Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Support and Protest as EDL Marches into Town

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Support and Protest as EDL Marches into Town

Article excerpt

Byline: James Cain Reporter james.cain@trinitymirror.com

ALMOST 350 English Defence League supporters marched through the streets of Middlesbrough on Saturday.

During the afternoon, EDL demonstrators had gathered in pubs along Corporation Road with the flag of St George a prominent symbol.

With a counter march taking place earlier in the day, over 300 police officers from Cleveland, Northumbria and the British Transport Police forces carried out a meticulously-planned handling of the demonstrations.

By 1.30pm, the roads along the march route had been closed off while the contained EDL contingent sang, "Whose streets? Our streets," "England till I die," and "We love you England we do".

As the crowd set off, turning the corner from Corporation Road onto Albert Road, it wasn't long before the singing was broken by the sound of a loud bang.

Police were forced to temporarily halt the march after the bang, from what appeared to have been a firework exploding, shocked many bystanders.

Seconds later, a second firework and a glass bottle were thrown from among the EDL crowd.

As it shattered on the footpath outside Middlesbrough Town Hall, one woman was injured and was sat at the road side being treated by an EDL first aider - her foot was bleeding.

Before the march, demonstrators had been warned that banners, flags and placards that might incite disorder would be banned along with anything that could be used to cause injury or damage.

Even so, some of the signs were highly critical of Islam.

One read: "Islam causes more deaths a day than cancer does".

Further fireworks exploded as the procession turned onto Borough Road.

As the procession passed some Asian men who were standing at the roadside, certain members of the EDL contingent began chanting "Scum, scum, scum."

Then, as the march turned onto Melrose Street, glass bottles and another firework were thrown in the direction of another group of Asian men, one of whom had a child on his shoulders. …

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