Lincoln youth climate strike: “We could be out here for years”

Young climate protesters warned that they will demonstrate on Lincoln High Street for years to come until their demands are met.

Over twenty students were waving placards on Friday outside the old Boots store from 11am until 2pm.

Some admitted that it was “embarrassing to be exposed to criticism,” but also said that demonstrating and getting their ideas out there was all they could do without being able to vote.

Photo: Connor Creaghan for The Lincolnite

Left to right (Georgia Preece, Mia Gregory Jones and Olivia Mills Kidals.) Photo: Connor Creaghan for The Lincolnite

Many of those out on the street had finished at school, but still wanted to protest about the climate crisis in their time off.

Olivia Mills Kidals, 16, and from Lincoln Christ’s Hospital School, organised the protest and told The Lincolnite: “I don’t see any change coming so we will keep protesting until that happens.

“We’re here to raise awareness and tell people that our current situation really isn’t very good.”

Photo: Connor Creaghan for The Lincolnite

Photo: Connor Creaghan for The Lincolnite

Mia Gregory Jones, 16, and from the same school, added: “We can’t vote but we can make a difference and communicate our ideas, so that’s what we’re doing.

“We’re here on our time off school after finishing GCSEs but there’s no point in finishing my education if in 20 years I can’t do anything because the climate is so bad.

“So it’s us making a stand, doing something embarrassing and putting ourselves out there to make a difference.

Photo: Connor Creaghan for The Lincolnite

Photo: Connor Creaghan for The Lincolnite

“We’re very exposed here on the High Street, open to criticism. It’s scary but also it shows the bravery of these people.

“Our group will keep demonstrating until we see change and can return back to school without risking our future.”

The University of Lincoln has declared a climate emergency, but both local councils haven’t yet followed suit.

City of Lincoln Council Leader Ric Metcalfe said they needed a plan in place to “say exactly what it means in practical terms.”

Georgia Preece, 22, and a masters student at the University of Lincoln also said: “I can’t justify being sat in a lecture theatre when there’s work that needs to be done.

“Lincolnshire County Council decided not to declare a climate emergency.

“So until they start listening we will be out here and letting them know that we will not be backing down.

“We want active steps. There are cities declaring a climate emergency all over the world and then not doing anything about it.

“The first step is acknowledging the problem and then we can start making change.”