Vivienne Westwood stages protest at London Fashion Week
Westwood, an environmental campaigner and activist, released a letter before the unveiling of her spring-summer 2016 collection at London Fashion Week in which she warned of the possibility of "mass extinction". (Leon Neal / AFP)
Published Monday, September 21, 2015 7:20AM EDT
LONDON -- British designer Vivienne Westwood transformed the catwalk into a protest march on Sunday, leading a procession of demonstrators holding placards reading "Climate Revolution" and "Austerity is a Crime".
Westwood, an environmental campaigner and activist, released a letter before the unveiling of her spring-summer 2016 collection at London Fashion Week in which she warned of the possibility of "mass extinction".
"It's incredibly important... to be political because we face incredible danger from our politicians and we've got to stop them!" Westwood wrote.
"They cause climate change and war... they're taking us to mass extinction and we have to do something."
Dressed colourfully in leggings, shorts, red lipstick and brightly-coloured crowns, Westwood's protesters demonstrated outside the fashion show venue before she led them onto the catwalk.
The placards targeted fracking -- the extraction of shale gas by blasting a mix of water, sand and chemicals deep underground, an industry Conservative Prime Minister David Cameron enthusiastically supports.
Earlier this month, the 74-year-old Westwood, an iconic figure in British fashion and a founder of the punk movement, rode an armoured vehicle to Cameron's home to protest against his fracking policy.
Other protest signs targeted the government's policy of cutting spending in order to reduce Britain's deficit, and the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership, a proposed free-trade deal between the United States and European Union critics fear will favour corporations at public expense.
Held in central London, the 62nd edition of the British capital's fashion week is due to showcase over 150 designers by its final day on Tuesday.