‘Boycott Barclays’ posters on London Underground are unauthorised

26 March 2024
What was claimed

Transport for London (TfL) and Sadiq Khan have allowed posters calling for the public to ‘Boycott Barclays’ on the London Underground.

Our verdict

These posters have not been authorised by either TfL or Mr Khan. They are being removed according to TfL.

Photos of “Boycott Barclays” posters in a London Underground tube carriage have been shared online with claims implying they’ve been authorised by Transport for London (TfL). 

One post on X (formerly Twitter) shares photos of two posters that say: “Barclays bankrolls Israel’s genocide. Want to close your account?” and “Barclays: financing genocide”. 

A photo of one of the posters is shared with the caption “But bikini and cake ads on @TfL are banned @Barclays @MayorofLondon?”, tagging the official Mayor of London account

Posts on Facebook share a photo of the other poster with overlaid text claiming: “TfL allows boycott Barclays adverts to be placed on the underground”. This image has been shared with the caption: “TfL is allowing THIS on the tube!? Wow. Just wow”. 

However, the posters have not been approved by either TfL or the Mayor London, Sadiq Khan, and according to TfL they are being removed. 

A spokesperson for TfL told Full Fact: “We recently became aware of unauthorised adverts on our network and we instructed our contractors to check trains and remove any related posters. Our advertising partner, Global, has reported the incident to the police. We also understand that the [British Transport Police] is investigating the incident.

“Our estate includes thousands of advertising panels that are regularly checked for instances of flyposting, with any removed as soon as they are reported”.

TfL responded to a post showing one of these posters, which were calling for the public to “join a mass account closure day”, asking for details of where they had been seen so they could be removed.  

Full Fact contacted the Mayor’s office for comment and will update this article if we receive a response. 

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Why are there calls to boycott Barclays?

Pro-Palestinian supporters have protested against Barclays for its links with defence companies for several years. A spokesperson for Barclays said in January 2024 that the bank is “committed to respecting human rights” and referred to its Defence and Security policy

You can find more of our work fact checking claims relating to the Israel-Gaza conflict on our website

Image courtesy of tompagenet

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