Banbury supporters greet climate activists who go to COP26 in Glasgow

The walkers in Banbury. Photo by Banbury XR member Tila Rodriguez-Past.

On September 28, nine people waved goodbye to their friends and supporters in Bilbao, northern Spain, and boarded the ferry to Portsmouth to begin their 29 days of uninterrupted walk, averaging 20 miles a day.

They passed Banbury on Friday October 8th.

The destination is Glasgow, host of the COP26 summit in November, where world leaders will meet to decide how to reduce carbon emissions and tackle climate change.

The walkers in Banbury. Photo by Banbury XR member Tila Rodriguez-Past.

“We believe it is our duty to make this small symbolic sacrifice if it can help raise awareness of everything that is at stake in Glasgow. Our future is at stake, ”declared José Martinez, an activist from Zaragoza.

In Banbury, the walkers were greeted by Banbury Extinction Rebellion, Quakers and other walkers and cyclists. They arrived at 9 a.m. en route from Deddington, where they were housed by local supporters, to Princethorpe (near Rugby).

After a brief stop at Banbury Cross to snap photos and pack lunch provided by Banbury supporters, the walkers continued down Southam Road. Motorists prayed for their support and walkers from Banbury accompanied them as far as Little Bourton.

Nicky Brooks, coordinator with UK supporters, said the group was encouraged by the kindness they have experienced so far; Perhaps the highlight was the dry socks that the Portsmouth people provided after a torrential downpour.

The walkers in Banbury. Photo by Banbury XR member Tila Rodriguez-Past.

“It has been a really inspiring experience to speak to people across the UK, ask for their support and get so much,” said Carlos Buj from Zaragoza. “So many groups have shown incredible solidarity, which lifts the heart.”

“We are prepared for very bad weather,” said Luis Alejos from Bilbao. “Especially the last stages through Northumbria and Scotland will be tough. But we are convinced that the changes we need can only be achieved through human engagement and mass mobilization. “

For the final stage, the Marchers will team up with other groups, including Camino to COP, who have been walking from London and Bristol since September, and a group of activists from Poland accompanied by German and Scandinavian hikers.

Maribel Roldón summed up the strength of the group’s feelings: “I believe that the future of humanity depends on what happens at the November 2021 Climate Change Summit (COP26) in Glasgow. It is our very last chance to take effective action. “

The project started in Zaragoza, Spain, and is co-organized by Extinction Rebellion, Ecologistas en Acción and Alianza por la Emergencia Climática.

Funding came from Spanish environmental groups and many individuals. The hikers will collect donations along their route to finance their journey home.

The project is supported in the UK by local groups from Extinction Rebellion, Friends of the Earth, Green Party, Climate Action Networks, Labor Party members, Greenpeace and Just Transition; and also from local churches of various denominations, Quaker groups and a Sikh temple.

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