29 February 2008

Racist wants to go on "shooting spree"

BNP man "Silky3" posting on the Nazi Stormfront website (Feb 27th):

I feel like getting hold of a gun,going to the tunnel or wherever most of these parasites are coming from,and going on a shooting spree.Then, go to every ethnic group/centre,Government buildings and doing the same.I absolutely hate with a passion what these selfish,twisted b@stards have done and ARE doing to this country.

The amount of people who have been raped,murdered and damaged as a result of liberal scum policies is something that has to be avenged.If ever there was a revolution,the scum responsible for the "human rights" should swing from a lamppost besides the scum they love so much.

I also feel like going up and hitting ethnics when I see them.


"Same here."

"Me too."

"Just because homo-africanis walks upright does not mean that they are human beings."

"Yes often, especially when I am driving in London having to put up with the rude, incompetent ethnics,"

This is the real voice of the real BNP. Do I need to say more?

[Having just taken a quick gander at Stormfront, "Silky3", in a rant against "poofters", would appear to be a woman. Nice people!]

28 February 2008

Race offences on rise in Suffolk

MORE people than ever are being found guilty of racially aggravated offences of violence in Suffolk, it emerged today.

New figures show the conviction rate has nearly trebled in only five years, from just 20 in 2002, to 58 in 2006.

The dramatic increase mirrors a similar sharp rise in the numbers of reported racist incidents.

In 1998/99, 150 offences which were believed to have been motivated by prejudice or hate, owing to race and faith, were reported.

But by 2006/07, that figure had leapt to 437 - a 191 per cent rise.

Police claim the increase could be down to the implementation of a number of measures aimed at making the reporting of such offences easier.

However, Jane Basham, director of the Ipswich and Suffolk Council for Racial Equality (ISCRE), said the results were an indication that racism was on the rise in the county.

“We must remember that it is a minority of people who commit race hate crime,” she said.

“Racism is an issue in Suffolk. The reality is that we continue to see an increase in racism across the county.

“ISCRE does not believe there is any real evidence to support the view that increased reporting and conviction rates of race hate crime is as a direct result of vigilance of agencies and confidence in the system.”

All police forces are required to closely monitor offences deemed to be racially aggravated.

Suffolk police said a new website and freephone number had made reporting racist incidents simpler, thus speeding up the conviction rate.

The force also believes the influx of migrant workers from Eastern Europe, many of whom are attracted to the county's employment opportunities, could also be behind the increase.

Peter Haystead, Suffolk police's community relations inspector, said dealing with hate crime was a priority.

He said: “There are various initiatives which police have developed over the years to try to encourage people to report incidents.

“We have seen a general increase (in offences involving racism) but the British Crime Survey suggests that's down to people's confidence in reporting incidents rather than an increase in the number of offences.”

To report a hate crime, call freephone 0800 1381643, or 999 in an emergency.

Ipswich Evening Star

Mayor threatens legal action against BNP

The Mayor of London, Ken Livingstone, has told the British National Party it could face legal action if it continues to publish leaflets called The Londoner'.

The British National Party is distributing a leaflet across London, misleadingly titled The Londoner'.

The front cover features the headline The changing face of London' with a photograph of Asian women and the words Is this what you really want?'

The Mayor publishes a monthly newspaper called The Londoner' which is distributed to homes throughout London.

The Greater London Authority has been the registered owner of The Londoner' trademark since 2002 and the British National Party has blatantly disregarded the rights of the GLA.

A legal letter to the British National Party states: "The GLA believes that you are intentionally trading on the goodwill of the GLA in the trademark of The Londoner' by using a trademark which is confusingly similar to The Londoner' and that the use of the trademark, does, or is intended to, confuse or mislead members of the public."

The letter demands that the British National Party cease and desist from using the trademark and remove from circulation any publication using The Londoner'.

The Mayor Ken Livingstone said: "The Londoner has been published for eight years and is a well-known newspaper across the capital.

"It is a disgrace that the BNP has deliberately chosen to trade on our good name by calling its outrageous propaganda The Londoner.

"Londoners should be clear that there is absolutely no link between the newspaper they receive each month and this offensive BNP leaflet."

Asian Image

26 February 2008

Enough with the ugly (and endless) anti-ethnic emails

Not as common in Britain as it is in the USA, the mass-mailing of hate emails is becoming a popular method used by racist groups to spread their noxious message.

If you receive dozens of poisonous emails each week, as I do, from well meaning people who are intent on bashing certain ethnic groups, then perhaps you also feel: "Enough already!" It is not just the volume of this hate mail that disturbs me; it's also that so much of it is misinformed, scurrilous, and/or downright false.

The two groups now in the crosshairs of this activity are Hispanics and Muslims. In California, where I live in the winters, Hispanics are highly prominent both in population and as subjects of comment.

At this point, it is fair to mention we do have problems that are in dire need of solutions. Yes, the borders are porous, there are unique problems to be addressed within the Hispanic community, and there are other issues widely and hotly discussed in today's political climate. It is not my objective to solve them; it is an attempt to put things in prospective, tone down the rhetoric, and deal with facts rather than the absurd urban legends about Hispanics who came earlier, and immigrants yet to come. That is the only way a well-reasoned solution can come about.

There are a variety of false and mean-spirited anti-immigrant messages circulating on on the Internet. Most complain about the supposed free ride Hispanic immigrants get in America, i.e. the horrendous costs to the taxpayers, the loss of American jobs and the cause of crime in our communities. Such messages are a mishmash of fact, fiction and plain prejudice. To get any traction on a solution, we need facts, not hyperbole. It is always too easy to play off fear and anxiety.

Part of the problem stems from a common but fallacious point of logic, which we all learned in Logic 101: Juan is Hispanic. Illegals are Hispanic. Therefore Juan is an illegal. This fallacy (untruth), known as a syllogism, is flawed logic. Reflecting on that before we judge Juan would be a good idea.

Another good idea is to change the rhetoric. I have now stopped using the word "illegal" and started using the words "documented" and "undocumented." This is to help tone down the rhetoric so we can come up with fair, humane, economically sound solutions for our country. I further believe this approach is best for all Americans as we traverse a heated and sometimes angry presidential campaign, in which candidates have been trying to outdo each other in turning up the heat on this issue. It is up to us, as citizens, to point the candidates in a more productive direction with patience, tolerance and reason.

In a similar, but even more vitriolic vein, I get some really mean (and usually distorted or false) material about Muslims. I can understand this hatred, though I cannot agree with it. There is no denying certain Islamic fundamentalists are a danger to our country, and have already caused great harm. Protecting ourselves from this radical group is essential and warranted. My complaint is that the criticisms I hear are way over the top, and tend to paint all Muslims with the same brush. If we have learned anything about unmitigated prejudice in our lives – whether it be from Adolf Hitler or the Ku Klux Klan – it is that such views are unwarranted, unfair, and even dangerous. Yet too many false messages get passed from computer to computer – even after having been thoroughly discredited.

Bashing Hispanics and Muslims in America is bad for many reasons, aside from the fact that it is wrong. First, it is obviously unfair to members of those groups who are people of good will, peace, and integrity. Second, it poisons and polarizes our society, as all prejudice and bigotry ultimately do. Third, it does not push accommodation, dialog, and understanding forward; indeed it exacerbates the many legitimate problems that are in search of a solution. But most important, it goes back to the adage that intolerance is OK as long as it is not my ox that is being gored. Which brings me to one of the most famous quotes on this subject, and one that we should all note and heed. It is from Martin Niemoeller, who used it in speeches (it has been variously worded) after World War II:

"First they came for the Jews, but I did not speak out because I was not a Jew. Then they came for the Communists, and I did not speak out because I was not a Communist. Then they came for the trade unionists, and I did not speak out because I was not a trade unionist. Then they came for me, and no one was left to speak out for me."

The bottom line: There is no place in our society for the disparagement of any group – and it is up to each of us to speak out, and end it now.

Myles Spicer of Minnetonka has spent his business career as a professional writer and owned several successful ad agencies over the past 45 years.

Myles Spicer on the MinnPost

Help Searchlight to beat the BNP in London!

Let’s vote for our London

This month Searchlight launches its campaign to stop the British National Party from winning seats in the London Assembly. Our objectives are simple. We need to prevent the BNP from gaining the 5% in the London list vote that would give it one seat, the 8% which would gain it two and the 11% which would see the party win three.

Over the next three months we will undertake our largest, most targeted and sophisticated campaign to date.

We will adapt the lessons from recent campaigns across the country and bring in new techniques that have been pioneered in the United States.

Given the size of the London constituency, with around 5.3 million potential voters, there will be a much bigger emphasis on internet and email campaigning, though this will not come at the expense of community work, especially the enthusing of minority communities and the mobilisation of faith communities.

There must be no pretending that our task is straightforward. In last May’s local elections the BNP polled 14.7% in the 742 wards it contested across the country. The highest average regional vote was in the Eastern region where the party achieved 19% of the vote in the 65 wards contested. The lowest regional vote was 11.1% in the South West, where the BNP fielded 34 candidates. If even its lowest regional average was replicated in London then the BNP would be on the verge of winning three seats on the Assembly.

The BNP is hopeful of success. In the 2006 local elections the party polled 41% in the wards it contested in Barking and Dagenham. It gained councillors in Havering and Redbridge, and overall it averaged 25% of the vote in the 27 wards it contested.

Its prospects will also be boosted by the virtual collapse of the UK Independence Party, whose London Assembly representatives now sit as the One London party. In the last London Assembly elections, contested in 2004 on the same day as the European elections, the UKIP polled 8.8% of the London list vote. This support is now up for grabs and research has indicated that much of it may cross to the BNP.

It is no wonder then that the BNP is prioritising London this year. The region has so far not been affected by the internal party feuds and Nick Griffin, the party leader, knows that even one place on the London Assembly will attract more media attention than several council election victories around the country.

The election will also be an important dry run for next year’s all-important European elections. Victory here, rather than in London on its own, would take the BNP out of the political margins. Each MEP would receive at least £200,000 a year in salary and allowances, so would be able to employ several BNP members as staff, but just as importantly MEPs would give the fascists a credibility they currently do not have.

Mobilising the majority

So, given all of the above, is it certain the BNP will win? Absolutely not, but we will only be successful in preventing a BNP victory if we can launch the biggest anti-BNP campaign to date. And that means people getting active and increasing turnout.

As our table below shows, increasing the turnout will make it significantly harder for the BNP. So increasing the turnout is our key priority.

London has particular groups that need to be mobilised. One third of Londoners are immigrants or the children of immigrants and this figures rises greatly if you include people who have moved into the capital from other parts of the UK.

The capital is far more socially liberal and tolerant than other parts of the UK. Research has shown repeatedly that Londoners are 20% more liberal in their social attitudes than people in other regions.

Many Londoners love London precisely because of its diversity. It is a “World in One City”, a fact that gave us the Olympics and gives it an identity unlike anywhere else. Warts and all, it is the most multicultural city in the world.

We cannot take it for granted that our Londoners will come out and vote. They will need to be reminded, cajoled and encouraged. There is genuine outrage and horror among so many ordinary people when the threat of the BNP is explained. However, often it is expressed only when the threat is explained and over the next couple of months it is vital that anti-fascists get to speak to as many people and groups as possible.

The internet will be vital in this. There are over four million people registered to vote in London. There are another million who are of voting age but are not yet registered. It would be foolhardy to believe that we can speak to anything but a fraction of these people so the internet and email networks provide the best way to spread our message more widely.

Searchlight is fortunate to be able to draw on the skills of political and community campaigners in the United States. They have shared their experiences, provided us with free software and given us advice about internet campaigning. Anyone who has visited our updated website or received one of our weekly email bulletins has, we hope, noticed improvements in recent weeks.

Our changes appear to be paying dividends. In December over 34,000 unique users (different computers) visited our Stop the BNP site, viewing over 400,000 pages. This was a massive increase over previous months and can only be considered a taster for the real campaign over the next few weeks.


Searchlight is kicking off its London effort later this month with a “Welcome” campaign. Our opening salvo is “Welcome the stranger you once were”. It is an attempt to remind people that London is a city of immigration, be it from abroad or from other parts of the UK.

It is also intended to be a positive reminder that the diversity of London is something to celebrate. It is a world in one city and most of us love it for that very reason.

This is only the start. Searchlight and its union, faith and community partners have drawn up a three-month rolling programme of action that will take us to polling day. Each activity will hopefully lead neatly into the next and all the time we hope to be raising the profile of our campaign and the importance of voting for our London.

Over the weekend of 15-16 March we will hold activities across the capital. From attending church services to running town centre stalls, mass leafleting of estates to community meetings, there will be something for every-one to do. In the process we hope to reach out to hun-dreds of thousands of people right across London.

But none of this can happen without your help. Searchlight has thousands of readers in London and there is a role for everyone. Some people might be prepared to deliver leaflets or staff Hope not Hate stalls in shopping centres, others might prefer to work quietly within their own community networks. Yet others may be able to do none of these but could still spread the word to their friends and family by email.

Searchlight cannot stress the importance of the London elections enough. A significant BNP break-through here will give the party a major platform for the European elections. We urge all of our readers to do whatever they can to get involved in the campaign.

To find out more please visit our campaign site http://www.hopenothate.org.uk/london/


25 February 2008

Free ads - the Green Bigot

You can trust the BNP - to lie through its teeth

Look anywhere on the Web and you'll find BNP members declaring how "proud" they are to belong to the racist party.

So proud of the name "British National Party" that they pretend to be anything but when booking meeting rooms.

Recently the party lied to the worthy folks of the Hastings Voluntary Association for the Blind, booking a room on their premises for a meeting attended by Nick Griffin in the false name "British Heritage".

HVAB was disgusted that the British National Party had lied to gain access. Spokesperson Jean Fleming said: "To say we are shocked about this is an understatement. We are horrified. We would not have allowed the booking if we had known it was for this purpose."

The BNP also lied to obtain the use of Little Kimble (Bucks) Stewart Hall, again for a Griffin meeting, and again using the fake "British Heritage" name.

In Birmingham on February 23rd the BNP's bogus micro "trade union", Solidarity, held its annual conference at the Apollo Hotel, Birmingham. The booking was made in the name of "Accentuate", a vaporous one man "PR company" which seems to exist to issue press releases nobody takes any notice of.

Solidarity, taken from its founders Clive Potter and Tim Hawke in dubious circumstances in a Griffin-inspired coup and handed to failure and nonentity Patrick Harrington, is so useless that the only advice it could give Mark Walker, at the centre of its feeble cause celebre case, was to "hire a lawyer specialising in employment law".

Some union!

The reason for booking the Apollo Hotel in the name "Accentuate" was purely to con the owners and to disguise the fact that this was a BNP event in all but name.

True to paranoid form, Solidarity insisted its members meet outside a McDonalds from where they would be redirected. I understand they were also told to keep schtumm so that the Apollo's owners didn't tumble to the fact that it was playing host to a gathering of hardcore racists.

The paranoia extended even to its own small band of deluded devotees, who were subjected to bag searches and "other security measures". Photography was out, so were mobile phones and "recording equipment", and only three hours were allowed from start to finish.

Not exactly like your average above board trade union with nothing to hide, is it?

But then nothing about the BNP is above board, and it has plenty to hide.

23 February 2008

65 years ago today: remembering the White Rose

Exactly 65 years ago today three young Germans went to their deaths following a perfunctory Nazi show trial prosecuted by the notorious Roland Freisler. The three were members of the White Rose, a war-time anti-Nazi resistance group little known outside Germany, even today. In the months and years following those first executions other members of the group, most of them young, idealistic and patriotic, also lost their lives to the vengeful Nazi state.

Read more at Lancaster Unity.

22 February 2008

The BNP and the dodgy internet bank

After placing a peg on your nose you can - if you have a strong stomach and plenty of moral resolve - bring yourself to read some of the BNP's literature. Apart from the bigotry, the constant use of the words proud, English and threat you will often see reference to 'Freedom Promotions.' It would appear that Freedom Promotions is a front for the financial arm of the BNP - when ordering leaflets etc BNP members make their cheques payable to Freedom Promotions.

If you visit the website of the Financial Services Authority (FSA) you will find a list of unauthorised internet banks - one of which is an organisation called... you guessed it, Freedom Promotions.

Is the BNP running an unauthorised internet bank?

Why not ring the FSA and ask them - their number is 020 7066 1000

From Mike Ion's blog.

21 February 2008

Extremists target youth

EXTREME right wing political group the National Front has set up a youth group in Chippenham, despite huge opposition from schools and parents.

The group, whose conditions of membership include no homosexuals, must be of white parentage and partners must also be white', has already held two meetings in the town.

At the latest meeting on February 16, more than 25 youngsters from the age of 14 attended and awards were handed out to individuals for their work for the organisation.

When the Gazette broke the news of the National Front's arrival in Chippenham in September, schools were outraged that the party intended to hand out leaflets at the gates to attract young members.

Gerard MacMahon, head teacher at Sheldon School, said: "I am confident that our pupils would not have any involvement with an organisation which is involved in the stirring or spreading of hate.

"At the school we would have nothing to do with an organisation like that - Sheldon will have nothing to do with them.

"As an immigrant myself, I am not at all interested in what they have got to say."

News that the party has managed to establish a youth group in town has come as a shock to many. Mum-of-two teenagers Emma Fitzwarren, 44, of Eastern Avenue said: "I think it is totally disgusting they have infiltrated the town - why have people even given them the time of day?

"I have warned my children about getting involved with the racists and I know they would never be sucked into it.

"I am now just concerned about other children. They might feel pressured to join and that could lead to horrendous consequences. I plead with all parents to make sure their children are not involved."

A spokesman for Wiltshire College said: "We are an inclusive organisation and we would be very concerned about any association with groups who do not share our values, particularly those who would seek to discriminate against groups or individuals."

Steve Reynolds, executive member of the National Front, said: "Many issues arose, one on their safety and their fears of being attacked by others. Some expressed concern for their elderly relatives, claiming they had been failed by the system and others in the community. We also touched on the closure of Lacock Post Office."

Gazette and Herald

20 February 2008

Migrant workers in West Norfolk: The facts

MIGRANT workers have not affected unemployment figures in West Norfolk and are statistically more likely to be the victim of crime than commit crime, according to a newly-published leaflet.

"Dare you Face the Facts" has been created by Chris Lindley of Lynn's Churches Together and is designed to rebut myths surrounding the influx of predominantly Eastern European workers to this area.

It explains the rights of those people working here who originate from a European country, and stresses that they pay the same taxes as UK workers, adding they come to Lynn because by 2002-03 there was a shortage of labour.

It urges residents to welcome the migrants and offer support and information.

"For many migrant workers their time spent in Lynn and West Norfolk can be very positive and enjoyable. For others, the experience can be less positive, if they are treated badly by employers, landlords or members of the public," it says.

Mr Lindley said he created the leaflet to answer questions about the migrant community and to put right misconceptions about the new arrivals.

The leaflets are available from churches in the area.

Lynn News

18 February 2008

Heckmondwike Yorks Day of Action

Click the graphic to download
and distribute the flyer

British Nazi Party ‘most popular political site’

Ein volk, ein lager und ein packet of crisps, bitte

Very unpleasant racist scumbags, the British National Party, has the most visited Web site in UK politics, says the Daily Mail, itself a rather unpleasant mouthpiece for retired colonels, rabid women with sensible shoes and people who think house prices can only be stabilised if all immigrants are hung from lamp posts.

The far-right group got 51 per cent of all hits to UK party sites last year - seven times more than the sites run by Labour and the Liberal Democrats and twice as many as the Tory Party – the UK’s rather insipid answer to the Republicans.

Hitwise’s Robin Goad, the outfit that supplied the figures, reckons most visitors to the BNP site were ‘curious’ rather than genuine party supporters, people for whom the epithet ‘curious’ is somewhat lacking in vehemence, bile and spittle-flecked nastiness.

This, of course is exactly the same defence put up by saddoes accused of downloading kiddy porn.

Naturally, The Wail’s well-balanced readership is quick to jump to the BNP’s defence, pointing out that every right-thinking person is sick to the eye teeth about how our once-proud nation has been sold down the river by mealy-mouthed left wing liberal dole scroungers.

"And the visits will continue to grow. People are dissatisfied with how our country is been run down," slobbers Reg from Aylesbury.

But there is one comment that suggests not all Wail readers are total halfwits. Step forward, please, Eric from Harrogate:

"Of course it has received more hits. The other political sites require the ability to read - BNP supporters have not evolved sufficiently to acquire a skill such as that."

The Inquirer

17 February 2008

Successful NU inaugural meeting

Norfolk Unity held a very successful and constructive first meeting in Great Yarmouth on Friday night. 21 people of all political persuasions and none attended, with several apologies from those unable to attend due to the travelling distance or prior commitments.

The meeting raised over £140 to kick our bank account off, and a further £70 in subs were paid on the night. The landlord of the pub where the meeting was held even waived his room hire and buffet fee.

It was decided that Norfolk Unity would remain an independent antifascist group until after the May local elections, when speakers from Searchlght, UAF and other organisations would be invited to address us on the benefits of affiliating to them.

Because Friday's meeting was very Yarmouth/Broadland-centric it was decided that in future meetings should rotate between Yarmouth, Norwich, King's Lynn and Thetford, with a view that each town would establish its own Unity group.

After the meeting we were joined for a lively social by pub regulars and entertained by a well known local folk artist who donated his services to the cause.

A fantastic night and a great start! Thanks to all who attended.

The date and location of the next meeting is yet to be finalised, but we'll keep you posted here.

In the meantime, as promised below is a link (click on the graphic) to the TUC/Searchlight publication "Organising against racism and fascism handbook", which was discussed at our meeting.

14 February 2008

Muslim dating promoted on Green Bigot's website?

King of racist BNP bloggers, liar extraordinaire, useless lump, Nazi Stormfront habituee and ludicrous Griffin-groupie the Green Arrow has set up his very own Proboards forum - perhaps the windbag keyboard warrior has delusions of rivalling the recently DDoSed American-hosted giant.

Green Arrow, always one to overstate his own importance, puts it this way on Stormfront: "Green Arrow site now as a forum" - where you, too can enjoy the tortured grammar known to the wider world as BNP-speak.

At the time of writing a whole nine users have flocked to the Green Bigot's boards.

Well, I say nine. I wonder how many of them are actually the Green Bigot himself.

Below is a classic case of a puppeteer outing his own sock-puppet, where the puppeteer forgets he's logged in as himself and not his alter-ego:

No doubt the Green Liar will come up with an explanation as to why he signed his own post "Sarah", who, strangely enough, makes the next post. This little slip may at the same time excite debate on Stormfront as to how many sock-puppets he runs there.

What will most upset the Green Bigot's visitors (and definitely the Muslim-hating Bigot himself) is this, which greeted me when I went to have a shufty:

You couldn't make it up, as another (more well-known) bigot would say.

Antifascists everywhere may like to join up and post away, giving the Bigot a moderating nightmare. And others may like to remind Proboards of its own terms of service:


Your web site must conform to the following standards to be eligible to utilize this service:

User's content must comply in a manner consistent with any and all applicable laws of the State of California and the US Federal Government. User's web site may not contain content promoting the use of illegal drugs, alcohol, sex, pornography, nudity, or any other form of adult content, profanity, hate, "spam," fraud, racism, mlm, pyramid schemes, or promote any illegal activity.

Well, I'm looking at at least two of those provisions which are likely to see the Jolly Green Bigot deprived of his forum pretty quickly...

13 February 2008

Call for full investigation into BNP finances

Investigations into the British National Party’s finances by the BBC and Searchlight have revealed the sheer incompetence of the Electoral Commission. The Commission, which oversees political party finances, has repeatedly failed to investigate properly a series of allegations of BNP wrongdoing.

In 2005 the BNP’s former treasurer, John Brayshaw, wrote to the Commission pointing out that he had refused to sign off the BNP’s accounts because he had not been given access to all the records he needed to see and had resigned after a number of irregularities had come to light. Yet the Electoral Commission said it had no reason to believe a breach of the party funding law had taken place.

It is illegal for political parties to accept any donations of more than £200 from individuals who are not registered to vote in the UK. In June 2005 Searchlight wrote to the Electoral Commission drawing attention to a blatant attempt by Nick Griffin, the leader of the BNP, to solicit large US donations to the BNP by channelling them through a BNP front group called Civil Liberty. Again the Electoral Commission did not consider that any breach had occurred.

Searchlight wrote again to the Electoral Commission in May 2006 about another attempt to channel overseas donations of more than £200 through Civil Liberty. Although the Electoral Commission told us that our complaint would be investigated, we heard nothing more.

Searchlight demands that the Electoral Commission mounts a proper investigation into the BNP taking account of the evidence uncovered by Searchlight and the BBC Radio 4’s File on 4 programme broadcast on 12 February, as well as the matters raised by Jon Cruddas, MP for Dagenham, in an adjournment debate in the House of Commons on 18 December 2007, which he subsequently reported to the Electoral Commission and the Metropolitan Police. They include:
John Brayshaw’s statement about irregularities while he was BNP treasurer and the shredding of BNP financial documents.

The BNP’s attempts on more than one occasion to solicit overseas donations via Civil Liberty.

The fact that the only two officers of Civil Liberty were both BNP officers, Civil Liberty’s PO Box address is the same as that of the BNP’s North East region and there is no evidence that Civil Liberty has given legal support to anyone who is not a member of the BNP.

The statement to File on 4 by Adrian Davies, a barrister who has often represented the BNP, that he saw people queuing up to give cash to Griffin at a rightwing conference in the USA.

The unusual pattern of large donations that the BNP has reported to the Electoral Commission.

The verdict of Chris Makin, a forensic accountant engaged by File on 4, on the BNP’s accounts.

The fact that the BNP never submitted any accounts to the Electoral Commission for the last three months of 2001.
If the Electoral Commission fails once again to investigate the BNP fully, it rests with Parliament to initiate a thorough review of how the Electoral Commission exercises its role.

Stop The BNP

12 February 2008

Tonight 8pm, Radio 4 - File on 4 investigates the BNP’s finances

At first glance the Trafalgar Club - with its annual dinner commemorating the famous sea battle - sounds like a heritage society wanting to honour one of Britain's national heroes.

For just £15 a month minimum donation, members receive a newsletter and a free ticket to its annual dinner.

Men get a tie with "England Expects" - the first two words of Nelson's rallying signal at the battle - emblazoned on it while women receive a personal organiser.

The club could be a gathering of naval historical enthusiasts - the reality is different.

Those who attend the annual dinner are addressed by Nick Griffin, chairman and leading light of the British National Party.

'Elite fund-raisers'

Billed on the party's website as its "elite fund raising group", the club is a channel for well-heeled BNP supporters to give financial aid to the party without having to be listed as an official donor.

The website tells would-be members: "You do not need to be a member of the British National Party to join the Trafalgar Club.

"The government currently bans many civil servants from joining the BNP so the Trafalgar Club is a great way of demonstrating your patriotism and making sure you keep your job."

It adds: "After many years of running on shoe-string budgets, the BNP has learned how to stretch a pound as far as it will go!"

However, a BBC File On 4 investigation has heard other claims about the party's finances.

Former party treasurer John Brayshaw refused to sign off the party's accounts because he claims he was not given the access to all the records he needed to see.

In 2005 he wrote to the Electoral Commission, the body which oversees political party finances, saying that he resigned as BNP treasurer. He alleged a number of irregularities had come to light including missing invoices and receipts from the Trafalgar Club.

In his letter, Mr Brayshaw said current party treasurer John Walker and his deputy David Hannam visited his home for a week to complete the accounts.

He said he did not help them but claimed he witnessed some unusual activities, namely the shredding of a large number of documents and invoices.

Mr Brayshaw said he was told to burn the shredded documents, but kept them because he felt something improper had taken place.

A black bin bag containing the documents has been handed to File On 4.

It contains fragments of cheques, train tickets, receipts and invoices.

Some of the fragments carry the names of Nick Griffin, his parents and even the Trafalgar Club.

One unshredded item is a petrol receipt with the name Excalibur - the title of the party's merchandising arm.

Under tax regulations all financial records should be kept for six years.

The Electoral Commission said it had no reason to believe a breach of the party funding law had taken place.

Current BNP treasurer John Walker dismissed Mr Brayshaw's allegations as pure fantasy.

He said Mr Brayshaw had failed to make the books balance and had left the party's accounts in a mess.

Mr Walker said the shredded material included material such as "draft accounts that may have errors in dates and things like that. Because you are trying to reconcile the accounts, of course you shred documents

Confronted by the BBC with some of the shredded material, Mr Walker said they contained working copies of printouts of the BNP accounts and bounced cheques.

He added: "What you've got in front of me here is clearly very weak evidence and the BBC is clutching at straws."

Among other questions raised by File On 4 are whether the BNP breached party funding rules by not declaring the name of a donor who gave £20,000 to the party. The rules say all donors who give more than £5,000 should be identified.

When leader Nick Griffin was cleared of race hate charges in November 2006, he claimed the party had just received its largest ever donation.

BNP member Sharon Ebanks told the BBC she was personally thanked by a party official for collecting the £20,000 donation via her internet fund-raising.

Ms Ebanks told File On 4 that the party informed her the donor's cheque was genuine and he should be made an honorary life member.

The BNP strenuously denies that it has broken any rules. It claims that the cheque in fact bounced and therefore did not need to be declared.

Labour MP for Dagenham Jon Cruddas has already raised the issue of BNP finances in Parliament, and presented the Electoral Commission with a 20-page dossier just before Christmas.

He said: "What this investigation for File On 4 is identifying is much more significant than any of the charges I was laying before the parliament - namely a systematic series of financial irregularities.

"And this cannot be laid to rest without the most thorough of investigations by the Electoral Commission."


Party funding findings: Tuesday 12 February 2008, 2000 GMT, repeated Sunday 17 February 2008, 1700 GMT.

The mainstream political parties are facing sustained pressure over donations, loans and honours. But now new concerns have been raised about the finances of The British National Party. Will its records bear scrutiny? Fran Abrams investigates. Producer: Samantha Fenwick, Editor: David Ross.

You can listen to this programme as broadcast, online, timeshift, or download the podcast.

File on 4 website.

10 February 2008

Are you getting a security alert?

Users of certain security plugins, notably Kapersky, may be getting phishing alerts when accessing this and other Blogspot-hosted blogs.

We would like to assure our visitors that no malware exists at this site, and that the problem seems to lie with Kapersky itself.

Please check The Real Blogger Status for an important post on this.

In the meantime, please continue to enjoy Norfolk Unity.

9 February 2008

Love Music Hate Racism Carnival

Anti-Nazi gig 'biggest in years'

The biggest anti-racism music event in London for 30 years is to take place in April, organisers have said.

The event - which marks the 30th anniversary of the Rock Against Racism carnival - will take place in east London's Victoria Park on 27 April.

Rock act Babyshambles will headline and the event will be sponsored by the trade union Unite.

Other performers include Tom Robinson, whose band headlined Rock Against Racism in 1978.

'Message of unity'

Derek Simpson, joint general secretary of Unite said: "Events like these that bring people together are vital to helping suppress the threat we face from racist organisations.

"These organisations are attempting to gain votes by playing off people's disenchantment with politics and their insecurities."

In April 1978, a Carnival Against the Nazis was held, with 100,000 people marching from Trafalgar Square to Victoria Park through the East End, where the right-wing National Front had support.


8 February 2008

BNP keeps a brave face as disappointments keep on coming

This last few days must have been terribly disappointing for the BNP.

Not that we care, but we'd imagine Nick Griffin would have liked something to cheer up the troops after the ructions of the past couple of months and after the resignations of Alans Warner and Bailey from their positions of, respectively, town and real councillor.

Happily, the situation has gone from bad to worse. Despite putting everything into a major fight to win a mere parish seat (so desperate are they for a win of any kind) for dismal Donna Bailey at Upper Beeding, the far-right party was pipped at the post by twenty votes.

Joyce Shaw (Ind): 297
Donna Bailey (BNP): 277
Becky Davoubi (Ind): 196

Bailey, variously described by the creepier than usual BNP as the British National Party Blond Bombshell and brave (why brave?), received an astonishing amount of support for her campaign and cost the local council tax payer a few thousand quid just to prove the party could lose even where it had its own version of Julie Andrews standing for it. Even when the Dail Mail had assisted by printing a two-page puff-piece about her.

James Clayton (see pic), though no blond bombshell, deserved more support from his wretched party than he actually got. No mass leaflettings for him, no double-page spreads in the Mail and no commiserating posts on the BNP website either.

Despite standing for a real council seat (on Wyre Borough Council) and probably being its youngest candidate, the BNP chose to ignore young Master Clayton, which might explain why he bombed at the polls.

Con 769
Lab 339
BNP 222
UKIP 151

So nice to see the BNP failing its young up and comers.

But these results pale almost into insignificance at the latest news - that the High Court has awarded the disputed (see here and here) Burnley seat of Rosegrove and Lowerhouse to the Labour candidate, Paul Reynolds, leaving the BNP's John Rowe with egg on his face and a bill estimated at around £30,000.

Given the BNP's treatment of Sharon Ebanks (and she was only stuck for £5000 after following the party's advice and taking her disputed vote to the High Court), we'd advise Rowe to grab the money NOW before the party changes its mercurial mind and tells him to get lost, or to save time and declare himself bankrupt now.

If the BNP really intends to cover the costs of this wasted case, we wonder how the funds will be found - a raid on Nick Griffin's legendarily deep pockets, a dig into the hidden donations from Civil Liberty or the Trafalgar Club or yet another begging letter to the members. Or maybe it'll just come out of the membership fees paid for this year - a juicy thousand of them.


BNP's "Blonde Bombshell" misfires

Elevating an obscure and unimportant parish council by-election into a matter of national importance, the BNP somehow got itself to believe that the election of Donna Bailey to Upper Beeding Parish Council was a forgone conclusion.

Carried away with the idea that a pretty face and a much discussed article in the Daily Mail (which BNP members linked to on almost every forum they infest) would secure Donna's victory, they seemed to forget that the BNP was also contesting a real election for a real council with real power on the same night in Lancashire.

Having demanded co-option on to Upper Beeding Parish Council (Sussex), Donna Bailey and her vociferous band of supporters forced the council into the needless expense of a by-election when she was refused.

Bailey stood as an "independent", as did the two other candidates opposing her, but it was very clear from the beginning that the BNP regarded her as anything but "independent" - and it seems that the voters of Upper Beeding were of the same mind.

Proving beyond any doubt that Upper Beeding Parish Council were right not to cave in to her demands for co-option, Bailey came second, rejected by nearly two-thirds of local voters:

Joyce Shaw (Ind): 297
Donna Bailey ("Ind"): 277
Becky Davoubi (Ind): 196

A twenty vote shortfall, but, given the hype and the media coverage Donna Bailey and this by-election have received, a real embarrassment for the BNP and its golden goddess, who expected to win this contest by a wide margin.

We await the stock BNP excuses that Donna wuz nobbled.

Back in the real world of real politics that matter, BNP candidate James Clayton took part in a four-cornered contest in Victoria ward (Cleveleys) for a seat on Wyre Borough Council. Last May Victoria ward returned as follows:

UKIP 353
Lab 474
Lab 472
Con 1351 Elected
Con 1150 Elected
Con 1165 Elected

In May 2007 Clayton fought Cleveleys Park ward, coming seventh of eight candidates, with 19.6% (after vote averaging). Last night in staunchly Conservative Park ward, Clayton managed a so-so 14.99%:

Con 769 (51.92)
Lab 339 (22.89)
UKIP 151 (10.20)
BNP 222 (14.99)

Total 1481

The BNP did nibble into the UKIP vote, but UKIP's surviving 10.2% gives lie to the BNP fantasy that UKIP voters are always interchangeable with its own. Disappointed BNP supporters not getting the message that to be anti-Europe is not to be pro-fascist were this morning sourly condemning the UKIP as "ludicrous" and "pointless".

Just like that costly by-election one of their supporters forced on Upper Beeding Parish Council.

Denise G

'BNP hijack is disgrace'

The far-right British National Party has been threatened with legal action by the Mayor of London over controversial campaign leaflets distributed in Barnet in recent weeks.

The leaflets, which contrast scenes from 1950s Britain with three women in Islamic veils alongside the demand: "Is this what you really want?" have been delivered to homes across the borough as part of the BNP's city-wide campaign for the mayoral election in May.

However, the BNP has incurred the wrath of Mayor of London Ken Livingstone for using the same title for its leaflets - The Londoner - as he does for his monthly newsletter.

Mr Livingstone said: "The Londoner has been published for eight years and is well-known across the capital. It is a disgrace the BNP has chosen to trade on our good name by calling its outrageous propaganda The Londoner."

Mr Livingstone's office wrote to the BNP on Friday to insist it stops using The Londoner trademark or face legal action.

The leaflets have also concerned Barnet residents because of inferences made by the images.

advertisementShakil Ahmed, a member of the congregation at the Hendon Mosque, believes relationships between different communities in Barnet are good, but he added: "We don't know what affect this will have.

"The worry is that hatred is going to be targeted at Muslim women dressing in this particular way. I don't think we've had many incidents in Barnet, but I've heard of things in Brent, where women in headscarves have been attacked."

Barnet councillor Brian Gordon, chairman of a committtee which recently produced a review of hate crime in the borough, said: "The difficulty with the BNP is that although it sails close to the lawful wind in its reference to ethnic minorities, it is careful to avoid saying anything overtly racist for which it could be prosecuted.

"Much of its literature has sinister overtones. It would be highly damaging to good community relations if the BNP were to make political inroads in Barnet and we should be very vigilant against them in the forthcoming mayoral and London Assembly campaign."

Nick Eriksen, London Organiser for the BNP, denied the suggestion that the flyer is racist. He said: "There's nothing in it criticising any minorities themselves. The juxtaposition of the two images is merely to highlight the scale of immigration and how it's changing the culture of our towns."

Hendon Times

7 February 2008

A journey worth making

I originally penned this much abbreviated memoir of my time as a highly active far Right activist for our friends at the Lancaster UAF blog, where it was received to general approval. Antifascists rarely have an opportunity to see things from the other side of the fence, as it were, and my article was an attempt to give them an ex-fascist activist's eye view of life in the eternally turbulent place that is Britain's extremist Right wing fringe.

My days as a convinced fascist and fervent racist are long behind me, but if this memoir can help antifascists to understand what makes fascists on the ground tick, and if it helps strip away the veneer of false respectability parties like the BNP have been trying to cultivate for the last few years, then it will have done its job.

I'm republishing the memoir here for the reasons given, but also because visitors to the Norfolk Unity blog have a right to know about my murky (and all too often wild and woolly) past. I hope you enjoy it, and I hope you find it worthwhile reading.


Part One

Only one thing surprises me about the current rumpus within the BNP.

That it took so long to happen.

The far Right's ability to rip itself asunder in vicious internal division is the one consistent thing about it. And I should know, because until comparatively recently I was one of them.

Allow me to take you on what was, for me, a long journey to enlightenment, one that began in the early 1970's when, fresh out of school and newly into work, I was inducted into the ways of casual racism and homophobia.

I was a country boy. You could count the number of 'coloured' people I'd seen in my life on the fingers of one hand, and they were nearly always the bus drivers who travelled the route from the city (which shall remain nameless) to our village and back again. The city was somewhere I didn't really know and had few reasons to visit. In those days your mum caught the bus in to do the shopping and buy your clothes every Saturday. To work, though, I had to go into the city.

It was a huge culture shock. In the outer suburbs you'd see the odd black face or an exotically dressed Asian woman, but as I got to know the city better I realised there were whole districts where immigrants had a significant presence. And it shocked me.

At work you would routinely refer to these immigrants as "w*gs", "n*gg*rs", etc. Everybody did, and there was always talk of them "taking over". Work also brought me into contact with the first homosexual man I had ever met, a slightly effeminate quality control inspector who was probably very conscious of the remarks and the sniggering going on behind his back.

I didn't see any of these people as being completely human. They definitely weren't my equal.

Somewhere along the line I became interested in Germany's Nazi period. The more I read up on it, or saw on television, the more I realised how close to German National Socialism my own hardening views were. I became very critical of what I saw on television or read in books, and one day so upset my father with what I thought of as my "fairness" towards wartime Germany that he angrily shouted that if the Germans had come to England I would have been a Quisling.

At that time, he was probably right.

On a day out to London I was standing outside Euston station and noticed some stickers plastered over a bus shelter. They were very colourful, and I could just make out the words "Stop Immigration, Start Repatriation". This was my meat! I went over to read the stickers. It was the first time I'd ever heard of the National Front, and I carefully noted down their address: 50 Pawsons Road, Croydon.

As soon as I got home I fired off a letter asking for information, and about a fortnight later there was a knock on the door. It was the organiser of the local group and his wife. Knowing that my parents wouldn't be very happy to have them indoors, I kept them outside where we talked for nearly an hour. They left me with copies of "Britain First" and "Spearhead", and gave me directions to the pub where the group met. I couldn't wait, and the same day posted off my membership application.

It was a coincidence that my membership card arrived on the same Thursday I was due to attend my first meeting. I was pleased and proud, and as I chatted to the other members of the group before the meeting began, I knew I was Home.

The meeting itself was a bit boring for a 19 year old, but the drinking and the socialising afterwards more than made up for it (the NF was big on drinking). There were fifteen of us in the group at that stage. Two of them had been in the National Socialist Movement with Colin Jordan and John Tyndall, another had been in Jordan's successor British Movement, and the two oldest members had been in Mosley's BUF.

They all regaled me with their memories of far Right derring-do stretching back to before the war, and if there was one thing that came over it was that almost everybody in the group had some degree of sympathy for German National Socialism.

Over the weeks we started delivering leaflets door to door on Monday nights, and on Saturday's began selling "Britain First" and "Spearhead" in the city centre. This activity brought us to the attention of the local "Reds" belonging to the International Socialists (as the SWP called itself then) and the International Maxist Group, and pretty soon we weren't so much selling papers as fighting a weekly war. To my own surprise I found I could handle myself very well.

We put on members and became a fully fledged National Front branch, our meetings in early 1974 attracting over thirty members (though our paper membership was about 120). We began to cooperate with nearby branches when selling our papers, and our numbers dissuaded the IS and IMG from attempting any physical confrontation. We weren't averse to "culling" them, though. For every paper seller we had two or three others watching, and if they could isolate a stray Red for a bit of quiet retribution, they would.

The February 1974 General Election really made our branch. We pitched in with our Birmingham comrades, who were fighting three seats. By then I'd been elected on to our branch committee and was entitled to attend West Midland Regional Council meetings. At my first WMRC I realised that not everybody in the NF gravitated towards National Socialism, or at least, not in public.

There had been an influx of ex-Monday Club types, exemplified by Tom Finnegan, a powerful, persuasive man, who brought their experience in the Conservative Party to the National Front. Mostly they were racist to the core, but they were also pragmatists. Members like me saw John Tyndall and Martin Webster as living links to the Nazi past. Influential members like Tom Finnegan saw them as impediments to progress, and the influence of people like him began to seep into our branch.

Though we didn't stand a candidate in February 1974, we did benefit from the huge number of enquiries that came as a result of our election broadcast. We regularly had new people at our meetings, most of them former Tory activists or voters, and soon had to find a bigger meeting room. We didn't stop to think what this increase in membership might mean.

The next big activity of 1974 was to be a march and rally in London, on June the 15th. I don't need to repeat what happened there, other than to say "Red Lion Square".

Those of us who'd been on the march were cock-a-hoop at the publicity, and fired up by the rousing speeches of Tyndall and Webster in Conway Hall. But there were grumblings in some quarters of the home camp, which we didn't take very seriously.

There was also the tragic death of student Kevin Gately, which overshadowed the day. To us, he was just another Red who had got what he deserved. Five years later the death of Blair Peach at Southall brought out similar expressions of sympathy.

A march in Leicester came next, with more violence and more publicity. It ended with a meeting in a school, where John Tyndall gave the speech of his life. There was also a television film camera in the hall, and we were soon to find out why.

Our branch was well prepared for the October 1974 General Election. Unfortunately our candidate was a virtual illiterate, but he was the only one prepared to stand. His election agent knew what he was doing, but privately we knew we had to keep our candidate away from the press and never let him go near a public platform. At a WMRC meeting before the election one of Tom Finnegan's associates approached me to ask if I thought our candidate was up to the job. I had to admit he wasn't. Then he asked "Is he a Nazi?" which I thought was strange, and finally, "Something bad is going to happen, very soon."

The "something bad" turned out to be the infamous (to the far Right) "This Week" documentary, "The National Front", where the Nazi pasts of John Tyndall and Martin Webster were exposed for the whole country to see. It didn't faze me, I already knew that, but for our newer members it was a real problem and they were determined to do something about it.

Standing a candidate in the October 74 General Election was almost the last positive thing we did for a long time. The party was fracturing along its internal "Tyndallite" and "Populist" fault lines.

I had no idea how well organised the Populists were. Being a known Tyndallite I was kept in the dark over the furtive meetings taking place in the West Midlands region, and went to that year's annual conference completely unprepared for the stormy nature of the proceedings. JT attempted to make his speech and all hell broke loose as the Populists chanted "Nazi, Nazi!" And then JT was deposed in favour of Kingsley Read. As quick as that.

I couldn't believe it.

The acrimony at the top spread down to our branch. We were seriously divided, and the two camps only ever came together at branch meetings which became set pieces of factional power play. By June 1975 our activist base had shrunk and the paper membership was in freefall. In July, after attending a meeting addressed by John Tyndall, I was voted off the branch committee. We were being weeded out, but following JT's orders did nothing that might earn us expulsion. Local activities virtually ceased, as there was no point in bringing in new members only to have them leave when they saw how divided we were.

What I should say at this point is that if anybody thinks the Populists were anti-Nazi in any specific sense, then they weren't. Before the splits we'd all sit in pubs discussing the Second World War from the German side, and sounding off opinions that could only be described as Nazi. The difference was that the Populists were desperate to hide any outward show of Nazism. One of their leaders, in an attempt to persuade some of us into their camp, made no bones about his admiration for National Socialism, but: "We've got to get to power before we can do anything about it, and to get to power we must have a clean image."

Quite a lot of people went along with that. Quite a lot of people are still going along with it in the present BNP.

I remember the second half on 1975 as a quarrelsome, vicious time. We hated each other. The only thing we had in common was that we hated blacks, Asians, Jews and homosexuals more (except we Tyndallites weren't so prepared to lie about it).

Things came to a head in January 1976, when elementary procedural mistakes by the Populist faction on the NF's National Directorate led to them losing control and leaving to form the National Party. Different regions and branches were affected in different ways. Our branch divided very badly, and there wasn't much love lost between us.

With JT back at the helm we began an exhausting round of activities. These were meant to boost morale, to rebuild the party, and above all to destroy the National Party. Luck was with us in that year. It was a year of multiple immigration scares, each of them helped along by the media and leading mainstream politicians.

We took advantage of each scare as it came along, and the structure of the NF (activist based and quick to react) ensured that we regularly made the headlines. We didn't always care what sort of headlines, so long as we eclipsed the National Party. While the National Party attempted to sink roots and develop an electoral machine, we were here, there and everywhere, soaking up the support they needed. Though they won two seats on Blackburn council that year we knew that their membership was slowly evaporating.

By late 76 it was obvious that the NP was finished, and in dribs and drabs they began to return to the fold.

I was almost alone in opposing this. As far as I was concerned, we'd just rid ourselves of a destructive disease and here we were injecting it into ourselves again! But I was overruled, and had to accept that people who had stood candidates against our own just a few months before had the same say as I did. It was galling. With some like minded comrades I settled down to a few beers, certain that sooner or later we'd split again.

Our branch never returned to the harmony of early 1974. We treated each other correctly, but there was always an air of tension that sometimes exploded into open hostility. It usually happened because the activists tended to be Tyndallite, while the ex-Populists were good at raising funds, but also good at telling us what they should be spent on. They didn't like us getting into scraps with the Reds, and they tried to dictate what I should put into my press releases (I was Press Officer at the time). And, for the sake of a slightly late payment into our bank account, they deposed our Tyndallite organiser and replaced him with one of their own.

It was obvious we weren't going to last long like this. We knew that nearby branches were in a similar condition, but HQ liked to pretend that we could all get on together, and told us to focus on raising a full slate of candidates for the next general election.

That gave the ex-Populists in our branch the leverage they needed. They were far more experienced in fighting elections than we were, and it wasn't long before I was the only Tyndallite remaining on the branch committee. Somehow we struggled along, but not without a lot of bitching, and all the time the local Reds were paying us more and more attention. It was a brave man who openly tried to sell "National Front News" in the city centre, even when protected by other members.

Activities outside of branch meetings were really suffering. Delivering leaflets became a risky business because the Reds always seemed to find out where we were within half and hour of our starting, and even branch meetings became secretive affairs as we were forced to move from venue to venue, booking under a false name each time.

In August 77 came the Lewisham march. Half way down to London our ex-populist organiser called a rest stop, which nonplussed us as we were cutting it fine anyway. So we arrived in Lewisham late, unable to join the march, and got ourselves mixed up with the Reds, who were being baton charged by the police. We had no choice but to dump our banners and hide our badges and pretend that we were part of the mob we despised.

Despite the Reds getting the blame for the violence, the publicity we got from Lewisham was all bad. Even the party leadership seemed to know it (but would never admit it). Though it wasn't the NF attacking the police on that day, many members who'd made the march said that they'd noticed a change in the police's attitude. Until then individual policemen were completely neutral, sometimes even friendly at NF marches. At Lewisham their attitude was one of barely supressed anger, and many NF members were roughly handled by the police. The marching party had gone on for too long, and it wasn't funny any more.

I don't remember exactly, but it was at about this time that No Platform came in (or was enforced more vigorously), and the NUJ instructed journalists not to report the NF and its activities unless in a negative light.

That really hurt us. It was something we couldn't fight and had no answer for, other than to continue making a noise by marching and demonstrating, which just brought us more negative publicity. We were really frustrated by that, but otherwise things seemed to be moving forward. We had Excalibur House, money was coming in, we put on members, and had our election targets to meet. But it wasn't the same. The old comradeship had gone.

We were very confident before the 1979 General Election, though. Martin Webster assured us that we were going to attract "hundreds and hundreds of thousands of votes", and we worked hard to achieve them. While we were focussed on that our internal contradictions were disguised, but only temporarily. We weren't fazed when Margaret Thatcher told the media of the public's fear of being "swamped" by a tide of immigrants, but we should have been. When two of our members left to join the Conservatives we Tyndallites saw it as vindication for what we'd been saying all along, that Populists were just Tories and could never be Nationalists.

The lead up to the election was a violent time. We couldn't hold public meetings anywhere without meeting violent opposition, but it never stopped us trying. Our "public" meetings always filled up with Reds, who we were legally bound to admit to publicly owned property. We'd protect the platform and place stewards all around the hall waiting for things to kick off, which they usually did very quickly. Then we'd pitch in not particularly caring who we thumped. My response to this was to do the same to them, and we disrupted as many left wing meetings as we could.

Come election night, reality dawned. We'd been thrashed. 303 candidates (if my memory serves) and not one of them got a decent vote. It was a shattering experience.

The blame game began, and the old divisions and the old arguments were quick to surface. At about the same time rumours of Martin Webster's homosexuality began to surface, with the circulation of photostats of statements various people had made alleging seduction attempts by him. And if there's one thing your average White Nationalist hates as much as a black, it's a gay. I was horrified, and wondered how Tyndall could continue to associate with Webster.

What I and most of the party didn't know was that JT had broken with Webster when the rumours were confirmed, but in the minds of most members Tyndall and Webster went together like bread and cheese. That gave the founders of the National Front Constitutional Movement a better opening than they otherwise would have had.

The NFCM was the sneakiest attempt to form a splinter party while pretending it wasn't that I've ever come across. In our depleted ranks the ex-Populists still had four out of five committee places (I was the fifth), and meetings seemed to be conducted as normal, except that sometimes, after the words "National Front", the words "Constitutional Movement" were tacked on. I asked what that meant, to be told "We're just supporting an internal Directorate attempt to change the party structure."

A quick phone call confirmed that the branch was actually operating outside the authority of the Directorate, and had to all intents and purposes joined a separate political party. It was obvious that a lot of secret meeting had gone on. I moved quickly with the only two other members to remain loyal and gathered up as much branch property as I could, but we lost most of it.

And there we were, just the three of us remaining in a branch that could once hold meetings of up to eighty. It was the same in other parts of the country. The NF seemed to be evaporating.

When we went on Webster's marches (there was one in Nuneaton, I think) we were only going through the motions and making up the ever dwindling numbers. Even the Reds didn't pay us much attention any more, and the whole point of marching seemed to have been lost. For me it was like being part of a beaten army fighting on to preserve its honour.

I was in touch with JT regularly at the time, and knew by now that he wanted Webster out. The plan was to change the constitution of the National Front, and to operate the party on authoritarian lines.

And so we reach the true genesis of the British National Party...

Part Two

The events of 1979/80 seemed to come together in a rush. Faction-fighting was no-holds-barred and former friends were now bitter enemies. Locally, the three of us remaining in the official National Front did all we could to eclipse the far larger NF Constitutional Movement, pulling off stunts and firing off press releases as if they were going out of fashion.

Despite our tiny numbers we succeeded. The three of us were dedicated activists, and that was three more activists than the NFCM talking shop could muster. We had learned a lot from the divisions of 75/76.

This bout of factionalism, however, was much worse, and it was difficult, even for the most dedicated, to see how we were going to dig our way out of the hole in which we were firmly planted.

John Tyndall was removed from his positions in the NF and Andrew Brons installed as chairman. But everybody knew that the real power behind the throne was Martin Webster, whose homosexuality made him anathema to many NF members.

There was little we Tyndall loyalists could do but wait to see which way our leader (we considered him so) would jump, in the meantime fending off HQ's frequent demands for loyalty and cash. The wait wasn't too long. A phone call from JT's father-in-law, Charles Parker, summoned me to London and a small gathering of trusted Tyndallites, where the possibilities were discussed.

Nobody liked the idea of founding a new political party, so, as David Bruce said, we'd pretend we weren't!

JT talked of a "lifeboat" coming alongside the sinking ship of the NF to take off the crew, a simile we all liked as we could tell ourselves that we weren't "splitters". The next meeting, which I did not attend, decided on the name New National Front, which seemed just about right, given the task we had set ourselves, as it showed our continuing identification with the National Front.

The NNF was tiny. Branches, as we had known them in the NF, hardly seemed to exist over much of the country, and in our own West Midlands region members were particularly thin on the ground. Our purpose, though, was not to act like a political party (something that was beyond our means), nor was it to waste resources in recruitment leafleting; our task was to bring on board the worthwhile nationalists remaining in the NF or those who had gone over to the NFCM.

I baulked at the idea of bringing NFCM people into the fold, and on one of our paper sales drives in Brick Lane spent a lot of time bending JT's ear on the matter. JT was supremely confident that the NNF's autocratic constitution would allow him to nip any future populist plotting in the bud, but he allowed me the luxury of a veto on membership applications locally, which mollified me.

Despite appearances that were sometimes to the contrary, John Tyndall always believed that any nationalist party must necessarily be "broad church", even though this would (as it still does) bring with it the same problems that had plagued the NF in the 1970's. With himself as Leader with sole power to make internal party appointments, however, it seemed that the issue of factionalism might have been solved. To put it bluntly, the organisation's grass roots could become as populist as they wanted, but with Tyndallites installed in every position of power and influence, that would henceforth be of little consequence.

And it worked, until the conman in Nazi clothing came knocking at the door.

These were hectic days. We got ourselves over to the few National Front branches that continued to operate in order to poach their members, continued to pull stunts locally, supported NNF demonstrations wherever they were held, and made the journey to Brick Lane every Sunday morning.

It's all a bit fuzzy now, but even though my views have changed completely since those times it's still difficult for me not to look back on them with a certain amount of fondness. If I could go back now and undo everything I did then, I would do it without hesitation, but I did lead that life and I was involved in those events, and there's nothing I can do to change them.

Chief Constables in those days sought bans on far Right marches almost as a matter of course, but we learned to play this to our own advantage as we could often cause ourselves reams of publicity without ever really doing anything. We could also play the sometimes obvious Special Branch spying on us (through our mail and telephone calls) to our advantage, and gleefully did so.

Some years before a manager at my workplace called me in to his office. I knew him well, because he was a sympathiser, and so it was fortunate that when the SB came calling at the factory to gather information on me, he was the manager detailed to do it. As a result, we learned far more about the SB than they learned about us.

It had been obvious for a long time that my mail was being opened, and sometimes, usually just before a major NF or NNF event, I'd pick up the telephone and hear distant voices and random noises of movement that would suddenly disappear as the dialing tone came on. As I called JT and Charles Parker regularly after the formation of the NNF, we used other routes of communication when discussing party business, but used our home telephones or the mail when we wanted to feed the SB something.

That happened quite frequently. For example, I knew that the NNF was going to march in Burton on Trent, a march we knew would be banned. So we hatched a plan whereby midland NNF organisers received a bulletin calling them and their members to a redirection point at Corley Services, on the M6 in Warwickshire. Of course, the police were waiting for us, and would not allow us to leave. Charles Parker arrived, and the location of the march was quietly passed on. In the meantime, the main body of the NNF went sailing by on the motorway, hotly pursued by a large contingent of police vehicles.

Shortly afterwards, the police keeping us penned in at Corley Services said they were going to escort us out of the area. By then I had secretly passed on photocopied maps showing the back lanes of north Warwickshire and south Staffordshire by which everybody could make their way to Burton. The idea was that as soon as the opportunity arose, drivers would dive into the first country lane they could and try to lose the police by taking non-obvious routes. In our case, we headed four miles west, before shooting into a skein of lanes I knew like the back of my own hand, and played a thrilling game of cat and mouse with our police pursuers. We got the better of them by pulling into a wood, waiting for them to pass, then (suspecting that they would expect us to head back towards Corley Services and the M6), took a long-winded route to the west. We arrived in Burton with time to spare, and so, it appeared, had most of those trapped at Corley Services.

That kind of adventure builds comradeship like nothing else can. We had completely outwitted the police and were bloody proud of it. The escapade impressed quite a number of our old NF colleagues, and that was a large part of the point.

So was the march that never was, which again involved taking advantage of police spying. In a certain Midlands town the "Reds" were to stage a march in support of a highly unpopular cause. It came at short notice, and there wasn't much we could do to physically oppose it. We had a feeling that the police would ban the march if they could, but they needed a good reason. We decided to give them one, taking the credit for ourselves and reaping the publicity.

Despite knowing that if our bluff was called a derisory march of perhaps 50 NNF members would take place on the same day as the much larger Red march, we decided to pretend otherwise. I saw the local police and gave them the most provocative route I could think up together with wild overestimations of the numbers intending to show up, and JT played his part in sending out emergency bulletins that seemed to confirm this. And, naturally, we talked very loosely over the telephone.

I'd also learned to forget using the established local evening newspaper, where articles on the far Right, if they appeared at all, were always negative (the same newspaper had also run several exposes of our activities in the past). There was an independent free newspaper, delivered to every household whether they wanted it or not. Its headlines were rarely inspiring, and I had a good idea they would jump at the chance of an "exclusive".

They bit like a hungry shark. Their journalists, used to parish-pump stories, were as green as grass, and I sensed as much as they began to interview me. I did not play down the idea of clashes between ourselves and the Reds, and got them to take down a heck of a lot of disinformation, some of it at JT's instigation. It was all repeated in banner headlines two days later, and soon I had the hacks of the evening paper and the BBC on my doorstep infuriated that I hadn't broken the story with them. It was news all that weekend.

Three days later all marches in the town were banned. JT and I sighed with relief, but were cock-a-hoop that so much success had cost so little. We had earned ourselves a lot of publicity, and into the bargain many NF people came over to us. It was also the end of the NFCM in our area. Again, that was a large part of the point.

It was also virtually the last thing I did for a long time, as one day I went to work and woke up in hospital, where I remained for six months. I've never really had good health since.

I was on the sidelines when the NNF became the BNP, but did my best to return to activism. It was a chore by now though, as my old strength had gone, never to return. It was also very difficult to keep one's morale intact in those hard and barren days of the 1980's. I did keep up certain friendships, including that with JT (though it was now mostly by mail and the odd telephone call), and with one or two people who remained in the National Front.

We watched the antics of Nick Griffin and the NF with bewildered amusement. Much that went on in the NF in those days was known to us very quickly, and their internal bulletins always found their way into our hands. Even though we were no longer NF, we still had affection for our old political home, and it was difficult for us to watch as Griffin steadily ran the organisation into the ground, always managing to blame somebody else for every self-inflicted reverse.

Those who knew Griffin had learned the hard way not to trust him. They are still learning the hard way.

My memory of those bulletins and other internal NF literature of the time is that they came from the pen of a madman. I wish I had retained them: they are a salutory lesson in how, with Nick Griffin, the more things change, the more they stay the same. Nick's frequent political flip-flops aside, there was a hardening suspicion among my NF friends that Nick's number one priority was Nick.

More illness came my way. The 80's became the 90's and not much seemed to change. Nationalism was stuck in a rut that it just couldn't seem to get out of. I was unhappy at C18 involvement with the BNP - if you like, I thought they were the "wrong" kind of National Socialists! And the NF finally broke down, as, with the leaders available to it, it was always going to.

By now I was hardly active at all. Health and the call of family commitments saw to that. There was no local organisation, and as far as I can recall we had less than fifteen members in our city, most of them doing little more than meet up for drinking sessions. Then came the election of Derek Beacon, and suddenly the BNP was in the headlines - and out of the shadow of the NF.

I don't know for sure, but I presume that was the moment when a certain well known political acrobat sniffed the air, smelt money and power, and sat up and took notice.

My correspondence with JT was by now very infrequent. I was conscious that he was very busy, and I was hardly doing much for the cause. When news filtered back to me that Nick Griffin was making overtures to JT I wrote him at once reminding him of Griffin's previous antics in the NF. JT's reply was bland, and not at all what I expected of him.

This was odd, as I had mostly respected JT's judgement. At a London meeting I sought out Val Tyndall and asked her what she thought of Griffin. She simply didn't trust the man, was her flat answer. And so, I thought, all would be well: if Val thought that, then JT must be influenced by her, as Val was no fool.

Then I learned that Griffin was in the party. I was horrified. This ambitious man had done little but involve himself in factional wars for as long as anybody could remember his name. But never mind, he was just a member...

The biggest shock of all came when JT handed the editorship of Spearhead over to Griffin. It was unbelievable, and JT was starting to look all too fallible. He stopped answering my letters.

With Griffin as editor, I found Spearhead difficult to read. I felt that every word he wrote served another purpose, and that he lacked the sincerity of a convinced Nationalist. I wasn't the only one to detect that. It was also becoming obvious that the ageing JT would soon have to stand aside and pass the leadership on to a younger man. I had a queasy feeling that man would be Nick Griffin, who seemed to me to be sitting there like a spider in its web, biding his time.

With my health still bad, I needed the kind of job that wouldn't be too taxing and where my employer would be flexible. I found one, but it was 140 miles away from the city where I lived. I made the move and my family began anew. As far as I was aware, there were no other BNP members in my adopted town, and I wasn't inclined to kick things off. In many ways it was a relief to be away from it all. I let my membership lapse after 26 years, but continued to take Spearhead.

After a while I found I was reading Spearhead with a certain detachment. I wasn't even keeping my eyes and ears open for positive mentions of the BNP on the television or in the press, as all BNP members compulsively do. And my wife, long suffering but loyal, was glad to have me "back". I realised that all my activism had caused me to miss my kids growing up when my daughter said she intended to marry - I still thought of her as a little girl! And for the first time I talked to my kids, and finally listened to what they had been saying for years: that they hated my membership of racist parties, and were often ashamed by my frequent appearances in local newspapers, which led to them being taunted at school.

That really hit home.

I was still interested enough to follow Griffin's challenge to JT's leadership. For some reason the BNP didn't seem to know that I was no longer a member, and I got all the election bumpf from both sides. I also spoke to old friends by telephone, and from them heard what I expected to hear, namely that the political acrobat was up to his old tricks again.

Griffin's victory came as little surprise. The BNP had been growing its membership in the mid and late 90's, none of it to do with Griffin, but many old populists were now back, and (as ever) an increase in membership brought with it an increase in the numbers of those we Tyndallites sometimes called "National Tories" - or populists. This was inevitable, and it was the constituency Griffin directly appealed to. JT's comment to me, years before, that he would have the power to nip any plotting in the bud rang very hollow by now.

With Griffin as leader of the BNP, I lost any interest I ever had in the party, even allowing my Spearhead subscription to lapse. I can say, without benefit of hindsight, that I felt then that not only would Griffin fail to live up to his election promises, but that it wouldn't be a very long wait before he manifested his old paranoid NF ways. Every action of his since then has proved me right.

Mentally renouncing the BNP (but not my racism and Nationalism) did me a power of good. I stopped seeing conspiracy in every dark corner. I also took a new attitude to my fellow man, no longer seeing them as unenlightened "sheeple". And I began to read books that I'd never have dreamed of reading in my party days.

Some time in late 2000 I happened to be in my local library when I saw a poster advertising an open seminar to be put on by the local Community Relations Council. That raised my hackles, and I thought I'd go along to see what went on.

In my days as a Nationalist activist I always enjoyed people in the race relations industry making statements that could only inflame any existing tension. The more they alienated whites, even if unintentionally, the more I liked it. I held then, and I hold now, that if you pay people to seek out racism, then they will inevitably find racism wherever they look, even if it's completely undetectable to anybody else. If somebody's living is dependent on doing that, then as sure as eggs is eggs, that's what they'll do.

In my adopted town, ethnic minorities barely existed. But according to the agenda of this CRC seminar, their invisibilty was due to the racism they faced. It's the kind of sweeping, unproved statement that raises the hackles of more than dyed-in-the-wool racists, as it seems to be blaming the majority community for something they never knew existed, let alone imagined themselves to be guilty of.

That sort of thing is damaging and it is unnecessary.

I went into the seminar laden with preconceptions. The three CRC people were white, and around the room there were several Asians and blacks, all of them looking completely bored. The only whites were people I thought of as the usual local do-gooding suspects. The seminar started and it was the whites (and only the whites) who kept banging on and on about the "racism" supposedly stalking this peaceful town. It also became obvious that only three of the Asians and two of the blacks actually lived here. When asked to describe their experiences, they were stuck for something to say. One of the blacks said he'd been shouted at once, but that was it.

The meeting dragged on and on, and finally broke up for refreshments.

As we went for tea, one of the Asian gentlemen began talking to me. He was a shopkeeper, he said, and only came to the meeting after having been pestered into it. "There is no racism in this town," I said flatly, and not in the most friendly tone, "but this is the kind of thing that could kick it off." "Yes, you're right," said the Asian gentleman.

That surprised me. He introduced himself, and his wife, and both offered me their hands, which I reluctantly shook.

For the want of something better to do while I drank my tea, I carried on talking with the pair, and we found ourselves in agreement on our negative opinions of the seminar and its purpose. Several of the other locals gravitated towards us, and their general opinion chimed with ours. It wasn't what I was expecting at all. These people were quite happy with their lives, asked for nothing, certainly had no wish to be treated as somehow different from any other citizen of the town, and were a little disturbed that the intent of the seminar seemed to be to find wrongs that nobody else could.

Much to my own surprise, I found myself enjoying their company.

It was the first time most of us had met, and we got on very well. More or less distancing ourselves from the CRC people, who kept butting in, some of us repaired to a nearby pub to continue a jokey discussion that was a million miles away from the spectre of racism. That was the first time I had ever seen Asian or black women in a pub (and to judge by the landlord's face, the first time he had, too).

To cut a long story down to size, friendships were made that evening which endure today. My addiction to racism took a big knock that night.

There were no journalists at the seminar, so the local weekly paper printed a rehash of the CRC's press release. It was predictably heavy handed and hysterical; and, just as predictably, the letters page the next week was filled with diatribes from indignant readers unhappy that they and their town were considered a hotbed of racism, and wanting to know why the invisible ethnic minorities considered themselves victims of it.

Satnam, the shopkeeper, rang me that night. He was very upset that the CRC had given such a distorted picture, and wanted to put things right. We got together with two others and presented ourselves at the local newspaper offices asking to see the editor. As it was, we were seen by a young journalist. And we wasted our time, as nothing ever appeared.

I saw my new friends occasionally, Satnam in particular. I'd never told any of them about my past, which increasingly seemed to be a fading memory, but one night I emboldened myself to do it. Satnam looked as if he was about to fall over, but he collected himself and started laughing. "I've been an idiot too," he said. "We're all entitled to be idiots, as long as we learn not to be."

The admission changed nothing between us, and nothing more was ever said about it.

By now I didn't even think about my BNP and NF days. It was as though somebody else had lived that life, and I'd merely tapped into a stray memory belonging to somebody else, but even I didn't realise how far away from my previous life I'd travelled.

A year or so later I walked through our local market place and came across a huddle of BNP paper sellers. They were doing no business at all, but an unexpected impulse came charging through me.

I wanted to rip their papers from their hands and kick them bodily out of the town! I really did.

In fact, I wanted to do more than that.

The BNP was beginning to make the news, especially when it began to win council seats. News like that would once have had me leaping for joy, but now it filled me with disgust. I was filled with disgust when I saw BNP people on television lying through their teeth about their racism, and with explosive anger whenever I saw Griffin dissembling, as if all he had written and said in the 80's and 90's had never happened. I knew all about the political acrobat. It's one thing to misrepresent yourself to the gullible members of the BNP, but to do it to the nation is something else again.

Those BNP paper sellers, it turned out, had come in from elsewhere as there was no organisation in this town, as I found out by calling some old contacts. The day, however, must come when the BNP would arrive here, and I thought "we" (there was only me, as far as I knew!) should be ready for them.

Certain things happened in this town at the time, mostly to do with Portuguese migrant workers and asylum seekers, which brought the small National Front presence here out to exploit the situation. I became aware of a small group of people actively opposing the NF's efforts, but had no idea how to contact them until by chance one of their leaflets came into my hands.

The leaflets were sensible and constructive, with none of the hysteria I associated with anti-racist literature (an old frame of mind dies as hard as an old habit), so, after giving it a little thought, I wrote off to the PO box number given, and was quickly invited to a meeting.

The four people I met weren't the raging Trots of far right legend. They were just ordinary people who looked at black faces and white faces, and saw only human beings. At that meeting I first met somebody you are all familiar with, and even as I laid my murky past out in the open I met only kindness. Their businesslike approach appealed to the natural activist in me, and before I knew it I was out and about with a map and my share of leaflets.

It had been nearly 32 years before that I first so enthusiatically joined the National Front, and now here I was, just as enthusiastically opposing them - and loving every minute of it.

Our little group went on for a couple of years until work relocations broke us up, but in that time we did a lot to oppose fascism and racism in our part of the country, and, as individuals, we continue to do so. Maybe we've just been lucky, or maybe our work has had a positive effect, but in this neck of the woods the BNP has failed to grow at all, and we aim to preserve that status quo.

Just ten years ago I could not have conceived that one day I would come to be writing as I have here, for the readers of what I would have considered to be a lying extreme Left website visited only by Trots, junkies and deadbeats. But it's not like that at all.

Others before me have made the same journey from fanatical racist to normal human being as myself, and others will again.

It's a journey well worth making, because it's great not to hate.