Flashback: Clampdown on lodgers, a cold-blooded hit and run driver and refugees found in back of a lorry

PUBLISHED: 15:00 22 September 2018

Romford Library

A look back at the biggest local stories from this day 60, 40 and 20 years ago

RRC Nostalgia wk38 40-years-ago 2-page-001RRC Nostalgia wk38 40-years-ago 2-page-001


Romford Council was clamping down on council house tenants who took in unauthorised lodgers.

In the future, applications for sub-letting would be refused if the tenant had already taken in a lodger behind the authority’s back.

This was the recommendation of the housing management committee who expressed concern at the apparent increase in illegal sub-letting.

RRC Nostalgia wk38 20-years-ago 2RRC Nostalgia wk38 20-years-ago 2

Tenants were permitted to take in lodgers if they first applied to the council.

A charge of 10s. for one person and 15s. for a couple would be made.

But far too many tenants had been taking in lodgers and keeping quiet about it so the housing committee, with a recommendation to Romford Council, registered its disapproval.


A “cold-blooded” hit-and-run driver sped off from a crash leaving one of his victims in flames and the other bleeding in the road.

Surgeons had to amputate a 22-year-old’s right foot and only a long battle by doctors saved his wife’s right leg.

Police were calling the driver “cold-blooded and merciless” and appealed for help in tracing him.

Officers said the car – a black Lotus Elan – would have been speeding along Colchester Road, Harold Wood, when it ploughed into a motorbike.

The rider’s injuries could have been much worse if it hadn’t been for the swift action of friends who were following the car.

His wife, who had been on the pillion, was lying nearby with her leg badly injured following the incident.


A storm of protest erupted after refugees, who were found in a lorry at a Romford warehouse, were allowed to walk free.

Police were called to Thorn Lighting’s warehouse, at King George Close, where 10 men were discovered in the back of a lorry delivering goods from France.

Officers arrested four Bangladeshis but to the amazement of the watching workers, six others, who claimed to be refugees from war-torn Kosovo, were pointed towards Romford train station and allowed to walk off.

Councillor Alby Tebbutt said: “It is absolutely diabolical.

“I feel the police got it wrong.

“They have no business directing them off into the wilderness.

“People arriving over here could be the top terrorists in the world.

“They ought to have taken them to the local police station and checked them out properly and then they should have been transported to the home office.

“It’s only common sense.”


Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Romford Recorder visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Romford Recorder staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Romford Recorder account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Latest Romford News Stories

Yesterday, 17:14

It might have a twitter account dedicated to parodying its daily delays, but c2c has been named the best train operator in the country at a prestigious rail industry awards night.

Yesterday, 15:00

A dedicated volunteer at Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Hospitals NHS Trust is preparing to jump out of a plane to raise funds for charity.

Yesterday, 13:42

Police and London Ambulance Service (LAS) were called to the scene at around 7am this morning.

Yesterday, 13:08

Two West Ham United players have been testing out the council’s healthy eating app alongside children in the borough.

Yesterday, 10:58

Ofsted’s chief inspector was pleased with the practical support offered to young people at a Romford support hub for children in care.

Drivers failing to look properly contributed to 168 road accidents last year in Havering.

Sunday, October 14, 2018

Letters, contributions and comments sent in from Recorder readers this week.

Sunday, October 14, 2018

Gallows Corner has been an ongoing headache for the people of Romford, Harold Hill, Harold Wood and Hornchurch for decades!


Vauxhall has completed its sport utility vehicle range with the third, and largest, Grandland X. We put the SUV, now available at Tony LeVoi in Romford, to the test.

“The time to repair the roof is when the sun is shining,” so the saying goes. So if some warm weather is making your conservatory uninhabitable, think about replacing its roof with a flat one and adding a roof lantern instead.

The next step in renewable energy could be right beneath your feet as you walk through a Romford shopping centre.

Newsletter Sign Up

Romford Recorder twice-weekly newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Most read news

Show Job Lists

Education Promo

News from your area

Digital Edition


Enjoy the
Romford Recorder
e-edition today


Education and Training


Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now