Letter: The three views on Brexit we encountered on holiday in Europe

PUBLISHED: 06:00 20 May 2018

Placards and flags are held by pro-EU protesters. Photograph: Victoria Jones/PA Images.

Placards and flags are held by pro-EU protesters. Photograph: Victoria Jones/PA Images.

PA Wire/PA Images

I've just had ten days in France and North Italy. As I was wearing my EU/UK badge, I got Brexit chat - three types.

My summaries may be useful to readers who discuss more vigorously than this octogenarian.

(1) Leavers in the group I travelled with were polite but firm:

“Bureaucratic gravy train”; “Under the EU we only produce 10% of our food. Alone, we’ll produce 60-80%”; “We signed up for economic stuff, not this supranational guff”;“We decided, so you should support us.”

(2) Anglophones from the developed world thought the UK was mad:

“You’re turning selfish and racist”; “We trade with you in the EU and we’ll continue if you leave – but new agreements will take time and, having less clout, you’ll lose”; “You weaken those resisting authoritarian nationalists like Putin, Erdogan, Orban and Trump.”

(3) Citizens from other EU states were saddened and puzzled:

“We’ll miss you. For all your faults, for two centuries you have helped lead us through so much – through agricultural, industrial and even data revolutions; through wars and reconstructions; through continuing struggles for the values of peace, democracy, the rule of law, freedom of expression and a fair deal for ordinary people. Now, just as all this is threatened and we stumble, you leave us. Worse, you seem to be losing those values yourselves.”

• Send your letters for publication in The New European to letters@theneweuropean.co.uk

MORE: Subscribe to The New European and get it delivered to your door from just £1

MORE: Labour is failing and my party loyalty is being tested to the limit

MORE: John Redwood ducks out of radio debate with young activist Femi Oluwole

You've seen the news, now discover the story

The New European is committed to providing in-depth analysis of the Brexit process, its implications and progress as well as celebrating European life.

Try 13 weeks for £13

Become a Supporter

The New European is proud of its journalism and we hope you are proud of it too. We believe our voice is important - both in representing the pro-EU perspective and also to help rebalance the right wing extremes of much of the UK national press. If you value what we are doing, you can help us by making a contribution to the cost of our journalism.

Find out more

Latest Articles

Most Read

latest issue


Grassroots anti-Brexit campaigners are keeping up the pressure on politicians as Brexit rumbles on. Here is a list of the events organised across the UK in the coming weeks.

Newsletter Sign Up

The New European weekly newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy