Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Misunderstandings and misinformation.

John Ward the Medway resident blogger brought this to my attention.

Far-right group's meeting cancelled by pub

A pub landlord has shut the door on the English Defence League after they hired out a function room under a different name.
The Kent branch of the EDL – a far-right group set up last year to oppose the spread of Islamic extremism across the country - had made plans to hold a meeting at O'Connells, Chatham, at 8pm tonight.
Labour councillor Vince Maple, who actively campaigns for the Love Music Hate Racism campaign, said the pub had now cancelled the booking.
"I have spoken to pub and police and they confirmed, unsurprisingly, that the room was booked in a different name and the pub had no idea the EDL were planning to use their venue.
"They have now confirmed there will be no meeting of any description tomorrow."
Chief Inspector Peter de Lozey added: "Kent police in Medway have been made aware that there is information circulating that the English Defence League plan to hold a meeting tonight at a public house in Medway.

"We have spoken with the licensee of the pub in question and have been advised that the meeting will not be going ahead."
So being interested in the EDL I set off to do some checking and yes this was the case, in order to avoid trouble from various groups opposed to the EDL the local division decided to use a different name to hire the room. Unfortunately secrecy does not work in these cases particularly where facebook is concerned and details of the meeting were free to all, so a bit of an own goal for the EDL division there.
That said, there's the usual misinformation being thrown around by the media and the Labour party guy too.
The EDL are not right wing, they're a multi ethnic, multi racial, multi sexual single issue protest group, they certainly have right wing members (right wing as in Tory/UKIP) but they also have a good few left wing members as well, as any check on their forum will tell you.
Pub landlords have the right to bar anyone from their premises if they don't want them there, I have no problem with that, they also have the right to take the consequences in loss of trade and income too, the EDL meet in pubs and spend money, you'd have thought in these days of pub closures the cash would be useful though I suspect the real reason is ignorance fuelled by lies and propaganda from Vince Maple who clearly doesn't understand a genuine working class movement when he sees one, preferring to believe the socialist line that working class movements should be socialist controlled and not spontaneous.
The meeting did go ahead however in a different pub (Cricketers Arms, Rainham) after offers were made to the division on the news breaking, also the EDL have learned the lesson and no longer hide who they are, the poppy day disgrace having turned the tide of public opinion away from the states pets and given the EDL a far higher and better profile in the public's eye than previously due to the unceasing negative press they got from the MSM and socialists in general. 
As a member of the EDL said 
"Was speaking with one of the fb group last night ref this, its a bad move to not inform any landlord of a pub as to what group you are. We held a meeting when Kent with one division in a pub in Chatham and we were up front with the landlord who by the way is mixed race and there were no problems, you need to be honest and not ashamed. The next meet and greet is being held in Dover and has the full consent of the landlord so there wont be no drama, just be honest is the best way."
So lessons learned, I suspect naivete from the EDL rather than any complex plan to deliberately cover up who they are, trying to avoid trouble rather than inviting it, yes it came back to bite them and they learned a lesson from it, I doubt it will be repeated.

4 annotations:

Xopher said...

Wait until pub licences are dependent on the approval of local councils, local police, local health experts and anyone else who wishes to object. There will be no meetings unless big brother approves.

John M Ward said...

It is a pity that the EDL handled this in the way they did. If the event had gone ahead, and especially as the venue would have been just around the corner from me, I'd have gone along to find out for myself, rather than having to rely exclusively on others' (often contradictory) views of this outfit.

It is the best way to be properly informed; and if they hold such an event in my area again I shall try to attend.

Quiet_Man said...

I'll try and keep you informed, I have a few contacts in the EDL now and contribute occasionally to their forum.

John M Ward said...

Now the local press are in on this, including a letter in today's YourMedway entitled "Keep these thugs out of our towns", from a Terence Judd of Chatham.

It's on page 32, third letter, left-hand column.