Two rival political groups will march to Norwich city hall this Saturday.
The English Defence League (EDL), a radical right-wing group, will march from Castle Gardens. Counter demonstrators We Are Norwich will gather in Chapelfield Gardens prior to the march.
The counter demonstration will meet at 11am.
The EDL are protesting against a decision by the city council, banning a Christian preacher from distributing anti-Islamic “hate-motivated” leaflets from a stall on Hay Hill.
A joint statement denouncing the EDL march was issued from the Church leaders of the Church of England, Roman Catholic, Methodist and Baptist churches, Salvation Army, United Reformed Church and the Quakers.
It said: “The intention of the English Defence League to mount a demonstration in Norwich is entirely unwelcome. Norwich has a long history of welcoming strangers, often in considerable numbers.
“The integration of so many different groups into the life of this fine city is what gives Norwich such richness in its life today. This is a cause for celebration, and we must not allow this honourable tradition to be broken.”
We Are Norwich is a group of local political, community and faith groups. Those to have pledged their support include Josh Bowker, the Union’s academic officer.