For a seventh consecutive year, the March For England descended upon Brighton for St George’s Day.
While claiming to simply be a celebration of England, it is an extremist right-wing march organised by fascist groups such as the English Defence League and Casuals United. They choose Brighton for it being contrary to the England they want, as for the most part it is an incredibly tolerant city.
On the years when there has not been a large counter-demonstration by anti-fascists, residents of Brighton have been racially abused, so a large counter-demonstration is necessary.
Around 100 fascists descended on Brighton with around 600 anti-fascists.
Outnumbering both sides were the police, who in a £500,000 operation had police dogs out, a helicopter overhead, mounted police, huge metal barriers erected to restrict movement within the city and around 1,000 police officers drawn from all over the south including Devon and Cornwall, London and Hampshire police.
Police had control on the streets, so the fascists did march. However there were confrontations later in the day when fascists and anti-fascists clashed. At one point anti-fascists took Brighton station and held it with makeshift barricades causing the police to draw batons.
Around 27 people were arrested, with a surprisingly even amount of fascists and anti-fascists.