Tom Berwick says his ‘life is ruined’ after fatal injury in pride attack

A man whose back was broken during a homophobic attack at London Pride has spoken out about the damage caused to him by the incident.

Tom Berwick, 50, said his life has been “ruined” by the perpetrator and admitted his pet-shop business is “struggling” because of his injuries.

Berwick spoke out about his slow recovery in an interview with the London Evening Standard and says he’s now housebound on crutches.  

The attack took place in the early hours of July 8, following London’s pride celebrations the day before.

Berwick was walking along Greek Street in Soho towards Tottenham Court Road, where he was planning to take a bus home, when he was attacked from behind.

“A second later I felt a crack on my back like I was kicked,” he said to the Standard. “I went straight down. They took my phone and ran, it was all over in a second.”

After the attack Berwick somehow managed to get on a Central Line train to Stratford – and passengers rushed to his aid when they noticed he was in pain. But he doesn’t remember how he got on the train.

“I just remember waking up on the Central Line, and then the pain really kicked in – it was excruciating,” he told the Standard.

He spent 10 days in hospital, and was released with a spinal brace and put on a high dose of pain medication. He has also started a course of physiotherapy.

The incident is being treated as a hate crime “due to offensive language heard by the victim” shortly before the attack, police explained.

“Nothing like this has ever happened to me,” Berwick said. “I’ve been out since I was 18 and never come across any hate stuff like this,” he added.

A man rides a tube escalator decorated with the Pride flag colours (Photo by Carl Court/Getty Images)

There have been no arrests.

“Detectives have carried out extensive CCTV enquiries to identify the suspect(s),” said a spokesman for the Met.

“They would like to hear from anyone who witnessed the assault which happened following Pride in London. The area would have been busy at the time. Officers would also like to speak with anyone who helped him off the tube at Stratford.”

Anyone with information is asked to call the Community Safety Unit at Westminster via 101, or ring Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.