A PROTEST against Islam by The English Defence League spilled over in to Frodsham and led to an arrest.
The group – which opposes the spread of Islam, Sharia Law and Islamic extremism – had attended a protest in Wrexham with The Welsh Defence League when a coach load of members stopped in Frodsham at about 6pm on Saturday.
After being told to leave two other pubs, they arrived at the Cholmondeley Arms, Church Street, Frodsham.
“They were shouting at the football and singing racist chants, as well as whacking the beams and ringing the bell on the bar,” said a member of staff working at the bar on Saturday night. “There were 20 or so of them, sat in the corner.
“They were in here for about 30 minutes and they were annoying the customers.”
Before things got out of hand an army of police officers waiting outside the pub asked the group to leave, before arresting a 20-year-old from Bolton for being offensive to the officers.
“The police were sat outside, there were two or three riot vans and squad cars,” added the member of staff.
“I think the police were expecting them, waiting for it to happen. The police came in and told them to get out.
“We stayed pretty calm. We don’t want it happening in here.”
Inspector Phil Hodgson, head of the Western Rural Neighbourhood Policing Unit, said: “We heard they were coming to Frodsham late on Saturday afternoon so were able to mobilise our officers.
“We arrested a 20-year-old man from Bolton for being drunk and disorderly on Church Street, he was being offensive to officers. The remaining people were escorted on to the coach and away from the area.
“It is the same with any all male group with drink inside them and no affinity with the area.”
In neighbouring North Wales a carefully planned strategy ensured that Saturday’s protest in Wrexham by members of the English Defence League and Welsh Defence League, as well as opposition groups including Wrexham Communities Against Racism, in Wrexham town centre took place without significant incident.