After the vote ... and before the results

Thank you to everyone who voted - or tried to vote - on Thursday. 

The conservative right wing who never wanted Theresa May as prime minister have finally managed to carry out their putsch (aided, of course, by the Prime Minister's own mistakes and mis-judgements). They have also succeeded in a classic piece of news management - generating a big news headline to push speculation about their party's poor election result down the news channels.

But there is another news story that we shouldn't lose sight of - the many EU citizens in the UK, and UK citizens abroad who have been unable to have their vote counted in this week's election.

It is unacceptable that people entitled to vote have been refused their rights, but there are widespread reports of

EU citizens on the electoral register not being sent the form they need to be able to vote yesterday, or having got and returned the form in time, the local authority failing to process it in time, or even after having had a letter from the local authority confirming they could vote, being refused a vote at the polling station.


UK citizens with a registered postal vote address in another country not being sent their vote in time to return it before polls closed yesterday.

We recommend that anyone denied a vote should complain the the Chief Executive of their local authority, to the Chair of the electoral commission and to their MP. A draft letter that can be adapted to fit individual circumstances can be downloaded here



European elections

The European Parliament elections are on May 23rd!

The European Parliament elections are scheduled for May 23rd to elect Members of the European Parliament that votes on future policies, rules and regulations of the European Union - the EU is controlled not by unelected bureacrats but by democratically elected Members of the European Parliament and members of each country's democratically elected government. 

Although there are three North East MEPs, our UK election law says we each have only one vote on May 23rd. We can vote for a party, but not the individual candidates (other countries do it differently).

There are seven parties standing in the North East of England:

Conservative - Labour - Liberal Democrat - Green - UKIP - Brexit - Change UK

Many of us regret that some of these parties with similar views didn't come to an arrangement to work together, but the UK's election system doesn't make that easy, especially with an election that has been arranged at short notice.

North East for Europe is a cross party group and does not plan to endorse any particular party,
but we want pro-Remain and pro-Peoples Vote parties to receive a majority of the votes cast,
and we want as many pro-EU MEPs as possible.

And next time someone tells you that the EU is not democratic, please do gently point out that the election is happening across the EU.


European elections

The European Parliament elections are on May 23rd!

Easter is over, and it seems that everyone is back at work - but Brexit still isn't working, and no-one yet knows if the Labour party's talks with Government will get anywhere, or even if Theresa  May's Government is willing to change anything in their thrice-rejected proposals.

So the European Parliament elections seem set to go ahead on May 23rd. Nominations close on Thursday 25th April, but it seems that Remainers and Leavers will each have a wide choice of parties.

Here in the North East, with only three MEP places, many of us regret that the parties didn't come to an arrangement to work together, but the UK's election system doesn't make that easy. 

North East for Europe want to encourage anyone who is eligible but not currently registered to vote to get their registration in by the closing date of May 7th - you can register at

And next time someone tells you that the EU is not democratic, please do gently point out that the election is happening across the EU.

The European Parliament election is happening because the EU is democratic - we voters choose the MEPs and the MEPs have to approve the EU budget and any new EU rules and laws, and will have a vote on the make up of the new EU commission that will be set up after the election. In many ways our MEPs have more influence on how the EU works than our MPs do on the Government in Westminster.


Indicative Votes 2

Indicative Votes 2

It is disappointing that Monday's round of indicative votes didn't produce any positive decisions, but our view of the results is that the proposal for a "confirmatory public vote" again was the most popular among MPs. Importantly more MPs backed it than last week so there seems to be a momentum building that we hope will see this either alone of as a combined proposal being supported by the majority in the end.

More votes are expected on Wednesday. Meanwhile let's keep making the case to MPs that since they can't agree on what Brexit should look like, they should put the decision back to us, the people of the UK, and see if the majority even want Brexit any more.

You can see how your MP voted by going to the BBC website at You can write to your MP to let them know that you want them to support a People's Vote or revoke Article 50.

And the petition to revoke article 50 and abandon Brexit now stands at over six million and rising - anyone who hasn't yet signed can do so at



Indicative votes 1 - How North East MPs voted

Coming soon - Indicative votes 2!

Following the House of Commons rejecting the Withdrawal Agreement (for the third time) on Friday 29th, A second round of "Indicative votes" are expected on Monday 1st April, with MPs being asked to reconsider the options that got most support last time. This weekend it is important to contact MPs- thanking and encouraging those who have already backed a second referendum and putting pressure on those MPs who didn't back it on Wednesday 27th march (especially the 9 North East Labour rebels).

Labour (including Jeremy Corbyn) are now officially calling for a public vote on any Brexit deal.

If you have a Labour MP who didn't vote for this on Wednesday please email or tweet them to ask why not?

(See the table below to find how your MP voted)

Indicative votes 1

On Wednesday MPs were finally able to start voting for alternatives to the prime Minister's deal. In the first stage of the "indicative votes" nothing got a majority but the best supported options were (i) as second referendum (ii) a customs union and (iii) Labour's alternative plan (changes to the withdrawal agreement so that it includes protections to workers' rights, a permanent customs union, and close alignment to the single market).


For the first time, Labour officially backed the vote on a second referendum. Unfortunately 27 Labour MPs voted against and around 20 more did not vote. Six North East Labour MPs and all three conservatives voted against a referendum. Another three Labour MPs from the region were in Parliament but did not vote on this option.

Constituency MP Party Voted For or Against a second referendum Number of signatures from constituency on the Revoke Article 50 petition
Berwick-upon-Tweed Anne-Marie Trevelyan MP Con Against 5215
Bishop Auckland Helen Goodman MP Lab For 3845
Blaydon Liz Twist MP Lab For 5783
Blyth Valley Mr Ronnie Campbell MP Lab Against 3879
City of Durham Dr Roberta Blackman-Woods MP Lab For 8409
Darlington Jenny Chapman MP Lab For 4896
Easington Grahame Morris MP Lab Against 2168
Gateshead Ian Mearns MP Lab Did not vote 5894
Hartlepool Mike Hill MP Lab Against 2714
Hexham Guy Opperman MP Con Against 8445
Houghton and Sunderland South Bridget Phillipson MP Lab For 3041
Jarrow Mr Stephen Hepburn MP Lab Against 3998
Middlesbrough Andy McDonald MP Lab For 2907
Middlesbrough South and East Cleveland Mr Simon Clarke MP Con Against 3908
Newcastle upon Tyne Central Chi Onwurah MP Lab For 7020
Newcastle upon Tyne East Rt Hon Nicholas Brown MP Lab For 11159
Newcastle upon Tyne North Catherine McKinnell MP Lab For 7406
North Durham Rt Hon Kevan Jones MP Lab Against 4001
North Tyneside Mary Glindon MP Lab Did not vote 6012
North West Durham Laura Pidcock MP Lab For 5100
Redcar Anna Turley MP Lab For 2574
Sedgefield Phil Wilson MP Lab For 3565
South Shields Mrs Emma Lewell-Buck MP Lab Against 3377
Stockton North Alex Cunningham MP Lab For 3148
Stockton South Dr Paul Williams MP Lab For 5161
Sunderland Central Julie Elliott MP Lab For 4470
Tynemouth Sir Alan Campbell MP Lab For 10143
Wansbeck Ian Lavery MP Lab Did not vote 4158
Washington and Sunderland West Mrs Sharon Hodgson MP Lab For 3334

(Petition numbers at 11.36 on Thursday 28th March)

You can check how your MP voted on all the Indicative Vote options at the BBC or Guardian websites (and elsewhere!)

If the Government don't get the Withdrawal Agreement approved by Monday, it is expected that MPs will have another round of indicative votes, concentrating on the alternatives that had most support on Wednesday.


Hearts not Hate

Hearts not Hate

The North East for Europe team in Sunderland gave Nigel Farage and his Betrayal March a warm reception on 16th March with their hearts showing the benefits to the UK of being in the EU. They then welcomed him in Teesside with Teesside4EU and went down to North Yorkshire to make ensure he had got the message loud and clear. Unfortunately Farage had left after the first leg of his march. Maybe because he was so disappointed with their numbers.

You can join in the Hearts not Hate campaign at every Betrayal March location down the country by contacting your local group and asking to take part. If you're not able to make one of the campaigns then don't worry you can also support this campaign by downloading the graphics on the campaign page print them out and take a photo to share on social media with #SharetheLove and #loveEU. Let the people know why you want the UK to remain a leading country at the heart of Europe.


Peoples Vote march in London

Put it to the People:

Parliament is in a logjam. We need things to change. The only sensible way out is for Parliament to put the final decision on Brexit back to the People.

The People's Vote campaign is on the march again - on Saturday 23rd March in London.

Last October around 700,000 people came. This time it could be even bigger.

Maybe Parliament will have backed a People's Vote by then, in which case this becomes the start of the campaign to stay in the EU; if not this is the last and best chance to show the strength and depth of public opposition to the course recommended by Theresa May and her government, and it is not too late for Parliament to force a change.

Caroline Lucas MP has said "The 23rd of March is likely to be High Noon for Brexit - when anyone who cares about the future, anyone who feels betrayed by broken promises in the last referendum, anyone who wants to prevent years more of this chaos needs to make their voice heard".

North East for Europe urges anyone who agrees to join us in London if at all possible.

What you can do now:

  • Arrange your travel - by train , Megabus, National Express , or any other way you can, please go. Cheapest travel tickets are selling fast so don't wait. (Also, if returning by train, please be aware that trains leaving King Cross after 6.30pm on 23rd march will finish at York with ongoing journey by connecting bus and/or train depending on your destination.
TRAVEL UPDATE: Please note that we are not able to take any more bookings for coach places - we started with one coach and now have four coaches going the North East to the march, as well as the many people who are travelling by train or other means.  

North East for Europe are arranging meeting points for people from the North East before the march, and a social afterwards for those taking a late train or are not in a rush to leave.


Share the Love

There are many things to love about being a member of the EU:

Reasons include:

  • Cleaner beaches & cleaner air
  • Freedom to work, study or retire in 27 other countries
  • food safety rules that protect our health and let our farmers export theior products across Europe
  • protection for workers rights including 28 days holiday per year
  • investment in regions such as the North East of England
  • the 50 trade deals we already have with countries such as Australia, New Zealand, Canada and Japan.

For Valentines day and week, North East for Europe is celebrating some of the many reasons to love the EU, and we want everyone to share the love with family, with friends and with our MPs.

Visit our sharethelove page to find out more!


Another Theresa May U turn

Another Theresa May U turn!

Theresa May spent almost the whole of the first year of her time as prime minister saying she wouldn't call an early General Election - then she called one!

She has spent the last few weeks telling us that the withdrawal she negotiated with the EU27 couldn't be changed - but on January 29th she agreed it should be renegotiated.

So when she repeatedly tells us that there wont be another referendum - a People's Vote on the Brexit deal - why should we believe her? - in fact, based on her track record we should assume that there will be another U turn, and that sometime in the next two months she will be announcing it!

So fir the first half of February the clock to Brexit will continue to run down, and the Government will strenuously(?) try to fix their withdrawal deal to get something that the EU, the DUP and the whole of the Conservative party can agree on. Good luck with that!

The likelihood must be that when Parliament comes to the next 'meaningful vote' on Brexit, we will be back to a stalemate. Parliament so far has voted against no-deal, and the only way out of the stalemate of a deal that it doesn't support will be to pass the decision back to the people.

The sooner our MPs accept this, the sooner we can find a way out of the Brexit mess.

North East for Europe will be continuing to press our local MPs to back a #PeoplesVote. If you can help, please join us



Waiting for Parliament to take back control

In 2016, the Leave campaign was keen for the UK Parliament to take back control. Oddly, many of the Brexiteers don't seem so keen on that now - and the Government certainly isn't.

Somehow, we now have a Government that failed to win an election saying that it would be unconstitutional for MPs to decide what should happen with Brexit, and undemocratic to let the people of this country have a vote on it!

The next big day in Parliament will be Tuesday 29th. And meanwhile the campaign for a People's Vote continues. We are continuing to meet the public at street stalls and other events, to deliver leaflets, and to press our MPs to support a People's Vote - the only sensible way out of the Brexit stalemate.

If you can help, or want to know more, please contact us