Chris Packham is surprise trial witness for Just Stop Oil supporter facing a ten year sentence

BBC TV presenter and respected naturalist, Chris Packham, is testifying today at the crown court trial of Just Stop Oil supporter, Cressie Gethin. He has released a statement offering support for Cressie’s actions.

Today, Wednesday 14th February, marks the eighth day of Cressie’s trial for Public Nuisance. She is appearing at Isleworth Crown Court, appearing before Judge Duncan. Cressie, 22, a music student from Hereford, faces up to ten years custodial sentence if found guilty. 

Cressie climbed a motorway gantry above the M25 on the 20th July 2022, two days after the governments’ net zero strategy was declared unlawful, and one day after the UK recorded it’s highest ever temperature of 40.3 degrees celsius, a milestone that scientists previously thought was impossible. [1] [2]

Before entering Isleworth crown court, Packham spoke to members of the media. He made this remark today:

“Because of Cressie, and other Just Stop Oil protesters, I sat sweating on the M25. Was I inconvenienced? Well, that’s a relative value. I was late to work, but my house was not burning down. I wasn’t drowning in a flood, displaced by famine, or separated from my family as a climate refugee. I was just sat on the M25, a position that I and millions of others find themselves in every single day of the year. Not because of protesters, but because our traffic system is broken, overloaded or stalled due to a breakdown or tragic accident.”

“So I used my ‘inconvenience’ for good… I imagined the motives of the protesters, why they were taking such a physical risk and further risking imprisonment. I imagined how scared they must have been hanging onto a gantry. I also thought about their message and how in a record breaking heat wave – with our government’s Net Zero policy not fit for purpose – they should be commended for sounding a vital alarm. I reconciled that my ‘inconvenience’ was entirely justified.”

“I am attending court to support Cressie Gethin because I don’t think she is getting a fair trial. I think, along with the UN, that the UK’s protest laws and sentencing of protesters are unjust, draconian, and in conflict with our basic human rights. I think we are witnesses to disproportionate vindictive witch hunts hell-bent on punishing some of the bravest individuals in society just because they are forced to struggle to tell the truth. These trials are shameful, demeaning, and undemocratic. I set a challenge to the judge, the prosecution, and their witnesses… go home and tell someone you know: a son, daughter, nephew or niece who is under 25 what you have done today and then ask them if they are proud of you’”.

A Just Stop Oil spokesperson commented:

“Chris Packham was personally disrupted by this action, however he is advocating for Cressie today because he recognises the fundamental truth that short-term traffic disruption is nothing when compared to the level of disruption that will be imposed on all of us as a result of the ongoing collapse of our life support systems.”

“The courts can try to silence people like Cressie, but as the magnitude of our predicament becomes clearer, many more ordinary people will take matters into their own hands to try to prevent a much greater harm. It is clear that new oil and gas means societal collapse, and if Labour or the Conservatives prioritise corrupt scheming over our lives, then they can expect mass noncompliance.” 

The trial is ongoing. Updates will continue to be published by Just Stop Oil.

Just Stop Oil supporters are refusing to allow the breakdown of ordered society and a collapse of the rule of law as a result of the selfish actions of a few. The people of the UK have had enough of the corruption and lies of those running the country and are stepping into civil resistance in order to save our communities from the worst of climate breakdown. It is not a case of ‘if’ we will win, but ‘when.’


Photo credit: Zoe Broughton 2024
Twitter: @cameraZoe
FB: Zoe Broughton
Insta: @camerazoe
TikTok: zoefilmedit

Press contact: 07762 987334

Press email: [email protected]

High quality images & video here:






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.

Just Stop Oil ‘Blue Lights’ policy: our policy is, and has always been, to move out of the way for emergency vehicles with siren sounding and ‘blue lights’ on.