In the footage, Ms. Barker could be seen grimacing and shouting, “It’s a peaceful protest” as Mr. Field shoved her past a row of diners and toward the door.
According to Greenpeace, 40 of its volunteers had crashed the chancellor’s speech, which was being broadcast on live television. The women began reading an alternative speech calling for more decisive action to stop the effects of climate change.
Thursday night’s event, known as the Bankers’ and Merchants’ dinner, is held each year in a gilded hall at Mansion House, the official residence of the Lord Mayor of London, the leader of the city’s financial district. It is notable for speeches from the chancellor of the Exchequer and the governor of the Bank of England, but it has come under scrutiny in an age of austerity for gathering together the leaders of the city’s biggest banks and financial institutions in a luxury setting.
In 2017, the dinner was canceled out of respect for the victims of the deadly Grenfell Tower fire.
Mr. Field has been a Conservative lawmaker for the Cities of London and Westminster, among the richest constituencies in Britain, since 2001. As a Foreign Office minister, his portfolio includes climate change. But in April, Mr. Field — citing the disruption to local residents and businesses — asked the Metropolitan Police for “a much firmer grip” on climate protesters who were blocking traffic in the center of London this spring.
After the protesters had left the dinner, Mr. Hammond, looking calm and composed, continued his speech, saying to cheers from the audience, “The irony of course, is that this is the government that has just led the world by committing to a zero carbon economy by 2050.”
This month, Prime Minister Theresa May proposed legislation to bring Britain’s net production of greenhouse gases to zero by 2050. This would make the country the first of the world’s major economic powers to end its contribution to global warming.
U.K. Official Suspended for Forcing Out Climate Protester by the Neck – The New York Times