Brexiteers have been mistakenly criticising a Labour council’s decision to erect ‘pro-EU banners’, which actually offer advice for EU citizens on applying for settled status.
Just saw this sign from @LBHF and at the same time remembered @MrRichardGadd talking last night about the importance of kindness and how, after everything, he'd still give Martha a cup of tea. Now quite teary on my way in to work. pic.twitter.com/p4ranG8btG— Deirdre O'Halloran (@deirdre_OH) October 17, 2019
The banners read slogans such as “Proud members of the EU” and “Home is where the heart is – We’d love you to stay” with pictures of the EU flag, and link to a website where EU citizens can apply for settled status.
Hammersmith and Fulham council was accused by The Telegraph of campaigning for a second referendum, and of ‘electioneering’ by Brexiteers on Twitter.
One Brexiteer said: “They’ve lined the street with pro EU banners. What a wast [sic] of money! It could have been used for better purposes…”
However, the council insists the banners were put in place to encourage EU citizens to register for settled status.
Yet conservative commentators such as Darren Grimes said the banners – which cost £27,000 – were extortionately priced “at a time when councils are supposedly strapped for cash”.
READ MORE: Government ‘pauses’ the £100 million ‘get ready for Brexit’ campaignAnother Brexiteer tweeted: “I wonder what taxpayers of Hammersmith and Fulham make of this.”
70% of voters in Hammersmith and Fulham backed Remain in the 2016 referendum.
A Twitter user from the borough said: “I actually live in Hammersmith and Fulham and was very pleased to see these banners.”
One other added: “It’s uplifting to see all those banners around.”
A council spokesman said: “The vast majority of EU residents who have settled in Hammersmith and Fulham are essential workers in our NHS, care services and economy and we’d like them to stay, so the banners clearly send that message.
“They cost £27,000 which is a small figure in comparison to the huge costs taxpayers will have to bear if these essential workers don’t get settled status.”