The camera never lies unless you make it

The other day I was trawling through a few of the Facebook pages and groups that I like to keep an eye on and I had a look to see what George Edwards had been up to.

Edwards, or to give him his real name – Crapper, is a Sheffield based far-right activist and full time fantasist. You can read more about his recent activities here, here, and here

He likes to think he is a big name in the various far-right factions and he is usually seen at most of the demonstrations.

Today he was at the EDL demo in Dewsbury, last Saturday with the Infidels and National Front in Dewsbury and he also found time to be at a BNP demo at Fareham Magistrates Court. He is a busy man.

The other day he took time out of his busy schedule to drive around various parts of inner city Sheffield and take a series of photos showing the supposed “Islamification Of Sheffield”

Unfortunately for Crapper one of the areas that he chose was the one I grew up in, lived in until recently and know like the back of my hand.

The first place that caught my eye was the Mother of God parish centre on Abbeydale Road. Click the pics for full size.

Because of these photos and comments I contacted the Parish Priest and went to see him yesterday afternoon.

Monsignor William Kilgannon has been the local priest for well over 30 years. He said after seeing the pictures of his church that what Crapper is suggesting is absolute rubbish. The sign was damaged recently by strong winds and that they have a new sign on back order. He also pointed out that the church has a weekly mass of 600 attendees and the parish centre is used almost daily by a wide variety of groups from all sections of the local community.

Here’s a couple of photos I’ve taken of the church and the parish centre.

In this picture you can see the scaffolding where the church caretaker is in the process of removing an old crucifix as it’s going to be replaced with a new one in the next few days.

Here you can see the sign has been taken down from the parish centre ready for its replacement.

One of the other places Crapper targeted was one of my local haunts in the past, The Earl of Arundel & Surrey.

This was a great pub a few years ago but greedy pub-co’s and an endless list of other reasons see it in it’s current state. It’s one of several pubs in the local area that have closed over the last few years, The Royal, The Sheldon, The Albion and The Bridge Inn off the top of my head have also gone.

Emptiness when children and families once were
says Crapper about the photo.

He is right in one respect. 30 years ago there did used to be a couple of streets of terraced housing which were demolished by the council to make way for a ring road which never happened. Instead it was grassed over, renamed Lowfield Park and was a very popular place to walk dogs and play football.

Not that you would notice that from his gloomy photos of dereliction.

The reality is very different and Crapper has committed a particular kind of sophistry that I hate.

Yesterday afternoon I took this photo from the same carpark that Crapper had taken his photos from.

This one was taken from from about the same position that Crapper took his photo.

This building is going to contain a music studio, performance space, dance studio, IT suite and of course the changing rooms for the various sports teams that will be using the place when it opens in the next few weeks.

This is a view from the top of Lowfield Park looking towards The Earl.

At a time when there are so many pressures on any inner city area anything that can help ease those pressures should be applauded. Whilst I’m in no way religious I recognise the important work various faith groups do in upholding social cohesion. The same goes for groups that tackle racism in the community and help break down barriers between people.

Both the Mother of God church and Football Unites – Racism Divides (who will be running the new facilities) are important parts in that work along with many others.

Crapper also took several photos of the Madina Mosque on Wolseley Road. I will comment on them sometime next week.