Boy, 15, accused of plotting Isle of Wight Festival terror attack

Around 90,000 people attended the Isle of Wight festival this year

A 15-year-old boy is to go on trial in the spring accused of plotting a terror attack after allegedly researching the Isle of Wight Festival as a potential target.

The teenager, from Cowes, is charged with preparation of terrorist acts under Section 5 of the Terrorism Act 2006.

It is claimed he developed an interest in extreme Islam and supported IS ideology. He allegedly researched the music festival, held on the island between June 16 and 19, which was attended by around 90,000 people and featured acts including Lewis Capaldi and Kasabian.

The youth is accused of looking at weapons, including firearms, vehicles and a stab vest.

He is also alleged to have obtained a knife and written notes, including a martyrdom note entitled To My Family. The defendant allegedly had a knife in his rucksack when he was arrested by counter-terrorism police on 11 July.

Winchester Crown Court Credit: PA

Officers had received a tip-off from the FBI that he was allegedly planning to attack a non-believer who he thought had insulted Islam.

He was charged on 17 July and made his first appearance at the Old Bailey on Thursday (18 August).

Wearing a grey sweatshirt and black trousers, the boy confirmed his identity byvideo-link from youth detention.

At the start of the hearing, Mr Justice Sweeney thanked Rossano Scamardella QC for attending despite defence lawyers' industrial action.

The judge told him: "The court would like to thank Mr Scamardella QC for representing the defendant for the best possible reasons - given his age and the potential injustice that may have arisen were he unrepresented."

He went on to set a timetable for the case with a three-week trial from 18 April next year at Winchester Crown Court.

A plea hearing will take place on 4 November, he said.

The defendant, who cannot be identified given his age, was further remanded.