Friday, 13 November 2009

Campaign launched to keep BNP festival away from Denby

A CAMPAIGN to stop the BNP holding its annual festival in Amber Valley has been started by a local anti-fascist organisation.

Amber Valley Campaign Against Racism and Fascism has plans to fight the right-wing party with a 'No BNP here, thank you' campaign, which it is hoping will be taken up by other people in the borough and around the county.

The group plans on setting up a huge petition, signed by thousands of people, which it hopes will keep the event out of the area.

The group said it set up the campaign in response to the £500,000 which was spent on policing this year's Red, White and Blue festival, and the protest march of more than 1,000 people which took place in Codnor on the same weekend in August.

John Kimberley, spokesman for the group, said: "We felt most local people did not want the BNP holding its international fascist festival in our community.

"Talking with local people over the past few months it is clear they hate the bad name the BNP gives our area.

"Plus, police money could be better spent on community relations, fighting crime and supporting victims.

"We believe the best solution is that the BNP do not hold its festival here again."

A spokesman for the BNP said the party had discussed moving the three-day event elsewhere in the country following this year's festival, but no decisions had yet been made on the location for next year, which will be the party's 11th rally.

The petition against the Amber Valley rally, which has been held on land off Codnor-Denby Lane for three years, will be set up online within months.

Ripley & Heanor News

Mr Clarke sums it up nicely in the comments section when he says:

A few things people may wish to consider. At the first festival with only one solitary protester, all the usual suspects raised bogus fears about the event. But there were no traffic problems, no major complaints about noise and certainly no trouble.

Enter the protesters and problems occur. Now, those same people have to talk as though the festival and protest are one event so as to try and equate trouble with the BNP and thus perpetuate the myths that surround the party.

The festival and protest are TWO SEPARATE events. Let the protesters stomp around Codnor Rec if they want to march but keep them from blocking roads.

As for Kimberley and chum. Setting up an online petition? Why not just get off your backside and ask LOCAL people to sign on a piece of paper? An online petition will get people from all over the country to sign, maybe even some silly student types from Exeter Uni!

Finally, two quick points. Does the fact that from the whole of Denby, Codnor, Waingroves and Loscoe only nineteen people (of which, four were BNP supporters) bothered to turn up to the recent public meeting arranged by the police, give some indication as to the 'outrage' felt by local residents?

Kimberley should perhaps take a look at the local ambervalleymatters blog to see that the BNP is now the third biggest political party in Amber Valley, and closing fast on the Tories and Labour.

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