The stepson of Pink Floyd guitarist Dave Gilmour has been sentenced to 16 months in prison for his part in the famous London student protests in December last year.
Charlie Gilmour, 21, was adopted by Gilmour when the rock veteran married the boy’s mother, journalist Polly Samson.
Gilmour junior had taken a cocktail of valium and LSD on the day of the protests, when he was pictured swinging from the Cenotaph using a Union Jack flag. He was also found to have thrown a bin at the car carrying Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall and smashing the window of a high-street store.
Passing sentence, Judge Nicholas Price said, “It would, in my view, be wrong for me to ignore who the occupants of the three cars were and that’s undoubtedly an aggravating feature.”
“You should have known better than to behave in such a criminal and reprehensible way.”
Of the incident regarding the Cenotaph, that saw Gilmour universally condemned and scorned by war veterans, particularly after he admitted he did not know the significance of the monument, the judge said, “It caused public outrage and understandably so… You have shown disrespect to those who gave the ultimate sacrifice, to those who fell defending this country.
“For a young man of your intelligence and education and background to profess to not know what the Cenotaph represents defies belief.”
Gilmour’s so-called intelligence was being nurtured at Cambridge University, and was granted bail until last week’s hearing at Kingston Crown Court so he could take his exams. The university has not yet revealed whether Gilmour will be allowed to complete his studies in history, with a spokesperson for Girton College quoted as saying, “The college notes the gravity of the offence and is firmly opposed to public disorder… Due legal process has been observed and Mr Gilmour has been tried and sentenced accordingly.”
Gilmour and Samson both looked on from the public gallery as their son was sentenced, with an emotional Samson fighting back tears. Half of the sentence of 16 months will be spent in jail.
Charlie Gilmour’s father is the writer and poet Heathcote Williams.