Secret Millionaire made New Addington 'look like scumland'
A PROGRAMME which this week plunged the estate into the limelight has been slammed for portraying the area as a "scumland".
On Monday the New Addington estate, including Fieldway, was featured on the hit Channel 4 programme Secret Millionaire.
More than £50,000 was pledged to a variety of good causes by Croydon businessman Bobby Dudani, founder of the global chain Computer Exchange, who went undercover for the show.
But many have claimed the episode has done "more damage than good".
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There are concerns that the way the area and its residents were portrayed has set the estate's reputation back by years.
Outraged residents took to social networking sites to vent their anger, which has been shared by those in authority.
Dawn Edwards wrote: "This is really embarrassing to watch; they are painting it to be a scumland full of thugs."
Simone Johnson added: "I just want to cry, this is our home they are making look like scumbag central.
"Feeling a little like blood money at the moment."
And the fury was shared by Councillor Simon Hall, who said: "Of course all of the causes who were given money completely deserve it and do good work, but I couldn't help feel disappointed at the way Channel 4 decided to portray the area.
"We accept we have challenges we need to deal with up here but it wasn't a fair representation."
Part of the show featured on a 20-year-old boy named Alex who threatened to rob and attack the secret millionaire. Residents insist the boy was not a true representation of the majority of young people living on the estate.
Causes given money were the Timebridge Centre, which received £21,000; Pandemic Steel Orchestra which provides musical tuition to students and received £12,500; New Addington Boxing Club which received £17,500 and Croydon Auto Bike Scheme – part of the Croydon Youth Development Team – which received £15,000.
And Timebridge Centre's Youth Club, which had been under threat of closure because of funding issues a while back, shared some of the frustration.
Chair of the centre Terry Gillam said: "We are really grateful for the money and it will do a lot of good.
"This is the start of things for us.
"But it was a little bit frustrating to be honest. It felt like we were sidelined when we could have been recognised a bit more for all the hard work we do up here.
"They filmed for quite a while up here and we run some great activities for some great kids and none of it was shown."