HOPE not Hate Profiles

Britain First

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Who are Britain First?

Who are Britain First?
Britain First are the best known and most active far-right political party in Britain. Throughout 2022, they undertook near weekly activities, including recruitment drives, harassment of asylum seekers in their accommodation, while also being a home to criminals, racists and those with violent pasts.

How successful are Britain First? Are they winning elections?

2022 was a mixed year for Britain First. While the group carried out numerous actions and moved into a new headquarters in Manchester, Paul Golding will no doubt be disappointed with its slow growth and mostly terrible electoral results. He also remains mired in an ongoing and bitter legal dispute with former deputy leader, Jayda Fransen.

Since successfully re-registering as a political party in 2021, Britain First has sought to use local elections to build capacity at a local and regional level. The first big test came at the May elections, in which it stood just three candidates, all of whom were exposed by HOPE not hate for antisemitism, conspiracy theorising and past membership of fascist groups.

The group’s key focus was Salford (Walkden North ward), where chief of staff, Ashlea Simon, came second with 508 votes (21.6%), losing out to Labour’s 51% showing. Simon once stated that “English people can’t be black, English blood is white” and is a core figure in the anti-Muslim party.

She was accompanied to the vote count by Andy Frain, a notorious football hooligan with a conviction for slashing the throat of an off-duty police officer. Her failure to capture the seat was hardly the “narrow” defeat that Britain First claimed, a fact that will be especially disappointing given the months of effort and resource channelled into the ward.


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