Wandsworth Borough Council has decided to name a new housing development after Sir Edwin Alliot Verdon-Roe, accomplished aviator, antisemite and prominent member of the British Union of Fascists.
Verdon-Roe supported Sir Oswald Mosley during the 1930s, a time when Mosley’s ‘blackshirt’ thugs terrorised London’s Jews. Dr Steven Woodbridge, Senior Lecturer in History at Kingston University, told the Evening Standard: “Even during the Second World War, he was contributing articles to the publications of extreme-right parties. I think his views would be abhorrent to people today. There was a definite strand of antisemitism in his thinking and outlook.”
It is disappointing, and unacceptable that, notwithstanding Verdon-Roe’s achievements in the field of aviation, Wandsworth Borough Council has decided to bestow the honour of naming a new development after him.
Campaign Against Antisemitism urges the Council to reconsider their decision and choose a more appropriate figure to name the building after.
You may wish to e-mail Wandsworth Borough Council’s leader, Councillor Ravi Govindia CBE, at firstname.lastname@example.org to let him know your thoughts.