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Saturday, 25 June 2016

The morning after...

Not an opportunity I could miss really, to post a comment on the EU referendum. Yesterday's vote has been discussed,  argued over and specffulated about for months. For some of us the opportunity to make our mark regarding the relationship with the rest of Europe has been a long time coming. Forty one years have past since the people of Britain went to the polls over Europe. Back then it was a 67% yes vote from 65% turnout.

Back then it was the European Economic Community, no-one was openly talking about fiscal and political union. I wasn't old enough to vote, a couple of years short of voting age. Now you're trying to do the maths and work out how old I might be, well, good luck.

The important factor is that I, along with the biggest turnout (72;2%) for any vote since the 1992 General Election, made our way to the Polling Stations and put our cross in the relevant box.

In the first past the post system in British politics, a vote over fifty percent of the votes cast is a majority. 51.9 voted to leave, 48.9 voted to stay across the country. A close call nationally but looking at the country region by region the vote was clearer. Across the Yorkshire region the split between the votes was 61,56% to leave, 38.44% to stay. A clear majority. The BBC website has an intriguing scale of how the regions voted

London, Scotland and Northern Ireland voted to remain, and had the lowest turnout. Flooding in parts of London may have had some effect. The south east mirrored the national vote almost exactly and in every other region the vote was to leave, only the margin varied.

I'm sure that will be investigated by future historians who look back on the events of the past few days.

The result throws up as many questions as it answered and the ripples of the vote were felt in the financial markets across the world almost immediately. The reaction from some of the figures at the heart of Europe was emotionally charged and maybe had the power to launch teddy bears out of prams. Behind all the flimflam, bluster and bull I think the establishment thought they had it in the bag.

It takes nerve to be the first to get up and leave the party, you just know everyone will be talking about you when you've left.

So how did I vote, well, it's a secret ballot, so I can't say.

Through the window from my desk I look out on trees, and the greatest tree in the English wood is the Oak. Roots planted firmly in the soil and its trunk, with a good solid heart pushes up to the heavens, gnarled time worn and weather beaten boughs reach for the sky, branches lift a crown fit for a king: a crown of... leaves.

I'm going for a beer now; a Spitfire, a good Kentish ale,  Seems appropriate to the day.
I waited a long time for this one!

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