EDL organiser expects 650 at Sheffield protest march

Ian Crossland, Yorkshire regional organiser for the English Defence League
Ian Crossland, Yorkshire regional organiser for the English Defence League

The organiser of an English Defence League march through Sheffield’s streets tomorrow says he hopes the protest will pass without any trouble.

Ian Crossland, Yorkshire regional organiser, said some 650 right-wing campaigners are due to attend.

The march has been organised in the wake of the child sexual exploitation scandal in South Yorkshire.

Mr Crossland said: “There’s a hell of a lot of interest and a buzz going around about this one. I’m hoping for a minimum of 650 people but you never know until the day.

“We’re getting a very good response online.

“There’s the usual opposition but in general I’m getting a good response.

“I have deliberately avoided all the shopping areas in our route and I hope it passes without incident – but I do hope it gets plenty of notice.”

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The march from Tudor Square to South Street Park is set to take place from 12.30pm to 3pm tomorrow with rolling road closures. South Yorkshire Police has confirmed it will have an increased presence in the city.

A Unite Against Fascism counter-protest will assemble at the top of Fargate from 11am, with a rally beginning at 12 noon.

John Campbell, chair Sheffield UAF, said: “We say with one voice, justice for the victims of sexual exploitation. Don’t let the racists divide us.

“The overwhelming majority of our great multicultural city rejects the hate and division of the EDL.”