Watch: Queen Victoria bust smeared with jam and porridge by climate protesters

This Is Rigged protest
This Is Rigged protest

Two women have been charged after environmental protesters targeted a marble bust of Queen Victoria in one of Scotland’s largest museums.

Climate activist group This Is Rigged filmed Sorcha Ni Mhairtin, 30, and Hannah Taylor, 23, carrying out the protest at around midday on Sunday in Glasgow’s Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum.

The group said it carried out the act to protest against increasing food insecurity. In a video posted online, a pot of oats and a jar of jam were spread over the bust

A protester used spray paint to write an expletive on the bust’s plinth, before telling the camera: “We refuse to be dragged back to the Victorian era. Diseases of starvation such as scurvy and rickets are on the rise.

“Freedom begins with breakfast and if you can’t understand that, we’ll shove it in your face. Food is a human right, and we call out the rotten systems under which we are suffering.”

The two women then allegedly glued themselves to the plinth.

This Is Rigged said it will continue action until the price of baby formula is reduced back to what it was in March 2021 and the Scottish Government funds a community food hub for every 500 households in Scotland.

The museum was forced to close during the protest but later reopened. However, the section containing the bust will remain closed until the extent of the damage to the statue is assessed.

A Police Scotland spokesman said: “Around 11.55am on Sunday, March 3, police were called to a report of a protest and alleged vandalism within Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum, Kelvingrove Park, Glasgow.

“Two women, aged 23 and 30 years, have been arrested and charged following the incident.  They have been released on an Undertaking to appear at Glasgow Sheriff Court at a later date.  A report will be submitted to the Procurator Fiscal.”