EDL Protest Passes “Peacefully”

On the 20th February 2016, the English Defense League (EDL) decided to host a protest/ march through the otherwise quiet and quant city of Preston.

They spoke of figures of over 200 arriving, however Preston police estimated that only about 150 turned up. This is compared to the over 400 anti-protestors who turned up at the flag market.

The EDL gave chants of “E-E-EDL”, “Allah is a paedo”,”Mohammed is a paedo” and “You’re not English anymore!” as they were guided across Preston by around 400 police officers.

The anti-protestors held banners brandishing “Anti-Fascism” and “say NO to NAZIs”. They also hosted loud, upbeat music, delightful free cake and an abundance of other freebies; such as badges, coffee, sweets and Indian delicacies.

Their aim was to show that, despite the hatred created through the EDL’s message, the community can gather together peacefully and happily and show that Prestion isn’t a “White no-go area”.

No arrests were made, and local police described the event as “peaceful” despite temporary tense stand-offs.

The photo below of a woman holding a sign above her face is pretty notable. When asked if she knew what Preston was like “before”, she replied “no” and said she’s from Liverpool! [credit to my friends at Preston Blog]

Here are some of my best photographs from the day, which will also be posted on my photography page.

Preston flag market hours before anti-fascist protestors arrived.

Muslim faith groups gathered outside the waiting EDL in Black A Moor Head pub.

  

A member of the public joined the EDL crowd, only to shove them around before being removed.

  

A police officer helps a frightened elderly woman across the road.

  

EDL protestors began to heckle police and bystanders.

  

Police lined the streets as they guided the EDL protestors into their area.

  

One EDL protestor was keen to show the media her sign.

  

A small boy hands a police liaison officer a rose.

  

Freebies were passed around in the anti-protest area.

  

EDL protestors ironically gave ‘peace’ signs.

  

This EDL protestor began to threaten bystanders and the police.

  

This EDL member proceeded to glare at the media.

  

Police flooded the street as they guided the EDL out.

  

The aggressive EDL protestor from before began to shove the police before being shouted at by another officer.

  

The police liaison officer described this as the “highlight of her day”.

  

A flood of yellow jackets guided the EDL out of Preston.

  

The reminants of the EDL included a lot of discarded beer cans.

  

Police stood by at Preston train station in anticipation of EDL protestors.

  

EDL protestors heckled bystanders by chanting, “You’re not English, anymore!”

  

The Preston community stood together in love and harmony, despite EDL’s appearance.

 

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