Tactical Voting Guide: European Parliamentary Elections 23rd May

This Thursday we have an opportunity to show all our politicians that our view of Brexit has changed since the Referendum in 2016, and send to the European Parliament MEPs to represent us. The most important thing is that everyone who wants us to remain full members of the EU goes out to vote and encourages as many others as possible to do the same. 

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Bob Saunders
Happy 1st Birthday Brexitometer!

t is now one year since the first ever Brextometer session here in Shrewsbury. Since then this useful campaigning tool has been used the length and breadth of the country to gauge the level of public support for Brexit and as a focus for the debate that has gone on in the streets of our towns and cities as parliamentarians have failed to reach any conclusions and the divisions on Brexit remain.

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Bob Saunders
Why Mrs May’s Renegotiation of the Northern Ireland Backstop Will Fail!

Mrs May is extremely unlikely to get what her right-wing supporters are demanding as their price for supporting her Withdrawal Agreement for the reason s explained here. This would be a fundamental threat to the EU. There is however a real danger of a fudged agreement to defer the difficulties until after we have left.

If we are to avoid a fudge over the backstop, I think we need to point out that agreeing to the Withdrawal Agreement does nothing to bring to an end the debates surrounding our future relationship with the EU and if we leave the Customs Union and Single Market, we are creating a border where none exists today. On the other hand, staying inside the Single Market and the Customs Union delivers no independence from the EU’s rules while losing our current rights to a seat at the table where they are made.

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Bob Saunders
What is the People's Voice?

A People’s Vote must be different from the last referendum. The vote in 2016 has been hugely divisive. Compromises are not available. We are either inside or or outside the European Union. As the debate has continued over the Withdrawal Agreement attitudes have hardened. Leavers are not prepared to accept compromise in our ability to strike new trade deals with the rest of the world to preserve a closer trading relationship with those geographically closer and currently more important. Nor have they recognised the importance of safeguarding the Northern Ireland peace process if that means accepting constraints on our perceived national (English) sovereignty.

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Bob Saunders
Never Mind the Backstop: This is a Bad Deal, Full Stop

The analysis hones in on three fundamental downsides to the deal. First, promises made during the referendum have not been kept - indeed they cannot be kept because they were contradictory. This is not what people voted for. Second, this is a much worse deal than the current deal we have as members of the EU. And third, this vague deal leaves so much up in the air that we’ll be stuck negotiating Brexit for years to come - a “Brexternity” stretching out in front of us.

The document then shows how each of these problems will disrupt so many things: our trade, economy, security, sovereignty, global influence, rights, the NHS and the future of our young people.

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Bob Saunders
Christmas Message from Andrew Bannerman

Whilst the national situation re Brexit changes almost hourly and the prospect for 2019 is shrouded in uncertainty and division, we have much to celebrate as the People’s Vote now looks much more likely than when we first started campaigning.

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Bob Saunders
Shrewsbury welcomed Anna Soubry, Mike Galsworthy and Madeleina Kay

Brexit: the decision for UK’s future lies ahead

Shrewsbury will be able to discover more about the realities of Brexit at a panel meeting featuring Anna Soubry, Conservative MP and supporter of a People's Vote; Dr Mike Galsworthy, founder of NHS Against Brexit and Scientists for EU; and #EUSupergirl, singer songwriter, Madeleina Kay. The event will be staged on Thursday 22 November at Shrewsbury Town Football Club.

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Bob Saunders
The Bake Off Approach to Brexit

Many thanks to Gary Bainbridge for this great Brexit analogy!

LEAVER: I want an omelette.
REMAINER: Right. It’s just we haven’t got any eggs.
LEAVER: Yes, we have. There they are. [HE POINTS AT A CAKE]
REMAINER: They’re in the cake.
LEAVER: Yes, get them out of the cake, please.
REMAINER: But we voted in 1974 to put them into a cake.
LEAVER: Yes, but that cake has got icing on it. Nobody said there was going to be icing on it.
REMAINER: Icing is good.
LEAVER: And there are raisins in it. I don’t like raisins. Nobody mentioned raisins. I demand another vote.
LEAVER: Right, where’s my omelette?
REMAINER: I told you, the eggs are in the cake.
LEAVER: Well, get them out.
EU: It’s our cake.
JEREMY CORBYN: Yes, get them out now.
REMAINER: I have absolutely no idea how to get them out. Don’t you know how to get them out?
LEAVER: Yes! You just get them out and then you make an omelette.
REMAINER: But how?! Didn’t you give this any thought?
LEAVER: Saboteur! You’re talking eggs down. We could make omelettes before the eggs went into the cake, so there’s no reason why we can’t make them now.
THERESA MAY: It’s OK, I can do it.
THERESA MAY: There was a vote to remove the eggs from the cake, and so the eggs will be removed from the cake.
REMAINER: Yeah, but…
LEAVER: Hang on, if we take the eggs out of the cake, does that mean we don’t have any cake? I didn’t say I didn’t want the cake, just the bits I don’t like.
EU: It’s our cake.
REMAINER: But you can’t take the eggs out of the cake and then still have a cake.
LEAVER: You can. I saw the latest Bake Off and you can definitely make cakes without eggs in them. It’s just that they’re horrible.
REMAINER: Fine. Take the eggs out. See what happens.
LEAVER: It’s not my responsibility to take the eggs out. Get on with it.
REMAINER: Why should I have to come up with some long-winded incredibly difficult chemical process to extract eggs that have bonded at the molecular level to the cake, while somehow still having the cake?
LEAVER: You lost, get over it.
THERESA MAY: By the way, I’ve started the clock on this.
REMAINER: So I assume you have a plan?
THERESA MAY: Actually, back in a bit. Just having another election.
REMAINER: Jeremy, are you going to sort this out?
JEREMY CORBYN: Yes. No. Maybe.
EU: It’s our cake.
LEAVER: Where’s my omelette? I voted for an omelette.
REMAINER: This is ridiculous. This is never going to work. We should have another vote, or at least stop what we’re doing until we know how to get the eggs out of the cake while keeping the bits of the cake that we all like.
REMAINER: Fine, I’m moving to France. The cakes are nicer there.
LEAVER: You can’t. We’ve taken your freedom of movement.

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Bob Saunders
Write This Wrong

Many thanks to all those who came to our Pen and Pint Session last Sunday 4th November.

Over 40 people wrote hand written letters to Daniel Kawczynski and there were also a few for neighbouring Shropshire and Telford MPs. We have copied them and will ensure that the originals are sent to the correct MPs with copies to the Conservative Chief Whip and the local Conservative party Association.

If you were not able to come along you can still write to your local MP. Just click on the title to this item and you will be directed to the website with full instructions.

Whatever emerges from Mrs May’s negotiations will be a million miles from whatever anyone expected after the 2016 Referendum. This whole process has divided the country, with the more than 50% of the electorate who did not support leaving have been completely ignored by both government and official opposition. We need leaders who want to heal these divisions and giving us all a further vote once the conditions of leaving are known, with the option to remain will be an important first step.

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Bob Saunders
200 Shrewsbury supporters joined crowds in London calling for a People’s Vote

Over 200 supporters from Open Britain Shrewsbury travelled to London on Saturday 20 October to take part in the People’s Vote March for the Future.


These supporters making the 340 mile round trip filled four coaches and joined a crowd of over 700,000 from all over the UK in what was the biggest protest yet demanding a People’s Vote on the final Brexit deal. The march was also recorded as the largest public protest at Government policy since the anti-Iraq war protest in 2003.


Open Britain Shrewsbury chairman, Andrew Bannerman said: “The number who descended on London to call for a People’s Vote on whatever deal the Government brings back from its negotiations with the EU, exceeded all expectations of both the organisers and police. The London march began at midday in Park Lane led by thousands of young people before finishing in Parliament Square where the crowds were addessed by the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan; business leader Deborah Meaden; and TV host and cook, Delia Smith.


The Shropshire marchers added their voices, calling for clear options to be placed in front of them – the Government’s Deal, No Deal, or Retaining our place as a leading member of the EU. The implications of each option should be clearly and succinctly explained to the electorate. We were not offered this at the Referendum in 2016, so this is not a re-run. A People’s Vote is the only fair and democratic way out of the shambles we have witnessed since 2016.”


He added: “We are waiting for our MP, Daniel Kawczynski to respond to our request for an urgent meeting. Our polls show that his constituents are overwhelmingly unhappy with his hard Brexit stance.  A no deal brexit will be an immediate catastrophe and is completely unacceptable to most people. We, particularly younger people, who will have to live with the consequences, have the democratic right to be shown the implications of any deal made by the Government and to vote on it.’’  

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Bob Saunders