Veteran climate activist among protesters to be removed from train

An 83-year-old grandfather was among five protesters who climbed onto the roof of a DLR train on Thursday morning.

Phil Kingston clambered onto the train at Canary Wharf station with other climate activists who unfurled a banner that said "business as usual = death" and "don't jail the canaries."

The members were part of a group called Christian Climate Action and included a mother-of-three and a cobbler.

Mr Kingston even packed sandwiches for the protest and tucked into them while on the roof of the train.

British Transport Police used ladders, ropes and harnesses to slowly guide the five Extinction Rebellion (XR) protesters from the Canary Wharf train, including Mr Kingston.

The five protesters were arrested on suspicion of obstructing the railway.

In a statement BTP added: “Shortly after 7.15am this morning officers from BTP were called to Canary Wharf station after a number of protesters climbed on top of a Docklands Light Railway (DLR) service.

“Specialist units trained in protester removal were immediately deployed and have now safely removed those obstructing the DLR service.”

Police remove Extinction Rebellion protesters from the entrances of the London Stock Exchange Credit: Isabel Infantes/PA

Extinction Rebellion activists also targeted London's financial districts to highlight what they call the business world's "role in our collective suicide" on the 10th and final day of disruptive protests.

The demonstrators temporarily blockaded the London Stock Exchange by gluing themselves across entrances to the trading hub in the City of London early on Thursday morning.

They were un-attached before being taken away in police vans, with Scotland Yard saying 26 people had been arrested on suspicion of aggravated trespassing.

The London Stock Exchange said all markets were open as normal.

Similar protests were held in Edinburgh where activists staged a protest at the Royal Bank of Scotland's (RBS) headquarters.

The campaigners are calling on the bank and others to fully commit to ending the financing of fossil fuel projects.

They say RBS has been taking steps in the right direction over the past few years but believe the bank - which is majority owned by the UK Government - has a "massive opportunity" to lead the country away from fossil fuel finance.

RBS said its exposure to the power, oil and gas sectors has reduced "substantially" in recent years.

The protest outside the bank's AGM in Gogarburn, Edinburgh, involved activists from the organisations Friends of the Earth Scotland, BankTrack and other local campaign groups.

XR said its action in the City of London was likely to last a few hours, on the day the group is due to end blockades at Parliament Square and Marble Arch.

The campaign group is also planning a number of “swarming” protests around the City of London throughout Thursday, including dozens of activists demonstrating outside Goldman Sachs offices in Fleet Street.

An XR spokeswoman said the area is being targeted because “the financial industry is responsible for funding climate and ecological destruction and we are calling on them, the companies and the institutions that allow this to happen, to tell the truth”.

She added: “And we’re asking the Government to take action to address the climate emergency.”

The eco-protesters have been urging ministers to declare a climate emergency to avoid what it calls a “sixth mass extinction” of species on Earth.

In a statement announcing the end of its action XR said: “We would like to thank Londoners for opening their hearts and demonstrating their willingness to act on that truth.

“We know we have disrupted your lives. We do not do this lightly. We only do this because this is an emergency.”

Extinction Rebellion protesters at the entrance of the London Stock Exchange Credit: Isabel Infantes/PA

The group also said the public should expect more action “very soon”, adding there will be a “closing ceremony” at Speakers’ Corner in Hyde Park on Thursday at 5pm.

In total 1,130 people have been arrested during the protests which started on April 15, while more than 10,000 police officers have been deployed.

The action has seen Waterloo Bridge and Oxford Circus blocked and a “die-in” at the Natural History Museum.

A Transport for London spokesman said: “We are aware that there are demonstrations taking place across London which may cause disruption to travel.

“The safety of our customers and staff is our number one priority and we’re working closely with the police to manage the impact on London’s transport network. We would encourage people to check their journeys before they travel.”