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Thursday, July 07, 2011

July 7th - Six Years On

Possibly with thanks to the
News of the World phone hacking scandal, you're going to see and hear more from the papers, radio, blogs and websites about the 6th anniversary of the July 7th London bombings on our transport system. This time six years ago, I was blogging virtually every half an hour trying to keep people informed. Then for about two months after that horrible day, virtually every day's post was about the aftermath and our attempts to get back to normality on the London Underground.

Monument in Hyde Park to the Victims of the London Bombings on July 7 by The Londoneer

Normality happened. Not overnight obviously, but we gradually began to stop looking suspiciously at people with rucksacks, or beards, or men of a particular race. We stopped having a fast beating heart each time a train got stuck in a tunnel. Numbers of police on the Tube gradually dwindled. Eventually, we began to relax and our normal moans about the Tube were more about overcrowding, signal failures, delays, Oyster card problems and not about the worry whether we'd actually arrive at our destination in one piece.

I blogged in the past how July 7th 2005 changed me in a variety of ways, I still count my lucky stars that I'm alive and able to travel on the Tube with as much nonchalance, freedom and mobility as most other commuters.

Today, many people will remember the 52 people who were killed. The permanent memorial in Hyde Park will  be the focus. There will be a service to remember the dead from 1pm to 2.30pm, organised by Survivors of Terrorism and the Tim Parry Johnathan Ball Foundation for Peace. Floral tributes will also be placed by relatives and friends of the dead at the five sites of the bombings.

Let's hope that today, will not be marred by the actions of some people who do not deserve to sleep well at night. We rose above the terrorists, we can rise above people who go to extreme lengths just to create a front page story.

This should be a day to remember those who lost their lives and also a day to support all those who were seriously injured, both mentally & physically. Ordinary travellers, whose normal Tube or bus journey turned into their worst nightmare. Please take some time out today to think about them and their families.

I would love to hear your memories of Tube travel at the time, or if you have any personal thoughts on July 7th that you'd like to share. Thank you.

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