The leader of Barking and Dagenham's BNP group has made a new outburst, this time against one of the borough's most respected clergymen.
Cllr Bob Bailey called Rev Roger Gayler, vicar of St Mark's, Rose Lane, Marks Gate, a fascist for getting involved in politics. Mr Gayler took the unusual step of having 2,000 anti-BNP leaflets printed ahead of Thursday's council by-election in Chadwell Heath.
Cllr Bailey - who last month warned Barking College principal Ted Parker against hosting anti-racism events and before May's London Assembly elections, launched a tirade of abuse at Recorder staff - argued with the vicar three days before the by-election.
Mr Gayler, who received Barking and Dagenham's highest distinction, the Freedom of the Borough, last year, told the Recorder: "He said this is against the democratic process. I said, 'No, this is about the democratic process - we're all free to express our opinion'. Then he called me a fascist and threw the leaflet. I find it rather amazing he called me a fascist. I thought it was interesting. It shows, as far as I'm concerned, the man was rattled and what we were doing was reasonably effective."
Cllr Bailey said he had had a conversation with Mr Gayler on his doorstep and did not deny he had referred to him as "a fascist".
He told the Recorder: "He shouldn't interfere with politics. He should concentrate on what his church is there for, which is ministering to his people. There are enough people that need help, without delving into politics.
Barking and Dagenham Recorder