Saturday, 19 January, 2019

Sir Patrick Stewart adds star power to Brexit referendum rally

Theresa May Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May arrives at a Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting business forum in London | Reuters
Melinda Barton | 16 April, 2018, 10:07

A new campaign group, backed by a star from the Star Trek movies, was launched Sunday calling for a public vote on a final Brexit deal.

The People's Vote - which held a rally in Camden, north London, on Sunday - aims to unite anti-Brexit groups.

In the meantime, both the Conservative and Labour parties have ruled out a second referendum.

And they faced jibes from Brexit supporters after recruiting Star Trek actor Sir Patrick Stewart to be a leading spokesman for the group.

He told the rally: "Unity, common cause, wellbeing of society and debate were paramount to the belief of this fictional character". 'Our country's future is at stake and we will not stand idly by, ' he said. "If the general public demand a Individuals's Vote, politicians will fall in line".

Both Prime Minister Theresa May's Conservatives and the Labour Party have ruled out a second referendum after Britons voted 52-48% to leave the bloc nearly two years ago, and the country is due to leave the European Union in March next year.

Speaking to the BBC at the event, Labour peer Lord Adonis said: "People want a say..."

"No-one had any idea what the consequences of Brexit were going to be".

"We'll do everything we can in Parliament for a people's vote. This issue is far too important to leave to the politicians". Tory Remainer Anna Soubry told the crowd in London that, whatever deal is done, "you and your grandchildren will be less prosperous than you are now".

James McGrory, executive director of Open Britain, which is supporting the People's Vote campaign, said: "Whether you think the government will negotiate a good deal or bad deal, Brexit is definitely a big deal".

In the European referendum in 1974, Huddersfield-born PM Wilson urged voters to vote Yes to remaining in the European Community.

He said: "The cost of war was everywhere and many never recovered from it. The public don't want it".

Stewart added: "As time has gone by, the information that we are receiving about the terms and conditions of that separation are quite unlike the terms and conditions that were spoken of so loosely during the 2016 campaign". What I am motivated by is history and emotion.

Sir Patrick went on to discuss his upbringing in working-class Yorkshire, where he witnessed the aftermath of the Second World War.

He added: "They voted with a substantial majority to leave the EU. We're now trying to deliver on that mandate from the people".

Sir Patrick Stewart has declared that two of his most well-known characters would have voted Stay, as he helped launch a marketing campaign for a referendum on the ultimate Brexit deal.