Labour-run Sandwell Council has withdrawn funding for a St George’s Day parade over concerns it might attract far right elements. Trevor Collins, a spokesman for the Stone Cross St George’s Day Association who organise the parade, says that they had planned to invite Gurkha soldiers to the event.

Sandwell Council have evidently been poring over photographs to spot if local BNP activitists have turned up. Maybe they did. But do the Councl not see that cancelling the event is a gift to the BNP?

Conservative-run Calderdale Council offers a more positive example. celebrate on Thursday  April 23rd, including a fireworks display and activity day for schoolchildren with flag-making and shield-making.

The plans include a St George’s Festival at the Piece Hall on the
weekend of April 25th and 26th, with a re-enactment of the story of St
George, events, storytelling and crafts for children and young people and a proposal for a themed market.

Other proposals include: A red and white themed fireworks display on
Beacon Hill. School children being invited to design their own flags
and shields and parade them around the athletics track at Spring Hall. Schools can also take part in George and the Dragon-themed relay
events. A dragon trail in one of Calderdale’s parks. The St George’s
flag flying from all Council buildings wherever possible. A selection
of English films showing at Hebden Bridge Picture House. Free admission
to Council pools and fitness activities for anyone who wears a St
George’s cross, for example on a T-shirt or carrying a flag.

Councillor Ian Cooper, community services portfolio holder, said:

"This year Calderdale Council wants to make St George’s
Day special, with a fantastic programme of events in the pipeline. The
events will help celebrate St George himself and our culture, heritage
and history. From sports to interactive activities, there will be
something for all ages with a St George’s theme."

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