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Greta Thunberg speaks to huge crowd in Bristol

Approximately 20,000 people turned up to hear the climate activist speak

By Ellie Brown, News Subeditor

Approximately 20,000 people turned up to hear the climate activist speak.

Greta Thunberg, the Swedish teenager who founded the global school strike movement, addressed a huge crowd at College Green earlier today.

Thunberg addressed the crowd | Epigram/Ellie Brown

Thunberg, who was due to speak at 11, was greeted with cheers and whoops as she walked onstage at quarter to twelve.

'I'm so happy to be here in Bristol with all of you', she said.

| Greta Thunberg's momentous journey from lone schoolgirl to international vanguard

Striking schoolchildren and their parents listened as the activist, wearing her famous yellow raincoat, reminded them of why they were there.

'People are already suffering and dying from the consequences of the climate and environmental emergency. But it will get worse', she stated. 'Nothing is being done to halt this crisis.'

Protestors waited in the rain | Epigram/Ellie Brown

She paid tribute to the city, noting that 'the plans to expand Bristol Airport were cancelled, a lot thanks to climate activists' and arguing that 'it shows that [climate activism] does make a difference.'

Thunberg joined the protestors as they marched through the city centre following the rally.

People watched from bus shelters | Epigram/Bethany Marris

Also speaking at the event was 17-year-old climate activist Mya-Rose Craig, who recently received an honorary doctorate from the University of Bristol for her work on increasing diversity in the environmental movement.

She paid tribute to the 'amazing young climate activists' at the rally and recalled her 'first bird-watching experience,' before reminding those at the march of how the climate crisis is affecting those in the Global South.

Park Street was packed with marchers | Epigram / Ellie Brown

The popularity of the rally - 2.6k people clicked 'going' on Facebook, though the number attending is estimated at much more - prompted safety warnings by police, though the organisers, Bristol Youth Strike 4 Climate, were clear that safety measures were in place.

Meanwhile, student-run Facebook page Wills Meme-orial Building created a special event - 'Let's Get Greta To Lounge' - apparently in the activist's honour.

Get your tickets now | Wills Meme-orial Building

'Greta Thunberg loves the environment. Lizards are animals, which means that Greta loves lizards. Greta, Lizard Lounge is the place for you' states the event's description.

At the time of writing, 98 people are going - though it is not known if Thunberg is one of them.

Featured: Epigram / Ellie Brown

Did you go and see Greta at College Green?