A far-right party planning a march through Dewsbury provoked outrage by staging protests outside mosques in a Muslim part of town.

Activists from Britain First handed out promotional material in the town centre on Saturday then headed into Savile Town.

With banners emblazoned with: “No More Mosques” they were filmed outside several places of worship including the Markazi Mosque in South Street, renowned as one of the biggest teaching mosques in the UK.

A screenshot from the Britain First video showing activists protesting in Savile Town, Dewsbury.
A screenshot from the Britain First video showing activists protesting in Savile Town, Dewsbury.

A group of activists, led by deputy leader Jayda Fransen, posed in front of a sign outside the Markazi Mosque which prohibits photographs or filming.

Dewsbury South Labour councillor Nosheen Dad said: “They tried to provoke but got nothing out of it.

“They tried to spread their message of hate but I was very proud of the community’s reaction. It will be the same when they come to Dewsbury for the march. No one will bat an eyelid because we are a tolerant and strong community.”

Dewsbury South Labour councillor Masood Ahmed (right) pictured in the Britain First video talking to activists in Market Place, Dewsbury.
Dewsbury South Labour councillor Masood Ahmed (right) pictured in the Britain First video talking to activists in Market Place, Dewsbury.

Fellow Dewsbury South Labour councillor Masood Ahmed, seen on the video talking to activists in the town centre, told the Examiner he had no problem with the march as long as it was properly controlled.

“They have every right to hold a march,” he said. “What I am more concerned about is the impact on traders in the town centre and the cost of policing.”

Britain First is planning a Dewsbury Day of Action in the town on Saturday, January 30. Protesters are to meet outside the railway station at 1pm and march through the town. There are also fears of a possible counter demonstration.

In a five-minute video posted on the party’s website and shared on social media, activists are shown handing out party newspapers in Market Place, Dewsbury, and Ms Fransen, speaking to the camera, tells of the “brilliant response.”

She said the march was “against Islamic extremism” and that Muslim people were taking newspapers too.

Later the video shows the protesters outside mosques and on the main Savile Road through Savile Town.

Jayda Fransen, deputy leader of Britain First, pictured in the party's video. She is in Market Place, Dewsbury, flanked by party activists.
Jayda Fransen, deputy leader of Britain First, pictured in the party's video. She is in Market Place, Dewsbury, flanked by party activists.

Asked by an interviewer why they were there, Ms Fransen says: “We have been in Dewsbury town centre and we have come to Savile Town and we have held our protests outside a few mosques. Obviously we are against mosques in the UK.

“We have had hostility from the locals which is almost 100% Muslim. As to be expected there was hostility, hurling abuse, but we won’t be silenced.

“This is a British town. We are proud British patriots and we will come there and protest as and when we like.”

In a joint statement Kirklees Council and West Yorkshire Police said: “Britain First have notified West Yorkshire Police that they intend to hold a demonstration in Dewsbury.

“West Yorkshire Police are working with the council to balance the rights of everyone, including the community, businesses, traders and Britain First. Negotiations are ongoing regarding the route due to the potential disruption this may cause.”

In its mission statement Britain First claims to be a “patriotic political party and street defence organisation that opposes and fights the many injustices that are routinely inflicted on the British people.

“We want our people to come first, before foreigners, asylum seekers or migrants and we are overtly proud of this stance.”

The party denies being racist and says: “Race does not feature in our policies or outlook in any way.”

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A march by the English Defence League in Dewsbury in 2012 was estimated to cost £500,000 in policing, council costs and lost trade.