The organisers of a popular 1940s festival are facing calls to ban Nazi uniforms after ugly scenes saw clashes between locals and a group dressed in SS costumes.

The men were confronted by crowds on Sheringham High Street during the resort's Second World War-themed weekend and had to be escorted out of the area by police, to stop the trouble escalating.

The annual event drew up to 25,000 people on Saturday and Sunday, many of them in period dress.

Among them was the group of at least 10 men in Nazi-era German uniforms, including some with SS markings on their collars, as well as badges featuring the 'death's head' symbol and swastikas.

Eastern Daily Press: A picture showing the group of men who had marched along Sheringham High Street outside of The Lobster PubA picture showing the group of men who had marched along Sheringham High Street outside of The Lobster Pub (Image: Submitted)

Their presence angered many locals, leading to the flashpoints on the high street on Saturday afternoon, as onlookers shouted at them and told them they were not welcome.

Event marshals stepped in to ask the men to leave and police also intervened to shepherd the group away from the angry crowds.

Officers said one man had reported being assaulted and that they were still investigating.

Eastern Daily Press: A Lancaster bomber soaring over Sheringham StationA Lancaster bomber soaring over Sheringham Station (Image: Alan Palmer)

The incident has prompted calls to ban Nazi uniforms from future weekends and the town council has agreed the discuss proposals to make the event Allied-uniform only.

German military clothing from the period is not currently banned - although the North Norfolk Railway, which runs an associated event over the same weekend, does not permit such garments.

A spokesman for the main festival organisers say German uniforms are permitted, as long as they do not "promote the Nazis".

He claimed the incident had been a "misunderstanding" and that the group was there to "commemorate the German people".

Witnesses said the group congregated outside The Lobster pub, where they were confronted by locals.

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Mike Keller, who lost family members in the Holocaust and whose father escaped Nazi Germany in the Kindertransport, was among those appalled by the sight of the uniforms.

"It was a lovely family atmosphere and very friendly, when suddenly from nowhere there were 10-15 men dressed in authentic SS uniform literally marching in unison," he said.

"It was deeply offensive. These men were not milling about and blending in among people. They were marching and making a demonstration. It was frightening.

"My father was from a Jewish family who lost his parents and brothers and sisters in death camps. He was fortunate to escape with my uncle via Kindertransport, so having to see this with my son was mortally offensive and a disgraceful act."

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Another witness said: "When the group gathered outside of the pub, the family-friendly atmosphere of the day fell tense. There was so much tension and shock in the air.

"There were many jeers and heckles from onlookers. While the group stood proud, one man at the pub confronted them.

"That's when the police arrived and swiftly escorted the group out of town. It all happened quite quickly."

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Eastern Daily Press: North Norfolk district councillor, Liz Withington, pictured at Sheringham StationNorth Norfolk district councillor, Liz Withington, pictured at Sheringham Station (Image: Supplied)

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Liz Withington, a Liberal Democrat district councillor for the town, said the men's appearance was "not in the spirit" of the family event, which has been held since the 1990s.

"A group of men dressed in SS uniforms appeared in the town and caused some distress to other people attending this popular event," she said.

"As a free event it is difficult to restrict entry and this group were, according to local police, not acting unlawfully.

"However, when carnival marshals became aware of them and their location, the event manager spoke to them and they were asked to leave town and monitored to ensure they returned to their accommodation by marshals.

"The wearing of SS uniforms is not in the spirit of what is a family event for all generations.

"I hope this incursion into what was otherwise a positive and enjoyable event does not detract from the fantastic efforts of the carnival and railway volunteers, the local businesses who entered into the spirit along with vintage vehicle owners and locals and visitors who dressed up appropriately."

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Eastern Daily Press: A packed Sheringham High Street during the Saturday of the 1940s eventA packed Sheringham High Street during the Saturday of the 1940s event (Image: Alan Palmer)

Despite the controversy, Ian Abernethy, from the Sheringham Carnival Committee, which organises the weekend, said the incident had been a "misunderstanding".

He claimed that although some of the men were dressed in SS uniforms with swastikas, they were not re-enacting the Nazis.

"There was a historical reason for them being there, and that was to commemorate the German people," he said.

"It is a misunderstanding that the men were dressed as Nazis. The reenactors did not wish to promote the atrocities of Hitler and the Nazi war machine which we absolutely condemn.

"These guys were here to enjoy the weekend and have a great time and enjoy what north Norfolk has to offer and not provoke or offend people."

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Eastern Daily Press: The event is to celebrate the 1940s era The event is to celebrate the 1940s era (Image: Alan Palmer)

Eastern Daily Press: The Lobster Pub had narrowly avoided a German BombThe Lobster Pub had narrowly avoided a German Bomb (Image: Alan Palmer)

Sheringham Town Council have said that they will discuss with Norfolk police a way to avoid a repeat situation at future weekends.

A spokesman said: "Sheringham Town Council has been made aware that on the Saturday there was an incident in the town that was managed by the police.

"Sheringham Town Council will consult with the police, North Norfolk Railway and others to determine what happened and what action may be taken to prevent a recurrence."

A police spokeswoman said: "A police officer on patrol in Sheringham came across a confrontation in the High Street on Saturday at about 5.30pm, involving a man and a group of people who had been attending an event.

"The officer intervened and quickly resolved the incident. One man reported being assaulted and this is being investigated further. No one was injured during the incident."