PEACE campaigners are once again calling for the cancellation of a defence expo near Malvern.

The Three Counties Campaign Against the Arms Trade (3CCAAT) has delivered an open letter to the Three Counties Showground asking it to reconsider hosting the Three Counties Defence and Security Expo on July 7 and 8.

Also handed in was a petition signed by 900 members of the public.

This is not the first time the peace group has protested the event, with similar demonstrations being held in 2019 and 2020.

Organisers have long highlighted the economic benefit to the region of the defence industry, saying it provides more than 400 jobs in the area.

Many local businesses also take part in the event, using it as an opportunity to sign the Armed Forces Covenant, which helps veterans find jobs after leaving the military.

On the second day of the fair, peace campaigners from across the region will gather to express their opposition to the arms trade.

Members of 3CCAAT will endeavour to make attenders at the Expo aware of what lies behind the event they have been attending. A vigil will be held on 8 July at Barnard’s Green in Malvern from 2.00 p.m. to 3.00 p.m. Anyone sympathetic to the views of 3CCAAT will be welcome to take part.

Rebecca Tully, one of the organisers of the protest, said: “We are delighted with the number of local residents getting on board with this and hope very much the Showground will see the strength of feeling in the area.

"Businesses, local and global can use their technologies to tackle our real security issues - food security and the climate emergency for a start."