AN EAST Dorset historical re-enactment society has been banned from Facebook for a second time after being mistaken for a far-right militia in the wake of the US Capitol riots.

The elderly members of the Wimborne Militia were left bemused after their Facebook accounts were suspended last month.

The social media giant had been taking down and restricting accounts of allegedly right-wing, paramilitary groups in the US.

Although their page was reinstated they have again been taken off the platform following the events in Washington last week.

On Monday, a committee page for five members who are administrators on the official Wimborne Militia Facebook page was disabled.

When they try to access the page it states the link has been disabled and this is 'irreversible'.

Wimborne Militia currently has about 60 members and recreates historical events such as the Battle of Monmouth.

It is well known at local events, such as the annual switching on of the Christmas lights in Wimborne.

With many of its activities cancelled during the pandemic, the group has relied on social media to keep in touch with members and stage virtual events.

Chris Brown, 64, a member of the Wimborne Militia and the town crier, said they were 'harmless eccentrics' who had no intention of 'toppling the government'.

He said they had been reassured by Facebook that this would not happen again after they were reinstated last month.

He said: "The committee page for the five officers who run the group was taken down on Monday.

"The page says it has been disabled and when you click on the link it says it is irreversible.

"We were led to believe after the first time it happened we would be marked as 'ok' and it would not happen again.

"There must be an algorithm picking out the word 'militia', although the bizarre thing is our normal society page is still active.

"We are a bunch of harmless eccentrics who like to dress in fancy clothes, not people who want to topple the government.

"We'd like to think we are conscientious members of society and I also help run Neighbourhood Watch pages.

"We are the opposite of the people storming the US congress last week. The whole thing is very weird."

Facebook has been approached for comment.