London will never give in to fanatics says police chief Rudd: Tube probe arrest ‘signifcant’
“The policemen are praying before their mission against terrorism.”
Penelope has previously spoken of the work she puts into caring for the foreign refugees she fosters with her 88-year-old husband – teaching them English and British values. The couple were Cops swoop in Sunbury yesterday honoured by the Queen in 2009 for their services to children and families.
Pictures captured the moment Her Majesty pinned the honour on their lapel – while proud Penelope smiled as she engaged in conversation with the Monarch.
Family friend Nikki Nicholass, said: “They’re a wonderful couple who have lived at that address ever since they were married. They’re loved and respected by everyone. They’re an amazing couple who would do anything for anyone.
“I know they housed refugees for social services for years. They’re very old but so kind – they don’t deserve this. They took on troubled kids and changed their lives for the better.”
The couple were last night believed to be with their children. Penelope, a school governor, refers to their £340,000 property in the suburban street as the “mad house”.
She has previously told how at least eight foster children have been refugees.
In an interview to promote foster caring in Surrey, the couple said: “We’ve had a real mix of children from Iraq, Eritrea, Syria, Albania and Afghanistan. One boy ... his mum was imprisoned because of her beliefs. He walked until he got on to a boat [and eventually] managed to get in a lorry travelling through Calais. He was only 15.”
Penelope became a foster mother after working in a juvenile prison and was always supported by her husband. After they received their honours she said: “I just like to be able to help people.”
They turned to fostering in the 1970s and Penelope recalled their first placement.
“If I wasn’t being called out to a police station, I was patching him up in casualty,” she said.
“That was in December 1970. Then a few years later we said we could do with another placement. I just like to be able to help people. We open our hearts to all the children. Anybody that comes to us we will do whatever we can do to help them.
“There must have been hundreds of children. I try to stay in touch with them, send them birthday cards – it’s a very extended family.”
Scotland Yard’s counter-terrorism chief Neil Basu revealed they were “keeping an open mind” as to whether there were others responsible for Friday’s attack. Mr Basu said: “We have identified 121 witnesses and spoken to 100 of them already.” LONDON’S police chief yesterday vowed the capital would never give into terror.
Metropolitan Police Commissioner Cressida Dick spoke as she joined an increased police presence on the streets, travelling on the Tube to Waterloo Station and patrolling the South Bank.
The Commissioner said: “London has not stopped after other terrible attacks and it will not stop after this one.
“The public seem to be very positive about the number of officers that we have. The great thing about London is we don’t give in, we don’t give in to terrorists, we never have and we carry on.
“So the transport system is running just as it ever did and events are going ahead. People are out and about. I’ve spoken to lots of Londoners, tourists and business people. People are here and I would say, carry on about your business and secondly, of course, be vigilant.”
“Don’t be alarmed but make sure you tell us anything that worries you.”
Of the investigation into Friday’s Tube bomb, she added: “We are making some very considerable progress.” HOME Secretary Amber Rudd said the arrest of an 18-year-old man over the Tube terror attack was “very significant” – but she could not say whether he had been on the police’s radar.
Speaking after a meeting of the Government’s emergency Cobra committee, she said: “This is a very significant arrest, the police have made very good progress. But the operation is ongoing and we will have to wait to hear from them about any more information.
“There is no doubt that this was a serious IED. It was good fortune that it did so little damage. But we are very sympathetic of course to all the people that did get affected by it.
“We will have to take all steps that we can to ensure the sort of materials that this man was able to collect become more and more difficult to combine together. We always learn from these incidents.”
PROUD AT THE PALACE Penny and Ron receive MBE from Queen in 2009 HONOUR Penny and Her Majesty DEFIANT CHIEF Cressida Dick yesterday