ON THIS DAY 1934: Bail for Wortham Blackshirts

Archive front page: Evening News 20 Feb 1934. Photo: Library Archive front page: Evening News 20 Feb 1934. Photo: Library

Thursday, February 20, 2014
1:36 PM

As part of a new daily online series we look back on what was making the news on this day in Norfolk. Today, we look at the Eastern Evening News front page of February 20th, 1934.

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An application for the release on bail of Sir Oswald Mosley’s Black Shirts, including the national political organiser of the British Union of Fascists, who were arrested at Wortham last Saturday, was granted by Mr Justice Charles (sitting in chambers) in the High Court today.

Bail was granted, each in £50, with a surety of a like sum, and it is understood that two conditions were imposed, viz, that none of the men before the Court shall take part in any like course of action to that alleged, and they will not speak at or attend any meeting of any organisation that they may represent.

The application was made by Mr St John Hutchinson. Mr Gerald Dodson represented the police.

The Local Position

Early today the Fascist organisers at Diss received a telephone message from the London headquarters of the movement, stating that all the Black Shirts had to leave the district and return to their own centres by 6am. No reason was given over the telephone.

Shortly after this mysterious message had been received, one of the Fascist steel protected cars left Diss on a patrol of all the outposts.

Other individual Fascist scouts were also sent out to key points, where their comrades were keeping a close look-out for the approach of a lorry which was expected in the early hours.

During last week, the Fascists acted as pickets for part of the property of Mr R H Rash, where fifteen fat bullocks and 124 pigs had been impounded for non-payment of tithes.

Since Saturday, however, the Black Shirts have not been seen on the property, although they have maintained a vigilance service to warn Mr Rash of the approach of the van which is to take away the animals.

At 7am, it was reported at the Fascist headquarters that all the Blackshirts had been instructed to withdraw, and were making their way to their home centres, only a nucleus of twenty men remaining in the district.

Supt. Eade, of Eye, arrived at the piggery shortly after 6am, and this was taken as an indication that the pigs might be removed today, but later the superintendent returned to Eye.

Mr and Mrs Rash were also at the piggery at an early hour. Mr Rash said he did not know when the pigs would be removed.

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