Haringey Council responds to Finsbury Park safety fears after killing of Iuliana Tudos
PUBLISHED: 17:21 03 January 2018 | UPDATED: 17:54 17 May 2018
Haringey Council has today responded to calls for improved safety around Finsbury Park following the killing of barmaid Iuliana Tudos.
The 22-year-old was found dead in a hut near the softball pitches on Wednesday after going missing on Christmas Eve.
She had left friends at 8pm that night and was set to meet up with them later for Christmas Day celebrations but didn’t show up. CCTV shows her on the periphery of the park at about 8.20pm.
Tributes and donations to a funeral fund have poured in from the community, which has been hit hard by Iuliana’s tragic death.
It has also brought fears about the park’s safety to the fore. Extra officers have been patrolling Finsbury Park in the last week to reassure locals but neighbours want longer-term action.
A petition urging town hall bosses to install lighting, CCTV and wardens on footpaths has been signed by more than 3,000 people. But Haringey said the park’s safety was already being reviewed as part of a borough-wide project that began last year, and said staff would work with the police to implement any measures found necessary once the review had finished.
Last year, the Gazette reported local police tackling drug dealing in the park had complained about the Stroud Green Road gate being left open all night.
Though there is no suggestion Iuliana entered the park through the gate, police warned that the fact it didn’t close encouraged people to use it as a shortcut to and from the station after dusk, when the park is meant to be off-limits.
The farcical reason for the gate being left open is it takes two people to manoeuvre, but Haringey only has one worker for the job.
At the time Haringey said it had no plans to change the gate – and today it repeated that stance.
Haringey leader Cllr Claire Kober added: “We, like our community, are shocked and saddened by the death of Iuliana Tudos and our thoughts are with her family and friends.
“We understand this will have caused a great deal of concern. A review of parks safety in Haringey began last year and we will, of course, work with colleagues to introduce any changes found to be necessary.
“Police officers are out speaking to the community following this awful tragedy, and we will continue to work closely with the police to support their investigation.”
Kasim Lewis, 31, of Friern Barnet has been charged with Iuliana’s murder and will appear at the Old Bailey on Friday.