Monday, April 04, 2005


When Mr Howard took a look at a traveller site at Crays Hill, near Wickford in Essex, he was given a lot of stick for his demonising of a community of school governors, car tax payers and other upstanding citizens, seeking only to live their immemorial existence at peace with all - but now living in fear of Howards pogroms.

I can't be sure ... but would that be this site at Wickford ?

Amelia Whale, shown here celebrating her 100th birthday, refused to move from the home she shared with her younger brother Leonard in Islington, despite four break-ins in 18 months.

Police installed security bars and CCTV last year after the third burglary. But that did not stop Bernard Gallagher, 23, and Mark O'Brien 26, raiding her home last September and stealing £2,000.

The pair, both travellers, were caught on camera and traced to a campsite. They now face jail.

Miss Whale, a former leather worker, had lived in the house off Essex Road, for 93 years.

Gallagher and O'Brien admitted one count of burglary in court last Friday.

Snaresbrook Crown Court heard that they and an accomplice forced their way in while Miss Whale was in the sitting room. They then ransacked the flat, rifling through boxes and throwing them on to the floor.

They even dragged Miss Whale up from her chair to search underneath for her pension book. She was unable to stand up by herself.

Eventually the burglars discovered the Whales' life savings, stashed in a shoe box.

The CCTV set up at Miss Whale's home helped identify all three men. Police arrested Gallagher and O'Brien at a caravan site in Wickford, Essex. They will be sentenced on Friday, but the hunt for their accomplice goes on.

The thing I love about the modern Left is their concern for the truly vulnerable in society.

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