MASKED protesters gathered to demonstrate against a controversial organisation which has set up a church in York.

The Church of Scientology - which boasts movie stars Tom Cruise and John Travolta among its followers - has come under attack from opponents who claim its teachings are "sinister".

Its Mission Of York was set up last year at Matmer House, in Hull Road, making it one of 14 Scientology churches in the UK.

More than 20 local campaigners picketed the building on Saturday as part of a worldwide protest against Scientology.

One protester, who asked to remain anonymous, said: "The church has a strong history of litigation against any of its critics so we wear masks so they cannot identify us."

No one from the Church of Scientology was available to comment.