Now an Ilford businessman gets verbally abused for flying the St George flag to support England in the World Cup
PUBLISHED: 16:55 28 June 2018 | UPDATED: 17:46 28 June 2018
An Ilford shop owner was verbally abused for decorating his shop with England flags to support our boys in the 2018 World Cup.
Khalid Hussain of K1 Tyres, Ilford Lane, was subject to a barrage of unprintable insults after flying St George Flags.
The incident comes days after a shop manager on the same street told the Recorder about being sent abusive letters by a racist troll - GMS Heating & Plumbing Spares, was shocked to receive hate mail saying that as an Indian he should not be showing support for the three lions.
Mr Hussain, who is also chairman of the South Ilford Business Association said this is not the first time he has had racist comments at his premises.
“We support England, we love England, this is our country - we don’t care what people think,” Khalid told the Recorder.
“We have put up flags for years and these lowlifes are not going to stop us.
“If they don’t like it, they know what they can do.”
Resident, Harmander Singh, said both shops have supported England for “donkey’s years” and the abuse is very disappointing.
He said the borough is normally known for its multi-cultural peace and harmony and that is why so many people want to live in such a vibrant and diverse area.
“The note writer certainly didn’t go to a Redbridge School, it would have been better written,” he said.
“We have really good schools in the borough.
“Everyone should be able to show support to England, no matter how they play.”
On Thursday, June 21, GMS Heating & Plumbing Spares, was sent an anonymous, handwritten, note asking if the owner had forgotten his skin colour and his motherland, after he adorned the front of his shop with patriotic banners.
He wrote that the manager should be flying a different flag and said if the National Front saw his display they would “kick you back to India without your trousers on”.
The heating and plumbing professional said he has shown support for England in the world cup for the past 20 years and the notes gave him the impetus to stick up even more.
“We are a family business that my father started over 30 years ago,” he said.
“He has lived in this country for around 40 years and we love this country otherwise we wouldn’t be here.
“Supporting England during the football is enjoyable and all part of the fun – and some people seem to think it is wrong for us to do because we are Indian.”
While the correspondence will not stop him, he said it has put a bit of a downer on the World Cup festivities.
“It is shocking how backward minded people think that by supporting the country you live in you will be dishonouring our religion or insulting India,” he added.
“These are the wrong people, not the ones who enjoy being part of the English culture.”
David Landau, senior caseworker at the charity Redbridge Equalities and Community Council, said abuse in any form should not be tolerated and needs to be reported.
“This is a rather unusual situation but abuse is abuse and if someone is abused for putting up England flags this is wrong,” he said.
“It shouldn’t be happening and racism needs to be condemned.”
If you value what this story gives you, please consider supporting the Ilford Recorder. Click the link in the orange box above for details.