BBC Homepage World Service Education
BBC Homepagelow graphics version | feedback | help
BBC News Online
 You are in: UK
Front Page 
World 
UK 
England 
Northern Ireland 
Scotland 
Wales 
UK Politics 
Business 
Sci/Tech 
Health 
Education 
Entertainment 
Talking Point 
In Depth 
AudioVideo 



The BBC's Kevin Bouquet reports
"In daylight, the full scale of the damage becomes clear"
 real 56k

Home Secretary David Blunkett
"It was local people destroying their own community"
 real 28k

Mohammed Riaz, former local Conservative candidate
"The initial anger was towards the National Front"
 real 28k

Maxie Hayles, Racial Attacks Monitoring Unit
"The police have not learnt a thing"
 real 28k

Sunday, 8 July, 2001, 12:04 GMT 13:04 UK
Bradford counts cost of riot
Burnt-out Mini
Rioters set cars on fire and caused widespread damage
After one of the worst nights of rioting in Britain for many years tension is still high in Bradford as a massive clean-up operation gets under way.

Police say they came close to being overwhelmed by violent clashes which left 120 officers injured and saw 36 arrested.

Up to 1,000 youths hurled bricks, bottles and petrol bombs at police in the Manningham area of the West Yorkshire city.

The trouble flared after an Anti-Nazi League demonstration against the National Front on Saturday.


No-one expected this sort of trouble - it has destroyed Bradford

Mohammed Amran
Commission for Racial Equality
Home Secretary David Blunkett called the riots "sheer, mindless violence - it was people acting in a totally anti-social and thuggish fashion".

He added: "Whatever the provocation from outside the area, it is overwhelmingly local people who have damaged their own community and its future."

Assistant Chief Constable Greg Wilkinson, of West Yorkshire Police, admitted police were surprised by the ferocity of the violence.

But he rejected suggestions that it had been allowed to escalate.

"When faced with rioting you can't just click your fingers and stop it," he said.

Gangs

Police chiefs have promised to track down all those involved in the riot, which saw gangs of Asian and white youths fighting running battles with police.

Officers were pelted with bricks, bottles, petrol bombs and fireworks, and attacked with baseball bats and hammers.

Police said of the 36 people arrested - 13 white and 23 Asian - all but two were from the Bradford area.

Many officers were treated in hospital for head wounds, although only one was detained, with a severe foot injury. Two police horses were also wounded.

Two people were stabbed, cars were set on fire and other vehicles were repeatedly driven at the police lines.

'No way out'

Fire crews are still damping down at the Manningham Labour Club, which was torched on Saturday night.

Landlord Roy Glister, who said he had lost everything, described how 28 terrified drinkers inside were lucky to escape with their lives.

"All the windows were smashed and then they firebombed it," he said. "We locked ourselves in the cellar and waited for the fire brigade."

Crowd
Police say up to 1,000 youths were involved
"By this time they'd firebombed my car. We'd no way to get out at all."

Mohammed Amran, of the Commission for Racial Equality, was shocked at the scale of the violence.

"No one expected this sort of trouble on this scale," he said. "It has destroyed Bradford."

Appealing for residents to avoid further trouble, he added: "Businesses have suffered and enough is enough."

Summer violence

Bradford is the latest northern town to suffer race rioting this summer.

Oldham and Burnley have both had serious incidents but the trouble in Manningham is on a much more serious scale.

Bradford, with an Asian population of about 100,000, has a history of good relations between different ethnic groups.

This week, Mr Blunkett granted the police special powers to ban marches and outdoor meetings in Bradford until 27 September.

But tension flared on Saturday amid reports that members of the National Front still planned to demonstrate.

The Anti-Nazi League held a counter-demonstration in Centenary Square attended by about 500 people, mainly Asian men.

Witnesses said the violence appeared to have started when a group of white men emerged from a pub and hurled racist abuse at the crowd.

Search BBC News Online

Advanced search options
Launch console
BBC RADIO NEWS
BBC ONE TV NEWS
WORLD NEWS SUMMARY
PROGRAMMES GUIDE


Background

TALKING POINT

FORUM

AUDIO VIDEO
Internet links:


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Links to more UK stories are at the foot of the page.


E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more UK stories