Update: The Aessal New York Stadium has cancelled Anne Marie Waters’ booking, which was made through an external organisation.
Leading anti-Muslim activist Anne Marie Waters is set to launch her campaign for the UKIP leadership at the New York Stadium, ground of Rotherham United Football Club, on Saturday, 1 July.
Waters, who founded Sharia Watch UK and was a leader of the anti-Muslim street movement Pegida UK, became notorious for organising a Muhammad Cartoons exhibition in 2015. She has recently developed links to the European extreme far right.
She is now hoping to take the helm of UKIP after former leader Paul Nuttall stepped down following disastrous results in the June 2017 general election.
Waters was deselected from standing as a UKIP parliamentary candidate in the recent election by members of UKIP’s National Executive Committee (NEC) after pressure from HOPE not hate and other media sources, becoming a kind of martyr in the eyes of the most Islamophobic elements within the party.
Waters will seek to further exploit anti-Muslim sentiment in Rotherham, a town still recovering from the appalling grooming scandal that was uncovered nationally in 2012.
Waters announced her intention to run for the UKIP leadership at the anti-Muslim demonstration in Manchester earlier this month, a disorderly event organised by former English Defence League (EDL) leader Stephen Yaxley-Lennon. Waters’ campaign launch, set to start at 1pm, is being promoted by former BNP star Jack Buckby.
Also running for leadership is David Coburn MEP, and controversial MEP Bill Etheridge has also announced his intention to stand if Nigel Farage does not return to lead the party. Etheridge recently called for the removal of Waters and her “vociferous supporters’” from the party after she appeared to blame the Finsbury mosque attack, in which Darren Osborne mowed down worshippers in a van last Sunday.
“It’s called ‘war’, and if not for Islam, none of it would be happening,” Waters wrote, later adding: “Islam has waged war on unbelievers for 1,400 years. It’s not the only cause of war, but it’s the cause of this one.”