Venue near Manchester United's Old Trafford stadium faces backlash for inviting Tommy Robinson to speak

Former EDL leader Tommy Robinson due to speak in November

Tommy Robinson says his book will explain why Muslims kill for Islam

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

An entertainment venue close to Manchester United's Old Trafford stadium has faced a backlash after inviting former Tommy Robinson to speak at an event.

The former EDL leader has been invited to present his new book during An Evening With Tommy Robinson at Bowlers Exhibition Centre in Trafford Park.

The event, due to take place in November, will also include a book-signing session and a Q&A, with tickets costing £38.50.

Robinson has been enthusiastically promoting the event on Facebook, saying his book will "explain why Muslims kill for Islam" and promising that the event is "extremely secure."

However Bowlers, which is less than two miles from Old Trafford, has received a torrent of abuse on Facebook over its decision to host the event, according to the Huffington Post.

One user wrote on Facebook: "In a city that's suffered tremendous loss, to then remind the world what community means, why on earth would they allow, let alone charge £40 for the privilege, a talk by Tommy Racist and his hate fuelled mob from the EDL."

Another wrote: "Any venue that would give a far right extremist a platform to peddle his hate fuelled scribbling, is either desperate for cash, or incredibly badly run.

"You would like to think that following the attack in Manchester, venues like this would steer clear of anything remotely divisive. Well done BEC management, you're about to piss off a LOT of people."

Responding to the criticism, Bowlers managing director Simon Colderley said “Bowlers Exhibition Centre has no political opinions or political agenda. We are a multi-purpose exhibition centre that host a diverse range of events.

“We have taken a booking for Tommy Robinson’s official book launch on Friday November 3 2017. The book launch is a private ticket only event targeting Mr Robinson’s supporters and has been only promoted through his official social media platforms.

“One of factors in us accepting the booking is that Mr Robinson has said that he will donate his profits from the event to the Manchester bomb appeal."