The leader of Barnet Borough Council has criticised plans to stage an anti-fascism protest outside a store associated with the far-right.

North London Unite Against Fascism has organised a rally outside the Viking Thor Shop in Ballards Lane, a new outlet store for Thor Steinar, is a popular brand among neo-Nazis.

Thor Steinar was banned in Germany in 2004 for using a logo similar to symbols worn by the Nazi SS.

Although the firm has since rebranded, the clothing has been surrounded in controversy sparking anti-fascism protests outside its stores.

But council leader Councillor Richard Cornelius has said although fascism is not welcome in the borough, lobbying the North Finchley store is not the answer.

Cllr Cornelius said: “There is obviously no welcome for anything linked to fascism in Finchley. Indeed, we don’t want to see this kind of thing anywhere.

“However, a demonstration is the oxygen of publicity that the situation does not need.”

But organisers at North London Unite Against Fascism say the aim of Friday's protest is to expose what the clothing brand is "really about".

The store’s owner, who asked to remain anonymous, told the Times Series he did not understand the controversy around the brand and denied its links to the far-right.