It is 20 years ago since the 1996 Docklands bomb ripped through buildings in South Quay.
But time hasn’t faded the memories for so many people affected, including survivors, victims’ family members and emergency services crews that fought to save people’s lives.
“You can’t forget. It doesn’t go away,” survivor Tony Sharp said following a memorial service held at South Quay DLR station on Tuesday, February 9.
Tony was working on the fourth floor at Franklin Mint on February 9, 1996.
He said: “At 6pm we were told to evacuate the office, but about 10 minutes later we were given the all clear and told it was ok. We still don’t know who gave that order.
“So I went back with five of my colleagues to tidy up, but as we were doing so, at 7.01pm, the bomb went off.
“I immediately went to get my coat, but my colleagues ushered me out. Once I was outside I collapsed to the floor and blacked out.”
Tony suffered a broken nose and had shrapnel embedded in his face, but he says it could have been much worse.
What happened on February 9, 1996?
At 7.01pm the IRA, aided by then Libyan dictator Colonel Muammar Gaddafi and his regime, detonated a lorry bomb by South Quay DLR Station, in Marsh Wall.
The attack resulted in the death of Inam Bashir and John Jeffries who had been working in their nearby newspaper kiosk Newstop2000.
“The thing is I used to be at the front of the building two months before, but I moved to the back. If I’d been at the front I wouldn’t be here now.
“The thing that really brings it home is my late brother’s birthday would be today, so my mum would’ve lost two sons on that day.”
Tony was among around 200 people that attended the memorial service in honour of more 40 people that were injured and two people killed - Inam Bashir and John Jeffries, who had been working in their newspaper kiosk Newstop2000 on the day of the attack.
Following the service a flock of doves, from The White Dove Company, were released as a sign of peace.
Read more: South Quay bomb remembered 15 years on
President of the Docklands Victims Association, and survivor of the attack, Jonathan Ganesh hosted the service.
He welcomed fellow victims, family members of victims, including Inam’s brother, Ishan Bashir, representatives from the London Fire Brigade, the Metropolitan Police Service, former MP Andrew MacKinlay and Tower Hamlets mayor John Biggs.
Jonathan said he had found it difficult to sleep last night, but that he was really touched by how many turned out today.
He said: “It’s been a very emotional service. Very powerful.
“All colours, religious faiths - they have united together in making a beautiful statement that we condemn all acts of terrorism around the world.
“What has touched me is that so many people came. It really says that Inam and JJ are not forgotten.
“Terrorist bombs don’t discriminate who they kill or who they maim.
“Now the DVA will still do what it does - we will speak out against terrorism and fight against it and I hope to god we will be successful.”
During the service local religious leaders from a variety of faiths came together to speak against terrorism and honour the terror attack victims.
One of the speakers, Imam Tajammul Islam, from Newham said: “It was amazing to see the doves released and it was a really nice turnout.
“It’s the first time I’ve done something like that with people from so many different faiths, but I think it worked really well.”