A vigil will be held by anti-fascism demonstrators this evening outside an Islamic community centre burnt down in a suspected racist attack.

Unite Against Fascism is encouraging community leaders and neighbours of the Somali Bravanese Welfare Association in Muswell Hill to join them for the peaceful demonstration between 6pm and 7pm.

The Coppetts Road community centre was destroyed in a suspected arson attack in the early hours of Wednesday.

Fire investigators later found graffiti with the letters ‘EDL’ – the initials of far right anti-Islamist group the English Defence League – scrawled on the building.

Since the huge blaze on Wednesday, community leaders and politicians have voiced widespread condemnation of the alleged attack.

Specialist officers from the Met's Counter-Terrorism Command returned to the scene today (Thursday) to continue their investigations.

Meanwhile, the police presence in the area has been stepped up and officers are speaking to neighbours and community leaders to give reassurance.

Barnet’s Chief Superintendent Adrian Usher said: "I have spoken to community leaders and assured them that a thorough investigation is being conducted.

"The safety of our communities is always our priority and we are consulting widely, offering our support and reassurance. All communities can be confident that they have our support and I can be contacted personally to answer their concerns."

The Chief Superintendent says he has received messages of support from other communities, including Jewish and Christian, to pass on to the Somali community.

He added: "I have been astonished by the calm resolve that community leaders have displayed. Despite such a blow to the community, their focus has been on moving forward and how best they can bring the community together in a positive way."

Investigators are continuing to appeal for information from the public, particularly from those in the vicinity of the community centre on the evening of June 4 or early hours of June 5.

They would also like to speak to anyone who visited or passed the centre on June 4 and may have noticed any graffiti as they work to establish when the letters ‘EDL’ appeared on the building.

Anyone with information should call the incident room on 020 7230 2299, or contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.