. But why aren’t other fund managers helping?
The King David Hotel gives precious work to Palestinians - unless peace talks are on

King David Hotel: Palestinians not included

The King David is special to Jerusalem. Nick Kochan checked in and discovered it has some special arrangements, too
More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years

End of the Aussie brain drain

More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years
Meditation is touted as a cure for mental instability but can it actually be bad for you?

Can meditation be bad for you?

Researching a mass murder, Dr Miguel Farias discovered that, far from bringing inner peace, meditation can leave devotees in pieces
Eurovision 2015: Australians will be cheering on their first-ever entrant this Saturday

Australia's first-ever Eurovision entrant

Australia, a nation of kitsch-worshippers, has always loved the Eurovision Song Contest. Maggie Alderson says it'll fit in fine
Letterman's final Late Show: Laughter, but no tears, as David takes his bow after 33 years

Laughter, but no tears, as Letterman takes his bow after 33 years

Veteran talkshow host steps down to plaudits from four presidents
Ivor Novello Awards 2015: Hozier wins with anti-Catholic song 'Take Me To Church' as John Whittingdale leads praise for Black Sabbath

Hozier's 'blasphemous' song takes Novello award

Singer joins Ed Sheeran and Clean Bandit in celebration of the best in British and Irish music
Tequila gold rush: The spirit has gone from a cheap shot to a multi-billion pound product

Join the tequila gold rush

The spirit has gone from a cheap shot to a multi-billion pound product
12 best statement wallpapers

12 best statement wallpapers

Make an impact and transform a room with a conversation-starting pattern
Paul Scholes column: Does David De Gea really want to leave Manchester United to fight it out for the No 1 spot at Real Madrid?

Paul Scholes column

Does David De Gea really want to leave Manchester United to fight it out for the No 1 spot at Real Madrid?