Anti-fascist demonstrators rallied on Ross-on-Wye’s Chase Hotel in October to protest against their hosting of the annual BNP ‘Trafalgar Club’ dinner.
Many of the party’s top brass–including leader Nick Griffin–were in attendance at their elite fundraising event.
Up to 100 local people turned out, with only 48 hours notice, to show their disapproval.
The hotel had earlier denied that the BNP were there, claiming they had no bookings all weekend. This turned out to be an out-right lie.
Upon arrival it was clear that the police were taking the protests very seriously, drafting in officers from Welsh constabularies. It has to be asked, how much did this cost the tax payer to protect these fascists? Private security hired by the hotel also stood guard at the entrance.
The protest was lively. When BNP members started to arrive protesters attempted to block their way, although the combined effort of the police and security present meant that this could not be pulled off. Minor scuffles broke out and deputy leader, Simon Darby, had his car pelted with eggs.
Two women repeatedly entered the hotel grounds in an attempt to complain to the hotel manager, before being ejected by BNP security who threatened to set their dogs on them.
Although these actions did not stop the event from taking place, they have shown that the racist politics of the BNP will not be tolerated in Herefordshire.
Recently the BNP have attempted to portray themselves as victims and use ‘freedom of speech’ as a shield against any opposition they face. This facade is as hollow as Nick Griffin’s head. The truth is that if the BNP had their way ‘freedom of speech’ would cease to exist for many millions of people in this country.
The BNP like to portray themselves as the party of the white working class, but their true colours are shown in the ‘Trafalgar Club’. It is a clear example of the elitism and of the class division that lies at the heart of the party–the ones that can afford it attend black-tie dinners in plush hotels, fill the party coffers and get a chance to spend an evening with the party leadership, most of whom live in large country houses, miles away from the people that they claim to represent.*
The BNP have a history of anti-working class policy, from calling for the army to be brought out in the Miners’ Strike of 1984/85, to calling for the revoke of the firefighters right to strike in 2003. In some areas of the country where they are in local government they have consistently voted for public service cuts, and they have been less than crystal clear on expenses claims. In short, they are the same as the rest of the parties in Westminster–a money grabbing, anti-working class party.
*Like Nick Griffin, who lives on a large farm in mid-Wales, whilst ‘representing’ his constituents in north-west England in the European parliament.
New on Heckler TV: ‘Fighting Talk’
Angelic Upstarts frontman Mensi presents a documentary on Anti-Fascist Action, who were active during the 80s and 90s confronting the National Front and BNP.
First-hand accounts are given of the fight against fascism, and why it must be stopped and not simply ignored. A must see.