Woman behind street parties to 'celebrate' death of Margaret Thatcher named
The woman behind an internet campaign to organise street parties to "celebrate" the death of Baroness Thatcher can be named as Romany Blythe, a drama teacher from Brighton.
Blythe said the parties would be targeted at Lady Thatcher’s policies and did not intend to 'gloat' at her passing
On Facebook Romany Blythe appears posing with Tony Benn, second left, and Owen Jones
By Telegraph reporters
3:31PM BST 10 Apr 2013
Blythe, 45, created a group on Facebook called The Witch is Dead followed by more than 5,000 people, calling for “demonstrations of disapproval” across the country.
A number of places on the list were locations of riots and demonstrations that took place across the country on Monday, including Bristol city centre and George Square in Glasgow.
Blythe is a drama teacher with a workshop company that visits secondary schools. She specialises in “facilitating workshops for young, excluded and potentially criminalised individuals and uses drama techniques she has developed to explore resolution of conflict and oppression,” according to the company's website.
Writing on her own Facebook page she wrote on Monday: “So the old bag has copped it finally!! Party in the square tomorrow then!”
She then claimed she had invited more than 5,300 people to a 'flash party' to mark Baroness Thatcher's passing, with the message: "Anyone else like to join us?"
The group readers: "Come and celebrate our liberty and freedom from tyranny! On the day Maggie stands down, once and for all!"
On Facebook she appears in photographs holding a hammer and sickle flag and posing alongside former Cabinet Minister Tony Benn and left-wing writer Owen Jones.
She could not be reached today. However in an interview with the Telegraph last year, Blythe said her dislike for the former prime minister came from being told she might never find work on leaving school in 1984.
Blythe said the nation-wide parties would be targeted at Lady Thatcher’s policies and did not intend to “gloat” at her passing.
“It’s not about gloating and being mean. It’s about using that date to reflect on the past, however unfortunate that day may be for some people,” she said.
“She has family and they will grieve. She’s not the enemy right now; her legacy is the enemy.
"I’m calling for a peaceful demonstration of disapproval and letting the government know we’re not stupid and we haven’t been brainwashed by more prosperous times since then.”
A number of police officers were injured on Monday and arrests were made as hundreds held parties around the country when news of Lady Thatcher’s death was announced.
In Bristol six officers were injured as they tried to break up a gathering of around 200 people and were pelted with bottles and cans. One officer remains in hospital and one person was arrested for violent disorder.
In Brixton, south London, smashed windows and looting of shops was reported as two women were arrested on suspicion of burglary.
More than 100 people gathered in south London suburb - the scene of fierce riots in 1981 just two years into her first time in office. Some scaled the nearby Ritzy Cinema and changed the film listings to read "Margaret Thatchers dead".
Anarchist groups have warned of more mass protests on Saturday, with expected numbers between 2-3,000.
The events are being organised by a group called Class War with help from other groups such as the All London Anarchist Revolutionary Mob, which says it is “committed to radical action to undermine the state,” are also mobilising supporters to attend 25 locations across the country.
Ian Bone, who set up the group Class War, told the Telegraph protesters plan to hang an effigy of Lady Thatcher on the fourth plinth in London's Trafalgar Square.
He said: “There's a large papier mache statue of Thatcher being done that will be toppled. It will be similar to the size of the Saddam Hussein one, ideally in Trafalgar Square."
"It will be quite simply a celebration party. I expect to see hand made banners and signs. It's not a march, not a protest. We want to celebrate the end of Thatcher. I imagine it will go long into the night, There's no intention of violence.I think it will be joyful and great.
"The depth of dislike and hatred for Thatcher is big. We know some miners are coming down from South Yorkshire and Derbyshire.”
Scotland Yard has said they are aware of planned events around Trafalgar Square and are preparing an “appropriate” plan to counter any possible trouble.
The force has already launched a major operation to counter threats of disorder in the run up to her funeral next week, according to the Evening Standard.
All further leave for officers has been cancelled and operations are being run from a special command and control operations room in Lambeth.