Socialist Worker

Hundreds turn out in Slough to oppose racist EDL, but face police crackdown

by Sarah Cox
Issue No. 2389

Anti-EDL protesters in Slough

Anti-EDL protesters in Slough (Pic: Sarah Cox)


The racist thugs of the English Defence League (EDL) failed to bring division to Slough on Saturday of last week.

They only got around 150 for their national demonstration. The local counter-protest organised by Slough Trades Council and Unite Against Fascism (UAF) brought some 300. 

It was supported by Sikhs Against the EDL, Ealing Trades Council and councillors including Slough MP Fiona McTaggart. Many local people joined it as the EDL reached the shopping centre. 

The EDL could only achieve their aim of marching through the town and holding a rally in a deserted square thanks to a heavy police mobilisation.

The police were so determined to ensure that the racists were able to march and hold their rally that they cleared the road for them.

They pushed local shoppers and spectators off the pavement and manhandled photographers. They also shut the shopping centre, leaving hundreds of people inside.

As the EDL reached the High Street, a small group of anti-fascists ran out in an effort to confront them. 

Mounted police rode at them, brandishing truncheons and knocking down stalls and barriers with banners attached to them. 

The Sikhs Against the EDL’s banner was also confiscated by police, and four arrests were made after the police drove at the counter-protest with horses and dogs. 

The local trades council and UAF are now organising a public meeting to build for the 22 March demo against racism in central London.

 


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