Barclays in Broadmead was forced to close this morning as activists from XR Bristol and XY Youth staged a performance targeting the bank, which is Europe’s largest funder of fossil fuels.
At 10am today (October 29) around 25 activists and stewards gathered outside the Broadmead branch for a die-in and performance to remember the victims of climate breakdown and the continuing destruction of many important habitats, including the Amazon rainforest.
The action was dramatic, with dinosaurs dressed as bankers prowling amongst shrouded bodies on the ground to a soundtrack by Bristol-based duo Koan Sound.
A banner was specially designed for the event by Rhonda Anaconda, who most recently designed one of the subversive billboards erected by Brandalism last month.
The joint action brought together activists young and old, with some of today’s activists were reportedly in their 80s, whilst the youngest were in their teens.
In a statement, XR Youth member Poppy said: ‘Banks like Barclays have proven that they do not care about young people. They continue to pump money into fossil fuels whilst our siblings around the world face the climate crisis that is already killing people.’
‘We stand together with older generations to fight against dirty fuel investments for those on the front lines of the climate crisis, and for our futures.’
Speaking for XR Bristol, Jo Flanagan said,
‘With COP26 just around the corner, we are calling on the UK government to regulate the UK’s financial sector, stop investing in fossil fuels and do this right now. We cannot allow banks like Barclays to drive us to extinction.’
A sign put in the window of the branch by staff said: “For the safety of all our customers and employees, we’re unable to open this branch at the moment. We’ll be up and running again as soon as we can.”