Climate change protests to take place across Lancashire
Young people are leading the way at a series of climate change protests planned in Lancashire, as part of a global day of action.
The UK Student Climate Network has organised a 'Strike for Climate Change' gathering in Preston this morning, starting from the train station at 10am.
In Lancaster, students and staff at the university are expected to stage their own half-hour stoppage at noon in support of the protest. And in Dalton Square, businesses are expected to join in another demo at 1pm.
In Chorley this afternoon, pupils and staff from Parklands High School will be walking to the town hall to make their feelings known.
The action is part of a global movement which is expected to involve millions of demonstrators across the world today, with the first held in Australia. The protests are part of a snowballing movement sparked by teenage activist Greta Thunberg's school strikes outside the Swedish parliament.
Children and young people across the UK are preparing to walk out of lessons and lectures, with hundreds of thousands of workers expected to join them. The UK Student Climate Network (UKSCN) says more than 200 events are taking place across the UK, with - for the first time - adults being encouraged to join the youngsters as they strike.
However, Schools minister Nick Gibb said while the Government "shares young people's passion" for tackling climate change, children should not miss school to protest.
Speaking on BBC Radio 4's Today programme, he said schools need to record the absences.
He said: "We share the passion, as a Government, of young people for tackling climate change, and that is why this Government and this country is committed to reaching net zero greenhouse gasses by 2050."
He added: "We don't think it should be at the expense of a child's education because what we want is for the next generation to be as well educated as possible to tackle these kinds of problems, and you don't do that by missing out on an education."
He said even missing out on one day of school can affect GCSE results.