This short news clip shows a group of kids leafletting outside a school (I’m not sure which one?) and discussing racism and the National Front with fellow pupils. You can also see a march by school children across Hackney Downs.
Heartwarming stuff – I’m very grateful to Louis Allday for posting this to Twitter (and to the comrade who brought it to my attention).
School Kids Against The Nazis was an initiative by the Anti-Nazi League, but as you can see from the clip this incarnation in Hackney was a very grassroots affair with distinctly homegrown leaflets (and accents!).
There was a battle for the hearts and minds of schookids taking place in the late 1970s, with the National Front publishing its own youth paper Bulldog to pollute children’s minds with its fascist ideas. The NF also produced its infamous “How To Spot A Red Teacher” leaflet in 1978 which led to some physical attacks on teachers. The Front was especially active in Hackney in this period – its National HQ Excalibur House in Great Eastern Street in the south of the borough opened in 1978 also.
Hackney School Kids Against The Nazis was formed shortly after the ANL’s Carnival Against The Nazis in Victoria Park on April 30th 1978.
The clip is taken from a longer Thames Television documentary which you can see here:
There is a tonne of great Hackney-related footage in the full piece (but the school kids segment is the highlight for sure):
00:00 ANL march from Traflagr Square to gig in Victoria Park, including interviews with marchers
03:07 Patrick Kodikara of Hackney Campaign Against Racism
03:52 Leafletting session on Hackney estates
04:45 Leafletting Ridley Road market: “Remember to bombs on Hackney, we remember in Ridley Road, we remember Mosley’s fascists”. As Charles points out in the comments below, this includes Monty Goldman – one of Hackney’s most prominent Communist Party candidates.
05:36 Veteran tenants organiser Bob Darke (previously covered on this site here)
07:59 Haggerston Labour councilliors Roger and Ros Tyrrell
11:15 Aiden White from East Ender newspaper
13:13 School Kids Against The Nazis
There is also some great footage of Hackney school kids talking about police racism in the 1980s here.