Only Fools and Fascists: hardened far-right activists latch onto Aldershot anti-migrant campaign

Right Response Team - 13 05 24

Having claimed his activism days were done, long-time Nazi Derek “Del Boy” Young has crawled out of the woodwork, along with fellow ex-EDL activist Keith “Kenny” Sutton.

2024 has been a comparatively slow year for the UK’s anti-migrant movement. Last year, demonstrations against the use of hotels as temporary migrant accommodation sites were happening with alarming frequency, but there is presently a palpable lack of momentum and direction in the anti-migrant scene.

One of the few places bucking that trend is in leafy Hampshire, where the ongoing campaigns in Rushmoor, an area which incorporates the towns of Farnborough and Aldershot, remain steady. And on last Wednesday evening, a demonstration in Aldershot was graced by a pair of long-time and hardline far right activists, one of which had publicly declared himself out of the movement less than two years ago.

But first, some background. Leading the charge in Rushmoor is Jez Stocking who lives not far from the area.

Jez Stocking sporting an edgy shirt at a demo in Farnborough on 4 May

Since the start of the year, we’ve spotted Mr Stocking (who attended the ill-fated Armistice Day 2023 demonstration in London) at at least eight demonstrations held in Farnborough and Aldershot against the use of temporary migrant accommodation sites. This includes the one in Farnborough on 13 January, where Turning Point UK activist Jack Ross made a speech outside Princes Mead shopping centre. This demo was also attended by members of nazi outfit Patriotic Alternative, having sought to attach themselves to the campaign.

Consistent across these demonstrations have been the use of hardline, anti-migrant messages printed onto correx board signs, several of which have been produced by group member, Gareth Stone.

One of the immediately identifiable correx boards

One such sign given a frequent airing reads ‘WE’RE NOT FAR RIGHT WE’RE JUST RIGHT”, a much-used phrase indicative of the broad anti-migrant movement’s desperation to avoid the “far right”  label. This is despite many of the groups and individuals involved falling comfortably within it.

A protestor holds a sign aloft at the Aldershot demo on 8 May

What Fresh Del

Now, this is where it all gets a bit iffy for the Rushmoor contingent. 

That’s because at the demonstration in Aldershot last Wednesday 8 May were two men, one named Keith (AKA Kenny) Sutton, and another who goes by the name Del Carpenter, but is also known as Derek “Del Boy” Young.

Keith Sutton (left) and Del Carpenter AKA Derek Young (right)

Mr Sutton and Mr Young have been firm friends for several years, having weaved in and out of the English Defence League (EDL) and its various splinter groups.

Sutton has frequented far-right demonstrations across the country, including EDL events throughout the first half of the 2010s in Leicester, Lincoln, Rotherham, Bristol and Dewsbury, to name only a few, as well as the 2012 March for England in Brighton. Sutton headed up the march at the EDL/South East Alliance demonstration in Dover in April 2016 alongside former Essex EDL leader and chair of South East Alliance, Paul Prodromou (AKA Paul Pitt), indicating his significance within the group.

Sutton (left, sunglasses) at the April 2016 Dover EDL/South East Alliance demonstration. Photo: HOPE not hate

In addition to a sizeable turnout from the EDL and its splinter, the South East Alliance (SEA), the April 2016 demonstration also featured Nazis from the British Movement (BM), as well as then-National Action (NA) member, Jack Renshaw. That year, NA would become the first far-right organisation in the post-war period to be proscribed by the British government, and Renshaw would go on to try and murder his MP, a plot foiled by HOPE not hate and for which he has been sentenced to life in prison.

Keith Sutton outside the protest camp at Stradey Park Hotel, Llanelli

More recently, Sutton spent time amongst two of the most significant anti-migrant campaigns of 2023; the protest camp outside Stradey Park Hotel in Llanelli, and the one at RAF Scampton in Lincolnshire. Indeed, Sutton was accompanied on the trip to Stradey Park by Mr Young, for which the pair received a warm pat on the back from the leader of the National Front (NF), Tony Martin.

Leader of the NF, Tony Martin, congratulates the pair on their trip to South Wales

Meanwhile Derek Young, who lives in Tilehurst in Berkshire, has his own long and chequered history within the UK far right; one that spans several organisations and significant events over the years.

Back in the mid 2010s, Mr Young also spent time with the EDL and its offshoots, the Infidels, the English Volunteer Force (EVF) and the South East Alliance (SEA). In addition to this, Young immersed himself in the grim world of the NF.

Young (front, red England shirt) at the English Volunteer Force demonstration outside Parliament in March 2014. Photo: HOPE not hate

In 2015, Young made a speech at the World Demo Day rally in Preston which had been organised jointly between the National Front and the North West Infidels and brought many of the UK’s most extreme fascists onto the streets. During his speech, Young was flanked on either side by Paul Prodromou (AKA Paul Pitt), the violent North West Infidels activist, Shaun Jones, and the hardline neo-Nazi, Gary Crane.

(L-R): Paul Prodromou (front), Shaun Jones, Derek Young, Gary Crane. Photo: HOPE not hate

The following year, on 30 January 2016, Young made the trip to Dover for what has now become the most infamous nazi mobilisation in the last decade. Called initially by the NF and gaining wide support among the fascist street movement, the day itself descended into a riot, as pitched battles between fascists and anti-fascists brought the town to a standstill, leading to many arrests across the far right, including the North West Infidels’ leader. On the day, Young was seen near the front lines, as fascists tried desperately to break through the police cordon and reach the anti-fascists as well as assisting a bloodied fellow fascist.

Indeed, Young himself seems to have fond memories of his time on the Kent coast, posting a commemorative graphic on 30 January 2024 as the profile picture on his ‘Del Carpenter’ Facebook page.

Young is not hiding his involvement in the Dover riot

More recently, as mentioned above, Young had been involved with the unapologetic nazis of the NF, and has attended NF marches on the Cenotaph on Remembrance Day. Nazis marching to a British war memorial; there really are few more shameful displays of disrespect for Britain’s war dead imaginable.

Disrespect: Young at the NF Remembrance Day march 2022
Chummy: Young posing arm-in-arm with the NF’s drummer, Mac McElhinney

Young’s appearance in the Aldershot demonstration comes less than two years after he publicly announced on his Facebook page that he would be stepping back from far-right activism, describing it as ‘pissing in the wind’. His and Sutton’s involvement, therefore, is indicative of the way in which anti-migrant activism acts as a magnet to a wide array of far-right individuals around the country. Often far right activists have been involved in anti-migrant groups from the beginning, but if not they are frequently drawn into their orbit and begin pulling the strings.

Finally, whilst Young may have put his activism on the back-burner for a period, a recent Facebook post about the film American History X shows that his politics haven’t changed one iota.

Spoiler: the film ends with a young nazi being shot and killed


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