ABSTRACT

This chapter examines the diversity of people's views about how the Bradford riot developed. It examines what the interviewees believed had been the immediate causes of the riots, what are often referred to in the literature as flashpoints', precipitating events or a sudden shift from individual identity to the extremist, empowered social identity of the crowd. Some talked of the rumours and expectation that Bradford would follow in the wake of events in Oldham and experience similar violence. A further major theme of the rumours and expectations of the weeks prior to the riot that people could recall were that the National Front (NF) were coming to Bradford. However, whether or not the NF, the British National Party (BNP) or some other grouping of neo-fascists actually came to Bradford and exactly what they did was a matter of dispute between interviewees.