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Harringay, Haringey - So Good they Spelt it Twice!

Every time I visit Harringay's Grand Parade, at the end of my road (hard to avoid) I get approached by beggars, some of whom can be very determined and aggressive.

One followed me some way today screaming at me to give him £2. Others sit passively by the roadside and bleat after you as you pass by.

Now I know begging is illegal but there seem to be no efforts by the police to combat it. There are CCTV cameras all over the place, but they all seem to ignore begging, which is just as much a crime as running a red light or parking in a bus lane. I honestly feel threatened.

For many years I've praised Green Lanes (I've lived here for thirty years) and Harringay as an example of multi-ethnic culture, but now I'm about ready to move out.

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It's a tough one if you feel genuinely threatened. Fortunately I don't feel threatened as you do.

I haven't thought through the policy issues associated with this. So I'll keep my own counsel. 

Have you thought about having a word with the St Ann's neighbourhood Police? 

You can add comments on the police neighbourhood page for St Ann's. Alternatively they do run drop-in surgeries in local cafes and other venues. 

It's also worth getting in touch with the Garden's Residents' Association who have an establised relationship with the police and no doubt raise this issue with them. 

Sorry you feel threatened. You shouldnt. As a sober healthy person you are a lot stronger than them. If someone follows you make them aware that you are uncomfortable (loudly stating 'can you stop following me'). If you get abuse get your phone out and say you are calling the police. 99% of the time they will back off.

Part of feeling threatened is that I think if I take any counter-moves such as threatening to call the police it may escalate the situation and provoke violence (and it would be a threate I wouldn't be able to carry out,m since I don't carry a mobile phone). My son has been stabbed once up in the vicinity of Turnpike Lane station, and I think we are all aware of the growing amount of knife crime in his and other areas of the city. To be fair (!) I accept that most beggars will simply accept a simple no, but some now seem to be getting more determined not to take no for an answer.

And you may well lose the phone, if you have one :-)

Sorry your son got stabbed. There is escalating knife crime, there is also the old mantra of standing up to bullies. As grown adults we have to step in sometimes. The other day I was counting my change when a begger said 'give me it'. I straight up told him to go f*** himself. If you are concerned about being attacked take a self defence class (don't mean that in a patronising way). 

I somehow think that taking a self-defence class would mean the intimidators have won.

Well the intimidators are not going to go away. But the problem with self-defence classes is that the baddies are going to be faster and more determined than you and less worried about the outcome.

I don't think learning how to defend yourself equates to anyone winning. Im 170lb and very strong but know the basics of self defence (always watch the hands)  and I just wont put up with any bs. 

Whereas I am 72 years old and very frail.How would you suggest I defend myself?

Honestly? If you arent able to physically defend yourself scream as loud as you can. If you are bear hugged from behind dead weight your body. If someone lunges at you make your right hand into a fist to protect your head then use your left hand to jab them in the throat. Always watch there hands. Hope you are never in that kind of situation. 

Ah, the arrogance of youth Graham.

If LJD survives to our age, she may then understand how advancing years rob us of strength and speed of reaction. Being attacked in the street is very different to the situation in the gym or dojo where you EXPECT an attack. In the street your first reaction is " This can't be happening to me "

Then it's " Dammit, what was it I was supposed to do ? "

Well given I take care of myself and am streetwise I very much expect to surpass your age. My Dad is 73 and as sharp as ever. Some people are just lucky I guess. 

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