Celebrity Extinction Rebellion supporters have admitted in an open letter being “hypocrites” over their high-carbon lifestyles.
But stars including Benedict Cumberbatch, who last week joined London protests, called for “systemic change” to the “fossil-fuel economy”.
It comes as Extinction Rebellion was granted permission to challenge a London-wide protest ban in court.
Several demonstrators have been arrested as hundreds defied the ban.
More than 100 celebrity supporters of Extinction Rebellion signed the letter to the media, which urges the media to focus on “the real story” of the climate and ecological emergency.
Spice Girl Mel B, comedian Steve Coogan, musician Sir Bob Geldof, actor Sir Mark Rylance, model Lily Cole and Glastonbury’s Emily Eavis, among others, all confessed their culpability in the climate crisis.
The letter says: “Dear journalists who have called us hypocrites. You’re right.
“We live high carbon lives and the industries that we are part of have huge carbon footprints.
“Like you, and everyone else, we are stuck in this fossil-fuel economy and without systemic change, our lifestyles will keep on causing climate and ecological harm.”
But they called on the media to focus on the “more urgent story” of life on earth dying in a sixth mass extinction.
They said they cannot ignore the call of young people such as Greta Thunberg to “fight for their already devastated future”, even if it means putting themselves “in your firing line”.
Meanwhile, police have begun making arrests after Extinction Rebellion activists defied an order banning them from demonstrating anywhere in London.
About 500 protesters gathered in Trafalgar Square, some of whom covered their mouths with black tape to symbolise the silencing of their protest.
Within a couple of hours, the protest broke up and large numbers dispersed. Police arrested a small group who were blocking Whitehall, BBC correspondent Andy Moore said.
Among those arrested were Green Party co-leader Jonathan Bartley and George Monbiot, the author and Guardian journalist.
As he was arrested, Mr Monbiot said: “We have to make a stand against the destruction of our life support systems.”
An application for a judicial review of the ban was accepted by the High Court, according to an Extinction Rebellion spokesman.
It means the case can go ahead, with an initial hearing scheduled for Thursday.
The claimants include the Green Party’s Caroline Lucas and Baroness Jenny Jones, Labour MPs Clive Lewis and David Drew, and Mr Monbiot.
Extinction Rebellion argues the ban is disproportionate and an unprecedented curtailment of the right to free speech and free assembly.
The group hopes the High Court will quash the decision to implement the blanket ban.
It follows the Metropolitan Police announcing new restrictions under Section 14 of the Public Order Act, which required protesters to disperse by 21:00 BST or risk arrest.
Any assembly of more than two people linked to the Extinction Rebellion action is now illegal in London.
The force said it decided to impose the rules after “continued breaches” of conditions which limited the demonstrations to Trafalgar Square.
More than 1600 people have been arrested since the protests, dubbed the Autumn Uprising, began on October 7.
Deputy Assistant Commissioner Laurence Taylor, who is leading the policing of the demonstrations, said he was confident the Met’s decision was “entirely lawful” and “entirely proportionate”.
Also on Wednesday, a group of mothers and babies defied the restriction, staging a “feed-in” outside Google’s offices in London’s King’s Cross, while other activists targeted the nearby offices of YouTube – a Google subsidiary.
They said they wanted to highlight the company’s political donations to organisations that have campaigned against action on climate change.
Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn said concerns had been raised about the police’s decision to ban the protests, adding that shadow home secretary Diane Abbott was discussing it with the police.
“I think it’s important to protect the right of free speech, and the right to demonstrate in our society – obviously in a non-violent way,” he said.
He added that Labour’s London Mayor Sadiq Khan had no involvement in the “operational decision” by police to remove the protesters.
On Tuesday, Mr Khan said he was “seeking further information” about why the ban was necessary, saying he believed “the right to peaceful and lawful protest must always be upheld”.
A government spokesman said the UK was already taking “world-leading action to combat climate change as the first major economy to legislate to end our contribution to global warming entirely by 2050”.
“While we share people’s concerns about global warming, and respect the right to peaceful protest, it should not disrupt people’s day-to-day lives,” he added.
What are the rules around protests?
Police have the powers to ban a protest under the Public Order Act 1986, if a senior officer has reasonable belief that it may cause “serious disruption to the life of the community”.
Police are also under a duty to balance the task of keeping the streets open with the right freedom of assembly under Article 11 of the Human Rights Act 1998 and freedom of expression, under Article 10. These rights are not absolute – the state can curtail them.
However, the BBC’s home affairs correspondent Dominic Casciani said: “The test, if and when it gets to a human rights court battle, is whether police action was proportionate to the threat and only what was strictly necessary.”
By law, the organiser of a public march must tell the police certain information in writing six days in advance.
Police have the power to limit or change the route of the march or set other conditions.
A Section 14 notice issued under the Public Order Act allows police to impose conditions on a static protest and individuals who fail to comply with these can be arrested.
A “dangerous” drug addict has been found guilty of murdering his friend in a pub doorway in London.
Joe Gynane fatally injured Mohamed Elmi, 37, with a large kitchen knife in the doorway of the Coach and Horses pub in Soho, at about 06.00 GMT on 3 March.
Hours later he used the “blood-stained blade” to seriously injure a 16-year-old boy near Tottenham Court Road.
The 34-year-old, of no fixed abode, was found guilty of Mr Elmi’s murder at the Old Bailey, on Wednesday.
Gynane was also found guilty of causing grievous bodily harm to the unnamed teenager.
Gynane and Mr Elmi had spent parts of the early morning together walking around Soho, smoking and taking drugs with a group of people, the court heard.
The defendant admitted he had taken heroin, crack cocaine and spice.
Prosecutor Gareth Patterson QC told jurors: “In his first knife attack he fatally stabbed a man called Mohamed Elmi in Soho.
“In a short but deadly assault in the doorway of a pub he stabbed him repeatedly using a large kitchen knife.”
The court heard Gynane was a “dangerous” man with previous convictions for robbery and several assaults.
Gynane, of Wimbledon, south-west London, denied murder and causing grievous bodily harm with intent.
He claimed diminished responsibility on the basis he was suffering from “misuse syndrome” – the effects of the misuse of drugs – and a personality disorder.
Judge Richard Foster remanded the defendant into custody to be sentenced on Thursday afternoon.
Rail commuters are facing major delays in London due to “multiple incidents”.
Damage to overhead wires between London St Pancras and Blackfriars blocked all Thameslink services during rush hour.
Services have now resumed but the operator – which runs trains across the South East – warned of “major disruption until the end of the day”.
A speed restriction in Borehamwood is adding to the disruption, affecting mainly south-bound trains from St Albans to St Pancras.
Thameslink said there was a “significantly reduced service” through central London stations, London Bridge, Gatwick Airport, East Croydon, Sevenoaks, Orpington, Rainham, St Albans, Wimbledon and Sutton.
“Please check customer information screens and journey planners prior to travelling, and listen to station and train announcements for up to date service information,” it said.
Power to railway lines between London St Pancras and Blackfriars had been switched off following “multiple incidents”, Network Rail said.
“Network Rail staff have been working overnight and this morning to repair the issue,” the company said.
“Services have now resumed but passengers should check their journeys before travelling as residual delays are expected.”
Another train operator, Great Northern, has tweeted in reply to a customer: “We are experiencing severe congestion on the line due to damage to the overhead wires in London Blackfriars which results in late notice cancellation of services.”
|Specsavers County Championship Division One, Kia Oval (day three):|
|Surrey 402-6d: Borthwick 137, Pope 106; Mullaney 2-73, Coughlin 2-83|
|Nottinghamshire 77-1: Slater 29, Mullaney 21*; Clarke 1-11|
|Notts (1 pt) trail Surrey (5 pts) by 325 runs|
Surrey and England batsman Ollie Pope struck his eighth first-class century as their game against Nottinghamshire at The Oval drifts towards a draw.
On a rain-affected day three, 21-year-old Pope made 106 while opener Scott Borthwick was out for 137 as Surrey declared their first innings on 402-6.
Relegated Nottinghamshire finished on 77-1 as Rikki Clarke took the wicket of Steven Mullaney lbw for 21.
Stumps were called at 18:00 BST with Ben Slater and Ben Compton not out.
On a day where numerous County Championship fixtures were rained off, play was delayed until 13:10 BST.
Pope began on 79 not out alongside Scott Borthwick, who was on 109, as Surrey resumed on 248-2.
The pair added a further 44 runs before Pope’s wicket ended their 222-run partnership.
Clarke (36 not out) and Jordan Clark (23 not out) added some late runs after tea to earn Surrey a fifth batting point, before the hosts declared at 16:15 BST.
But Nottinghamshire repelled Surrey’s seam attack to finish the day 325 runs behind, with Slater (29) and Compton (16) both surviving.
Heavy rain is causing travel problems and flash flooding across England.
Eight flood warnings and 38 flood alerts have been put in place by the Environment Agency.
The Met Office has a yellow rain warning covering most of the country in force until 23:00 BST.
Floods have been reported on roads in Southampton, Birmingham and Liverpool, while Transport for London (TfL) said a number of roads across the capital were also affected by flooding.
A flood warning is in place in Crawley for the Ifield Brook and River Mole at Ifield and the River Mole at Lowfield Heath.
Flooding is also expected on the upper Frome between Maiden Newton and Dorchester in Dorset and on the Grace Dieu Brook between Whitwick and Thringstone in Leicestershire.
Edwinstone and Ollerton in Nottinghamshire are also at risk of flooding from the River Maun as are areas around the Whinney Brook at Maghull in Sefton, Merseyside, and Wash Dike in Pontefract, West Yorkshire.
National Rail warned of major disruption between Birmingham Snow Hill and Stourbridge until about noon because of a tree blocking the line earlier.
Southampton City Centre has seen problems with several cars having broken down in water on Millbrook Road West.
Motorists have also been advised to avoid the road between Waterhouse Lane and Paynes Road.
Roads have flooded in the Longbridge area of Birmingham, while Mersey Fire and Rescue Service reported vehicles trapped in floodwater in the Queens Drive and West Derby area of Liverpool.
A service spokesman urged drivers to “please take extra care”, adding: “Slow down, increase your distances, switch your lights on and please don’t drive into floodwater.”
About 2in (49.6mm) of rain fell in the six hours before 09:00 at Boscombe Down in Wiltshire, according to the Met Office.
Spokesman Grahame Madge said it was a “significant” amount of rain.
He said the band of rain was “transient” and, having started in the South West, has moved to the Midlands before hitting the North later in the day.
He said some other areas could expect to see the same amount of rain as Boscombe Down.
Downward dogs and yoga mats have replaced cars and buses on London’s Tower Bridge as part of Car Free Day.
The mass yoga session was one of a number of activities taking place in the capital as more than 16 miles (27 km) of streets were shut.
Bank junction was turned into a festival space while children will race go-karts in the Square Mile.
The closures will be in place until 19:00 BST with roads elsewhere expected to be busy as a result.
Tower and London Bridge were shut at 07:00 BST along with streets in parts of the City, Southwark and Tower Hamlets.
Among the other activities taking place were a hedge maze in Cheapside and classic cycle rides on Tower Bridge.
Organisers hope more than 150,000 people will join the event, which has been named Reimagine.
Away from the centre, 15 boroughs will be running their own Car Free Day celebrations and more than 340 “play streets” – safe spaces for local people to socialise and play – have been approved by 24 boroughs.
London’s Mayor Sadiq Khan said the day was about “demonstrating our commitment to cleaning up our toxic air and experiencing a greener way of living”.
Transport for London has warned that those who do take to the roads should expect “significant delays”.
A series of failings by the National Probation Service (NPS) contributed to the death of a five-year-old boy who was murdered by his mother’s partner, an inquest has found.
Alex Malcolm was killed by Marvyn Iheanacho, who flew into a rage after the boy lost a trainer in a park in Catford, south-east London, in 2016.
The inquest found the NPS failed to share vital information about him.
Alex’s mother Liliya Breha said the “systems meant to protect us did not”.
The inquest, led by senior coroner Andrew Harris at Southwark Coroner’s Court, concluded on Thursday that a “series of individual failures by the NPS probation officers, coupled with inadequate support and supervision” contributed to Alex’s death.
Iheanacho, of Hounslow in west London, had just been released from prison when he started going out with Ms Breha in early 2016.
In November that year he went to Mountsfield Park with Alex where he flew into a rage after the boy lost a trainer.
Alex died in hospital two days later and the inquest recorded a head injury as the cause of his death.
Iheanacho was convicted of his murder in 2017 and jailed for life with a minimum of 18 years, which was later increased to a minimum of 21.
Under his release conditions, Iheanacho should not have had any unsupervised contact with children under the age of 16 and should have notified his probation officer of any relationships and changes of address.
But the inquest heard he broke those conditions without consequences, even though this would have been grounds for recall to prison.
The NPS failed to ensure his violent history with women was shared with Ms Breha and wrongly classified the “manipulative high risk offender” as a level one risk category instead of three, the inquest found.
The Ministry of Justice, which oversees the NPS, has apologised “unreservedly”.
A spokesperson said: “Our deepest condolences remain with the victim’s family, and we apologise unreservedly for the unacceptable failings in this case – we will now carefully consider the coroner’s findings.
“In the three years since Alex’s tragic death, the NPS in London has undertaken a huge programme of work to improve standards and better protect the public.”
But Ms Breha said her son “didn’t have to die for system failures to be identified and for people to start to do their jobs properly”.
“Alex was my heart beat and I miss him so much. He should be here right now going to school, playing with his friends,” she said.
“Someone took this away from him for no reason and the systems meant to protect us did not.”
A man has died while working on a moving walkway at Waterloo station.
Paramedics were unable to save the worker, who has yet to be identified, and he was pronounced dead shortly after 02:20 BST.
British Transport Police officers are investigating the death, which is being treated as unexplained.
Vernon Everitt, London Underground’s managing director, expressed “deepest condolences” to the man’s family from the rail network.
“We are also very conscious of the impact this sort of incident has on first responders and station staff, and a full support network has been stood up,” he added.
Passengers were advised they would be unable to change lines because of a fault with one of the Tube station’s two travelators.
A one-way system has been implemented at the station for Wednesday morning.
The man’s next of kin has not yet been contacted.
Sadiq Khan’s former policing adviser has joined the Liberal Democrats, saying his children were no longer safe in London due to rising violence.
Leroy Logan, a former police superintendent, said he quit the Labour Party over the London mayor’s failure to “grasp” knife crime.
Mr Logan will now become policing adviser to the Lib Dem mayoral candidate Siobhan Benita.
Mr Khan has been approached for comment.
Speaking at the Lib Dem’s conference he said: “I’ve seen my children and their generation grow up in fear.
“It’s so tangible. It’s been normalised to such an extent it can happen anywhere, not just small pockets of deprived areas.”
Mr Logan said the mayor of London “doesn’t really understand” knife crime, and has “isolated himself” on the issue.
“He’s surrounded himself with people who think they are problem solvers, but are creating more problems on the street because they’ve lost touch with what is going on.”
Mr Logan previously criticised the choice of Lib Peck to run London’s Violence Reduction Unit – a role he had also applied for.
Ms Benita, who is running London’s 2020 Mayoral election, said: “Sadiq has wasted his mayoral term in not addressing this issue with the urgency it needs.
“While he continues to blame other people, our young children in London continue to be traumatised, petrified and at risk. There is so, so much more we can do.”
Fulham will be without midfielder Harry Arter after he was sent off in the draw at Cardiff, so Stefan Johansen could come into the starting XI.
Striker Aleksandar Mitrovic is looking to score for the eighth successive game for club and country.
Unbeaten West Bromwich Albion will make a decision on Kieran Gibbs (groin) following his return to training.
Boss Slaven Bilic may bring in Kenneth Zohore up front for Charlie Austin, who is yet to score in the league.
But Bilic says it is still too early for Egypt defender Ahmed Hegazi, who has not played since his ankle operation after the African Cup of Nations.
- Fulham are unbeaten in their last seven league games against West Bromwich Albiob, although this is their first Premier League meeting since February 2014.
- Albion are winless in each of their last 15 league trips to Fulham since a 2-1 victory in October 1967, when Jeff Astle and Tony ‘Bomber’ Brown scored the goals.
- Fulham have put together 126 sequences of 10 or more passes in open play this season – 47 more than any other Championship team.
- The Baggies have won the most points from losing positions in the Championship this season (11). The Baggies have gone behind in five of their six games and lost none.
- The two teams to complete the most successful passes in the opposition half this season are Fulham (1,347) and West Brom (1,308).
- Grady Diangana’s three Championship goals this season for Albion have been worth five points. No Championship player has won more points for their team this season.