Extinction Rebellion: Climate change protests 'cost businesses £12m' as more action planned

Climate change protests have cost businesses in London's West End £12m, according to a group representing firms in the area.

Takings and footfall are down by up to 25% in some stores, the New West End Company said, as it called on police to "take control of the situation".

Protesters from the Extinction Rebellion campaign have occupied the cross-roads outside Oxford Circus Underground station, camping out there for two days.

Despite a police order restricting demonstrations to a site at Marble Arch, they have remained at some of the capital's busiest hotspots - including Waterloo Bridge.

So far at least 290 people have been arrested for taking part in the ongoing action as police say the demonstrations are causing "serious disruption".

More "non-violent" protests are planned today on the Underground network "to highlight the emergency of ecological collapse" - if the government does not meet Extinction Rebellion's members.

British Transport Police confirmed wi-fi has been shut off at some stations in a bid to deter demonstrators.

Jace Tyrrell, chief executive of the New West End Company, wrote a letter to London Mayor Sadiq Khan saying businesses in the district were "deeply concerned" by the "continued disruption".

"At a time when our high streets are struggling, this additional pressure is deeply damaging to London's economy and reputation," he added.

The group says it represents shops on 74 streets which employ 150,000 workers.

Mr Khan has said he shares the passion of protesters about the urgent need to tackle climate change.

But he added he was "extremely concerned" about plans to disrupt the London Underground.

"It is absolutely crucial to get more people using public transport, as well as walking and cycling, if we are to tackle this climate emergency - and millions of Londoners depend on the Underground network to get about their daily lives in our city," he said in a statement.

"Targeting public transport in this way would only damage the cause of all of us who want to tackle climate change, as well as risking Londoners' safety and I'd implore anyone considering doing so to think again."

Have you been affected by the protests? Get in touch with your pictures and videos:

:: WhatsApp - 07583 000853

:: Email - news@sky.com

:: 'Your Report' on Sky News apps