Just Stop Oil Activists Threatening Wimbledon Centre Court Protests

Just Stop Oil Activists Threatening Wimbledon Centre Court Protests

by Alex Waite

Wimbledon 2023 is reportedly a target for Just Stop Oil protesters, who could try to disrupt matches on Centre Court this year.

Earlier this year, Wimbledon organisers explained how they were working closely with police and other authorities to limit any potential protests during the competition. In 2023, climate activists have repeatedly tried to disrupt UK sporting events with various protests, including the horse racing Grand National and the snooker World Championships.

Protesters have also committed stunts at recent tennis events as a man set his arm on fire during last year's Laver Cup, while a woman also tied herself to the net during a Davis Cup match. Ahead of Wimbledon 2023, an undercover journalist from the Sun, reported that the campaign group, Just Stop Oil had plans to glue themselves to the Centre Court net, umpires chair or grass.

"An image of someone’s hand glued to something on Centre Court would be amazing. That would be very inspiring. There’s a lot of people up for that.”

A Just Stop Oil protester said

“Wimbledon is a bit of an open secret. It would be an iconic image. It would be an even better photo than the snooker.”

Wimbledon 2023 gets started on Monday, July 3 and will conclude with the men's singles final on Sunday, July 16. With an estimated 42,000 spectators visiting the All England Lawn Tennis Club per day and global audiences tuning in to watch the event, activists could use the tournament's profile to draw attention to their cause with a protest.

In April, the All England Lawn Tennis Club Chief Executive, Sally Bolton, sought to re-assure fans and attendees heading to Wimbledon that safety is of paramount importance in SW19.

"‘Every year we work with the Metropolitan Police and other agencies in planning for the Championships. As part of that, we do a very thorough threat and risk assessment. Our arrangements for security are planned around those and that is an ever-changing environment."


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