The boat made famous by climate change activist group Extinction Rebellion is on show at the National Maritime Museum after having spent the day outside the Royal Courts of Justice forming a peaceful blockade.
The blue boat, named the Polly Higgins after the environmental campaigner and barrister, will be on display on the north lawns by the museum’s entrance until the end of summer.
The National Maritime Museum explores people’s ever-evolving relationship with the sea and engages with audiences through objects on display and their interpretation.
The museum said that the recent climate change protests by Extinction Rebellion are of contemporary relevance in this debate and of sufficient importance for engagement.
The boats have become an icon of this debate.
Paddy Rodgers, director of Royal Museums Greenwich, said: “The National Maritime Museum explores the ongoing human relationship with the sea, through centuries of trade, fishing and exploration.
“This includes the historical transition from wind-powered sail ships such as the Cutty Sark to the fossil fuel dependent shipping industry of today.
“We are reliant on the ocean not just for the goods we use every day – more than 85 per cent of all trade is still carried by ship – but for our fundamental survival as the oceans have absorbed more than 90 per cent of the heat increase caused by greenhouse gases to date.
“Climate change and the health of the oceans are of primary importance to our society.
“As part of the museum’s programme and collecting policy, the museum has a compelling opportunity to engage with the public on these issues, through display and presentation of contemporary stories and objects.
“The recent climate change protests under the banner Extinction Rebellion (XR) are of undeniable importance.
“The use of boats by XR has become a globally recognizable symbol of the movement and the XR boat on view at the National Maritime Museum is an important story to tell in contemporary Britain just as the iconic Cutty Sark or Miss Britain III racing boat, also on display.”
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