Mystery of BNP venue

THE BNP has refused to release details of where its conference will begin tomorrow.

It is believed the event will be staged in Blackpool, but the party will only confirm the date and that it will be held in the North West.

The event has been hosted by the New Kimberley Hotel, South Promenade, for the past three years.

Hotel bosses have refused to say if it will be held there tomorrow, but earlier this year management did say they would be prepared to cater for the event.

Police say they have not been made aware of the location of the conference – which will be taking place on the same day as soldiers from 12 Regiment Royal Artillery are welcomed home to the resort from the battlefields of Afghanistan and Iraq, with a special parade and service.

A spokeswoman for Lancashire Police said: "Our events and planning department has not been made aware of the location of the BNP conference this weekend."

The Unite Against Fascism North West group said it believed the conference was due to take place in Blackpool, but was not aware of the exact location.

Paul Jenkins, regional organiser, said: "In previous years, it has been held at the New Kimberley but we do not know if this is the case again this time.

"We have heard a few rumours, but nothing substantial at the moment."

Local BNP organiser James Clayton told The Gazette the venue was being 'kept under wraps'.

He said: "The conference is this weekend, but I cannot confirm whether it is in Blackpool or not.

"As far as I know, it will be held somewhere in the North West. I don't even know where it is being held yet."

Earlier this year, the BNP said it would definitely be holding its next conference in the resort, after its 'victory rally' took place at the New Kimberley in June.

The controversial right wing party was celebrating its success at the European Parliament elections.

Extra police were drafted in as anti-fascist groups held a protest outside the South Promenade hotel.

BNP leader Nick Griffin was elected as North West MEP in June.