Lincolnshire leaders on UK’s decision to leave EU

All districts in Lincolnshire voted for Brexit, joining the majority of areas across the country for a 52% Leave vote.

Click to view full Greater Lincolnshire results and turnout.

Click to view full Greater Lincolnshire results and turnout.

After a dramatic night, the final results showed a remain majority for all of Lincolnshire and most of the country. Catch up on the night’s events on our liveblog here.

This was followed by the announcement at just after 8am that Prime Minister David Cameron would be stepping down. 

With the magnitude of Britain’s decision settling, politicians and business leaders across the county are sharing their reflections:

Lincolnshire County Councillor Colin Davie

Councillor Colin Davie, Executive Member for Economic Development at Lincolnshire County Council. Photo: Steve Smailes for The Lincolnite

Councillor Colin Davie, Executive Member for Economic Development at Lincolnshire County Council. Photo: Steve Smailes for The Lincolnite

“It is now clear that our country has chosen hope over fear and that a new day has dawned in the history of our great country.

“We are not diminished by this decision but strengthened and we should now pull together to deliver a stronger Lincolnshire and a fairer country for all.

City of Lincoln Council Leader Ric Metcalfe

City of Lincoln Council Leader, Councillor Ric Metcalfe

City of Lincoln Council Leader, Councillor Ric Metcalfe

“This is not good news for Great Britain. However, the people have had their say.”

Boston and Skegness MP Matt Warman

Matt Warman, MP for Boston and Skegness.

Matt Warman, MP for Boston and Skegness.

“Britain has decided to gamble on Brexit – while I personally took the view that it wasn’t a risk I wanted to take, I’ve also said it was one person one vote, and a gamble that could pay off. The government now has a duty to make sure exit negotiations with Europe are as painless as possible.

“I very much respect the will of voters in our region and across the country, and we have a long road ahead of us. Changes won’t be seen overnight, but I look forward to working with colleagues from Lincolnshire and within Government to make sure that the inevitable uncertainty does not cause the predicted economic damage to people’s jobs and livelihoods.

“We do now have a chance to change immigration policies and our trading arrangements; I hope that those do result in the promised improvements that Brexit campaigners suggested – as the Prime Minister himself has said, Britain can prosper outside the EU.”

East Midlands MEP Emma McClarkin

Emma-McClarkin-MEP-large.jpg

“A new day has dawned for the British people. The destiny of our great country is in our hands. Britain will now be a freer, more democratic and prosperous country. Our future today is bright.

“Having campaigned for a Leave vote, I am naturally absolutely delighted that, against all the odds, the force of our arguments has cut through and resonated with a majority of the British people.

“I hope that those in the remain campaign will now accept the result as the settled will of the British people, and work positively to help ensure a swift, orderly and friendly exit from the EU for the United Kingdom.

“We must now all work in the national interest and it is now up to us as politicians to deliver the will of the British people. I look forward to helping out in any way I can in the days months and years ahead.”

Former Labour MP candidate David Prescott

David Prescott. Photo: Steve Smailes for The Lincolnite

David Prescott. Photo: Steve Smailes for The Lincolnite

“Well, we tried our best but it still wasn’t good enough.

“I’ve spent the last six months campaigning for us to stay in the EU, from running market stalls in Newark to touring the East Midlands doing debates and talking to people.

“Now our country is divided, our economy is about to go into a severe shock and we could even see the collapse of the EU and Scotland leave the UK.

“Cameron granting a referendum was never about staying in Europe. It was about remaining in Downing Street by winning over UKIP votes at the last General Election.

“But what’s vital now is that we stick together.
“We’re in the driving seat to negotiate a new deal with the EU that will hopefully work in our favour.

“Not as good as what we have, but we must try and get something similar to secure the three million jobs that are linked to our trade in Europe.

“But Labour must take the lead on this. It will take two years to engineer our divorce with the EU.

“And if a week is a long time in politics, two years is an eternity.

“So let’s set the pace in developing a framework that deals with people’s concerns.”

Business consultant Sue Liburd

Sue Liburd. Photo: Steve Smailes for The Lincolnite.

Sue Liburd. Photo: Steve Smailes for The Lincolnite.

“The EU referendum campaign has been divisive, ugly and bitter. Creating divisions at home, in schools, at work, across business and in our communities.

“I am hugely dismayed with the result and now gravely concerned about the future of our Union, our leadership in the world and our economic growth and stability. Although I believe in democracy and we the electorate have spoken, I do feel we have made a mistake.

“We live in an interconnected, digital and collaborative world. Our vote to exit the EU and stand alone, I fear leaves us weakened and vulnerable.

“How will we heal our divisions at home and in our communities, how will our warring politicians successfully uncouple us from our biggest trade partner and lead us through a difficult divorce, negotiating the numerous agreements necessary to trade with the world? We are entering unchartered waters and difficult times.”

East Midlands MEP Andrew Lewer

Conservative MEP for the East Midlands, Andrew Lewer

Conservative MEP for the East Midlands, Andrew Lewer

“I welcome the UK’s – and in particular the East Midlands’ – truly remarkable and historic decision to leave the European Union.

“It seems a long time since I carefully weighed up the remain and leave arguments and decided “on balance” to vote and campaign against staying in the EU.

“There’s no doubt the outcome has come as a shock to many – not least the financial markets. It is important that we act carefully and reasonably to plan and negotiate our exit. I do not believe the “Leave” vote means we are turning our back on our European neighbours. Rather, we have chosen to take control our own destiny and reject the ever-closer union that was the EU project.

“I believe we can maintain and secure mutually beneficial relationships across Europe and beyond to strengthen trade, education and cultural opportunities. We do not leave the EU today, there is a long period of careful negotiation ahead. The fundamentals of the British economy are strong. We continue to be a tolerant society, including to those who have come to work here and make their lives here.

“David Cameron was right to give the country the chance to have its say over our continuing membership of the EU. He has shown extraordinary leadership over the last six years. It is sad to see him announce he is stepping down but statesmanlike of him to postpone that to help to ensure there is a period of calm and stability.

“I will continue to work hard as a Conservative East Midlands MEP to support the exit negotiations, to achieve the best result for the UK and to promote good relations with our European colleagues.”