On the 6th of August last year, the worst public order situation faced by Britain in decades occurred. What started as a small, peaceful protest outside a police station in North London soon expanded past the boundaries of Tottenham to many other areas across the capital. In all, 22 boroughs were affected by the riots, which caused an estimated £370m of damage.
Today, much of the damage to buildings has been repaired, and the community is starting to get back on its feet. The effects of the riots run deep though, not only physically and emotionally, but economically. There is the well-publicised story of 90 year barber, Aaron Biber, whose Gentleman’s Hairdressing business was ransacked, its windows smashed. He says business is significantly down compared to before the riots, and has not picked up despite visits from Spurs player Peter Crouch and the Mayor, Boris Johnston.
Sadly, Mr Biber wasn’t insured. But, hearing his plight, a local advertising agency started a blog-campaign to raise funds for Mr Biber’s barbers. £35,000 was donated in just 72 hours.
While such rioting is unlikely to occur again on such a scale, the experiences of many thousands of people do highlight the benefits of being insured, whether its contents insurance, landlords building insurance or one of the various other policy types available. When the worst happens, it does provide a real crutch to lean on.