Socialist Worker

Billy Bragg’s school visit takes the anti-fascist fight into Barking

Issue No. 2073

Billy Bragg kicked off a series of LMHR events in schools to promote the new CD with a visit to Barking Abbey, his old school, on Tuesday of last week. The school is in the east London borough of Barking & Dagenham where the BNP has 12 councillors.

Barking Abbey was the venue for the first LMHR event in the borough following the election of the BNP councillors, when Ms Dynamite spoke there. Many of its students have since got involved in the local LMHR group.

The latest LMHR visit to the school is one of five such events that have taken place in the borough in the last few months, organised with the help of Barking & Dagenham National Union of Teachers.

Some 300 pupils – the whole of Year 11 – took part in the visit, and were treated to an exclusive preview of the video of Roll Deep’s “Racist People”.

Billy talked about the link between music and politics, and how his biggest inspiration was seeing The Clash play the famous 1978 Rock Against Racism carnival – leading to him becoming a politically committed artist.

He stressed the importance of a new generation of bands and artists now taking up the torch for LMHR against today’s fascists – the BNP – and urged students to get involved by putting on their own LMHR gigs and standing up against racism wherever it arises.

Scores of pupils signed up to get involved in LMHR to challenge the BNP’s presence in their borough. They now plan to put on their own event at the school early next year.

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