Avon and Somerset Police, who will be in charge of policing the march by far-right group the English Defence League in Bristol next month, have reassured the local community that there will be a significant security operation to ensure that the day goes ahead without trouble. The EDL will march in the south-western city on July 14, the same day as the annual gay 'Pride' festival held at College Green. The EDL's planned location is at Castle Park, less than a mile away from College Green. Avon and Somerset Police have said:
The security operation to police both event is estimated to cost around £1 million, and involve as many as 700 police officers being drafted in from Yorkshire, South Wales and elsewhere in the South of England. The EDL's intention to march in the city has been criticised by local MPs who have urged the controversial group to stay away from Bristol. An online petition on Bristol city council's website has 1,678 signatures calling for the march to be stopped. However, as Avon and Somerset Police have stated the right to peaceful protest means that it is unlikely that the demonstration can be stopped.