London attack: ‘Business as usual’ for defiant MPs and commuters

“We are going to do work as usual. We are not going to let it get us down. The security services have done an amazing job. We can put our trust in them I think.”

Eric Lomas summed up the feelings of many Londoners in the aftermath of Wednesday’s attack on Parliament, which left four people, including a police officer and the attacker, dead.

After the initial shock and confusion when news of the attack broke, and the text messages from loved ones asking if they were OK, the mood quickly settled into one of quiet defiance.

“To be honest, all of us have been expecting something of this sort,” said Mr Lomas, who works in Parliament Street, which was inside the police cordon on Wednesday.

“We’ve just been wondering what form it might take. Luckily the injuries and deaths are much smaller than it would have been with a major explosion, but we still feel very sorry for those who are affected by it. We are always on our guard though.”

Watching commuters stream out of Charing Cross station, next to Trafalgar Square, it felt like the hectic rhythm of London life had barely been interrupted.

The only real difference was the empty streets around Parliament and the heavy police presence at road junctions.

Cyclists had The Mall and the other broad avenues around Parliament to themselves, and the flags on government buildings were flying at half-mast.

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