Those chilling words spoken by David Dimbleby on the morning of 24th June 2016 still send shivers down my spine....
"We can now say the decision taken in 1975 by this country to join the common market has been reversed by this referendum to leave the EU..... the British people have spoken and the answer is, "We are out"'.
Frozen with despair, I felt lost, confused and isolated. It was if those words had rippled outwards rocking my very foundations. As the hours passed I reached out to those closest to me, there was a common sense of disbelief. For the first time (as an adult) I felt detached from society. It seemed as if the message broadcast in the news and printed in the press had flipped over night. The underlying tone had changed. As the days and weeks passed by, words become increasingly filled with spite and aggression. Name calling was ripe, (such as; sore loser, re-moaner, saboteur") as any resistance to the result was stamped on.
Hurt, rejected and disempowered I watched in horror as the government reacted to the referendum result. Cameron resigned, Brexiters appointed into cabinet roles and then there was the ridiculous, last minute general election in 2017!
The simmering fire in my belly could on-longer be tamed. I had this urge to do something proactive......
Completely out of character I decided at the age of 39, to head to London for my first ever march. On the 25th March 2017, I joined thousands of other Europeans in Park lane to march against Brexit. It was nothing like I expected. The atmosphere was peaceful, friendly and celebratory (as it also happened to fall on the European unions 60th anniversary).
People had come dressed for the occasion with brightly coloured clothes, balloons and painted faces. Some had spent hours labouring over beautiful, creative and humorous placards. We were encouraged to bring freshly cut flowers to lay down in front of the Houses of Parliament, as the sun shone down these flowers released the sweetest smelling aroma.
Whole families were involved from babies, toddlers, teenagers, parents and grandparents. Possibly due to the weather, there was a surprisingly high turnout so the march was delayed by over an hour. As we waited patiently, we chatted away, learnt witty chants to Star Wars themed songs and soaked up the sense of finally belonging.
On Saturday 23rd June, I'm returning to London to march for a "People's Vote on the final deal". I urge you to join in too. It is being supported by organisations such as; Open Britain, the European Movement UK, Britain for Europe, Our Future our Choice, For our Future's Sake, Healthier In, Scientists for EU, Trade Deal Watch, Wales for Europe, In Facts and others.
If you are interested in taking part, come along to our first informal gathering at the George in Tunbridge Wells. Check out the details in our events section. It will be a great opportunity to meet fellow Europeans and have the opportunity to discuss plans, share ideas and possibly even travel up together.
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