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UK riots: Hackney 'cash-mob' unites community

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A year on from the riots that swept the UK causing millions of pounds worth of damage to Britain’s high streets, the Olympic Borough of Hackney came together today to raise awareness of local businesses.

Celebrating local independent shops, residents ‘cash-mobbed’ award-winning bookshop Pages of Hackney to highlight the difficulties facing small businesses.

‘Cash-mobbing’, derived from the popular ‘flash mobbing’, involves a group arranging to meet at a store and agreeing to spend a predetermined amount and was set up by Means of Exchange, an organisation looking for ways to improve economic self-sufficiency.

Eleanor Lowenthal, owner of Pages of Hackney, welcomed the move at a time when smaller communities are missing out on much-anticipated Olympic-related business.

“We, like many local businesses, have received scant reward from the Olympic Games taking place on our doorstep,” Lowenthal commented.

“Visitors are funnelled to the Olympic site and are not always encouraged to explore the local area. I am delighted that the local community are finding ways to rally together and support local businesses and delighted to have hosted this cash mob.”

Earlier this week, the Metropolitan Police outlined a new set of standards put in place to improve communication between the force and the public following “lessons identified in key reviews of last summer’s disorder”, according to a statement.

Divided into five areas, the standards comprise promises which aim to allow boroughs and central departments to meet them and include setting up a youth engagement coordinator in each London borough and holding four open public meetings in each ward per year.

“Key issues about the way we engage with communities identified from several reviews of last summer have been brought together into our new Quality Standards for Engagement,” DAC Stephen Kavanagh from the Metropolitan Police Service explained.

“I witnessed at first hand the destructive force of last summer’s disorder and so I am totally committed to the promises we are making in these Quality Standards.

“These new standards will enable the MPS to move forward and build on our past experience, and will improve the way we listen and respond to communities in London.”

Published on Thursday 09 August by Editorial Assistant

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