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'From the Galapagos to Antarctic we're in trouble' - Activists turn out for Earth Day in King's Lynn

PUBLISHED: 13:47 20 April 2019 | UPDATED: 14:12 20 April 2019

Dr Edwin Salter highlights the penguin's plight to shoppers in King's Lynn  Picture: Chris Bishop

Dr Edwin Salter highlights the penguin's plight to shoppers in King's Lynn Picture: Chris Bishop

Archant

"Dad, why's that man dressed up as a penguin," asks a shopper's son as Dr Edwin Salter swoons and sways, dressed as the very same in a shop doorway, to highlight the creatures' plight.

Daphne Sampson, from King's Lynn Klimate Concern, at St Nicholas Chapel for Earth Day  Picture: Chris BishopDaphne Sampson, from King's Lynn Klimate Concern, at St Nicholas Chapel for Earth Day Picture: Chris Bishop

“Dunnar,” says Dad, in a broad Lynn drawl. “Global warmin' or summat like that I 'spect.”

Dr Salter's stint in costume had at least chimed briefly with one parent, as he joined activists from King's Lynn Klimate Concern for Earth Day.

The retired scientist from Lynn was part of an advanced party who pitched up in an empty shop on Broad Street, promoting displays and activities on offer at nearby St Nicholas Chapel.

“I'm very worried as a penguin,” he said. “We are an endangered group of organisms, because of habitat change and climate change. All the way from the Galapagos to the Antarctic we're in trouble.”

Felix, aged four and Dulcie, aged seven, who were drawing pictures of penguins for Earth Day  Picture: Chris BishopFelix, aged four and Dulcie, aged seven, who were drawing pictures of penguins for Earth Day Picture: Chris Bishop

When he takes off his penguin suit, Dr Salter picks up his pen.

“I've been writing about climate change for more than 20 years,” he said. “I've been bothered about it for much longer than it's had publicity.”

Climate change has had plenty of that over the last few days, as protests by the Extinction Rebellion group have brought parts of London to a standstill.

Dr Salter and fellow campaigners blamed the protest on the environmental movement's desperation at lack of action by a government seemingly pre-occupied with Brexit.

An Extinction Rebellion flyer in King's Lynn  Picture: Chris BishopAn Extinction Rebellion flyer in King's Lynn Picture: Chris Bishop

They say the inconvenience caused by protestors, who have spent four days camped out in central London, is a tiny fraction of the inconvenience the planet will suffer from future extremes of climate change.

Extinction Rebellion flyers posted up in Broad Street and St Nick's expressed solidarity with the direct activists who have layed seige to parts of the capital.

“There's been a real change in the last six months or so,” said retired teacher Daphne Sampson, 68. “A lot us have been around for a long time. When we started the group four years ago, we used to feel we had to be quite gentle with people.”

At St Nick's a steady stream of visitors saw displays by the RSPB, Lynn Civic Society, Lynn Soroptimists and the Friends of Plantation Wood, along with a smoothie bike, children's activities and short films about climate change.

Extinction Rebellion demonstrators at Oxford Circus in London. Picture: Yui Mok/PA WireExtinction Rebellion demonstrators at Oxford Circus in London. Picture: Yui Mok/PA Wire

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