Hackney Council apologises for removing Godwin Lawson memorial

The Godwin Lawson memorial cleared by Hackney Council

The Godwin Lawson memorial was cleared by Hackney Council Photos © 2010 Hackney Citizen

A memorial to murdered teenager Godwin Lawson has been cleared away by Hackney Council.

The Council has removed the street tribute and destroyed personal items belonging to Godwin Lawson, 17, who died after being stabbed on 27 March in Amhurst Park, Stamford Hill.

Speaking to BBC London news yesterday, Godwin’s mother, Ms Yvonne Lawson said, “They didn’t have any empathy… His jacket was there. You can’t replace that, and his football boots. We were going to put all that in his coffin, because it meant so much to him.”

Ms Lawson said she wants “the Council to show some remorse, to put something in Godwin’s memory.”

She claimed the Council was insensitive and showed little respect in clearing and destroying Godwin’s memorial.

A Hackney Council spokesperson said, “The Council has apologised unreservedly to the family of Godwin Lawson through the police family liaison officer for the mistake which led to the removal of personal memorial items.

“Staff had been informed not to remove anything apart from dead flowers from this site and we are currently reviewing our policy to ensure this painful error cannot happen again.”

Asked by Hackney Citizen if it would be willing to honour Ms Lawson’s request for a new memorial to mark her son’s death, Hackney Council responded, “We are happy to work with the family and support them to find an appropriate way in which Godwin’s life can be celebrated.”

Moise Avorgah, 19, of Tottenham was remanded in police custody in April and charged with Godwin Lawson’s murder.

Murdered teenager Godwin Lawson

Murdered teenager Godwin Lawson



Real news stories don't come cheap.

The Hackney Citizen is the borough’s only independent newspaper, and is now in its tenth year.

Our hard-hitting journalism has uncovered fire safety failures in tower blocks, revealed plans to criminalise rough sleepers, exposed dodgy letting agents and reported on many other issues of public concern.

We’ve always been totally free in print and online, but advertising revenues are falling.

That’s why we’re asking for your help.

Hackney Citizen’s high quality journalism is produced by a small team on a shoestring budget, so we’re asking you to make a monthly contribution to fund our work, enabling the paper to survive and thrive.

Support the Hackney Citizen from as little as £2 per month.

Can you spare £4 a month or more? Get the paper delivered direct to your door each month! (UK only)