September 18, 2021

Four arrested after British GP climate change protest

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Last Updated: 02/08/20 9:10pm

Four Extinction Rebellion protesters have been arrested after they gained access to Silverstone for Sunday’s behind-closed-doors British Grand Prix.

It is believed that the four climate change protesters evaded security by wearing orange marshals uniforms.

They unfurled an “Act Now” banner as the cars set off on the formation lap before they were stopped by track security.

A joint statement issued by Silverstone and Northamptonshire Police read: “During the race, Northamptonshire Police were made aware of four people who had been detained by Silverstone security inside the venue perimeter.

“Officers are working closely with Silverstone Circuit and conducting a full investigation. Four people have been arrested and are in police custody.”

The incident will be a concern for Formula One’s bosses after Sunday’s race, which Lewis Hamilton won for his seventh career British Grand Prix victory despite a final-lap puncture, took place without spectators due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The 70th Anniversary Grand Prix – the fifth race to be held since the 2020 season begun last month – will also be staged at Silverstone next weekend.

A statement on Extinction Rebellion’s website said the aim of the protest was not to disrupt the race but to send a message that “the world is way off track to stop the climate and ecological emergency”.

“Today was an opportunity to remind the world that the climate and ecological crisis hasn’t gone away and is intensifying every day,” said Donald Bell from Extinction Rebellion Cambridge.

“Although we applaud Formula One for taking the bold steps and pledging to go net zero by 2030, this strong leadership makes a mockery of the EU and UK governments’ own 2050 target.

“It’s time the worlds’ governments show some leadership of their own.”