EDL To March In Peterborough
16 November 2010, 12:04 | Updated: 16 November 2010, 12:32
Cambridgeshire Police say the English Defence League contacted them to say it intends to hold a peaceful protest in Peterborough on Saturday 11th December 2010.
The route has been decided in consultation with Peterborough City Council, local community representatives, local business representatives and follows negotiations with the EDL.
The EDL march will start at 1pm on London Road, close to Peterborough United Football Club and proceed over Town Bridge, past Bridge Street Police Station and then congregate on Lower Bridge Street, opposite Peterborough Magistrates Court.
Temporary road closures will be applied for on London Road and Town Bridge while the protest takes place.
The EDL say they intend to hold a 'peaceful' protest but concern has arisen because previous demonstrations have ended in violence and multiple arrests.
Superintendent Paul Fullwood said: "We have worked hard to ensure we identified a location which would balance the concerns of local people and businesses in Peterborough, while responding to the EDL's requests".
"We decided on this location because it provided a central location for the EDL while allowing the majority of businesses in the city to continue as usual".
"We understand that for businesses in the Rivergate area there will be an impact during the protest and we are working with those business owners, alongside the council, to minimise this and look at alternative ways of drawing in business over the weekend".
"At this stage we cannot confirm numbers likely to attend but hope to be able to provide some indication as negotiations between the police and EDL continue. As and when we have further information we will share this with the public through our various established links with the community".
"As public authorities, the Constabulary and Peterborough City Council have a duty to support and facilitate people's right to peaceful protest, whilst balancing this with the rights of those who want to go about their business".
"Key to that process is ensuring we deal with any concerns people may have".
A multi-agency community group, involving police and the city council, has been set up to ensure the community are kept updated on information about the process and deal with any community concerns.
If you have any questions you can email the group at firstname.lastname@example.org.
More on the English Defence League...
Who are they?
The EDL was founded in 2009.
It states that it's opposed to 'Islamic extremism and it's influence on British Life' and the 'spread of Sharia Law' in the UK.
The EDL says it's against Al Qaeda both home and abroad but is NOT against Islam or Muslims.
The group have been involved in more than thirty protests since March 2009.