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Fashion designer's son burns �5m of punk memorabilia in protest

The son of Sex Pistols manager Malcolm McLaren and fashion designer Dame Vivienne Westwood has set fire to millions of pounds worth of punk memorabilia, saying punk “has become another marketing tool”.

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Joe Corre torched a chest containing clothes, posters and other items belonging to him on a boat on the River Thames in London’s Chelsea.

There were also effigies of politicians including former prime minister David Cameron and current PM Theresa May loaded with fireworks.

Dame Vivienne was among those gathered on the bank to watch as the memorabilia – said to be worth £5m – burnt and fireworks rose into the sky.

A fire service boat helped to extinguish the flames.

Corre, who founded lingerie company Agent Provocateur, told the crowd: “Punk was never, never meant to be nostalgic – and you can’t learn how to be one at a Museum of London workshop. 

“Punk has become another marketing tool to sell you something you don’t need. 

“The illusion of an alternative choice. Conformity in another uniform.”

He had previously said he was angered by Punk London – a year of events looking back at 40 years of punk heritage.

The plans include talks, films and gigs, supported by partners including the Mayor of London, British Library and the British Film Institute.

Corre had said he wanted to highlight “the hypocrisy at the core of this hijacking of 40 years of Anarchy in the UK”. 

He also warned of the dangers of climate change, with a banner on the boat reading: “Extinction! Your future”.

Dame Vivienne called for more people to adopt green energy, saying: “This is the first step towards a free world. 

“It’s the most important thing you could ever do in your life.”

One of the Sex Pistols, bassist Glen Matlock, told Sky News he was unimpressed with Joe Corre’s protest.

“I want to paraphrase Monty Python,” he said, “in that he’s not a saviour he’s a naughty boy, and I think Joe is not the anti-Christ, I think he’s a nincompoop.” 

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