X Factor winner was worried for her family and neighbourhood


Leona Lewis has revealed that she was stuck in her Hackney home during the London riots last summer.

The former X Factor winner, who was brought up in the area, was with friends at her house when the trouble began and was concerned about the welfare of those close to her.

I was worried about what would happen to the people who had their homes and businesses damaged,’ says Leona, 27.

My parents both live in Hackney too, and my dad was supposed to bring a CD round to my house that night. He rang me and said: “How badly do you want this CD? Because I’ve just seen a Mini get a petrol bomb thrown at it.”

I told him to go home straight away.’

The singer, who admits that seeing Hackney burn was really upsetting’, has since been participating in a mentoring scheme for young people in east London and hopes this can help to prevent rioting from happening again.

Winning The X Factor meant that I had access to the best mentors in the business, including Simon Cowell,’ Leona tells The Sun.

Having a mentor – someone that I can seek advice from and really learn from – has definitely helped me in my career.

And I knew I had enough knowledge to impart on these kids and to help them be even a little bit inspired.’

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Anna Francis