Mobile phone pictures lead East London fire coverage

When a huge fire ripped through an East London warehouse last week, reporters at Archant‘s East London Advertiser were told to get close enough ‘for their hair to curl”.

But it turned out to be the paper’s readers who got the best coverage of the blaze and that week’s paper’s front page picture was taken on a mobile phone.

Editor Malcolm Starbrook said: ‘It was a fascinating response. Within minutes of the fire starting we had a reader arrive at the officer offering to download a video on his mobile.

‘It just carried on from there. As fast as we received new images we posted them on line and that encouraged more readers to submit their images. The quality and standard of the submitted pictures was outstanding.”

The warehouse on the edge of the Olympic site blazed for around five hours from noon before fire crews brought it under control.

The paper, long with Archant’s other East London titles The Docklands and the Hackney Gazette, published four pages of reports and close-up pictures from readers two days later.

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