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Internet sensation riot speech woman ’embarrassed’

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Summary of story from The Daily Telegraph, August 10, 2011

The woman named the ‘Heroine of Hackney’ has spoken of her embarrassment at becoming an internet sensation after confronting rioters on a street corner in east London.

Pauline Pearce, a 45 year-old jazz singer and community radio activist, shook her walking stick at youths, told them they were looters without a cause and said it made her ashamed to come from Hackney.

In the clip, filmed by The Daily Telegraph, she asked the rioters: “Why are you burning people’s shops that they have worked hard to build up?”

“And for what, just to say you are warring and a badman? This is about a man who was shot in Tottenham, this ain’t about busting up the place.”

“We’re not gathering together to fight for a cause, we’re running down Foot Locker and thieving shoes, dirty thieves.”

After more than a million people logged on to watch the video, she said yesterday: “I had to say my piece and everyone stood and listened and some people were saying ‘Hear hear.’ Some people even clapped, but now I feel embarrassed.”

  1. I saw that video, nice to hear from the woman concerned again.

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