As I was trying to unwedge myself from Greenwich Market yesterday afternoon (I’d gone to buy an art pad from Bizili, but the place had closed, replaced with a slightly surreal Elephant Parade gift shop) I heard a cacophony of sirens. Now that’s not unusual in itself in Greenwich, so, even when I finally popped out of the scrum at Turnpin Lane and saw a flotilla of police vans, I didn’t really take much notice. But Brenda has just told me what happened, in case you were curious too.
“Depressing scenes in the Park yesterday,” she writes. “A large group had gathered – about 40 of them. A water fight escalated into two boys having a full on punch up then one running away and being chased by about 20 others. He stopped then threw a few more punches and then ran off… right in amongst families having a picnic.”
Brenda escaped to the Plume of Feathers’ garden, and the sirens began shortly after that. But she wonders “Are there still Park Police as we didnt see any all afternoon? I’ve noticed this happening quite a lot now – such a shame as its not relaxing.”
I’m pretty sure there are still park police, but I guess they tread a delicate line over how obvious a presence to be. I mean I wouldn’t want some copper breathing down my spectral neck every time I bit into my egg and cress sandwich or tried to get a kite to fly. On the other hand I expect them to be there when tedious people have too much to drink and decide to fight each other all over my picnic blanket. It’s my guess that yesterday they were in the shade somewhere. Can you imagine how hot those bullet-proof vests get?
What’s the answer, guys? Cheery plods on the beat, wandering around the park? More cameras? A van on patrol?