The female protestor who sparked fury today when she glued herself to priceless artwork in the National Gallery has been accused of being a jet-setting sailor who has racked up tens of thousands of air miles.
Student Hannah Hunt, 23, is the co-founder of Just Stop Oil whose social media pages are adorned with exotic holiday pictures from locations including Bali, Australia and the Canary Islands.
The aspiring psychologist has contributed to chaos across the country, after she was pictured glueing herself to roads, camping in the rafters of a major oil depot in Essex and today stuck pictures over John Constable’s The Hay Wain in London.
She and fellow student and musician Eben Lazarus, 22, first plastered over Constable’s masterpiece with pictures portraying an apocalyptic future, before they glued their hands to the frame as security stood on and watched.
The pair were quick to lecture the public on fossil fuels being a ‘death project’ and warning of the ‘total collapse of society’, despite Ms Hunt previously admitting she ‘impulse flew to the Canaries to escape chilly British weather’.
The former XR supporter even used the trips to bolster her environmental credentials, telling social media followers from Bali: ‘Can we look back in another 50 years and say we did everything to protect our pretty cool planet?’
Just Stop Oil co-founder Hannah Hunt, 23, and student Eben Lazarus, 22, both of Brighton, were pictured with their hands glued to the frame of John Constable’s 1821 masterpiece at the National Gallery in London on Monday
Student Hannah Hunt, 23, is the co-founder of Just Stop Oil whose social media pages are adorned with exotic holiday pictures from locations including Bali, Australia and the Canary Islands
Eco-zealots from Just Stop Oil cover John Constable’s The Hay Wain with their own apocalyptic pictures
Co-founder of Just Stop Oil, Hannah Hunt, 23, was seen in a video from the rafters of a major oil depot in Grays, Essex when Just Stop Oil blockaded the plant earlier this year
Ms Hunt co-founded Just Stop Oil in February, marching on No 10 to tell Boris Johnson to prevent ‘the ultimate crime against our country, humanity and life on Earth’. Above, a driver drags a Just Stop Oil activist from his oil tanker
Eco-vandal Eben Lazarus
Aspiring musician Eben Lazarus, 22, was seen alongside Ms Hunt as he supported her through Just Stop Oil’s latest stunt.
He and Hunt were removed and arrested at 4.45pm and taken off site, and the priceless national treasure was then removed by staff at the gallery.
The eco-zealot was last pictured actively blocking departures at Gray’s oil depot in Essex and also disrupting traffic on Britain’s motorways.
Lazarus’s father is a musician and wedding singer, while his grandfather is Dr Norman Lazarus and 84-year-old professor at King’s College London whose research interests include how to age more gracefully.
Aspiring musician Eben Lazarus, 22, was seen alongside Ms Hunt as he supported her through Just Stop Oil’s latest stunt
If Ms Hunt flew to every destination, she would have clocked up 49,404 air miles over five years and been responsible for the emissions of 13 tons of carbon dioxide.
The European average – per person – is 8.4 tons in a whole year, according to the My Climate website.
It is not known if the eco-activist chose to offset the carbon from her flights, which would cost a total of £379, according to non-profit Atmosfair.
The student co-founded Just Stop Oil in February, marching on No 10 to tell Boris Johnson to ‘intervene’ to prevent ‘the ultimate crime against our country, humanity and life on Earth’.
She has become a hero among eco-zealot supporters of the group, which formed as a breakaway of Extinction Rebellion.
Earlier this year she glued herself to the red carpet at the Bafta awards, and she has broken into an ExxonMobil oil refinery in Hampshire.
Hunt and Lazarus were both arrested at around 4.45pm following their eco-vandal stunt earlier today.
Just Stop Oil said their reimagined version of the 1821 priceless work, which depicts a rural scene on the River Stour in Suffolk, shows a ‘nightmare scene that demonstrates how oil will destroy our countryside’.
Ms Hunt said today of her eco-vandalism: ‘We can forget our “green and pleasant land” as further oil extraction will lead to widespread crop failures which means we will be fighting for food. Ultimately, new fossil fuels are a death project by our government.
‘So yes, there is glue on the frame of this famous painting, but there is blood on the hands of our government.
‘The disruption will end as soon as the UK government makes a meaningful statement that it will end new oil and gas licenses.’
Her social media shows pictures enjoying holidays and sailing trips in exotic locations including Bali, Australia and the Canary Islands
If she flew to every destination, she would have clocked up 49,404 air miles over five years and been responsible for the emissions of 13 tons of carbon dioxide
It is not known if the activist chose to offset the carbon from her flights, which would cost a total of £379, according to non-profit Atmosfair
The Brighton-based activist, from Cumbria, who studies at Sussex University, said after protests she enjoys ‘a weird, dreamy, calm mindset’ she finds empowering.
Her father runs an environmental consultancy firm and her family purchased an early 20th century property on the west coast of Scotland that has one of the lowest possible energy efficiency available.
Heating and lighting the home results in approximately 12 tonnes of carbon dioxide being put back into the atmosphere, which is double Scotland’s average according to the national register for Energy Performance Certificates.
The family also own a five-bedroom home near Kendal, Cumbria.
Ms Hunt is one of several middle-class campaigners who have been holding Britain’s motorists to ransom throughout this year.
Their protests continued in April when activists climbed onto lorries at the Grays depot. Dozens were arrested at three oil sites.
Meanwhile, hundreds of Extinction Rebellion supporters blocked four bridges and a major roundabout in central London.
Environmental activists have bemoaned the impact of air travel, saying individual flights can release more CO2 into the atmosphere than some people generate in a year.
A return economy journey to Bali releases 4.2 tons of carbon dioxide, while a return ticket to Australia would generate 6.1 tons.
Just Stop Oil began daily protests just two months ago, demanding the Government commits to end all new oil and gas projects in the UK.
The group has also faced criticism for attaching themselves to famous pieces of art in Glasgow and Manchester, with works by Van Gogh and J.M.W Turner all targeted in recent weeks.
Art historians and experts have all raised concerns that the vandals could have caused irreparable damage to the iconic masterpieces.
Dr Adrian Hilton, who is a fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, said today: ‘How is this even possible in the National Gallery? I mean, it’s a John Constable masterpiece; a national treasure. Is it really this easy to paper over or – God forbid – destroy it?’
The National Gallery later released a statement clarifying The Hay Wain suffered minor damage to its frame and on the painting’s varnish, both of which have been dealt with before it is re-hung in Gallery Room 34 on Tuesday.