A MURAL created by Banksy in the wake of climate protests in London has been cleaned and preserved by a Carlisle firm after it fell into disrepair.

The famed graffiti artist painted the image in Marble Arch following demonstrations by Extinction Rebellion in April this year.

The image, which has been cleaned and placed in a permanent polycarbonate case, depicts a young girl holding an Extinction Rebellion logo, next to the words: “From this moment despair ends and tactics begin.”

Westminster City Council commissioned the protection after consulting with art conservationists.

Chris Bull, director of Fine Art Restoration Company (Farco) in Carlisle, said some of the challenges faced in restoring the artwork included removing a “heavy layer of milkshake” which had turned “mouldy and green”.

“That was covering quite a lot of the artwork, so it was a bit of a process but it was very nice to remove that and rewarding to reveal the artwork underneath,” he said.

Tweddle Engineering at Kirkbride made the stainless steel frame for the Banksy, which was installed on Thursday.

“It was in pretty poor condition but it’s looking great now,” said Mr Bull.

Bird droppings, algae and “a lot of obscure different things people had poured down the back of the acrylic” were also cleaned from the artwork, which Mr Bull said has been generating great interest from the public.

“It’s very historically and culturally relevant right now,” he said.

“There’s a lot of interest from the general public and lots of people seem to be coming from all over the world to view it.”

Westminster City Council had previously promised to leave the artwork on display so it could act as a daily reminder of the risks of climate change.

“Bansky’s work generates so much excitement and attention, sadly some of that attention isn’t positive - so we needed to take steps to protect and preserve it for the future,” said Westminster councillor Iain Bott.

In 2017, Mr Bull’s firm carried out an extensive restoration on another Banksy mural, The Snorting Copper in Shoreditch, Hackney. It was restored and is now bolted to a concrete floor and protected by reinforced glass, alarms and CCTV.

Farco are also restoring some Banksy murals in the former Arches nightclub in Glasgow.

The works, which feature a gun-toting monkey in a tutu and a framed Mona Lisa,were mistakenly covered in 2007 then left after the club went into administration in 2015. Mr Bull said: “Things are moving slowly on that particular project due to funding issues.”