Extinction Rebellion-backing celebrities have written an open letter admitting that they are “hypocrites” for supporting the environmental protests despite living “high carbon lives”.

Household names including actor Benedict Cumberbatch, musician Sir Bob Geldof, and Glastonbury festival organiser Emily Eavis acknowledged that their lifestyles and professional industries contribute to the “climate emergency” Extinction Rebellion is campaigning to end. 

But the celebrities, who have thrown their weight behind the group’s two week long disruption in London that has grounded flights and blocked roads, said they will not be silenced by being called “climate hypocrites”. 

It comes after several famous faces received backlash for vocally supporting Extinction Rebellion despite landing lucrative car sponsorship deals and holidaying on private jets.

The letter reads: “Dear journalists who have called us hypocrites. You’re right. We live high carbon lives and the industries that we are part of have huge carbon footprints. 

On Monday night, the Metropolitan Police began clearing activists from Trafalgar Square using section 14 of the Public Order Act 1986, which determines that any assembly of two or more people linked to the group in London is unlawful.

Lawyer’s acting on behalf of Extinction Rebellion have mounted a legal challenge, which will be heard in the High Court, against the ban. 

Former Metropolitan Police chief Lord Hogan-Howe, who headed the UK’s largest force from 2011 to 2017, defended the police’s decision, telling the House of Lords: “These are difficult judgments. Of course on the last occasion Extinction Rebellion carried out their protests, the police were criticised for failing to take action.

“Here we see them criticised perhaps for taking too much.

“But surely when we have the threat of airports being closed and the Tube system being shut down, then this is a serious matter for London, as it is for the country generally.