The high street felt somewhat blighted today, not only with bad weather and endless roadworks disrupting trade and shopper's movements, but also with the sad news of the death of 82 year old Giuseppina Fazzani in a fire at Lou's cafe, which occurred in the early hours of yesterday morning.
There was a high police presence at that end of the street as they investigate what they now believe to be an arson attack, with evidence that an accelerant was used to start the fire
on the cafe and the Vietnamese restaurant next door to it. The Fire Brigade managed to save the life of a second woman who lived on the first floor, and the Deptford Dame, who broke the story yesterday morning, points out that if the proposed closures of our fire stations go ahead, she may not have survived.
Older residents will remember Giuseppina from when the cafe was a popular haunt before it closed around 20 years ago – it was also quite a creative hub for local musicians, artists and activists. Friends and family have been leaving flowers.
Meanwhile, at the other end of the street, van loads of coppers descended on Corals, Paddy Power and Ladbrokes in what is thought to be a drugs operation. William Hill and Jennings seem to have escaped the raid. A staff member at William Hill's said, "We only sell bets here...". Of course, despite these bookies breaking the terms of their licenses by "being associated with crime and disorder or being used to support crime" (Gambling Act 2005), it'll be business as usual tomorrow, no doubt.
next post for Crossfields' remembrance of Josie.