Ilford pub landlord ‘threatened with big knife’ over parking spat outside Islamic centre

David Christof standing where the attack happened

David Christof standing where the attack happened - Credit: Archant

A pub landlord who was allegedly threatened with a knife by a man over a parking spat is calling on the community to unite across all faiths.

David Christof standing where the attack happened

David Christof standing where the attack happened - Credit: Archant

David Christof, 52, manager at the Prince of Wales, Green Lane, Ilford, was putting a ticket on an illegally parked car in the pub car park, when a man rushed towards him from the direction of the Al Bayan Welfare Centre.

Joined by friends, the attacker, reportedly in Islamic dress, allegedly spat on David’s face and clothes.

David claimed the man attempted to run him over before speeding off shouting that he would come back and kill him.

“I don’t expect to be run over for a ticket,” David told the Recorder.

“I felt intimidated, I was spat at and there were so many of them using bullying tactics on my property.

“I am just doing my job, how would they like it if I parked on their drive?”

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Feeling shocked by the incident on Good Friday, David called the police, but before they arrived he said the man returned wielding a blade.

“I heard a car rev past and then it came to an emergency stop,” David said.

“The man got out the car lifted his robes and pulled out a handle of a big knife.

“I took one look at it and ran.”

The incident was recorded on the pub’s CCTV and a Met Police spokesman said a 22-year-old was arrested on suspicion of common assault. He has since been bailed.

“I am an Ilford person, I was born and brought up in Ilford,” added David.

“It has changed and so many different groups of the community don’t mix any more and it is getting segregated between communities.

“We need to stick together.”

A spokesman from the Al Bayan Welfare Centre – an Islamic centre in Green Lane – said it was upset and saddened by what happened but stressed that the attacker was not one of its users.

“What he did was completely out of order, we are aware of the individual but he does not come here.

“We warn people who come to our centre that the pub is on private land and we will continue to announce this.

“David is a good man and we are feeling bad about what happened to him.”

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