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Crowds gather in Harlesden for illegal street party

PUBLISHED: 10:53 03 June 2020 | UPDATED: 16:12 03 June 2020

Crowds attend 'Block Party' in Harlesden. Picture: David Nathan

Crowds attend 'Block Party' in Harlesden. Picture: David Nathan

Archant

Massive crowds attended an illegal street party in Harlesden as police helicopters hovered overheard.

Crowds attend 'Block Party' in Harlesden. Picture: David NathanCrowds attend 'Block Party' in Harlesden. Picture: David Nathan

Hundreds of people swarmed into Gifford Road and neighbouring streets last night (June 2) for the ‘block party’ ignoring covid-19 lockdown measures.

Music was played, fireworks were launched and people partied for hours, it’s reported.

Police had earlier put in place a section 60 stop & search order covering the area authorised until 6am today “to robustly police the area and reassure the community.”

At least one person was arrested at the event which is said to have started at 6pm with police helicopters flying off at 4.30am.

Police monitor a 'Block Party' in Harlesden ended in the early hours of June 3. Picture: David NathanPolice monitor a 'Block Party' in Harlesden ended in the early hours of June 3. Picture: David Nathan

Olympic champion Audley Harrison MBE criticised people for breaking lockdown to have a party when elsewhere people are joining legitimate protests as part of the Black Lives Matter movement.

He tweeted: “I see my neighborhood where I was born #Harlesden is trending - I looked at a few posts & laaard ‍♂️ my people my people - breaking quarantine for #blm protesting makes 100% sense, but a #BlockParty Flushed face if I was a yout, I would likely have been there, but a risky move for real.”

Police gather at 'Block Party' in Harlesden. Picture: David NathanPolice gather at 'Block Party' in Harlesden. Picture: David Nathan

READ MORE: Eleven police officers injured and five arrests

READ MORE: Dawn Butler MP urges people to stay alert to covid and avoid street parties

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At around midnight @MPSBrent tweeted: “Police are currently in the area of Gifford Road, #NW10, following reports of a unlicensed music event.

“Officers are engaging and dispersing a large group of people gathered in the area. There has been one arrest.

“The National Police Air Service (NPAS) is providing assistance.”

Clive McBride, who lives on Church Road and saw the party unfold said he did not know the reason for it. “All I know is that it started around 6pm and the police arrived around 8pm,” he said.

“The police closed some of the side roads to stop anymore from joining the party, even though some revellers got through by jumping fences.

“At one stage there were fireworks which I thought would have stopped the party but the police let it continue.

The party finished around 2am and the police left around 4am, although the police helicopters continued to circle the area until 4.30am.”

He added: “Some people travelled from different areas to join the party, some even travelled from Manchester.”

Many people took to social media to condemn the event.

Harlesden councillor Joshua Murray tweeted: “As Harlesden councillor I’m embarrassed of what’s happen tonight. I will be working with community leaders to find solutions because at the end of the day my residents are suffering because few people want to have a dance during a week day when people have work the next day.”


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