A SERIES of co-ordinated 'banner drops' took place across Oxford today as school children stepped up their activism around the climate crisis.

Since February, thousands of pupils have taken part in monthly 'school strikes' in the city over the issue – now young activists are urging adults to get involved with what could be the biggest action yet.

Video: Zoe Broughton 

The five banner drops at key landmarks – which were not technically part of a 'school strike', since students are on their summer holidays – aimed to draw attention to a 'global general strike' which activists hope could involve as many as 5,000 people in Oxford.

Oxford Mail:

Banner drops took place at five sites, activists say. Pictures: Hugh Warwick and (above) Pip Warwick

The joint action, between Oxford's UK Student Climate Network (UKSCN) and Extinction Rebellion Youth Oxfordshire, comes ahead of a planned worldwide strike on Friday, September 20.

Students said they hung banners at St Marys Church, Carfax Tower, the Westgate Centre and Castle Mound from 12.30pm.

After being asked to leave, they congregated in Bonn Square where they chanted climate slogans.

Extinction Rebellion's Poppy Silk, 18, explained: "Even when school's off, we'll continue to put pressure on the government to make the climate emergency a priority."

Also read: School strike - second climate demo as it happened

The Bartholomew School student continued: "On September 20, the adults are supporting the youth with their general strike because we know that the way that we win is by getting everyone involved.

"We have got trade unions and lots of different employers striking - we have got solidarity from many different organisations."

She was unsure of how many would attend, but added: "The most we've had for youth strikes is 2,000 and I think we will probably get 5,000.

"It is the biggest and most supported one we've done."

The movement was first inspired by Swedish teenager Greta Thunberg, who went on strike on her own a year ago and is currently sailing to a United Nations conference to deliver an environmental message.

Oxford Mail:

Since then, millions of students worldwide have got involved.

UKSCN activist EJ Fawcett, of Abingdon's Larkmead School, said students 'wanted to be the generation that chooses to live' and send a message that students are 'fighting for our future'.

The 17-year-old said: "We wanted to get our message across in a way that would be noticed but would not cause any problems (to the public).

Also read: School strike's Ella Mann, of Cheney School, to do biology at Leeds

"We are tired of being ignored, the planet will become uninhabitable if we don't take action but people tell us to sit down and accept it."

They continued: "I think people my age have a choice to make, we can listen to adults and ignore what's happening or stand up to save ourselves and future generations.

Oxford Mail:

Madeika McMinn (L), and Kirsty McIntyre (R), both nine, took part in the activism. Picture: Harrison Jones

"We have to make the choice as a generation, and as a society, to choose life over clinging to what we know."

The activist added that good A-Level results might 'feel amazing' but many youngsters felt there was 'no point because good grades will be intrinsically worthless during a climate breakdown'.