Anti-fascist protesters break in to BBC

Thursday, October 22 2009,

30 anti-fascist protesters have broken through a security cordon in place around BBC Television Centre in west London.

Over 100 people are protesting outside the corporation's television headquarters ahead of the arrival of British National Party leader Nick Griffin for his appearance on tonight's Question Time. Unite Against Fascism said that 16 coaches of people are expected to join the protest throughout the afternoon.

Shortly before 4:30pm, 30 people entered the BBC Television Centre grounds through a set of iron gates, and it is understood that a handful may have entered the reception area of the building. They have all been escorted from the premises.

Griffin's appearance tonight has been cleared by the BBC Trust on the basis that it should not interfere in a programme before transmission on the basis that it would "undermine the editorial independence" of the corporation. It has, however, attracted stinging criticism from anti-fascist groups and Cabinet minister Peter Hain, who described Griffin's planned appearance as "abhorrent".