Britain First leader blasts 'ghastly attack on democracy' after Chesterfield ban

Britain First applied to hold a conference at a Chesterfield Borough Council venue.
Britain First applied to hold a conference at a Chesterfield Borough Council venue.

A far-right political party has pledged to "make a stand" after it was banned from holding a conference in Chesterfield.

Britain First had booked a Chesterfield Borough Council venue for the seven-hour meeting next Saturday.

But in a letter to the nationalist party's leader Paul Golding, the council's chief executive Huw Bowen said: "I am writing to advise you that a decision has been taken to cancel this booking because of the risk of public disorder. Your fee of £379 will be credited to your account."

Mr Golding said: "This has thrown our preparations into chaos and left us in disarray.

"As a public body, Chesterfield Borough Council is supposed to be politically impartial and not discriminate against people based on their political beliefs.

"This amounts to a ghastly attack on the foundations of democracy itself."

He added: "Just like our war heroes fought for freedom and justice against tyranny, we find ourselves in the same boat on Remembrance weekend of all weekends.

"Britain First is a fighting movement with bulldog spirit - our movement never surrenders or backs down.

"I am sick and tired of Britain First being pushed around and sabotaged by left-wing police chiefs and local councils.

"It is about time we said 'enough is enough'.

"We are not going to be trodden all over any longer.

"We are going to make a stand."

He urged supporters to "chip in" in order to raise £5,000 so that "on Monday morning our legal representatives can pounce on the council".

He claims the council cannot legally cancel the booking.

In June, Britain First took Bedfordshire Police to court after the force applied for an injunction to ban the party from holding demonstrations in Luton for a year.

However, the High Court dismissed the application.

Mr Golding said: "This was a great victory for freedom of speech and assembly and for democracy."

Britain First campaigns primarily against mass immigration, multiculturalism and what it sees as the Islamisation of the United Kingdom and advocates the preservation of traditional British culture.

The party was formed in 2011 by members of the British National Party.