EDL and PTUC protest marches in Peterborough pass off peacefully

Two protests in Peterborough passed off peacefully today without major disruption to the city.

Saturday, 21st October 2017, 5:34 pm
Updated Tuesday, 12th December 2017, 1:11 pm
The PTUC protest today. Photo: Angus Ellis
The PTUC protest today. Photo: Angus Ellis

A protest by the Peterborough Trades Union Council (PTUC) took place between around 12pm and 2pm while a protest by the English Defence League (EDL) took place between around 2pm and 3pm.

Estimated numbers were around 30 people for the EDL demonstration and 60 for the PTUC event.

A multi-agency community group, involving police and the city council, was set up to deal with any concerns and ensure the community was kept up-to-date on information.

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There were also extra community patrols throughout the city to provide reassurance to local people and deal with any incidents.

A number of community representatives, including youth workers and faith leaders, acted as key contacts to ensure people were kept informed of the policing operation.

Superintendent Andy Gipp said: “Our aim today was to facilitate two peaceful protests while allowing the people of Peterborough to go about their business as usual and I am delighted this is what happened.

“We had sufficient resources on the ground to police the protests, carry out patrols in the city centre and key locations and deal with business as usual for the force.

The EDL did not turn out in anything like the numbers seen in Peterborough in 2014

“I would like to praise both sets of protestors and the people of Peterborough for ensuring today passed off without incident.”

Peterborough City Council's Chief Executive Gillian Beasley said: “Today's events have demonstrated once again our city's strength of community and that is thanks to the people of Peterborough for standing together and going about their daily lives as usual. The city centre has been a real hive of activity showing that people have been largely unaffected by the protests.

“I was also very impressed with the police operation which ensured both protests were able to pass peacefully with very little disruption to the city.

“We have been working very closely with our communities, businesses, police and partner organisations over the past few weeks to allay any concerns and reassure the community and to ensure the city could return to normal as quickly as possible after the demonstrations.

The EDL did not turn out in anything like the numbers seen in Peterborough in 2014

“Today we had 15 youth workers out in our neighbourhoods talking to our young people, keeping them informed and supporting them to feel safe in the city centre. Our young people have behaved maturely and responsibly and I would like to thank them for not reacting to the protests.”