Herefordshire4EU/European Movement activists descended on Corn Square with survey-board, sticker dots, gazebo and all the customary pro-EU paraphernalia. We are nearing the end of this cycle of questions to the public about the effects of Brexit on Britain since leaving the EU. Roughly every month, on a Saturday morning, we meet in a central square in one of Herefordshire’s market towns to question the public on their attitudes to Brexit now - and also to the promoters of it. Do they feel they were lied to in 2016? In what ways has Brexit affected them? Was it all a terrible mistake?
It is good to have these conversations, because on one hand people who never agreed to leave in the first place are given the chance to share their frustrations and are supplied with somewhere to turn, and on the other hand, people who voted to leave but have since begun to have doubts, are likewise welcomed. We also listen to those who wish to vent their anger at us for refusing to accept defeat and continuing to promote membership of the European Union. It is important to listen, not in order to win an intellectual battle, but to show common humanity and allow people to reach similar conclusions in their own time. This is sometimes difficult, but it’s well worth trying.
Here are the results of our latest survey in Leominster:
How do you feel our country is getting on... since leaving the EU?
Cost of living Just fine/Fair: 11.5% Not sure: 2% Poorly/Very badly: 86.5%
Health & Social Care 16% 16% 67%
Businesses/Farming 11% 17% 72%
The Music Industry 20% 34% 46%
The Environment 12.5% 10% 77%
Human Rights/Employment Protection 20% 10% 70%
What do you think?
Would your family have a better life if we were still an EU country?
Yes: 72% Not sure: 6% No: 22%
Have we been told lies about the “benefits” of Brexit?
Yes: 85% Not sure: 2% No: 12.5%
Should we try for a closer relationship with the EU in future?
Yes: 86% Not sure: 6% No: 8%
If you’d like to help or chat with us and place some stickers on the board, the next town on our agenda is Bromyard, probably outside the Hop Pole Hotel, on Saturday 26 August. We’d love to see you there!
In September, we shall rewrite the questions for a new cycle. September is also the month of the National Rejoin March in London: Coaches leaving from Hereford, Ledbury, Malvern and of course many other towns across the nation on Saturday, 23/09/23. We hope you’ll join us!
Harriet Pahl 01/07/2023