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Demonstrators brave baltic weather for climate strike

The demonstration lasted for four hours and was followed by a separate demonstration in the Thistles Centre.

Climate strikers braved wet and windy conditions to hold a demonstration outside of Stirling Council Headquarters at Old Viewforth.

The group of demonstrators gathered outside of the building at 11am and stayed until 2pm.

Throughout this time they stood in the rain, took photographs and even had a ceilidh.

The strike was organised by the group Youth for Climate Strike Action. Amongst those gathered were the Stirling University SSP (Scottish Socialist Party) group, members of Extinction Rebellion (XR) Stirling, striking high school students from Clackmannanshire, local families and Green Party Councillor Alasdair Tollemache.

Demonstrators outside the main entrance of Stirling Council HQ Credit: Harry Williamson

Councillor Tollemache praised the demonstrators for their attendance even in the bad weather conditions saying that, “it really is fantastic to see all the young people in this appalling weather, standing out here wanting a better future for themselves.”

When asked about Stirling Council’s working relationship with Extinction Rebellion amid clashes between the group and other local authorities and police in other parts of the country, Tollemache said,

“I think as a councillor I have [had a good relationship with XR] and there has been good engagement between Extinction Rebellion and the council, as well as councillors and council officers.

“That has been quite productive.”

The council are due to meet next month to report back on climate action that is taking place in the area by the council after it declared a climate emergency.

Councillor Tollemache has said that he is optimistic about what could come of this report, “I am optimistic but I feel that we should continue to put pressure on to make sure we do things quicker than perhaps a few people would like.

“The problem is now so we have to take the action now.

“I’m optimistic but we’ll have to wait and see what the council come up with, but we need to keep the pressure on.”

Green Party Councillor Alasdair Tollemache Credit: Harry Williamson

Tollemache’s optimism was shadowed by the demonstrators. But all agreed that change was needed.

Andy Paterson, one of the demonstrators said, “we’ve got to change our ways because what we’re doing right now just isn’t sustainable at all.”

As the day went on the demonstrators took part in country dancing and held a ceilidh outside the main entrance.

Police liaison officers from a national division attended the demonstration and were engaging with the demonstrators, chatting to them and making sure that the event passed without incident.

Climate Strikers dance in the rain during today’s demonstration Credit: Harry Williamson

Shortly after the demonstration, Extinction Rebellion Stirling held a “die in” at the Thistles Shopping Centre.

This involved just over a dozen XR demonstrators lying on the floor of the shopping centre to raise awareness about climate action.

XR Stirling staged a “die in” demo in the Thistles Shopping Centre Credit: Harry Williamson

Members of the public passing the demo showed interest in what was happening as other XR members handed leaflets out to the crowd.

Both events passed without incident.

The council will hear the report on climate action at a full meeting of Stirling Council on March 5.

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