Joe Corre and his mother, fashion designer Vivienne Westwood, burned millions of dollars in punk memorabilia on the 40th anniversary of the Sex Pistols’ debut single, “Anarchy in the U.K.” Corre’s father was Sex Pistols manager Malcolm McLaren.
Corre told the crowd that “punk was never meant to be nostalgic.”
The bonfire was intended to protest plans to celebrate the punk movement’s 40th anniversary. Boy do I feel old after writing that.
Mr Corre, who founded lingerie company Agent Provocateur, has been critical of Punk London’s plans to mark 40 years of the sub-culture.
The plans, which include events, gigs and exhibitions, is supported by groups including the Mayor of London, British Library and British Film Institute (BFI).
“Punk was never, never meant to be nostalgic – and you can’t learn how to be one at a Museum of London workshop,” said Mr. Corre on Saturday.
“Punk has become another marketing tool to sell you something you don’t need. The illusion of an alternative choice. Conformity in another uniform.”
As a card-carrying former punk girl who has injuries sustained from a mosh pit or two, I need to know: WHAT WERE THEY THINKING? Why not sell it and use the money for a good cause?
I’m not the only one who thinks this was a wacky idea. “I want to paraphrase Monty Python – he’s not the saviour, he’s a naughty boy. I think that Joe is not the anti-Christ, I think he’s a nincompoop,” Sex Pistols bass guitarist Glen Matlock told Sky News.
Vivienne Westwood told the crowd to use green energy after her son burned the millions of dollars in memorabilia.
Leaning out of the back window on the top of a green double-decker bus, parked on the river bank, she said: “This is the first step towards a free world. It’s the most important thing you could ever do in your life.”
Several fire engines, a fire service boat and police cars attended the protest.