The streets of the UK have been much more calm this evening than the previous four. The vandalism and looting is by no means as widespread as has been seen during previous evenings. 16,000 police officers descended on the streets of London and this seemed to keep those intent on causing misery, disruption and vandalism at bay in the capital. With there being 10,000 or so officers more in London this evening than there had been last night it would appear that the police would have been better able to respond to any trouble that broke out in the capital. This much larger police presence appears to have deterred those who might otherwise have taken to the streets from going out.
Other cities around England have sadly seen some vandalism and looting. Police in Greater Manchester appear to have been dealing with the worst of the violence this evening. However, the scenes in Manchester are not anywhere near as bad as those seen over the last few nights in London and Birmingham. Those who have taken to the streets in the Greater Manchester force area are still causing damage and managing to, for the most part, keep ahead of the police. Greater Manchester Police earlier held a press conference stating that they had significant CCTV footage and that they would be arresting individuals as early as tomorrow in relation to the criminal activities of those this evening who have decided to take to the streets.
In Manchester arrests have been made this evening, but the police operation is fast moving and that 47 people had been arrested in Manchester and Salford (at the time of publication). Greater Manchester Police also reporting that there are sporadic fires across the force area. Greater Manchester Police Assistant Chief Constable, Gary Shewen, said “”We have been shocked by the level of violence we have seen this evening. The level of violence has taken us all by surprise.”
Birmingham has also been the scene of more damage and looting, but again not to the same extent as has been seen in previous evenings. There has been reports of some standoffs between police and youths in the City Centre and West Midlands reporting arrests from around the force area in relation to vandalism and looting.
Nottinghamshire Police reported that a police station in their area had been firebombed by 30-40 men. Nottinghamshire Police are reporting that 8 people have been arrested in relation to the firebombing.
Police in Liverpool are reporting that a large group of youths have gathered and are causing disorder have gathered in Smithdown Road in South Liverpool and are asking people to avoid this area.
A 21 year old man has been arrested in relation to a massive fire that destroyed Reeves furniture store in Croydon. The image of this store burning was featured heavily on the BBC News 24 coverage of the riots in London on Monday. The Metropolitan Police are reporting 685 arrests to date in relation to the riots over the last few nights. The Metropolitan Police have released a breakdown of the 111 people charged to date which includes 69 charges of burglary and 13 for Public Order Act Offences.
Reports on arrests are coming in from forces all over England, many of which appear to be in relation to isolated and sporadic incidents rather than large scale public disorder.
The Prime Minster has recalled Parliament. Statements and debates will be held on the riots seen around England on Thursday.