Well-known names from the entertainment, sporting and business worlds are sponsoring coaches from their home towns to help campaigners take part in the ‘Put It To The People’ march in London.
The growing list of sponsors includes actor Jason Isaacs (Liverpool); broadcaster Joan Bakewell (Manchester); advertising executive and film producer Trevor Beattie (Birmingham); comedian and actor Steve Coogan (Manchester); businessman and chair of Stoke City FC Peter Coates (Stoke); Joe Hemani, Chairman of tech firm Westcoast PLC and Vice President of Chelsea FC (more than one coach); actor Natascha McElhone (Brighton); TV cook and majority shareholder of Norwich City Football Club Delia Smith (Norwich); and actor Sir Patrick Stewart (Huddersfield).
They’ve each paid £1,000 or more to pay for a coach to bring people from across the UK.
The writer and director, Armando Iannucci, who has created hit shows including The Thick Of It, is sponsoring a coach from Oxford.
‘When government whips vote against their own legislation, when the prime minister tries to take No Deal off the table but makes her MPs vote to keep it on, and when an Opposition that says it supports a People’s Vote urges its MPs to abstain from voting for one, I believe Brexit’s gone well and truly through the looking glass.
‘Voters have been left befuddled and bemused by what’s going on in Westminster and I think the only sensible thing left is to put whatever Brexit deal parliament comes up with to the voters one last time. It’s just one more vote to settle matters; what’s the problem? The prime minister’s now on to her third.’
Television cook and majority shareholder of Norwich City Football Club Delia Smith is sponsoring the ‘East Anglia Express’ coach from Norwich.
She said: ‘I am delighted to sponsor a coach to help people to get to London on 23rd. I want to make sure East Anglian voices are heard again in the streets around Westminster. Get to London on the 23rd!’
Actor Sir Patrick Stewart is sponsoring a coach from his Huddersfield.
He said: ‘The damage Brexit is already causing to our communities and country is clear. Businesses are closing, companies are cutting staff, the NHS is suffering and the opportunities for future generations of travelling, working and living across Europe without restrictions are at risk.
‘The Put It To The People march may very well be our last chance to demand a democratic final say on this mess before it’s too late.
‘This is High Noon for Brexit – when anyone who cares about the future, anyone who feels betrayed by broken promises in the last referendum, anyone who wants to prevent years more of this madness should come to make their voice heard. It’s now or never.’
Registrations have already exceeded numbers for the last demonstration – which was one of the biggest protests London has ever seen.
Coaches are travelling from places including Chesterfield, Doncaster, Lincoln, Peterborough, Stoke and Sunderland, which all voted to leave the EU by heavy margins in 2016.