RIOT UPDATE 9.40pm: Croydon landmark torched by looters
One of Croydon's most famous landmarks has been set alight by the rioters.
Reeves Corner furniture store, which has stood in the town for more than 100 years, is ablaze, along with several other shops and buildings in the town centre.
Trevor Reeves, owner of the family firm, described the arson attack as "mindless thuggery".
He told the Advertiser: "My first thoughts are this is a complete catastrophe.
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"We've been here since 1867. They've (the police) completely lost control, there's no law and order.
"They should bring the Army in."
Croydon Council leader Mike Fisher has branded the disorder as "pure criminal activity by mindless thugs and morons."
He has requested police reinforcements from other areas including Surrey.
Speaking about the fire at Reeves Corner he added: "It's terrible seeing local businesses that have been around for well over 100 years being burnt to the ground.
"This has got nothing to do with what happened in Tottenham."
Mr Fisher added that the council would do whatever it could to help catch the criminals.
MP Gavin Barwell has also slammed those responsible for tonight's riots in Croydon.
Speaking in the past few minutes, he said: "I'm absolutely sickened to see this happening in our town
"My first thought is with the owners of those businesses (affected). My second thought is that it is essential that the mindless criminals responsible for this are caught."
Mr Barwell added that he hoped the rioters would have been caught on cctv and will be brought to justice.
He also welcomed David Cameron's announcement that he will be returning to the country tonight, having been on holiday in Italy.
Police officers are coming under sustained attack at the scene, while shops in West Croydon have been looted.
Our reporters at the scene have told how carjackers were targeting people in London Road, West Croydon, while shops including Tesco and Somerfield were looted.
Rioters wielding hammers have also targeted shops and businesses in the town.
Have you been caught up in the chaos? E-mail your pictures or eye-witness accounts to firstname.lastname@example.org