Tempers flare as Britain First holds ‘Christian patrol’ in Bury Park



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Tempers flared as Britain First staged what they called a ‘Christian patrol’ in Bury Park on Saturday afternoon.

Members of the far-right group held up crosses and handed out literature as they paraded down Dunstable Road.

Footage of the march, which has been viewed millions of times online, shows heated arguments breaking out between the demonstrators and locals.

Britain First say they decided to stage the demonstration to highlight the convictions of Ibrahim Anderson and Shah Jahan Khan, who on Friday were found guilty of promoting ISIS.

Beds Police has launched an investigation into the incident, during which no arrests were made.

The force has said that police patrols have been conducted in the area for “community reassurance”.

Police were called to calm tensions

Police were called to calm tensions

The march has been condemned by members of the Christian community, who handed out flowers and messages of peace in Bury Park on Sunday.

Interfaith worker Peter Adams, from St Mary’s Church, said: “By their actions, Britain First has corrupted the message of the cross, which for us is a symbol of reconciliation, forgiveness and selfless love.

“We regret that they were able to come and reject their actions.

“In Luton, we will stay at peace.”

Mohammad Walayat, of Luton Central Mosque, added: “This was a lovely gesture from our Christian friends, and as always we are proud to stand beside them.

“We know through our strong working relationships and friendships that Britain First does not represent the Christian faith or values.

“Loving our neighbour and living peacefully alongside them is at the core of both Islam and Christianity”.

Responding to the show of defiance on Sunday, Britain First branded the Christians who handed out flowers “gormless, trendy, politically correct, tree hugging sandle wearing hippies who only care about multiculturalism.”

Saturday’s event was not the first time the far-right group has targeted Bury Park– in June 2014 Britain First leader Paul Golding and other members were filmed storming into Luton Central Mosque and Bury Park Mosque to hand out leaflets and bibles.

Last year they announced plans to stage a highly divisive demonstration through Luton town centre, which was almost scuppered after Beds Police applied for an injunction to ban the group’s leaders from the town.

The High Court rejected the bid to prevent Paul Golding and Jayda Fransen from entering Luton, but an interim injunction against the pair was handed down,

This banned the pair from publishing or distributing material which is “likely to stir up religious and/or racial hatred” and from behaving in a way that would cause “harassment, alarm or distress” for a period of 12 months.

Around 200 Britain First supporters attended the demonstration on June 27.

During the rally Fransen branded Christian leaders at St Mary’s Church ‘hypocrites’ and ‘traitors’ for attempting to get Britain First to call off its protest, while Golding promised that they would make a return to the town.