London is braced for another day of climate change protests today from demonstrators, including some who sent the night in tents in the city's parks, after a day of disruption yesterday from protesters who targeted busy thoroughfares.
Close to fifty people were arrested as police attempted to move on protesters who spent yesterday blocking roads and demonstrating outside tube stations, following five arrests outside Shell's headquarters where they glued themselves to windows and smashed glass doors.
Some activists glued themselves to the windows and smashed glass revolving doors at Shell's headquarters near Waterloo, while others spray-painted graffiti and hung banners on the building.
Workers returning home from areas around Waterloo Bridge, Oxford Circus, Marble Arch and Piccadilly Circus faced being unable to get through by road to Underground stations thanks to the Extinction Rebellion protests.
At around 7pm police started arresting protesters still to be found on Waterloo Bridge, after police issued an order under the Public Order Act telling demonstrators to limit their protest to the area around Marble Arch.
Climate change activists camp at the Marble Arch during a Extinction Rebellion protest in London yesterday
In Oxford Circus the demonstrators' pink boat was still in place as some settled into tents for the night and others waved flags
Climate change activists also camped at Marble Arch, after a day in which 52 of their number were arrested by the Met
Police said three men and two women were arrested on suspicion of criminal damage over the Shell incident. Extinction Rebellion claimed they aimed to cause more than £6,000 in damage so they can be tried by a jury in the crown court.
A Metropolitan Police statement said that 'information and intelligence available to the Met at this time means that that Met feels this action is necessary in order to prevent the demonstrations from causing ongoing serious disruption to community.'
By midnight last night, the police said, there had been 52 arrests in total, the majority of which were for breach of Section 14 Notice of the Public Order Act 1986 and obstruction of the highway.
Encampments sprung up last night at the sites of the demonstrations in Marble Arch and Oxford Circus, while Waterloo Bridge looked increasingly deserted.
As night fell the Met police declared that the 'Extinction Rebellion' demonstration should pull back to the area around Marble Arch and started escorting protesters off Waterloo Bridge
The bridge was left covered in trees, plants, graffiti and tents after the day of protest by green activists
The Extinction Rebellion demonstration left the tarmac scrawled with slogans including 'big love' and 'stop climate change'
After night fell protesters started to disperse but many continued to wave placards including one reading 'rebel for life on earth'
Metropolitan Police officers carried some protesters away from the demonstration after issuing an order restricting the demo to Marble Arch
Extinction Rebellion eco-protesters wave flags from the Shaftesbury Memorial Fountain at Piccadilly Circus in London today
Environmental protestors from the Extinction Rebellion group gather around a pink boat at Oxford Circus in London today
Climate protest group Extinction Rebellion block London's Oxford Circus today at the start of a week of planned protests
As afternoon commuters were blocked by protests and lines of bodies the environmentalists continue to make their voices heard at Edgware Road
Police officers detain a climate change activist during the Extinction Rebellion protest at the Shell Centre in London today
Activists from Extinction Rebellion block Oxford Circus with a sailing boat today to highlight the threat of global warming
Extinction Rebellion climate protesters in the centre of Oxford Circus stopping any traffic
Demonstrators speak during the Extinction Rebellion protest on Waterloo Bridge, with the City of London in the background
Extinction Rebellion activists sit under a van on the road during the climate change protests in London today
Protesters gather at Parliament Square with banners as they take part in the Extinction Rebellion demonstration today
Environmental protesters from the Extinction Rebellion group in fancy dress dance march towards Oxford Circus today
A group of protesters lie on the pavement and road as they stop traffic moving on Oxford Street in London today
Demonstrators shout and wave flags during the Extinction Rebellion protest at Oxford Circus in London today
A climate change activist is seen with her hands glued to the entrance of the Shell Centre in London during today's protests
Activists targeted five locations - the fifth being Parliament Square - as they demand the Government declare a climate emergency, but organisers warned they could be arrested for blocking traffic.
Protesters are holding people's assemblies, performances, talks and workshops - with a colourful display of flags bringing normally busy routes to a standstill, and trees placed on Waterloo Bridge making it a 'Garden Bridge'.
Skateboarders replaced cars and lorries on Waterloo Bridge, with police saying there were no plans to move protesters on - but indicated that the response might have changed if there were a major disruption at rush-hour.
Protesters who blocked roads approaching Heathrow Airport, in a 2016 Black Lives Matter protest, were arrested and later found guilty of wilful obstruction of the highway and fined several hundred pounds each.
One officer said: 'It's been very peaceful so far. Everyone has been really pleasant. The only grief we've had is from passing motorists shouting at them to 'Get a job' - that's about as exciting as it's got.'
Hundreds of people gathered outside Oxford Circus Tube station around a pink boat with the words 'tell the truth' printed on it, where some used makeshift devices to lock their arms together.
Marble Arch was also blocked, while demonstrators caused further disruption as they made their way from Hyde Park Corner to Piccadilly Circus. In Parliament Square, others unfurled banners and held up placards and flags.
Some observers said the protests would lead to others taking longer journeys than normal, with one labelling the protesters 'deluded zealots' and another tweeting: 'The one day I get the bus to work all the routes are messed up.'
Amid a relatively small police presence today, Scotland Yard said they have 'appropriate policing plans' in place and officers will be used from across the force 'to support the public order operation during the coming weeks'.
Police advised people travelling around London in the coming days to allow extra time for their journey. People in at least 80 cities in more than 33 countries are holding similar demonstrations on the same issues today.
Some people set up camp in Hyde Park overnight into today, although permission had not been sought from the Royal Parks, which said camping is not allowed. But police said no arrests had been made by midday today.
Transport bosses told of widespread disruption amid 20 bus routes being diverted, with organisers of the Extinction Rebellion group claiming up to 30,000 eco-protesters will block major routes today.
The movement, which is demanding the Government takes urgent action on climate change and wildlife declines, has been backed by actress Dame Emma Thompson and former Archbishop of Canterbury Dr Rowan Williams.
This graphic shows how parts of London have been reduced to gridlock by the protests today, with severe delays in red
Some people pointed out that the protests would lead to others taking longer journies than normal, while one woman tweeted: 'Allow that on the one day I get the bus to work that all the routes are messed up because of a demonstration'
People on a glass roof of the Shell building on the Southbank in London today during the Extinction Rebellion protest
Police officers talk to a climate change activist next to the smashed glass entrance of the Shell Centre in London today
Environmental campaigners block Oxford Circus during a co-ordinated protest by the Extinction Rebellion group today
Environmental campaigners walk across Waterloo Bridge as they take part in the Extinction Rebellion protest today
Protesters gather on Waterloo Bridge in London for a demonstration this morning which closed the area to traffic
Demonstrators hold skeleton models during a Extinction Rebellion protest at Parliament Square in London today
Women and children have a bite to eat outside the entrance to Oxford Circus Tube station during the protests today
Climate change activists lie in front of Marble Arch during an Extinction Rebellion protest in London this afternoon
A demonstrator gets escorted into a police van outside the Shell building near Waterloo in London during the protest today
The busy Thames crossing of Waterloo Bridge was closed to traffic in both directions this morning, Transport for London said
Police officers stand on guard outside the graffiti-covered Shell Centre in London during the protests today
Demonstrators during a Extinction Rebellion protest at Parliament Square in London this morning
Demonstrators gather for Extinction Rebellion action in Parliament Square, one of five linked protests in London today
A climate change activist is seen with his hands glued to the entrance of the Shell Centre in London today
A woman dresses as the Statue of Liberty during a Extinction Rebellion protest at Parliament Square in London today
The campaigners, who include the granddaughter of a baronet, are demanding the introduction of a legally binding policy to reduce carbon emission to net zero by 2025.
They say they will continue to block key roads in London for weeks and 'escalate civil disobedience' if their demands are not met. The first stage this morning saw protesters take over Waterloo Bridge from 10am.
The next part of their global 'Rebellion Week' saw human barricades formed at Marble Arch, Oxford Circus, Parliament Square and Piccadilly Circus.
Protester Olivia Evershed, 23, said: 'I hope that it's really going to bring awareness about the emergency crisis that we are in, and encourage the Government to act.
'They can change a few of the laws along with the Paris agreement so that we can really work towards achieving a practical target. We've got 12 years to act before there is irreversible damage to the environment and we start to see catastrophic changes. If we don't do anything to change this, our children will die.'
Laura Jordan, 52, said: 'This protest stands a good chance of working because we have a vast amount of ordinary people all saying the same thing. We need to change the way we do everything, the way we use fossil fuels. But this starts with the Government.'
Laura Sorensen, a retired teacher from Somerset, was among the protesters on Waterloo Bridge. She told the Guardian: 'I am so worried about what's happening to the planet. We are on a knife-edge now.
Protesters from Extinction Rebellion gather at Oxford Circus which has been blocked by the 'ship of truth'
Protesters from the Extinction Rebellion group take part in a demonstration on Waterloo Bridge in London today
Activitis used the boat at Oxford Circus this morning as part of a protest urging the Government to take action
A man skateboards on a temporary ramp as environmental protestors stage a protest in the road on Waterloo Bridge today
A man stands on railing as protesters from Extinction Rebellion gather at Oxford Circus in London today
Demonstrators in colourful outfits and face paint take part in the Extinction Rebellion protest at Oxford Circus in London
A demonstrator knits while sat in the road as it is blocked during a climate protest on Waterloo Bridge in London today
'I felt strongly that I needed to get out and show myself, rather than just talk about it in the pub. I see this disaster unfolding all around me… it is terrifying and the government have done nothing despite all the warnings.'
One driver caught up in the chaos told Sky News: 'Well, I knew it was coming. It's not ideal. But I do understand where they're coming from.'
Another added: 'It's fair enough really, but we're pumping fuel out the back while they're stopping us from going. I'm not happy about it, I'll end up going back down, it will cost me another two hours in the day.'
Their goal is to shut down vital roads and transport links, causing misery for commuters and keeping over-stretched police officers busy for hours.
Waterloo Bridge was was closed to traffic in both directions this morning, Transport for London (TfL) said. Extinction Rebellion tweeted pictures of activists walking on the road and said: 'We have taken Waterloo Bridge!'
Demonstrators in colourful costumes during the Extinction Rebellion protest at Oxford Circus in London today
Environmentaal activists dress up in flamboyant costumes as they take part in a protest blocking Oxford Circus today
Banners urging politicians to 'act now' are held by Extinction Rebellion protesters at Oxford Circus in London today
Environmental protestors from Extinction Rebellion take part in a demonstration on Waterloo Bridge in London today
Protestors gather on the north side of Waterloo Bridge in London today as they take part in a global eco-movement
Environmental protesters from the Extinction Rebellion group stage a demonstration at Marble Arch in London today
Protesters put trees on the pavement at Waterloo Bridge today as they urge the Government to take action on climate change
Tags Climate Protest