Proud to be from Pompey - a city that refused to riot

COMMENT: Whenever she arrives, we’ll give her a big welcome

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It was only last week that I talked about how lucky we all are to live in Portsmouth and surrounding area. I’ve said it many times throughout the two years I’ve been writing this column and I’m pretty confident – especially after this week – that I’ll continue to promote the benefits of living in our city to everybody I meet.

Do we have our problems? Of course. Can things be done to improve the city? Absolutely. But what we have is worth shouting about.

I was really moved when the people of Portsmouth refused to get involved in the rioting and looting that seems to have gripped our capital and other parts of the country.

There was some speculation and chitchat about so-called riots being planned in Commercial Road. But in the end nothing happened.

Then there was the big fire at the former Joanna’s nightclub on Southsea seafront.

I saw it with my own eyes during one of my jogs and immediately feared that somebody had tried to burn it down.

But, although investigators are not ruling out arson at this stage, it was an isolated incident and could turn out to have been caused by something else. I certainly hope that is the case.

I think all this talk of the riots being due to young people’s frustration with the political system and current economic crisis is a load of rubbish.

Such criminal acts have taken place because of nothing more than some individuals’ desire to take what isn’t theirs.

Looting is not an act of political or social protest for some greater cause. It’s simply a chance to get something for nothing.

Quite frankly I’m disgusted that the people of our country are prepared to commit such selfish acts and hit businesses already struggling in the economic climate.

I really hope that prime minister David Cameron follows through on what he said in his speech this week about bringing the rioters to justice and imposing the ‘full force of the law’. We shall see.

I’m just proud that I come from Portsmouth and that its people have not been ‘sheep’ and followed the disgraceful behaviour that we’ve seen in other cities.