A group describing themselves as “pirate rebels” braved the storms last night to fly 200 campaign flags under the cover of darkness. People in Falmouth awoke this morning to find pink flags flying on boats across the harbour.

It is part of the latest campaign efforts by local supporters of Extinction Rebellion, a socio-political movement that uses “non-violent civil disobedience” to protest against the climate breakdown and biodiversity loss.

The flags bear slogans such as “Act now”, “Your planet needs you” and “RIP Flushing”, in reference to the village across the River Fal that would be flooded if the sea rises to the predicted level.

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The group chose the start of Falmouth Week to highlight their message, as thousands of people visit the town for the carnival, regatta and music nights.

The rebels worked through the night boarding 200 vessels across the harbour and raising flags up each boat’s courtesy line.

They left a letter addressed to every boat owner apologising for boarding their vessels, and inviting them to continue to fly their flags for the whole of Falmouth Week “in solidarity with the urgency of our situation.”

In a statement released this morning, joint spokesperson Rob Higgs said: “We’re showing locals and tourists alike that Falmouth cares about the climate catastrophe our generation faces.

“The flags are to inspire folk to make changes to reduce their impact on the planet, or indeed get involved with their local Extinction Rebellion group.”

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Fellow spokesperson Belle Benfield added: “If we want our children and grandchildren to have a chance at civilized life with enough food to eat, now is the time for us all to stop in our tracks and dedicate time and energy to solving this problem.

“With all eyes on the water for the races this week, it seemed like an ideal place for a call to action.”

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