London disruption to continue, environmental activists vow
Extinction Rebellion members attach selves to Jeremy Corbyn’s fence using glue and bike lock
Climate change activists from Extinction Rebellion sit after gluing themselves to the front fence of Britain’s opposition Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn’s house in London. Photograph: Henry Nicholls/Reuters
Environmental protesters have vowed that disruption in London will continue for weeks, as activists glued themselves to a train and Jeremy Corbyn’s garden fence.
The Labour leader’s home in north London became the latest target on the third day of climate change demonstrations across the British capital.
Two men and two women from the Extinction Rebellion group used glue and a bike lock in a bid to prevent police from removing them from outside the house on Wednesday.
They said they all support Mr Corbyn, but want the Labour Party to go further than declaring a “climate emergency”. As they left, one protester, Tracee Williams (55), said: “We just really felt we had to bring it to his front door.”
More than 300 people have been arrested so far this week during ongoing protests in Parliament Square, Waterloo Bridge, Oxford Circus and Marble Arch.
Scotland Yard could not confirm whether anyone had been charged with criminal offences.
Campaigners said the cells in the capital are full and “operating on a one-in, one-out capacity”, while some of those being released from custody have rejoined the protests.
The Metropolitan Police said: “Our custody suites are not full and we are continuing to arrest those who are breaking the law.”
The force added those continuing to demonstrate in areas where a restriction is in place face prosecution.
Activists said they plan to continue their roadblocks until at least next Friday. They have affected more than half a million people, with road closures, traffic gridlock and disruption to transport and businesses since Monday.
Spokeswoman Jayne Forbes told the Press Association: “We would obviously look to go on for two weeks, and if we can go on longer then even better. It depends on the rebels. We have got quite a lot of people committed to do it for the whole two weeks.”
Robin Boardman-Pattison (21), said activists are planning to step up action on the rail and London Underground network. “We will be escalating our disruption throughout the week,” he said. “The impact to the Tube system will grow.”
The British Transport Police arrested two men and a woman on suspicion of obstructing the railway after activists clambered aboard the carriage of a train at Canary Wharf station on Wednesday morning.
A smartly dressed man and woman glued their hands to the roof before being removed and taken away in a police van.
Extinction Rebellion, which is demanding a meeting with the government, says direct action is needed to force authorities to act urgently on climate change and wildlife declines, and on halting a “sixth mass extinction”.
A YouGov poll of 3,561 UK adults suggested public opinion has swung against the protests, while some Londoners hit out at the group’s “seriously flawed” methods.
The survey results show 52 per cent either “somewhat oppose” or “strongly oppose” the action, compared to 36 per cent who “strongly support” or “somewhat support” it. – PA