English Defence League in Preston: Religious and civic leaders denounce planned demonstration

Posted on - 15th January, 2016 - 7:00am | Author - | Posted in - Politics, Preston City Centre, Preston News
EDL protest in Preston - (c) Michael Morrison

EDL protest in Preston – (c) Michael Morrison

Key figures from Preston’s religious and civic organisations have signed a statement speaking out against a planned demonstration by the English Defence League.

The far-right group have applied to Lancashire Police for a static protest on the Flag Market on Saturday 20 February to highlight what they claim is a ‘creeping Sharia’ in the city.

A statement denouncing the demonstration has been issued and is signed by the likes of the leader of Preston City Council, to multiple Lancashire Bishops and Umar Ayub a popular Virgin Trains worker at Preston Train Station.

The statement, co-authored by the founders of the Christian Muslim Encounters, Mohammed Ali Amla and the Reverend Dr Anderson Jeremiah, has been publicly issued and they ask for it to be shared on social media.

They write:

“The EDL has decided to hold a demonstration in Preston on Saturday 20th February 2016.

“The people of Preston are saddened that the far right has chosen to come to our city to express views which we consider to be hateful and divisive to all our communities. As proud citizens of Preston we totally reject the bigoted views of the EDL and express our strong opposition to this proposed demonstration. We are confident that the vast majority of Prestonians want these people to stay away.

“Lancashire has had to endure many such demonstrations over the years, all of which have proved to be counterproductive. This is totally unacceptable and has a detrimental effect on the lives of each and every member of our community.

“Preston is a multicultural and multi-Faith city, with a proud history of tolerance, respect and community cohesiveness. Our communities live peacefully together, work together and socialise together. We celebrate our unity and call on all to continue to foster good relations between our different communities.

“We invite all those who care for Preston to share this message on Twitter and Facebook and sign our message of solidarity with Prestonian’s opposing this unwanted presence on our Facebook page.”

Related: Opinion from Max Neil on why Preston must be heard against the EDL

A spokesman for Lancashire Police said they are still considering the application for the demonstration from the EDL and no decision had been made yet.

The full list of signaturies who back the statement against the EDL planned demonstration

The Rt Rev’d Julian Henderson Bishop of Blackburn

The Rt Rev’d Geoff Pearson Bishop of Lancaster

The Rt Rev’d Philip North Bishop of Burnley

Cllr Peter Rankin – council Leader – Preston City Council

Julie Ward MEP – Labour Party

Clive Grunshaw – Police & Crime Commissioner

Father Timophy Lipscomb – Vicar of Preston

Rabbi Ariel Abel – East & South Lancashire Jewish community

Greg Smith
Co-ordinator Preston Christian Action Network

Mufti Javid
Trustee : Al-ansaar welfare and education

Nirinder Singh – Guru Nanak Gurdwara Cultural and Recreational Centre

Lakh Rai – Guru Nanak Gurdwara Cultural and Recreational Centre

Melanie Close – Chief Executive Disability Equality (nw) Ltd

Fiona Frank – secretary of Lancaster and Lakes Jewish Community

Cllr John Collins – Preston Deputy Mayor

Rev Pete Hamborg

Revd. Malcolm Hickox, Minister Fulwood Methodist Church, Preston

Revd Canon Ed Saville – Lead Officer Social Responsibility Blackburn Diocese

Toni Brodelle
Council for Christian Muslim Relations
Pay It Forward Foundation/global movement

Cllr Drew Gale – Labour Party

Liz Neat MBE – NCBI International Associate

Maulana Amjad Yoosuf Patel

Connor Dwyer, Member of Youth Parliament for Preston.

Shaykh Salim Mohammed – Head teacher Iqra education centre

Frank Harrington – Preston Faith Forum trustee and lecturer in ‘Religion Culture and Society’

Julie Morrow. Head Teacher. Preston

(Moulana) Khalid Ibrahim – Head teacher & coordinator Quwwat Education Centre

Rev Mark Slaney, Superintendent Minister
Preston Ribble Methodist Circuit

Cllr Anis Faruki MBE – Labour Party

Dr Zakaria Terry Horne, treasurer of city mosque preston

Jeremy Dable – Chair Preston Faith Forum

Donna L Hussain Social Sector development Officer

Peter Lumsden – Trustee of Preston Faith Forum / Methodist district inter faith dialogue officer

Shoayb Bux – Jamea masjid committee member

Brett Lund Director Preston Green Centre Limited / Beautiful Planet Café

Cllr Martyn Rawlinson – Labour Party

Suafina Aslam – Vice Chair Sisters 4 Sisters

Cllr Roy Leeming – Labour Party

Kamran Ahmed – deputy and trustee at Iqra education centre

County Councillor Kevin Ellard – Labour Party

Cllr Terry Cartwright – independent

Rev Marc Wolverson, Vicar – St. James Church, Leyland.

Cllr Matthew Brown – Cabinet Member for Social Justice, Inclusion & Policy.

Sumaya Kovariwala – Preston Faith Forum project officer

Cllr John Browne – Labour Party

Ahmed James community Worker

Cllr Robert Boswell – Labour Party

Nigel Hartnup – retired

Rev Andrew Webb – Methodist Minister Preston Ribble Circuit

Phillip Elliot

Cllr Peter Moss – Labour Party

Cllr Jason Jeffrey – Liberal Democrat

Father Peter Randall – assistant priest St Wildred’s

Mike Kewley, MA Philosophy student at the University of Liverpool.

Cllr Stephen Mullen – Liberal Democrat

Cllr Ismail Bax – Labour Party

Irene Flack – student at UCLan, secretary of UCLan’s Environmental and Ethics society

Asif Timol – Prestonian

Cllr Nicholas Pomfret – Labour Party

Chris Collison

Ellie McGowan Youth Link co team leader
community cafe, Foxton Centre

Cllr Mark Yates – Labour Party

Yasha Mashoko- Methodist Minister, Preston Ribble Circuit

Kailash Parekh – volunteer & devotee at the Hindu temple

David Beattie

Cllr Jonathan Saksena – Labour Party

Hussain Master

Christine Laubin, mother and grandmother

Cllr Brian Rollo – Labour Party

Anna Rachel Debbage, member of Preston Faith Forum and Hope Community

Jon Ranulf Aveyard, member of Hope Community

Cllr Pauline Brown – Liberal Democrats

Cllr Javed Iqbal JP – Labour Party

John Ogden, retired university teacher and Methodist minister

Amy Troner

Max Neill

Simon Hurst

Cllr Elizabeth Atkins – Labour Party

Charlotte Knight

Alistair Sinclair Director UK Recovery Federation

Denise Karen Plant

Councillor Phil Crowe – Labour Party

John Mansfield – Teacher of young people with learning disabilities.

Alison Naylor, Data Analyst, NHS.

Juned ingar

Katie Pugh, team leader.

Luke Bosman, School teacher.

Alexandra Swannell

Cllr Salim Desai – Labour Party

Kerry Mansell – complementary therapist ,
youth work student

Emma Taylor, web designer from preston

Sarah Bell, support worker, Leyland

Loz Lomax, retired Hoghton, Preston.

Cllr James Hull – Labour Party

Angela Dunne

Cllr Yakub Patel – Labour Party

Cllr John Swindells – Labour Party

Saima Afzal MBE

Cllr Carl Crompton – Labour Party

Cllr Veronica Afrin – Labour Party

Cllr Salim Sidat – Labour Party

Cllr Noordad Aziz Hyndburn Borough Council

Najjif Shah – Training in Counselling

Umar Ayub – Prestonian

Caroline Coxon

Marianne Rose

Gloria Bullen – living in Preston

Darren Smith. Born & raised in Preston, now a teacher of Religious Studies in Durham.

Alastair Sanderson – Teacher in Korat Thailand now, but from Preston.

Liam Darwen, logistics, leyland

Louise Hitchen

Laura Heaton

Liz Wilson

Nichols Duffy

Liam Armstrong

Alison Mcallroy

Margaret McLaughlin

Ibrahim Tanner – Light Foundation.

Nicola Harper Lee

Hillary Hopwood – East Meets West Lancaster

Tanya Wilcock – Walmer Bridge Village Committee

Ayesha A-Choudhury

J E Bamber ….. Bamjimba Productions

Sue Taylor – Secretary to the Bishop of Blackburn and Churchwarden of Preston St George the Martyr

Natalia Lotocka Mystery Tea House

Jane Bell Labour Councillor South Ribble-Chair of Leyland Neighbourhood Forum

Arfan Iqbal – Light Foundation

CCllr Yousuf Motala – Labour Party

Valerie Wise, Chief Executive of Preston Domestic Violence Services

The Rev’d Canon Dr Shannon Ledbetter,¬†Community Canon, Blackburn Cathedral

Cllr Phil Crowe – Labour Party

Ismail Timol, Executive Committee Member of Masjide Saliheen (PMCC)

County Councillor Matthew Tomlinson LCC

Terry Mattinson Youth Worker St Clares Preston

Cllr Keith Martin – South Ribble Labour Group – Penwortham Town Labour Group – Co-op Member – Unite the Union Workplace Rep

Chris Lomax President Preston and South Ribble Trades Council

Fr Ted Gannon – Parish Priest

Will you be sharing the statement? What do you think about the EDL demonstration? Let us know in the comments below

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