POLICE are monitoring plans by the far right English Defence League to hold a major national demonstration in Exeter next month.
No route has yet been agreed for the march which is scheduled for Saturday, November 16, but a spokesman for Devon and Cornwall Police said it was aware of the plans and were now involved in planning for the day.
Groups opposed to the EDL have pledged to oppose the demonstration.
A statement posted on Facebook by the organisation said: “English Defence League Exeter Division will play host to a national demonstration on November 16.”
The statement claimed Islam had been “allowed to make way in this city”.
It makes comments about Exeter MP Ben Bradshaw: “Our local MP ben Bradshaw has deemed the EDL as thugs and not wanted in exeter and sings the praises of islam.“
Adding: “We are coming to take Exeter back if no-one else will fight for this city the EDL will. Taking our streets back since 2009....No surrender””
A spokesman for the Exeter branch of United Against Fascism pledged to oppose the demonstration.
The spokesman said: “We are aware of the EDL’s intention to march in Exeter but don’t have any other details than that at the moment.
“If it does go ahead we will be making plans to show that Exeter is not a place where the EDL has support.
“I am hoping this is just blustering and it does not go ahead. But if it does, we will make sure something is planned to give an alternative view of our city.”
A police spokesman said: “We are hoping that it will have as little impact as possible on the city.
“We have no route agreed as yet but these are very early days with more than six weeks away.
“There are significant negotiations under way with local businesses, the city centre and stakeholders, to lessen the impact on Exeter.
“There are regular meetings internally among Devon and Cornwall officers and negotiations with the national English Defence League.
“There is no estimate at this stage of possible numbers for the march.”