Six Just Stop Oil Supporters who Disrupted Harrods Found Guilty

Six Just Stop Oil Supporters have been found guilty of obstructing Knightsbridge outside the Harrods department store. The Just Stop Oil supporters were demanding that the government halt licensing and consents for the development of any new fossil-fuel projects in the UK. [1]

The six supporters appeared before Judge Sternberg at Westminster Magistrates Court yesterday. They were charged with obstruction of the highway in relation to peacefully blocking the road outside the Harrods department store, on the 20th October 2022, whilst two other Just Stop Oil Supporters sprayed the outside of the shop-front with orange paint. [2]

George Hibberd and Kate Chesterman have both been fined £650 in total costs, and Paul Bleach, John Blewitt and Selma Heimedinger have all been charged £590, inclusive of fine, court costs, and victim surcharge. Phil Snider, who entered an early guilty plea, has been fined £110. 

George Hibberd, 29, a former commercial airline pilot said:

“Harrods is owned by the Qatar Investment Authority which has huge shares in fossil fuel companies. Transport For London stated that as a result of our roadblock outside the store, we caused ‘moderate’ congestion and a ‘minor noticeable inconvenience’. Flash flooding on the same road in 2021 cost businesses millions in damages.”

“Extreme weather events and flooding are increasingly likely due to the climate collapse, brought about predominantly by our dependence on fossil fuels. Yet, it is us who are in the dock, not companies like the Qatar Investment Authority, who are not only causing disruption in our capital, but untold suffering all over the globe. The justice system is not fit for purpose.”

The result comes in the wake of a recent conviction of seven Just Stop Oil supporters at Wolverhampton Magistrates Court, where the judge described the defendants as ‘good people with admirable aims.’ [3]

A Just Stop Oil spokesperson said:

“The judiciary needs to stand for real justice and refuse to prosecute the ordinary people attempting to stop the harm that is being imposed on our communities. One day, the political and business leaders who are knowingly enacting policies that are leading to mass death and social collapse, will be put on trial for crimes against humanity.” 

“Recently, an Insulate Britain supporter, David Nixon, a 36 year old care-worker, has been sentenced to eight weeks in prison for simply mentioning the cost of living and climate crises in court. The injustice of imprisoning ‘good people’ for speaking the truth, demonstrates that the judiciary is protecting the very institutions responsible for the multiple crises we face. Judges need to protect the British people, stand for what is morally right and prosecute the real criminals.”

A further five Just Stop Oil supporters are also scheduled to appear at Westminster Magistrates on the 6th March 2023, for peacfully blocking Knightsbridge. Harvey Belcher and Kim Wainright, who sprayed paint at the Harrods shop-front, will be on trial in June 2024.

Since the Just Stop Oil campaign launched on the 14th February 2022, there have been over 2,000 arrests and 138 people have spent time in prison, many without trial. There are currently seven Just Stop Oil supporters and one Insulate Britain supporter in prison whilst awaiting trial or serving sentences for actions taken with the campaigns.[4]

We stand with these eight supporters in prison, with the 1,800 victims of our broken criminal justice system imprisoned for over a year without trial and with the 1,700 murdered across the global south, for protecting all our lives.

This is the moment for us to come together and resist the destruction of everything we love, something that is being imposed on us by a few, who only seek to enrich themselves.

We’re done with begging. We are going to stop new fossil fuel projects whether those in power agree or not. As citizens, parents and children, we have every right under British law to protect ourselves and those we love.

We are the last generation who can solve this. Will you step up? Join us and Just Stop Oil. [5][6]


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Notes to Editors

[1] Just Stop Oil is a coalition of groups working together to demand that the government immediately halt all future licensing and consents for the exploration, development and production of fossil fuels in the UK. Just Stop Oil is a member of the A22 Network of civil resistance projects. Climate Emergency Fund is Just Stop Oil’s primary funder for recruitment, training, and capacity building.

[2] Link to press release from October 20th-

[3] Link to press release from Feb 16th-

[4] Link to Guardian article from Feb 7th-

[5]  Fair Trials reports that the number of people being held in prison without trial in England and Wales is at its highest for over 50 years. 

[6] A recent report from Global Witness says that more than 1,700 people have died while trying to prevent mining, oil drilling or logging on their lands.