To London for the Patriotic March with March for England, UBA, EDL and others.
I met March for England by Westminster underground station as they formed up ready to move as one group to the rallying point in Tothill Street.  In Tothill Street there was a lot of press interest including a team from the BBC. At 2pm sharp the march formed up, the National Anthem was sung and the parade moved down Tothill Street, through Storeys Gate, skirting the edge of Parliament Square and into Whitehall. Halfway up Whitehall one of the leaders, Bill Baker, stopped the parade and asked for the chanting to cease so that the Cenotaph was passed in respectful silence. Once each contingent passed the Cenotaph they applauded.

We halted at the gates to Downing Street where David Cameron's office had agreed to accept a letter (something Gordon Brown had always refused to do, so I was told) which was handed in. I have read the letter and hope to be able to put the text up tomorrow. It asked for a referendum on membership of the European Union, consideration for an English Parliament comparable with the Welsh and Scottish Assemblies and that of Northern Ireland, and for a review of the Arbitration Act which has effectively been used to give more power than is wise to Sharia Courts in England.

There was no sign of any opposition from the United Against Fascism or similar groups such as we saw in Brighton or London on the occasion of Geert Wilder's visit. The one untoward incident happened by Downing Street when I think a missile was thrown a the parade from the crowd. The police dealt with it so quickly that I didn't really see what happened, while the stewards urged that the person or persons responsible be ignored and that no one should rise to provocation. The stewarding and policing was very effective in my opinion.

From Whitehall we walked along the edge of Trafalgar Square into Waterloo Place (the insurance for use of Trafalgar Square is now prohibitive for many demonstrations) where there was ice cream from Nelson's ice cream van and a speech from Michael Johnson.

He spoke on the nature of Englishness and how, with the Scots, Welsh and irish, many of whom were present with their flags we are one nation united on our islands. The crowd demonstrated their support for the Dudley Two, who were released on bail earlier this week.  I have been promised a link either to film of the speech or the text later.

I was glad of the opportunity to speak to him and Bill Baker afterwards. They are working on the formation of a political party, the English National Alliance which it is intended can join the different groups under one banner and a unified set of ideals without requiring them to give up their individual identity. As a properly formed Political Party, on the lines of the Countryside Alliance, members can be offered certain protections like access  to a legal fund, paid from the modest subscriptions. Thus preventing some of the problems the Dudley Two faced when bail was originally refused.

As I said, the stewards, many if not most of whom were provided by March for England kept good order of what was a good humoured crowd. The young men were the most vocal, and will probably be the ones featured in mainstream press and TV reports. There were families with children in pushchairs, courting couples, middle aged and elderly couples, plenty of women and a mix of races, including Chinese and Jewish. I met one Jewish lady whose roots, like my own, are in Bethnal Green.  

People had travelled from Kent, Wiltshire, Manchester and Yorkshire. And probably elsewhere; they were just the ones I saw or spoke to.   I will put more of my photographs up on the Flickr site tomorrow, I have just put a few up now, and the other material promised will go up when I receive it.

http://www.newenglishreview.org/blog_direct_link.cfm/blog_id/27685
25/10/2010

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