National Front march through Lewisham 1977

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  • Interviewee name: Patricia McKinnon Lower

  • Patricia McKinnon Lower grew up in Lewisham since the 1950s and has remained in the area ever since. Here she remembers the event that became known as the 'Battle of Lewisham' in 1977. The National Front were given permission to march through South London, passing through Lewisham where the residents were mainly left-wing. It caused a massive uproar and police had to protect the National Front from violent left-wing demonstrations against their march. Shops were barricaded in fear of them being destroyed in the process, police horses frantically trampled all over people's front gardens... "The day has been seen since as a turning point in the fortunes of the National Front and the 1970s anti-fascist movement as well as in policing - riot shields were used for the first time in England." - Wikipedia

  • police london demonstration politics protest community socialism south london lewisham national front march left-wing

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