Due to concerns that environmental activists may stage a protest at this year’s tournament, Wimbledon organizers have advised all spectators to “be considerate.”
A Just Stop Oil protester leapt on the table during the World Snooker Championship and threw orange powder all over the court. This was just one of many high-profile sporting events in the UK that have recently come under attack.
According to event director Hugh Brasher, a “handful” of Extinction Rebellion activists were going to “block” the London Marathon on Sunday, but a pre-race conversation with organizers helped to put a halt to any disturbance.
Meanwhile, this year’s Grand National was delayed by animal rights protestors, who tried to run onto the racetrack and climbed fences at Aintree with at least two fixing themselves to a jump using glue and lock-on devices.
Quizzed specifically about possible Just Stop Oil and Extinction Rebellion protests at Wimbledon 2023, chief executive Sally Bolton said: ‘I think the first thing to say is that front of mind and paramount for planning for the Championships every year is the safety and security of those attending and indeed their enjoyment.
‘Every year we work with the Metropolitan Police and other agencies in planning for the Championships. As part of that, we do a very thorough threat and risk assessment.
‘Our arrangements for security are planned around those and that is an ever-changing environment.
‘There have been some incidents recently that will inform the planning we will undertake. The picture is still emerging and our plans are evolving as time goes on.
‘What I would urge anyone attending the Championships to do is to be considerate of those who are also attending the Championships.
‘Our grounds conditions that apply to everyone are very much about the safety and security of everyone attending, but more importantly the enjoyment of everyone attending.’
The Laver Cup in September was interrupted by a climate change activist who burst onto the tennis court and lit his right arm on fire.
The incident occurred during Stefanos Tsitsipas’ singles match against Diego Schwartzman – with both players, match officials and fans left unharmed.
The protester wore a white t-shirt which read ‘end UK private jets’ and he was dragged off the court at The O2 in London by members of security.