Wyboston Lakes to hand over fee to charity after hosting Britain First event

Wyboston Lakes

Wyboston Lakes - Credit: Archant

A business and leisure centre has said it was left “deeply offended” after it inadvertently took a conference booking from the right wing political group Britain First.

Wyboston Lakes, based near St Neots, has said it would be handing over its booking fee to charity, after finding out the true nature of the private event which took place on Saturday.

The firm said it would never have taken the booking if it had known who was behind it.

A statement from the firm said: “For the sake of clarity, had we known the nature of the event being held by Britain First we would not have taken the booking as the values of our organisation conflicts with theirs in totality.

“Wyboston Lakes embraces diversity, employing 25 different nationalities and has served the local, national and international business community for over 30 years. Along with our team, our reputation is one of our most valuable assets, neither of which we would knowingly put at risk in such a manner.”

The statement said: “We can fully understand the concerns expressed but we can only refer to our company values and principles, our standing as an award-winning employer and assure everyone that we are deeply offended by their presence on our property.”

Wyboston Lakes said a small conference had taken place in its Oakley Suite which had been booked at short notice by a firm called Patriot Merchandise which had no obvious connections to Britain first.

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The £2,250 event had been paid for by credit card.

Wyboston Lakes said the conference had been a private function and that no banners had been put up in public areas. However, they had been put up in the closed-off conference room where they were not visible to guests or staff. A buffet tea was served outside the meeting and staff had not entered the room.

In its statement the firm said they were alerted to the event following a call from the press and, while they were investigating the claim, the Patriot Merchandise event came to an end and they then became aware of its true nature.

US president Donald Trump has come under fire for retweeting anti-Muslim videos from Britain First