AN OCTOGENARIAN who was this week arrested for his part in a climate change protest says he did it for his five grandchildren.

Faringdon’s Reggie Norton, who turns 85 today, says he was arrested on suspicion of causing criminal damage after taking part in a protest that blockaded the doors to the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy for seven hours on Monday.

The group were attempting to highlight the government’s lack of action to tackle climate change, following the Budget.

Mr Norton, who is part of Christian Climate Action, spray painted the ‘Extinction Rebellion’ symbol on the building, as ‘non-violent direct action’.

He said: “If getting arrested was good enough for the suffragettes as well as Martin Luther King and the American civil rights movement then surely it’s worth it to try to help secure a safe and prosperous planet for us all.

“I have five grandchildren that I love very much and I worry what kind of world we’re going to pass on to them. During my lifetime the UK has got rich from burning fossil fuels. But that comes at a cost, first for the world’s poorest people who are suffering the first, and worst, effects. Soon it will be felt by everyone.”

He used removable paint, which the group say caused no lasting damage. Others locked themselves to doors.

A Metropolitan Police spokeswoman said more than 20 arrests were made for offences 'including criminal damage and obstructing the highway.'

The department for business declined to comment.