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Last Updated: Friday, 7 July 2006, 16:05 GMT 17:05 UK
Reporters' log: 7 July remembered
Ken Livingstone and Tessa Jowell
BBC News reporters were at the scenes of the attacks across London where remembrance services were held on the first anniversary of the London Tube bombings.

They described events as they happened as Londoners remembered the 52 people killed and hundreds injured.


The commemoration service is over and the crowd is dispersing in the evening sunshine.

Survivors and bereaved families and friends have moved from the main stage area and have each been adding a single flower to a giant floral mosaic, dedicated to the 52 people who lost their lives one year ago.

This solemn act comes at the end of a what will have felt like a long and draining day.

John Falding lost his girlfriend Anat Rosenberg in the bus bombing. He found the service deeply moving, and feels some kind of relief at having got through the day.

"But tomorrow the excitement, if you can call it that, will be gone and it will be back to coping with things on my own," he says.


A small crowd is gathering in Queen Mary's Garden, as preparations get into full swing for tonight's national commemoration.

Police officers are sweeping the area around the floral mosaic - where the public were earlier laying flowers - as the gospel choir belts out a practice version of Something Inside So Strong. The rousing sounds have brought people to a standstill. On the stage floral displays are bursting with sunflowers.

Everyone has their own reason for being here - 22-year-old teacher Shopna Alom from Tower Hamlets, and her 16 year old pupil Khatija Hafesji, from Hackney, came because they believed it was important.

Khatija said: "We were born in London, we lived through it - it seemed important to be part of something greater than us."


The floral tribute in Regent's Park is taking shape nicely with an influx of visitors at lunchtime. Organisers say nearly 20,000 flowers have been put in place, a few by each person, and the shape of the seven-petal flower is almost complete.

One of those to lay a handful of carnations this afternoon was Lisa Andrew, the London Ambulance Service worker who took the first emergency call a year ago.

She said: "On a day like today I do feel great sadness. But I also feel great pride in the way my colleagues reacted, not only in the ambulance service but in the emergency services as a whole.

"I'm a Londoner and this has brought to the fore that although we're emergency services and we wear a uniform, we are human beings too.

"I felt it was very important to come here and put down some flowers because it gives us a chance to build something together as Londoners."


In Tavistock Square, there's been an almost eerie calm.

The roads around the square have been closed to traffic but the park has been left open for loved ones to lay their wreaths.

Many are still there, including senior police officers and members of the emergency services who were there on the day.


Many people have left cards expressing love and grief amongst the piles of flowers at the memorial garden.

A well-wisher has strung rosary beads from a tree.

One bouquet says: "Remember those who died. Forget those who killed them." Signed from Emma Baxter and Scott Read, it adds defiantly: "We are still using the tubes".

Another says "Thoughts and prayers, now and always" from all staff at Kings Cross travel centre.

A dedication from Transport for London and the Mayor says "We shall never forget... We shall continue to serve".

Many of those visiting emerge from the memorial gardens in tears.


The preparations continue here in Regent's Park for the main ceremonial event marking the anniversary: an open air service of remembrance this evening.

There was of course a respectful pause in activity for the two minute silence at noon.

The service will include songs of remembrance, readings from relatives of the victims and the reading out of the names of those who were killed.

There's also a floral mosaic laid out on the grass in the shape of a flower twelve metres across with seven petals for the seventh day of the seventh month.

I think anybody who uses the Tube regularly and who lives in London feels everybody was attacked
Melissa Wagstaff

A steady stream of members of the public have been coming by to fill the petals with purple carnations, a colour chosen by the victims' families.

There will be a thousand invited guests for the service with several thousand more onlookers expected to join them.


People began to gather near Edgware Road station about 20 minutes before the two-minute silence.

By the time midday came, hundreds of people lined the streets around the station entrance.

The silence was observed impeccably and when the two minutes was up, the station gates reopened and spontaneous applause broke out for a few seconds.


The two minutes' silence at King's Cross has just ended. It was observed by a crowd of a couple of hundred people of all ages, races and colours. During it, police removed their hats, many in the crowd were sobbing and behind me a woman quietly sang a gospel hymn.

Scores of station staff paid their own tributes by gathering inside the memorial garden, which has now been re-opened for the public to view.


The organisers say it's pure coincidence that the largest exhibition on Islam Britain has ever seen was organised for the anniversary of the bombings. But they've used the 1.8m event to send a strong signal to both their own communities and wider British society that Islam is part of Britain.

To underline that, when the two minutes' silence began, scores of people from all walks of life and all religious backgrounds gathered to silently remember the victims of the bombings.

Among them was former Iraqi hostage Norman Kember, who said afterwards: "I wanted to come here to say thanks to Muslims for all they did in trying to help release me, but also to help our society cement these relationships.

"Our relationships with Islam need to be more public - we have to move from fear of the unknown to respect of other peoples."

His message of conciliation chimes with visitors - among the thousands attending are a healthy proportion of white, non-Muslim schoolchildren.


The relatives of those killed in the Tavistock Square bus bombing emerged from the BMA, where so many of their relatives were treated a year ago, to have a private memorial service behind screens in the square.

Every hue of our rainbow city was present amongst the grieving - it was dignified but their faces were full of grief. From Tavistock Square I caught a 73 bus towards Victoria. At noon on Gower Street just yards from the site of the bomb, it stopped. The driver cut the engine and asked people to observe the silence.

Passengers bowed their heads and thought about the victims of last year's murderous attacks.


Many people are continuing to arrive to lay flowers at the memorial garden. They are being escorted into the garden by police and counsellors.

Members of the press are being held back away from the immediate area. As I speak members of the emergency services are arriving to lay their own floral tributes - a reminder that this is also a very big day for them.


A steady stream of relatives of the dead and injured have been arriving in Tavistock Square Gardens to make their own tributes to lost loved ones. One message for Marie Joanne Hartley reads: "We will love you always. Mum and Dad."

Most poignant of all was a message scribbled in a child's hand "To Mum, we miss you," signed from her three young children.

Mayor Ken Livingstone had written on his wreath: "Londoners will never forget those lost on 7 July 2005. And we will build a better city as the best way of remembering them."

Driver of the number 30 bus, George Psaradakis, had written: "You will never be forgotten - may you rest in peace."

Meanwhile transport commissioner Peter Hendy's message read: "In memory of innocent people killed and seriously injured on our transport network. We will never forget you." Relatives will shortly be holding a private ceremony in Tavistock Square just ahead of the noon silence.


There is a growing pile of flowers in the memorial garden, laid by a steady stream of people arriving to pay their respects.

They are coming individually, in pairs and in small groups. Many are family groups who lost a loved one a year ago today.

Inside the memorial garden some hold hands and hug each other, others simply stand in silent contemplation, watched by a crowd of press and cameramen outside the gardens.

Relatives are starting to gather for the unveiling of the plaque inside the underground station, an event which is due to take place simultaneously at all the sites of the London bombings, at 1130.


Regent's Park will host a major event commemorating the anniversary of the bombings tonight and final preparations are under way, with a stage and big screens erected and chairs being laid out.

But one part of the event relies heavily on ordinary people - a large floral tribute made up of purple carnations, forming the shape of a flower with seven petals.

The display will be completed tonight by survivors of the attacks and bereaved relatives, but during the day members if the public are being asked to come and lay provided flowers.

Many of those coming to lay flowers are everyday Londoners, who were not directly affected by the bombs but know they could have been.

One of them, 26-year-old Melissa Wagstaff told me: "I was travelling on a Tube that day but thankfully I wasn't hurt and nobody I know was hurt. But I think anybody who uses the Tube regularly and who lives in London feels everybody was attacked. I really wanted to come here and pay my respects - it could have been any of us."


Netty Hodges, 54, is a Red Cross ambulance technician. She and husband Chris were on the Mall with their Red Cross truck when they got the call on 7 July 2005.

They were despatched to Euston when it became clear that the bomb in Tavistock Square had gone off. They joined a convoy of ambulances and spent much of the day fighting to save people's lives in the BMA building.

Crying mourner

Chris said "It's so peaceful today. There was strange silence last year interrupted only by the sounds of sirens."

On their brave action on the day, Netty said: "We were just doing what we were trained to do. It's something you hope you never have to. Chris added "It was the sheer volume of casualties that amazed me."

He went on: "I'm here because I'm on duty, but for many other people it's about solidarity.

"The important thing is not to let this have a negative impact on our city. It's about keeping people together."

Lucinda Fudge had come to Tavistock Square to lay flowers. A friend and colleague of Jenny Nicholson, who was killed at Edgware Road station last year, she said was too gutted to say much.

She worked with Jenny at a small publishing firm where she said the daughter of a vicar was extremely popular. Lucinda said she felt very emotional but planned to go to a memorial service later to mark the tragedy.


Hundreds of office workers stood silently in Tavistock Square as London Mayor Ken Livingstone, the driver of the number 30 bus, George Psaradakis and transport commissioner Peter Hendy laid large wreaths in the square just yards from where the bus bomb went off.

Grim-faced, none of the men had words for the waiting media. People from the British Medical Association stood on the balcony of the building watching the wreath-laying ceremony.

Some of their colleagues lined the streets. Aside from a helicopter hovering overhead, silence fell across this assorted crowd of Londoners.


There is a much stronger police presence on the platforms at Aldgate now.

The atmosphere grew noticeably more tense as 0850 approached, the time last year when the bomb was detonated.

A few hundred yards from where we are standing, three trains were held on the platforms with their doors open while underground staff in fluorescent bibs searched the carriages.

There were then three blasts on a whistle, then the doors closed on one of the trains and it moved off into the tunnel.


Travelling here by tube, most passengers were going about their business normally.

Some were looking around at their fellow passengers, but it was hard to tell if they were doing so nervously or just with the usual inquisitiveness of tube-users.

At Edgware Road station the presence of a dozen or more police officers, a host of reporters, photographers and camera crews and a small handful of people carrying flowers, suggested this was no ordinary morning.

But as the exact time of the bombing one year ago came and went, it was largely business as usual, as Londoners went on with their lives coming and going from a busy tube station.


Someone has hung an England flag on the metal railings at the edge of the square. In each of the white corners is written a message: "Hatred is blind, anger is foolhardy, vengeance is bitter, compassion heals, forgiveness sets us free."

Not everyone passing through the square realised what the preparations are for. One man thoughts it was a film set.

But later this morning mayor Ken Livingstone is due to appear, followed shortly by 80 or so families and friends of the dead. They will walk from the BMA, where so many of their relatives were treated a year ago, to an enclosed area where they will have a moment shielded from the glare of the media.

An Asian woman appeared in the square earlier on clutching some flowers - she was so upset that she could barely get the words out to ask a policeman to lay her offering with the rest of a growing pile of floral tributes.

One of the messages on them is "Marie and the innocent - lest we forget."


There's a large media presence here with dozens of cameras, press and radio reporters and photographers enclosed in a special pen opposite the memorial gardens.

A crowd of several hundred is gathered here now - among them businessmen and women in suits, office workers, construction workers, parents with children and a scattering of tourists.

Some have come here especially. Many have simply taken time out of their journey to work to take in the memorial.

Most stand in silence or comfort each other. Some of those directly caught up in the bombings last year are obviously finding today difficult.

At 0850 Tessa Jowell and London mayor Ken Livingstone laid wreaths in silence before standing back for a minute or two of quiet contemplation as the rush hour traffic roared around the station.


Mayor of London Ken Livingstone is now laying his wreath. The train was barely 300 yards out of the station when the bomb was detonated. This is a moment to remember not only those who died - 26 on that train and 52 who died on that day.

It is also day to remember the hundreds who were wounded and the thousands traumatised and many families who have been bereaved, for whom this must be a very very difficult day.

Traffic flows by and the business of the city goes on - this is a normal working day - but people around the garden stand still in honour of the victims.

Mr Livingstone has said: "More than anything I am proud of Londoners for the way they coped one year ago. "The debt we owe to the emergency services is impossible to describe," he said.

"We should pledge never to forget those whose lives were ruined by 7 July. It is our duty to look after them in every way we can."


A crowd is gathering outside King's Cross where in about 20 minutes' time Tessa Jowell and London mayor Ken Livingstone are due to lay flowers at a memorial garden for victims of the 7 July bombs.

A handful of floral tributes has already been left by a steady trickle of people, some of them in tears.

Commuters and police at King's Cross station
Chaplains and Salvation Army officers are on hand to comfort those who need it and there is also a large police presence, including community support officers and patrols with sniffer dogs.

The atmosphere in the station and on the Victoria Line is subdued as commuters head to their destinations with sombre faces. Most of them are carrying on as normal, but it does not feel like a normal day.


People are now streaming into Aldgate station. Most have been happy to stop and talk about their feelings on the anniversary. The overwhelming message from everyone I've spoken to is that life goes on.

"If life doesn't go on, you let them win," said John Hooke, a London Underground instructor. Others, such as office worker Natasha Aiken, said they were in a sombre mood and spoke about how they would be observing the two-minute silence later.


Tavistock Square is closed to traffic today but a steady flow of commuters is passing through on foot. Preparations are under way for the events to mark the anniversary of last year's atrocity where a bus was blown up.

I am currently outside the BMA at the point the number 30 bus was actually hit. A placard on the side of the building is due to be unveiled later in the day.

In the garden square, which a statue of Ghandi overlooks, television crews mingle as preparations go on for a memorial event.


Travelling into Paddington there was no escaping that one year ago London was the target of suicide bombers.

Three police officers in fluorescent jackets stood at the station entrance, a sight usually associated with rowdy Friday nights.

Fellow passengers chatted on the platform about where they were and what they were doing when the news of the explosions filtered through.

Bombed bus in Tavistock Square
And there was some morbid discussion about why they (the bombers) had not chosen an earlier time to detonate the bombs.

After the usual safety announcement on the train came a call for extra vigilance and notice of a two minute silence in memory of those who were killed.

But the stampede to leave the train showed that despite the anniversary it was very much business as usual.


I have just travelled on a Circle Line train from Liverpool Street to Aldgate. It felt slightly eerie to retrace the steps of Shehzad Tanweer, almost exactly a year to the day that he detonated a bomb, killing himself and seven other passengers.

The mood was very much business as usual on the train as it edged slowly into the platform at Aldgate. My carriage was half empty, but it was only the black borders on the front pages of people's newspapers which suggested this might be anything other than an ordinary day.

There are about a dozen police officers milling around in the station entrance, but the police presence is not heavy-handed.

I also spotted a uniformed officer on the platform peering back into the tunnel towards Liverpool Street. If anything the police are probably outnumbered by reporters and photographers and I can see two TV satellite trucks parked outside the station.

There are very few people on the streets here.


A year on, as the cars crawl by and the commuters walk purposefully onto the station concourse, people have begun to leave flowers here in memory of when, deep underground, the terrorists caused such havoc and inflicted such enduring pain.

More flowers will be laid outside King's Cross at 0850 this morning, the time when the three tube bombs exploded.

A similar, simple ceremony will take place just under an hour later at Tavistock Square, marking the moment when the bomb on the number 30 bus was detonated.

This evening the bereaved and injured will take part in a service of remembrance. Some of them have been angered by the government's failure to hold a public inquiry and by the way their compensation claims have been handled.

Today will primarily be an occasion for them when their memories, never far from the surface, will once again be relived.

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