Dozens of Norfolk people on BNP list
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
Hundreds of people from Norfolk were named as members of the far-right British National Party (BNP) in a list posted on the internet yesterday. The list, which includes names, addresses, phone numbers, details of the jobs and in some cases the hobbies and qualifications of about 12,000 members, includes a Norwich pub landlord and 219 others from Norfolk.Nationwide, serving and former police officers, teachers and soldiers are listed as members of the BNP in the leaked document. While there is no ban on many of those professions joining the BNP, its policies are seen by many as incompatible with frontline public service. A radio DJ and a police officer were the first alleged members of the BNP to face action from their employers today after the entire membership list of the party was posted on the internet.DJ Rod Lucas was axed by TalkSport and a policeman in Merseyside was being investigated after they were 'outed' as having signed up to the far-Right organisation.Most of those on the list the Evening News spoke to did not want to be named in the paper, and some BNP members nationwide have used internet chat rooms to express their fear of repercussions.But pub landlord John Pugh, 63, who has been in charge at the William IV pub in Quebec Road, Norwich for two and a half years, wanted to be named.He said: “I've got no problem with being named on the internet or in the paper. I'm damn proud to be a member of the party and I'm proud to be British.“I'm an ex-serviceman and I fought with the British forces for 10 years, and now I'm still fighting for Britain. “I joined the party because I don't have any confidence in the status quo of British politics. I don't believe the three main parties have the interests of the average British person at heart. “I'm not a racist or a bigot. If I hurt people's feelings, sorry, it's tough. I don't preach to people who don't want to listen to me, but I'm entitled to my opinion as is everyone else.”One of those listed from Norwich, who did not wish to be named, said: “I'm not bothered about the names being listed, because in my case people know who I am and know I'm a member.”He said he had joined the BNP because he was “fed up with the state the country is in”.“We all feel the country is in a right state and something needs to be done about it.”Another person named from Norfolk, who did not wish to be named, added: “I joined the party because I would like a frank discussion on immigration and on us being in the European Union. We are not skinheads or thugs, but ordinary people, who feel their views are not being listened to.”The BNP has demanded a police investigation and said in a statement posted on its website that the list was “essentially genuine”.BNP leader Nick Griffin said: “We'll be asking the police to investigate. It's a list which is now just over a year old.“Having spent a lot of money to secure our members' privacy we are disappointed it's been breached.”In his statement on the BNP website, Mr Griffin described the publication as “a disgraceful act of treachery” by former BNP staff members who had subsequently been sacked.He said that he had lodged a complaint with Dyfed-Powys police on the grounds that the publication breached human rights and data protection laws.The Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) last night confirmed that serving police officers were not allowed to be members of the BNP. The anti-immigration party has won council seats in recent years, and took a London Assembly seat in May.