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Tower Hamlets remembers the 25th anniversary of the Docklands bomb

Commemorative plaque at South Quay DLR Station. Image courtesy of  Transport for London

The commemorative plaque at South Quay DLR Station

People in Tower Hamlets are being asked to observe a minute’s silence at 7.01pm on Tuesday 9 February, as the borough remembers the 25th anniversary of the Docklands terrorist bombing. 

On Friday 9 February, 1996 at 19:01 IRA terrorists detonated a terrorist lorry bomb at Marsh Wall, adjacent to South Quay Docklands Light Railway (DLR) station. 

The incident resulted in the death of Inam Bashir and John Jeffries who had been working in their newspaper kiosk Newstop2000. The bomb had been parked adjacent to Inam and John’s newspaper kiosk and the unimaginable force of the explosion, which obliterated the area, also left many people severely injured. More than 100 people were injured and many are still living with life changing injuries today.     

This Tuesday, a socially distanced act of commemoration led by Rev Ed Dix of St Luke’s Church Millwall, will take place at South Quay DLR station, where a commemorative plaque has been installed in memory of the victims of the atrocity.

John Biggs, Mayor of Tower Hamlets, will join survivors of the bombing and people from the local community at the commemoration.  

Mayor Biggs said: “I can still recall the moment when the borough felt the shock wave of the explosion on the island and the horror and devastation of what had happened became clear.

"As our community continues to live with the legacy of this horrific terrorist event, it is important for us to pause to remember John and Inam, those who were injured and those who lost their homes.”

Tony Sharp, who was working at the Franklin Mint in South Quay was severely injured on the night of the bombing and has since been actively involved in the Docklands Victims Association (DVA), led by the late Hamida Bashir,  whose 29-year old son Inam, was killed, and Jonathan Ganesh, who was severely injured in the attack and was also a friend of Inam and John.

Tony said: “The day of the bombing, which is also my brother’s birthday, will always be significant for me. I was working on the fourth floor at the back of the building and the impact of the blast caused severe injuries. I rushed out and the emergency services whisked me off to the Royal London Hospital. 

“On the first anniversary of the blast, I approached St Luke’s to hold a commemorative event, and it is important to mark the anniversary every year.”

On board DLR trains, Passenger Service Agents will observe a one-minute silence at 7.01pm. Transport for London will also run a message on the station’s platform information screens.

Marcus Barnett, Metropolitan Police Borough Commander (BCU) for Tower Hamlets and Hackney said: “It is important that we take the time to remember those from our community who were killed or injured in this absolutely horrific attack 25 years ago. We must not forget the tragic loss of lives; the pain suffered by the family and friends of those killed and injured, and those who lost their properties and their livelihoods. Our thoughts are with those who are remembering their loved ones today and those who continue to be affected by this attack.”

Posted on Monday 8th February 2021