'Dame Emma Thompson accused police of wasting taxpayers' money by trying to stop illegal climate change protests in London yesterday, as organisers promised to hold picnics on motorways in coming days and the Met warned the sheer number of arrests has left them short of space in the cells.
In chaotic scenes as the capital's streets were once again shut down the actress urged activists not to stop demonstrating hours before their pink boat in Oxford Circus was finally removed by police.
This week's Extinction Rebellion (XR) demonstrations have closed key routes through the capital, cost businesses tens of millions in lost revenue, inconvenienced half a million people a day, and resulted in at least 682 arrests, but show no sign of abating.
Yesterday organisers said they had seen an increase in people joining up, pointing to warm weather, the Easter holiday, and a David Attenborough documentary about climate change broadcast on Thursday evening as motivators.
The demonstrators lost their beloved boat yesterday as the bright pink Berta Cacares in Oxford Circus was finally carted away by police after 100 hours in situ.
Crowds who attempted to prevent the police removing the ship chanted 'we have more boats', and organisers said that on Easter Monday they planned to expand the protest to include 'picnics on motorways'.
The overstretched Met issued a plea that the willingness of so many people to be arrested was causing a 'logistical problem' for cell space and the wider criminal justice system.
The teenage founder of the millions-strong global movement of school strikes against climate change, Greta Thunberg, 16, told The Guardian she hopes to join the XR protests when she arrives in London this weekend.
Yesterday Dame Emma poured scorn on the Metropolitan Police's decision to escalate its approach on the fifth day of the protests having taken a hammering for its light-touch strategy earlier in the week.'
Read more: Emma Thompson accuses POLICE of wasting taxpayers' money at eco-protests - as the Met runs out of cells after 680 arrests and activists vow another WEEK of misery with 'picnics on motorways'
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