Michael Cole has condemned the “puerile stupidity” of Animal Rising protesters after two individuals targeted a portrait of King Charles in their latest attack.

Two members of the Animal Rising descended on the Philip Mould gallery in London, where the monarch’s latest red portrait was covered in Wallace and Gromit inspired decals.

The monarch’s artwork was covered with an image of Wallace’s face and a speech bubble reading: “No cheese Gromit, look at all this cruelty on RSPCA farms!”

Reacting to the incident on GB News, former Royal Correspondent Michael Cole said the move was “utterly contemptible” and have “dishonoured” the cause in which they are campaigning for.

Michael Cole and Animal Rising protest

Michael Cole hit out at the ‘puerile stupidity’ of Animal Rising protesters after targeting King Charles’s portrait

GB News / Animal Rising

Cole fumed: “It was an act of puerile stupidity and is utterly contemptible. These one-issue zealots, they demean themselves and they dishonour the cause for which they say they’re fighting.

“If they tried that in the Hermitage Museum in Saint Petersburg and the Putin’s police came in, I’d have a little bit more respect for them because they wouldn’t be treated as gently as they are in a gallery in Mayfair in central London.”

Highlighting the “one positive” outcome of the attack, Cole noted that the protest has “not damaged the portrait” and was only on the exterior covering of the artwork, created by Jonathan Yeo.

Cole told host Martin Daubney: “The only good thing about this childish episode is that the brilliant portrait of the Red King by Jonathan Yeo was not damaged in any way.

Animal Rising protest on King Charles portrait

The latest portrait of King Charles was vandalised by Animal Rising protesters today

Animal Rising

“The King apparently thinks it’s brilliant, and I think he’s absolutely right.”


Criticising the protesters and supporting the King’s decision not to comment on the incident, Cole said it is “real student stuff” and they “shouldn’t be given the oxygen of publicity”.

Cole explained: “They’re real lame brains, and I’m not even going to explain why they want to criticise the RSPCA, because that just gives them the oxygen of publicity.

“If they have a case to make, let them make it in a sensible, civilised way.”

Martin agreed and highlighted the “lack of security” surrounding the portrait, and how it was “embarrassing for the gallery” to allow such vandalism.

Michael Cole

Michael Cole says the move was ‘utter vandalism’ and they should make their case ‘in a civilised way’

GB News

Martin noted: “There is perspex over the painting, but not a security guard in sight, not even a velvet rope. This looks embarrassing for the gallery.”

Cole responded: “It’s nasty. And these things, I think, are counter-productive, because anybody who might be willing or open to persuasion on this will be put off by it because it’s vandalism.

“Let’s call it what it is. It’s utter vandalism. It’s unnecessary. We live in a democracy – if you have a case to make, make it in a civilised way, not in a way which alarms and and threatens other people and also damages property.”

Daniel Juniper, one of those involved in the attack on the portrait, said the protesters “couldn’t think of a better way” to draw the monarch’s attention to their cause.

In a statement, Juniper said: “With King Charles being such a big fan of Wallace and Gromit, we couldn’t think of a better way to draw his attention to the horrific scenes on RSPCA Assured farms.

“Even though we hope this is amusing to His Majesty, we also call on him to seriously reconsider if he wants to be associated with the awful suffering across farms being endorsed by the RSPCA.