A Day Trip to Wakefield with the EDL.
Four hours kip left a frantic need for tea in me and a slightly confused state as I purchased the tickets for the train in Sheffield station.
I really couldn’t understand why the EDL had called this demo and I knew it would be a pointless waste of time for everybody.
I’ve been through Wakefield countless times on the train but I’ve never been in the town centre and on a clear and sunny day it looked a great place as we walked through. Lots of decent independent cafes and greasy spoons selling tea amongst other things and a really nice market going off around the Cathedral.
One thing that did make our eyes pop was this.
We wandered down to the Wakey Tavern where the EDL were meeting up but as it was still only about 10.30 there was hardly anybody there. We walked back up the hill to look for the demo site and walked through it without knowing. There was nothing to suggest a demo was due to take place at all. No police, fencing or the blue and white tape they use to mark demo sites.
In the end I had to ask one of the police liaison officers where the demo was going to be and she pointed us back the way we had just walked. This was very low key policing.
We took a walk through the Trinity shopping centre so we could get our bearings and look for somewhere to hole up for a bit and drink tea.
Back down to the pub to see if any EDL had bothered to turn up and a few had shown up.
It was pretty obvious that this was going to be a total failure and we went and found a fantastic cafe which just about overlooked the pub and the demo site where the police had started to move into place.
Whilst we were having a smoke outside the cafe an unmarked coach full of EDL supporters drove past.
This increased the number of people milling around the pub and boosted the volume of their shitty singing but it was a pitiful turnout. We walked back down to the pub and took a few more pictures.
After a while they started to get themselves into position for the short walk up the hill to the demo site.
And away we go.
They finally got into position and the speeches started. Now this was hilarious. I’m not sure what they had done but they had either forgotten to put new batteries in the megaphone or they didn’t know how to turn it on.
Some pushing and shoving broke out when one EDL supporter was arrested by the police and the Sheffield EDL contingent were not happy.
Even whilst the great and the good of the EDL were venting their spleen EDL supporters were drifting away from the demo site and were returning to the pub. We were also bored shitless by this point and took a walk round to the other side of the demo site to see if anything interesting was happening there. No is the short answer so we buggered off for a couple of pints.
The pub we went to was a short distance from the Wakey Tavern and we watched them disperse for an hour or so before getting the train back to Sheffield.
I don’t know what numbers the EDL have been claiming but if I’m being generous I would say there were a few over 100 there. To put that number into context Sheffield and Leeds have a combined population of over 1 million and are within 30 minutes of Wakefield. Ah, but it was only a local demo they will say. They got 300 in Rotherham last year for a local demo.
This was pitiful. The spike in support they had because of the tragic murder of Lee Rigby has gone and even the people that are still involved are starting to notice this.
When I got home I had a look at the Sheffield EDL pages to see what they were saying about the day and I noticed this post by Marco Spillioni, the South Yorkshire EDL organiser.
Nothing to do with what will happen when your ex wife finds out what you are involved in then as certain people are saying Marco?