Belfast Telegraph

London GP recognised for work with victims of terrorism

Dr Jennie Read was described as ‘instrumental’ in supporting victims of the London Docklands terrorist attack on February 9 1996.

Office buildings in London Docklands devastated by the 1996 bomb blast (David Giles/PA)
Office buildings in London Docklands devastated by the 1996 bomb blast (David Giles/PA)

A London GP has been recognised for her support for victims of terrorism.

Dr Jennie Read helped a number of survivors of blasts such as the IRA bomb which devastated London Docklands in 1996, killing two people and injuring scores of others.

The Docklands Victims Association (DVA) presented Dr Read, of the Limehouse Practice in London, with the award as she prepares to retire.

She was described as “instrumental” in helping those suffering from PTSD across her 27-year career, and has also raised money for severely disabled orphaned children in Thailand.

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London GP Dr Jennie Read receives an award from the Docklands Victims Association in recognition of her work helping survivors of terrorism from DVA president Jonathan Ganesh. (Jonathan Ganesh/PA)

Two men in a nearby newsagents, shop owner Inam Bashir, 29, and employee John Jeffries, 31, were killed on February 9 1996 and more than 100 people were injured following the Docklands bombing. 

Jonathan Ganesh, who was severely injured in the blast, said Dr Read had helped him to cope with the trauma he survived.

“Our community and the NHS have been very fortunate to have retained a GP whose compassion for others has undoubtedly alleviated suffering,” he said.

“As a victim of terrorism I shall never forget the help she gave me and others during this very difficult period.”

Ihsan Bashir, who lost his brother Inam in the bombing, added: “I commend Dr Read for her dedication. She is a credit to the NHS and is an illustration that GPs can be instrumental in helping victims of terrorism.”

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Ihsan Bashir (left) with Jonathan Ganesh, head of the Docklands victims’ campaign group (Dominic Lipinski/PA)

Dr Read was also praised by other victims of terrorism, including Joe Holbeach who was severely injured in the IRA attack on a Remembrance service in Enniskillen on November 8 1987, in which 12 people died.

“Having developed PTSD I attempted to take my own life. I appreciate the support that GPs can extend to victims of terrorism,” he said.

“I felt very touched to learn of the work of Dr Read in her community. She has helped so many victims of PTSD.

“I hope all GPs will learn from her remarkable example”.

Susanne Dodd, whose father, a Metropolitan police inspector, was killed in the IRA’s bomb attack on Harrods on December 17 1983, also paid tribute to Dr Read.

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The police operation outside the Harrods store following a car bomb blast in which five people died (PA Archive)

“As a member of the DVA awards committee and having lost my dad due to a despicable attack of terrorism I feel very moved to learn of Dr Read’s support which she extended to help those affected by acts of terrorism,” she said.

Previous recipients of a DVA award include Dr George Legg of King’s College London, artist Lucy Harrison, MP Laurence Robertson and Hunna Ihsan of Marymount School for their outstanding service to humanity.

PA

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