“”I am now fuming. I don't give a fuck about any trolls or LEFT WING FUCKING WANKERS WHO MAY READ THIS. If your'e [sic] white English and are doing your bit in denigrating that organisation you are one fucking traitorous shit head. You need your bollocks cut off, shoved in your mouth and your lips sewn up.
|—Steadfast Trust supporter Dave|
“”The charity for the English, as long as its [sic] England 1,000 yrs. ago and not the reality of today!
|—Former Steadfast Trust activist Julia Howman|
The Steadfast Trust is a far-right English organisation (formerly a registered charity) devoted to supporting people of Anglo-Saxon descent, working in association with various English nationalist outfits such as the Anglo-Saxon Foundation, the English Shieldwall, British National Party, National Front and British KKK. Nope, nothing racist about them at all.
It argues that there are hundreds of charitable organisations and community groups in the UK devoted to ethnic minorities but none for the poor, downtrodden ethnic majority, and so aims to redress this balance.[note 1]
- 1 Background and activities
- 2 English Community Groups
- 3 Online disputes
- 4 Far-right connections
- 5 Conflict with the Charity Commission
- 6 Exposure and deregistration
- 7 External links
- 8 See also
- 9 Notes
- 10 References
Background and activities
The Steadfast Trust was set up in 2004. Its first directors appear to have been Tony Linsell, Stephen Pollington and Jane Phillips; Phillips appeared on the Channel 4 documentary 100% English, in which she was identified as the founder of the charity. Steven Whateley and Paul Marson became directors in 2005.
Linsell resigned in 2005, while the others all resigned on 6 September 2006. On the same day, a new team of directors took over: Julien Crighton and Shelly Marie Donohoe. According to the 2015 Exposure documentary on the charity, trustees Tim Hawke and Mark Taylor took over joint leadership of the Steadfast Trust in 2014.
Amongst the benefactors of the Steadfast Trust's funds have been the English Folcmoot, organised by the clearly unhinged nationalist campaigner Youngy; St George's and St. Edmund's day celebrations; and visits from Anglo-Saxon storytellers to schools. It has also donated books about the Anglo-Saxon period to various educational institutions.
Battle Abbey cafe
During a visit to Battle Abbey in Sussex, Steadfast trustee Tim Hawke was outraged to find that the cafe had the following text on display: "The Norman Conquest was a Good Thing, as from this time onwards England stopped being conquered and thus was able to become top nation." The fact that this is a joke from W. C. Sellar and R. J. Yeatman's 1930 parody of history textbooks 1066 and All That did not prevent him from making a complaint to English Heritage; the Steadfast Trust subsequently did the same.
In October 2013 two men covered the text with graffiti reading "Holocaust which still affects the English today"; one was caught, but released on caution. Tim Hawke responded to this incident by sending a letter to Dawn Champion, a local English Heritage area manager, which essentially threatened further acts of vandalism:
Sadly I must confess to having total sympathy with those who committed this act… Unless you take steps to correct your errors I do know that the kind of behaviour that took place on Monday October 14 will continue and sadly escalate to alarming levels. You have a large number of venerable structures throughout the nation which logically could be vandalised in protest of your actions at Battle. Windmills such as Saxtead Green Post Mill or Berney Arms Windmill could be totally destroyed through simple acts of arson and imagine the harm this would cause to our organisation were it made known that this stemmed from an Anglophobic act at Battle Abbey by English Heritage.
You are the custodians of the English peoples[sic] heritage and by deliberately insulting our proud/tragic past with your childish controversy you risk so much, particularly when the many aggrieved can strike at any time at any place.
The 2015 Exposure documentary revealed one of the men responsible to be Steadfast Trust supporter Darren Clarke.
English Community Groups
A major aim of the charity is encouraging the establishment of English Community Groups around the country to promote English nationalism. As its website outlines:
One of the Steadfast Trust's charitable objectives is ‘the advancing of the education of Anglo-Saxon arts and culture’ and another objective is to provide or assist in the provision of facilities for Anglo-Saxon English persons in the interests of social welfare and with the object of improving their conditions of life.
It is hoped that anyone setting up an English Community Group will partially follow these objectives and the Steadfast Trust will help where we can.
Several areas are represented by English Community Groups, not all of which are officially tied to the Steadfast Trust.
The first and most active of the groups set up on the model put forward by the Steadfast Trust is the English Community Group (Leicester); the charity has given the ECG(L) hundreds of pounds in funding. This organisation has Lee Ingram as its spokesman and was originally chaired by the ufologist and former BNP member Clive Potter.
Potter was eventually expelled from the ECG(L). This would probably explain why he subsequently attacked the charity which backs the group, branding it the "SteadFARCE Trust" and claiming that it had been "captured by liberal wishy washy liberals".
In 2012 the group conducted a survey by delivering questionnaires to 5000 households; only 112 were returned. The low response rate did not stop Ingram from confidently declaring that "89.3% Support the English Community Group (Leicester) existing in Leicester".
The ECG(L)'s main activities include ranting about officials who decline to meet up with it, such as Mayor of Leicester Peter Soulsby. Its official line is that anyone who refuses to meet with this small, crankish organisation chaired by a UFO nut with a background in a white nationalist party must, by definition, be an anti-English racist. The group scored a small victory when it obtained footage of Labour councillor Wayne Naylor agreeing with Ingram that Soulsby was guilty of discrimination; Naylor was presumably unaware of the ECG(L)'s fringe connections at the time.
In October 2013 Ingram asked the group's supporters to provide zombie costumes for "a fun Halloween project". This turned out to involve five ECG(L) activists loitering outside the office of local Labour MP Liz Kendall wearing horror masks (except for one chap, who had to make do with a camo balaclava) and holding up placards saying "No English", "Stop the English", "Smash the English" and "Unite Against the English". The group then posted photographs of the scene with captions such as "far-left masochists" and "brain-washed traitors".[note 2]
As satires go this was hardly subtle; somehow, though, it was not sufficiently idiot-proof to be grasped by the ECG(L)'s supporters. The majority of comments about the photographs came from people who believed that they portrayed a genuine left-wing demonstration: the activists in the images were referred to as "chicken shits", "little bastards" and "retards", with one person in particular being singled out as a "brain dead numpty". Some of the comments revealed a vein of racial prejudice running through the group's support base, with one person speaking of "Paki's" and another commenting that the ECG(L) activists "Look like Asians to me Muslims more like". Apparently realising that its publicity stunt had completely misfired, the group removed the photographs and their comments sections, later reposting the pictures with disclaimers identifying them as parodies.
In March 2014 the ECG(L) renamed itself "English Advocates" so that it could serve as a nationwide group.
An obscure group called Saxon Faction bills itself as the Essex ECG but does not seem to be officially endorsed by the Steadfast Trust. Its only activities of note appear to be opposing the construction of a mosque in Chelmsford and ranting about "the one world – one coffee coloured nation that 'they' would like to enslave us under." For some reason the site also contains dialogue from the infamously inaccurate Hollywood film The 13th Warrior; as the source is not credited the owners of the site are apparently unaware of the writing's origin.[note 3]
No member names are listed on its website, but a Whois lookup shows that the site was registered by a Chelmsford-based branding company in 2014 called M4Siz. A 2017 Whois lookup shows that the site is registered to Chloe Beach.
The group is possibly connected to a Twitter account called "saxon_faction", which has the same logo; the owner gives their location as Birmingham but was interested in the Chelmsford mosque and tweeted repeatedly about the issue. The discussions on this account are round about what you'd expect: "By the time it takes you to read & retweet this post many people in Arabia, Asia & Africa have died as victims of the religion of peace, Islam", tweets Operation English Vote. "Good. For everyone of them that dies is potentially one less ending up in England. Fuck em" replies saxon_faction.
An organisation calling itself the Essex English Community Group and modeling itself around its Leicester counterpart subsequently emerged on Facebook in December 2012, but shut down in later 2014. The Steadfast Trust included it on a list of groups worthy of financial assistance. This organisation warned against criticism from "renegades and Orcs". It was overtly racist and homophobic, referring to black people as "wogs" and saying that gay men shouldn't criticise the Church of England's stance on same-sex marriage because they "stick their todgers up each others arses". Amongst its active members was Jim Morgan, a supporter of Anders Breivik who once boasted about having driven a car at a pregnant woman.
One of the group's pages was quickly attacked by people accusing it of racism, largely because one of its supporters, Mark Pringle, also endorses England's Golden Dawn. This criticism prompted a response from EECG supporter Paul Prodromou (alias Paul Pitt):
"Well said, Paul", replied Bob Taylor.
i do people that we all have a right to exist.if you take a pallet of colours and mix them all up you get a single colour belive that is no good surely you need all the colours to create anything of any good,so come on what colour would you chose to leave and take away the rest? everyone has the right to exist? what does that make me because like it or not our heratige and culture is worth protecting being proud of your people country and culture does not make you a nazi? would you accuse somone jewish of being a nazi or somone black ? asain or any other race no you would agree that they have the right to exist
and the thing is they cant see that it is them being used that stops as the people changing things for the better government funded and being used to stop us all coming toghter it stops us all from addressing the issues that matter why do they do it? because they serve masters who want to keep us all oppressed to keep us from seeing what we can do from us all seeing the truth and who the real enermies are blood soaked oil money we must as a people as a nation look beyound ourselves beyound our lifetime and make a stand for our children to deny them their culture is to rob them of anything and will lead to choas and bloodshed in the future
This region is home to a group that was originally known as the English Community Group (Dorset) before renaming itself "English patriots (southcoast)"; this outfit appears to be active primarily as a Facebook group and is tied to an organisation called the English Volunteer Force. EVF supporters often post on its Facebook page: "NO MORE PASSIVE BOLLOCKS…" said Jimmi Kaprini in one colourful posting; "ALL MUSLIMS ARE LEGITIMATE TARGETS... COMING TO A MOSQUE... MUSLIM OWNED SHOP /BUSINESS... MUSLIM HOME NEAR YOU ! NO TOLERANCE.. NO PRISONERS.. NO SURRENDER !" Sentiments such as these possibly explain why the Steadfast Trust, which once endorsed the group, broke off connections. There is now a Portsmouth English Community Group as well.
Northamptonshire is home to the Northants English Welfare Society, which was founded in 2010 and later jumped on the ECG bandwagon by using "Northants English Community Group" as an alternative name. The group has helped the Steadfast Trust in its activities and operates a blog apparently run by a neo-Nazi who calls himself Walter Greenway.
Northants English Welfare Society appointed seven Trustees in November 2012. The society held its first Winter Social on 16th December 2012 at the Lilacs, Isham, with seventeen members, family and friends attending. In the same year, the organisation also threatened to peruse legal action against RationalWiki, but nothing has been heard of them since.
An Ipswich English Community Group was founded in late 2014, if anyone cares.
In September 2007 a thread about the charity was started at ARRSE, a forum for people with an interest in the British Army. The discussion was started by "Fyrdsman", who appears to have joined primarily to promote the charity.
The response was mixed. "How far back in history are we taking 'indiginous' as?" asked "jimmys best mate", while "OldSnowy" dismissed the charity as "Thinly-disguised racist shyte". Other members, on the other hand, argued that it was no worse than any other race-specific charity. "Fyrdsman" was subsequently joined by a member named Harold,[note 4] who also signed up to defend the charity, but wasn't very warmly received.
The nadir of the discussion came when Harold's first post had a comment inserted into it by a forum moderator, who began the addition with "Edited by Mod"; Harold took this as evidence that the Ministry of Defence was trying to censor him. "[I]f the Moderator goes around calling himself the MOD, then what do expect me to think?" he moaned, upon having his error pointed out to him.
A similar discussion took place at the British Expat Discussion Forum in 2008, with member "Londweard" signing up to praise the Steadfast Trust's work. Probably his most memorable comment was "those who join the BNP join because they want to put a stop to racism!"
A number of key activists within the charity have backgrounds in racist far-right organisations.
Tony Linsell, another founding director, supported the overtly white nationalist English National Resistance. This organisation's main purpose appears to have been campaigning against interracial marriage.
Tim Hawke, a former trustee of the charity, was previously involved in running the BNP-affiliated trade union Solidarity. Mark Taylor, the charity's events coordinator, is a staff member at the Anglo-Saxon Foundation. Both men are generally considered to be leaders of the organisation.
We Are The English
The Steadfast Trust seems to be closely associated with WeAreTheEnglish.com, as both sites have the same contact telephone number. The linking factor would appear to be Julien Crighton, who is one of the charity's current trustees and is reportedly involved in running WATE. He also runs the website of the nationalistic clothes company Senlak Clothing.
WATE at first appears innocuous enough, being primarily an online store selling clothing, mugs and other items with national icons such as St. George's cross on them. However, the site contains links to the websites of racist groups such as the BNP, the England First Party and Woden's Folk, and according to former Steadfast Trust activist and BNP candidate Julia Howman, WATE's leadership has been involved in selling goods to the BNP. The official WATE forum, meanwhile, is hosted by the Anglo-Saxon Foundation and is home to the sort of unhinged rantings which you would expect.[note 6]
Conflict with the Charity Commission
The Steadfast Trust was entered into the Central Register of Charities in 2004. The solicitor who first submitted it to the Charity Commission for registration subsequently submitted two groups with similar aims in 2005: the Ethnic-English Trust (formerly the Malfosse Society) and the Ironside Community Trust (formerly the Ethnic English Housing Trust). Later that year similar groups called the Wycliffe Trust, the Shieldwall Trust and the English Community Advisory Trust also applied.
The EET and ICT both had overlapping goals of providing support for white English people (or "the White English-English Community of England", as the ICT put it). The Charity Commission concluded that the groups had not demonstrated that their objects were in the public benefit:
The Members of the Commission acknowledged the occurrence of binge drinking, anti-social behaviour and teenage pregnancy in particular disadvantaged social groups might well be a proper and useful subject of study. The Members of the Commission were not, however, satisfied that there was a link between social problems and the “White English-English community of England”, as distinct, for example, from white Irish or Scottish people, or from white-skinned people with mixed ethnic backgrounds.
It also pointed out that the EET and ICT had possible links to a nationalist magazine entitled Steadfast, leading to the possibility of an ulterior motive behind the registration, and expressed concern that "the directors of EET might exercise their discretion improperly by restricting the benefits of EET's activities to people with white skin, thereby circumventing the policy underlying s.34(1) RRA 1976".[note 7]
The Steadfast Trust: initial conflicts
Although it initially accepted the Steadfast Trust's registration, the Charity Commission later expressed concern that the group is promoting propaganda. Trustee Mark Taylor, alias Scyld Scefing, dismissed this "as a concerted attack by the Charities Commission (backed,no doubt by the EHRC) on our charity,in an attempt to close us down."
Exposure and deregistration
In February 2015, ITV aired a documentary entitled Exposure: Charities Behaving Badly which focused on registered charities spreading extremism, the Steadfast Trust being the first organisation featured. Amongst other things, the documentary showed trustee Tim Hawke attending an event in which participants performed Nazi salutes, repeated fascist slogans such as "white power", "victory to the Aryan race" and "14 words", made racist jokes about a passing mixed-race family, and spoke of past involvement with groups such as the National Front and Ku Klux Klan. The Steadfast Trust responded by suspending Hawke and removing Darren Clarke, one of the people highlighted in the documentary, from its list of supporters. Shortly before the documentary was broadcast, the Telegraph ran a story on the Steadfast Trust revealing that it had been deregistered by the Charities Commission. The Commission later expressed regret that it had taken so long.
- Official website
- We Are The English
- Powerbase article on the Steadfast Trust
- "Stop the Steadfast Trust" Facebook page
- Anti-racist is a codeword for anti-white
- Council of Ex-Muslims of Britain - another organisation that got into a dispute with the Charity Commission
- White History Month
- To illustrate this point, they listed a number of heinous charities helping the ethnic minorities in the UK. That is, until it was taken down by the charity.
- To claim that Liz Kendall is somehow "far-left" shows that these people have no idea of the
petty infightingintricacies of left-wing politics in the UK: Kendall is a Blairite who stood against Jeremy Corbyn for leadership of the Labour Party. The actual left-wing of the party think she's a Tory. Either that, or anyone left of Genghis Khan is an undercover commie…
- The lines from the film, beginning "Lo There do I see my Father", are based loosely on a Viking (not Anglo-Saxon) prayer described by the 10th century Arab traveler Ahmad ibn Fadlan — but only loosely. Read the full story here.
- Judging by his usage of the phrase "Libral Lovey clap trap" this is the Anglo-Saxon Foundation member Harold Godwinsson, who considers himself "exsptionally more of a rational man than those of the likes of Rationalwikie and the Libral/Luvvie-Left Bum tart's."
- Examples include Savitri Devi's Forever and Ever ("hymns of praise and somber elegies... dedicated to Adolf Hitler"); Trevor Lynch's White Nationalist Guide to the Movies, with a cover showing Hitler at the cinema; Irmin Vinson's Some Thoughts on Hitler and Other Essays ("Vinson explains how the organized Jewish community uses the memory of Adolf Hitler and the Holocaust as weapons to stigmatize the patriotism and ethnic pride not just of Germans, but of all whites"); and Revilo Oliver's The Jewish Strategy ("How have the Jews survived for thousands of years? And: Why might the white race not even survive this century? The answers, of course, are closely related.") What lovely company you keep, Stephen.
- this is a fairly typical example.
- In essence, this piece of legislation says that any reference to skin colour made by a charity when classifying its benefactors should be legally ignored.
- The Steadfast Trust: Caught On Camera by Duncan Cahill (18 February 2015, 16:03) Hope Not Hate (archived from March 4, 2016).
- Ethnic charity list Steadfast Trust.
- "English Folcmoot Success" Steadfast Trust official website, 14 August 2011 (archived)
- "The Great English Folcmoot 2011" Facebook (archived)
- "Grant Review 2011" Steadfast Trust official website, 7 January 2012 (archived)
- Music CD selection from Steadfast Trust official website (archived)
- "English Community Group setup guide" Steadfast Trust official website, 16 October 2009 (archived)
- "ECG (Leicester) leaflet funding", Steadfast Trust official website, 16 February 2012 (archived)
- "English Awareness Questionnare" English Community Group (Leicester) official website (archived)
- saxonfaction.co.uk whois.nic.uk (archived from April 15, 2015).
- Whois Record for SaxonFaction.co.uk whois.nic.uk (Archived from November 6, 2017).
- File:Capture fc4368ef0208283c8f5b27290c2ecc334e747b8f.png
- "Trustee Appointed: Mark Taylor" Steadfast Trust official website, 29 August 2009 (archived)
- "Exposure: How does the Steadfast Trust's response stand up?" Britain is Radical blog, 26 February 2015
- "Views from the English Community" asbooks.co.uk
- About Senlak clothing (archived)
- Full set of links in all their glory (archived)
- "We Are The English" forum on Englisc Gateway (archived)
- "Charity Commission investigation" Steadfast Trust official website, 31 May 2011 (archived)
- "Crisis for the Steadfast Trust Charity" Englisc Gateway (archive)