The People’s Vote March in pictures

Yesterday I was one in a million! The People’s Vote campaign estimated that there were one million people on the streets yesterday asking for a final say on the Brexit deal.

I hope that Ed Davey forgives me the internal flight down, but I felt that it was worth it, just this once, to show support for something that is so critical.

I left home, where it was bucketing with rain, at 5am. The taxi driver who actually knocked on my door, even though he was fie minutes early, is not popular as my family had to deal with a barking dog who then thought it was play time.

Unlike last year, when our plane sat on the tarmac for two hours, everything went really well and I was in central London just after 9. I had some fortifying pancakes and then headed to join the LIb Dem contingent.

I was not expecting this as I arrived to pick up my placard at Wellington Arch.  It was quite a strange sight to see an example of British pomp next to Lib Dems in Bollocks to Brexit t-shirts.

Sal Brinton was there to greet the Lib Dems who were turning up to march and Claire Halliwell was handing out a huge supply of placards. I enthusiastically grabbed one of the “No plan, no clue, no Brexit ones” which I thought were stunning.  At the front of the march, Lib Dem MEPs were gathering to lead the Lib Dem contingent while their Westminster colleagues were a wee bit busy.

It was so good to see so many Lib Dems from all over the country. I spent time with people from Sheffield, London, Glasgow, Torbay and Huntingdon. The latter group included  their PPC and regular LDV contributor Mark Argent who told me that he had been on Masterchef back in 1995. So we all want to go round to his house for dinner now.

The march had a huge pall of anxiety about it. Previous occasions had been much more joyful and hopeful, but on this one, we really didn’t know what was going to happen in Parliament.

There was one moment on the march where I almost ended up in tears. Someone sang Ode to Joy from a PA system as we were walking down Pall Mall. The way I felt reminded me of the last days of the Scottish independence referendum when it felt like my country was about to go through a damaging break up.

Siobhan Benita’s face when the Letwin Amendment passed was a joy.

Despite that outcome yesteday,  we are still at a moment of huge danger. The reasons this deal is terrible are getting lost in the “Get Brexit Done” and various toy-throwing episodes from the Prime Minister. Workers’ rights, environmental protections and the basic integrity of the UK are under threat. The idea that this could pass without us getting our say on it is one of the worst democratic outrages I have ever seen.

PPCs Richard Flowers and Lisa Maria Bornemann told me why they were marching:

As always, there were very many Dogs against Brexit. Here are a selection:

 

And there was a gorgeous black lab who I wasn’t able to photograph because he was too interested in my Hazel’s biscuits in my pocket.

Let’s not forget another sort of animal altogether – Jacob the Unicorn.

After the march and a couple of hours in the pub, it was time to head for the 18:00 from Kings Cross to Edinburgh – which might have been re-titled the Bollocks to Brexit Express.

I am still exhausted today, but I am so glad I went.

* Caron Lindsay is Editor of Liberal Democrat Voice and blogs at Caron's Musings

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2 Comments

  • Sue Sutherland 20th Oct '19 - 5:05pm

    I can’t attend the anti Brexit marches so thank you Lindsay for making all that effort. It’s fascinating that you picked up your placard by Wellington arch because he is part of the history of Europe that eventually led to the EU. Arguably he won the greatest victory our country has had when he and our Prussian allies defeated Napoleon at Waterloo, stopping the Emperor from rampaging all over Europe gobbling up countries for the second time. However, he did not glory in war because he felt that the only thing worse than a battle won was a battle lost.
    Britain has always been a part of Europe, participating in wars but also in diplomatic attempts to prevent them, trying to keep the ‘balance of power’ to prevent one country from becoming dominant. Wellington was at school in France for a time together with other young men from aristocratic British families.
    Even though he was a Tory I think he would be in favour of the attempt to unite European countries politically and prevent any more bloodshed. I’m sure he would have laughed at Bollocks to Brexit T shirts because he had a certain chutzpah, telling the publishers of his mistress’s memoirs to ‘publish and be damned’.

  • Katharine Pindar 20th Oct '19 - 7:36pm

    Great to have this vivid account, complete with pictures of lovely dogs and Lib Dem people, thank you Caron. It complements excellently the six rather easier hours I spent at home, watching or listening to BBC Parliament, fitting in a lot of baking, cooking entertaining a friend to coffee and getting the ironing done at the same time! I saw and heard Jo, Sarah Wollaston and Tom Brake, got rather bored with the ever-eloquent Scots Nats, avoided Theresa May and admired Keir Starmer – a Labour leader one could imagine us working with. But as for Boris Johnson’s follow-up of sending the three messages to the EU, how embarrassingly childish the man is! However, the hope of getting the People’s Vote is still alive, thank goodness.

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