Friday, 4 October 2013

Facebook party: £1m home gatecrashed by up to 600 revellers -

Worried friends of Christopher's parents rang Mrs Seale and her husband, a company director, who were on holiday at the time to tell them their house was being wrecked.

Mrs Seale warned parents that the same thing could happen to them if their children's privacy settings on Facebook were not set to a high enough level.

"All parents should be warned that this could happen if you go away and leave your 17-year-old alone," she said.

"I think if anyone is going to throw a party, they need to look at their privacy settings on Facebook.

"It's absolutely essential that children are made aware of this."

Neighbours reported seeing "hundreds" of teenagers scattered in the street outside the house in Highgate, north London, during the party just over a week ago.

Christopher, who attends £18,000-a-year Mill Hill school, had invited 60 friends round to his house on Saturday, September 21, but a friend who posted the gathering on Facebook did not realise the online invitation could be seen by anyone.

As a result hundreds of teenagers headed straight to their street and house to get drunk and cause trouble.

Laughing gas canisters were tossed across Mrs Seale's ruined living room carpet and a skylight was damaged after one of the partygoers fell on it.

One neighbour, who didn't want to be named, said Christopher was desperately trying to keep revellers out.

"It started to get out of hand quite quickly. They were fighting to get through the door," he said. "I saw him standing there trying to shut the door.

"He couldn't fit them all in. I'm pretty sure he didn't know what he had let himself in for.

"There were kids out in the street singing and dancing."

Mrs Seale, whose daughter Anna, 15, goes to £17,500-a-year Highgate School, said the last thing she told her son before she went away on holiday was: "Don't have any parties."

She said: "The carpet was trashed and they damaged a skylight because somebody fell on it. They could have been killed.

"Even though it had been cleaned up when I got back from France, everything felt sticky and dirty and it stank."

However, her son appeared to have learnt his lesson, she admitted.

She said: "Since the party Christopher seems to be working really hard at school,"

"Maybe he's been hit by the realisation that the things he does will have consequences."

Six backup units of officers were needed to break up the crowd, according to neighbours in Gladsmuir Road.

Mr Grant, who lives a few doors from the property, said: "I came back along Gladsmuir Road after having dinner in town as the event was reaching its height and there was a large crowd of teens, probably between 16 and 20 years old, in the street.

"I live around three or four doors up from the property where the party was taking place and once I was inside my wife and I looked over our back terrace down to the back garden, which was absolutely rammed with people.

"I made my way inside to make sure my wife was OK – we live a few doors up but my neighbours who lived closer said they were anxious about damage while the crowds were milling about outside their front doors."

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