Neighbours of the foster couple who looked after the ‘bucket bomb’ suspect have said they were ‘the only good thing about the street’.
On Tuesday police lifted a cordon surrounding the home of Ron, 88, and Penelope Jones, 71, but forensics officers could still be seen gathering evidence inside.
They are also said to have been gathering evidence inside the loft of the foster family’s home as well as lofts of neighbouring properties in Sunbury-on-Thames, Surrey.
It is understood the couple were looking after an 18-year-old Iraqi refugee who is now at the centre of the probe into the terror attack, and had previously housed 21-year-old Syrian suspect Yahya Faroukh.
Neighbours who live near Ron and Penelope Jones (pictured on a cruise) have said the couple are the only good thing about their street in Sunbury
Around 20 houses on the street were behind a cordon, which was patrolled by police, while forensics and anti-terror experts investigated
It was said that the teenager, who had not been seen by neighbours, always used the back entrance and had built the bomb in his shed while keeping other items in the loft.
Stephen Griffiths, 28, who lives opposite the house, said he saw police at least five times over the past four weeks leading up to the Parsons Green attack.
He said: ‘Ron and Penny are role models, they are the only good thing about this street, there is a lot of trouble around here with violence and drugs.
‘I heard they had come out of retirement to foster more children but now this means they will probably never be able to foster children again, it is such a shame.
‘We were told that by Tory councillor Allison Griffiths police found another bomb on Saturday morning at 9am, but were only evacuated at 1pm. I don’t understand why it took so long?
‘But I have never seen him enter or exit the house and I live opposite so it would make sense that he always used the back door.
The home of Penny and Ronald Jones in Sunbury was being searched for clues into the alleged bomb plot
Residents have told of her shock and dismay that Penny and Ron Jones had allegedly unwittingly become involved in the terror incident
‘Everything was found on Saturday morning, apparently they had guns inside too.
‘I think they were inside the loft, the wall that separate the houses is quite thin I don’t think anyone would notice if a few bricks were knocked out so I think they were in neighbours roofs too.’
One resident who lives nearby said: ‘My parents live opposite and we had heard that one of the kids was a little bit hard to handle, but it shouldn’t reflect on Ron and Penny, they do a great job and should be applauded for it.
‘Everyone wants to know who he is, we were so shocked when we heard about it.’
Another neighbour, who did not want to be named, said: ‘Nobody seems to know anything about this guy at all.
‘I knew Ron and Penelope to say ‘hi’ to, but that was about it.’
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