WATCH: Hundreds join Black Lives Matter protest in Stafford

Hundreds of people turned out in Stafford town centre to show their support for the Black Lives Matters movement.

People from all cultural backgrounds were present at the protest in Market Square
People from all cultural backgrounds were present at the protest in Market Square

Around 1,000 people came together in the town's Market Square on Saturday to join a peaceful protest against police brutality and racial injustice.

The protest was the latest in a series of protests and events in honour of George Floyd and brought people from around the region to show their support.

Watch video from the rally:

Georgia Lewin had come from Birmingham to show her support as a woman of Jamaican heritage and as a member of the Socialist Party.

The 29-year-old had attended previous protests in Birmingham and Wolverhampton and said she hoped the movement could lead to a change in race attitudes and perceptions.

One of the speakers at the protest makes her voice heard
Many protestors wore face masks in solidarity with BLM

She said: "As a mixed-race person, I do understand from both sides, so this movement is just about coming together and being united with everyone.

"It would be nice for when people look at a black person to, instead of running away just because they've got a hood on, understand that we're all the same."

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Social distancing was encouragedt throughout the protest, which saw speakers from community groups around the region get up to speak outside the Shire Hall.

Rob Stone and Ella Boucher had come to join the protest in their home town, with both 19-year-olds saying it was important to show awareness of attitudes and racism.

Young and old were present in solidarity
Protestors brought signs with a range of slogans on them

Rob also has black heritage in his family, with his father coming from Trinidad and Tobago, and spoke about his own experiences.

He said: "I think it's especially important for me to show up today as people question where I'm from.

"I've been called a number of racist names and I think it's important to say that these attitudes are not necessary and not wanted today."

Even man's best friend was keen to take part in the protest

Ella said: "Stafford is a very white, conservative town, so I think it's really important to show that this is the other side of it.

"I think it's really important that people show that it is important even in small areas, not just big cities, to show awareness."

There was a heavy police presence, but the protest passed by peacefully
Social distancing was observed throughout the protest

Although there was a heavy police presence, there were few signs of trouble during the protest, with liaison officers on hand to keep away any potential troublemakers.

The protest culminated with everyone present who was able taking a knee for eight minutes and 46 seconds.

Meanwhile in London more than 100 people were arrested at a far-right protest which was condemned by Prime Minister Boris Johnson as “racist thuggery”.

Six police officers suffered minor injuries in violent clashes as several hundred demonstrators, mostly white men, attended the protest organised by far-right groups which claimed they wanted to protect statues such as Winston Churchill from vandalism.

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