News: Saturday sparks and crowds

Just as the suicide bombers hit Bali yesterday a power surge at London Bridge caused a few sparks along the tracks and caused a mild case of pandemonium south of the Thames.

Meanwhile closer to WC1, there were plenty of punters out and about as Oxford Street closed to traffic so there could be a street party. The effort was to boost sales that have been sluggish even before the July bombings.

No number of street performers bussed in from Covent Garden can conceal the fact that Oxford Street is a bit of a disaster. The shops east of Oxford Circus are mostly rubbish, and what is west to Marble Arch you have to fight through the crowds on poorly maintained footpaths. Oxford Street is really something to cross to get to the gym, to get to Soho, or to go anywhere else…

Later in the day the punters were out at the Astoria in force as Robbie Williams was doing what was described as "a small preview concert" of his latest album. Who would have thought so many females under 25 could be concentrated around such a small area of Tottenham Court Road?

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