The (we're not fascists, honest guv!) English Defence League (EDL) descended on Leicester on 10th October, 2010, for a day of racist taunts and attacks on anti-fascists and Asian residents of the town. Despite a rout in Bradford in August, the EDL were out in force and a crowd of over a thousand soon proceeded to hurl beer cans, rocks and fireworks at police and counter-demonstrators.
The EDL are a new strain of re-branded fascism. Portraying themselves through their glitzy new website as a single-issue campaign against 'Islamic extremism', they are, in fact, a campaign dedicated to injecting racist street violence back into the forefront of the fascist movement.
The police saw the demo as a significant threat, banning all marches in Leicester and bringing out in excess of 2,000 police who, nevertheless, failed to contain the fascist demonstrators. A group of EDL broke out of the police kettle, damaged an international centre and clashed with locals.
As usual, the EDL used a range of private coach companies to ferry them in for a day of racist violence. New names caught by Corporate Watch this time include Marshalls, Confidence's Coaches and Ribble Valley Coaches. As the EDL were leaving town several fascists were videoed jumping off a Marshalls coach to attack counter-demonstrators (see here).
Last month, Ausden Clark, the official coach company for Leicester City football club, confirmed that they would no longer provide services to the EDL after Corporate Watch revealed they had transported EDL fanatics to Bradford (see here).
Ribble Valley Coaches
Preston, PR3 2JJ
Tel: (01772) 865575
Fax: (01772) 865242
Bedfordshire, LU7 4YP
Tel: (01525) 376077
Andrews of Tideswell
Derbyshire, SK17 8RB
Andrews is a member of Coach Tourism Council and the Confederation of Passenger Transport (CPT).
The Old Foundry, Tat Bank Road
Oldbury, West Midlands B69 4NB
Airshuttle is a member of the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB).
21 Market Street, Hemsworth
Pontefract, West Yorkshire WF9 4JY
1 Station Lane, Featherstone,
West Yorkshire, WF7 5BE
68 Highfield Road, Hemsworth, Pontefract
West Yorkshire WF9 4EA
Johnsons Coaches, Liveridge House
Liveridge Hill, Henley in Arden
Warwickshire, West Mids, B95 5QS.