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Romford County Court

From: Etienne le wig
Category: Other stuff
Date: 14 November 2003


Clumsy concrete in the heart of Havering, near police station and other civic blandishments. A walk through the newly renovated 'Liberty' shopping centre and neo-con imperialistic nightmares rise up. A more traditional traipse through the market-in-an-underpass eases the fears - this could only be Britain - the Britain of Barrymore, Bushell and Baldness.

The interior of the building has a new security desk, designed to stop the Court being flown into a tall building in Stratford. A woman from the Council's surveyors has her camera confiscated, and my phone is checked to ensure that I cannot snap a judge. The plywood-look panelling and bilious green leather look seats convey no gravity, only gloom. Litigants spill out of the waiting area and down the stairs - the young, old, injured and repossessed, and I am smug at the head of the queue. I get my comeuppence in Court - the judge has already made up his mind before I sit down and my morning is a short fiasco.

So back through the town, past Steak Bake and Big Mac and Pie and Mash. There is something innocent about the way it is all presented, just twenty train minutes from the hip heart of the South East on which it depends, and which sneers basely back at it. Romford is more British than London would ever dare try to be.

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