An Epping Forest District councillor has endorsed the idea of Epping being a whites-only town.

Cllr Julian Leppert, of far-right party For Britain, says he does not want Epping to become a ‘Tower Hamlets’ in Essex and said it would be ‘ideal’ if Epping were for white people only.

The Waltham Abbey Paternoster ward councillor has been orchestrating – along with party ‘fixer’ Eddy Butler – a campaign against asylum seekers temporarily housed by the Home Office at The Bell Hotel in Epping during the coronavirus pandemic.

The councillor, who has appeared on BBC radio and Russia Today, to discuss the issue, told The Guardian: “We don’t want a Tower Hamlets out in Essex. It’s difficult to put it that way without being called a racist, but we’re entitled to our national identity as much as any other country. We shouldn’t have dominant other cultures imposed on us to the point where you no longer feel at home,” he said.

When The Guardian asked if he was advocating a whites-only enclave on the edge of London, Leppert replied: “Ideally, yeah.”

Cllr Holly Whitbread, who has led the council’s response to Cllr Leppert’s campaign, said: “They [the asylum seekers] are not a threat to local people and I would appeal to everyone to leave them in peace while the government deals with their claims.”

However, Mr Butler and Cllr Leppert show no signs of slowing down their efforts to whip up anti-asylum seeker sentiment in the town.

The pair, who often erroneously refer to the asylum seekers as ‘illegal immigrants’, continue to run their campaign on social media.

Previously, in a video posted to Youtube, Mr Butler and Cllr Leppert had made unfounded claims the arrival of asylum seekers had led to a spike in crime. Essex Police have said this is categorically untrue.

The pair were also previously accused of fake news after claiming Loughton food charity 3Food4U was diverting supplies ‘away from locals’ to the asylum seekers at the hotel – carity director Pesh Kapasiawala has labelled the “inaccurate and false”.

Green Party councillor, Dave Plummer, said: “It's easy to get despondent and downhearted but I believe that the vast majority of Waltham Abbey's and Epping Forest's people see through For Britain's lies. We want our communities to remain welcoming and inclusive, giving help to those who need it, regardless of the colour of their skin.”

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