Police praised for handling of Farnworth EDL protest
POLICE and crime commissioner Tony Lloyd has praised Bolton people for their “restraint” during Monday’s EDL protest.
He has also highlighted the good work of local police in keeping any problems out of the town centre.
About 100 members of the English Defence League gathered in Farnworth Park on Monday afternoon for a demonstration, with about 50 members of Unite Against Fascism (UAF) also staging a counter protest.
A huge police operation, which included mounted officers, dog units and the force’s elite Tactical Aid Unit saw the day pass off without major incident, with 12 arrests being made throughout the course of the day — 11 from the EDL, and one from the UAF.
Tony Lloyd, Greater Manchester’s Police and Crime Commissioner congratulated the force for a "well-organised and proportionate" operation to manage the protest.
He said: “The EDL is neither wanted nor welcome in Bolton or Greater Manchester and it’s about time they realised that.
“They have repeatedly tried to provoke and have repeatedly failed. The best response to the EDL is simply to ignore them and I would like to praise the people of Bolton for doing just that.
“Hopefully it will dawn on the EDL soon that the people of Greater Manchester simply have no time for their message of division and intolerance and will realise there’s just no point coming here.
“They have no support in Bolton or anywhere else in our region, and realistically they never will.”
Mr Lloyd added: “I would also like to thank the police for the well-planned and executed operation.
“This was a busy bank holiday weekend with a number of major events across the region — not least the Bolton Food and Drink Festival.
“The police, working with Bolton Council, allowed the decent, law-abiding people of Bolton and Greater Manchester to go about their ordinary business with minimal disruption.”
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