Former diplomat and Minister under Gordon Brown, Lord Malloch-Brown, is planning to unite diehard Remoaners in a desperate last-ditch bid to stop Brexit when MPs and Lords get the opportunity of a veto in Parliament. Brown, who is a former UN Deputy Secretary-General and Minister with responsibility for Africa, Asia and the United States, has told The Guardian: “The aim will be to shift public opinion by the time MPs come next autumn to have the meaningful vote that was agreed last week. We cannot know precisely the Brexit deal that the meaningful vote will be on, but it will be the moment to stop the trainwreck.” He went on: “We need to sway public opinion nationally so that there is a majority to remain at the time of the vote in Parliament. We also have to lobby in constituencies in a targeted way so we are reaching Leave-voting MPs in constituencies where the majority voted Remain, and we have to work in constituencies where Remain MPs have been cowed by the support for Leave in their seats.” So that anti-Brexit brigade is being led by a former diplomat, Tony Blair and unelected Lords! Truly a movement of the people eh? The Tory Remoaners who forced through a vote in Parliament for a Brexit veto have a lot to answer for. The political class are now in full blocking mode and don’t seem to give a damn what the public voted for on June 23rd 2016.

Theresa May will face a Cabinet row over Brexit after the EU warned that there is “no way” that the Prime Minister will be able to strike a bespoke trade deal with Brussels. Michel Barnier, the EU’s chief Brexit negotiator, said that Britain must “face the consequences” of Brexit and cannot “cherry pick” and still enjoy the benefits of the Single Market after Brexit.  Allies of Boris Johnson, the Foreign Secretary, and Michael Gove, the Environment Secretary, said Mr Barnier’s significantly boosted their case for Britain to be free of EU regulations and laws after Brexit. Eurosceptics in the Cabinet, who also include David Davis, the Brexit Secretary, and Liam Fox, the International Trade Secretary, want Britain to diverge from the EU so it is free to strike trade deals with other countries. 

The European Union’s chief Brexit negotiator has said “no way” to Theresa May  securing a bespoke trade deal with Brussels.  Michel Barnier said the EU is not prepared to come up with a makeshift trade deal for the UK that knits together all the best bits of existing models. In an interview with 
Prospect magazine, conducted before EU leaders agreed to move on to the second stage of Brexit talks covering trade and transition, Mr Barnier warned the “most difficult” part of negotiations was now starting. Ms May has insisted that in the long term, the UK does not want a Norway-style relationship with the EU, which retains access to the single market at the cost of accepting its regulations, but also that the UK desires closer ties than a Canadian-style trade deal would allow. But Mr Barnier said: “They have to realise there won’t be any cherry picking. “We won’t mix up the various scenarios to create a specific one and accommodate their wishes, mixing, for instance, the advantages of the Norwegian model, member of the single market, with the simple requirements of the Canadian one.

Key cabinet ministers are on course to agree that Britain should be allowed to gradually diverge from European Union rules in an approach that could run into trouble in Brussels. Today Theresa May will hold the first discussion with the ten members of the European Union exit and trade (strategy and negotiations) sub-committee of cabinet ministers on what Britain’s relationship with the EU should be. There is a full cabinet meeting on the same issue tomorrow and it is considered so sensitive that no papers have been circulated in advance. Matters to be discussed at the meeting are thought to contain forecasts about different potential Brexit outcomes.

Trade talks

Theresa May will today insist that Britain is allowed to begin striking global trade deals and registering new EU arrivals on the first day after Brexit. Eurosceptics have voiced concerns over the Prime Minister’s plan for a two-year transition period following our official exit on March 29, 2019. Brussels has said during the period the UK will have to remain under the jurisdiction of the European Court of Justice and be forced to abide by freedom of movement rules. Critics say it is remaining in the EU in all but name. But in a bid to allay fears among her backbenches, Mrs May will today tell MPs the country will start the process of going its own way during the transition. In a further boost, it was reported last night that senior party figures could ask the PM to remain leader until the end of the transition period in 2021, shortly before the next election. In a statement to the Commons following a European Council summit in Brussels last week, Mrs May will welcome the ‘shared desire of the EU and the UK to make rapid progress on an implementation period’. 

Theresa May will insist on Monday that she will try to sign new free trade deals during the UK’s Brexit transition period, setting herself on a collision course with Brussels. Ms May will tell the House of Commons she will attempt to finalise the deals “where possible”, despite the EU signalling it would not be feasible under terms for the transition they are proposing. The Prime Minister will also use her statement to calm an emerging row over the conditions that should apply during the two-year period in which Britain untangles itself from EU systems. Earlier on Monday, she is also due to meet her most senior ministers to discuss what kind of trade deal the UK should have with Europe after the end of the transition, which is likely to last from 2019 to 2021. Ms May’s statement in the Commons will see her indicate that she is determined to push towards the UK’s post-Brexit systems on trade and immigration. She will say that during the transition, she intends to “register new arrivals from the EU as preparation for our future immigration system”. “And we will prepare for our future independent trade policy by negotiating – and where possible, signing – trade deals with third countries, which could come into force after the conclusion of the implementation period.”

ITV News
The UK will look to pursue trade deals with countries around the world despite potentially being bound by European Union rules for around two years after Brexit, Theresa May is to tell MPs. Delivering an update to the Commons on the recent Brussels summit, the Prime Minister will say that even though the UK is leaving the single market and customs union in March 2019 she wants “access to one another’s markets” to continue “as now” during an implementation period. According to the EU, during the transition period the UK would have to comply with the bloc’s trade policy – preventing it from agreeing its own deals with other countries. However, May will say the UK wants to sign agreements which would come into force after the “strictly time-limited” period has ended. “We will prepare for our future independent trade policy by negotiating – and where possible signing – trade deals with third countries, which could come into force after the conclusion of the implementation period,” she will say. May and her senior ministers will also begin the process of thrashing out the Government’s plans for a post-Brexit UK-EU trade deal as Brussels indicated she may not get the “special partnership” she wants. The Prime Minister will say there is a “shared desire” between the UK and EU for “rapid progress on an implementation period” before any UK-EU deal comes fully into effect. The EU’s negotiating position makes clear that the bloc expects the UK to observe all of its rules
including on freedom of movement – and accept the jurisdiction of the European Court of Justice (ECJ) during this time.

THERESA May will defy Brussels today to insist Britain will start striking new trade deals as soon as we leave the EU. Brexit tensions exploded afresh last night when No10 was also forced to slap down the EU chief negotiator Michel Barnier. Downing Street officials dismissed the veteran French politician’s claim  there is “no way” the UK will get the bespoke trade deal Mrs May has asked for as just an “opening salvo” from him. Mrs May will fire two broadsides of her own today to hit back at a set of stringent initial rules proposed by EU leaders when they formally declared the start of Brexit’s Phase Two – transition and trade talks – on Friday. One was that Britain must stick closely to all EU trade policy throughout the two year transition period after Brexit Day in 2019. But in a statement to the Commons today, Mrs May will tell MPs: “During this period we will prepare for our future independent trade policy by negotiating – and where possible signing – trade deals with third countries”. Lucrative new deals with countries such as the US will then come into force the moment transition finishes in 2021. Mrs May will also tee up a second flashpoint with Brussels, when she declares the Home Office will also start registering new arrivals from the EU during the transition period. That will also irritate some Brussels hardliners, who will insist free movement to and from European states must continue exactly as it does now. Laying down her terms for a swift three month negotiation of the transition period until March, Mrs May will add: “We would propose that our access to one another’s markets would continue as now.”

Sky News
Theresa May will tell MPs the UK will look to sign trade deals with non-EU countries and prepare new immigration controls during a transitional deal with Brussels. Having seen EU leaders last week declare “sufficient progress” in Brexit negotiations in order to move on to the next phase of talks, the Prime Minister will outline her aims for her wished-for implementation period. The Government hopes the terms of a transitional deal will be agreed by March next year, with talks to begin in January. But, in appearing to set out her red lines for the discussions to come, Mrs May could be preparing the ground for a new battle with Brussels. The Prime Minister will tell the House of Commons on Monday of a “shared desire of the EU and the UK to make rapid progress” in agreeing the terms of what is expected to be a two-year Brexit transition period. “This will help give certainty to employers and families that we are going to deliver a smooth Brexit,” she will say.

Customs union

Labour is likely to announce that it wants to stay in a modified version of the EU customs union indefinitely, according to three members of the shadow cabinet. Senior Labour figures, including those from Brexit-supporting areas, said that the move was intended to make a major break from the government’s policy. Jeremy Corbyn’s party is likely to say that it wants to negotiate to be part of a new UK-EU customs union very similar to the one at present. It will also say that Britain should be part of future trade deals done by the EU. Critically, under Labour Britain would demand a seat at the table, on the EU side, in future trade talks between the EU and other countries.


MICHAEL Gove is to get his own navy to get foreign trawlers away after Brexit. Defra is to get its own squadron of armed patrol boats to prevent European boats fishing illegally in UK waters. The first ship of four, HMS Forth will have a 30mm gun, machine guns and a helicopter when it enters service next year. The others will be built at a cost of £350million, and one is being sent to the Falklands. The navy ships will be paid for by the Marine Management Organisation, part of the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, to patrol coastal waters in a contract worth millions of pounds. The ships form part of a policy to strengthen policing of UK waters once we leave the bloc in March 2019. A Defra spokesman said: “Leaving the EU means we will take back control of our waters. Access will be subject to negotiation, and will support a thriving future for our fishing sector. “We are reviewing all aspects of fishery management, including satellites, patrol vessels and aerial surveillance.” The news comes after Admiral Lord West said Britain’s three vessels were too few and the UK would be a “laughing stock” if it was unable to police the coastal waters.


Theresa May is being urged to delay her departure until close to the next election to avoid the Tory party engaging in a bloody battle that could ruin trade talks with the EU before they are complete. Cabinet ministers and senior backbenchers fear that any resignation before 2021 could be ruinous for the party and thwart the delicate negotiations, which are likely to continue after Brexit in March 2019. This view contrasts starkly with the position barely a fortnight ago, when the prime minister was facing suggestions that she would struggle to remain in the job much beyond Christmas, and when she lost a Commons vote last week. One cabinet minister told The Times: “She is not one to up sticks and leave.

THERESA May must remain as Prime Minister to stop a civil war that will bring down the Government and ruin Brexit, according to Cabinet Ministers. Theresa May faced calls to resign as party leader only a fortnight ago and last week lost an important Commons vote after a rebellion from pro-EU Conservative MPs. But, now Cabinet Ministers and senior backbenchers fear a resignation before 2021 would cause the Government to “fall” and ruin all the progress made on Brexit negotiations, which are likely to continue after Brexit. One senior minister said: “Mrs May will have to stay on indefinitely, not least because the government will fall if she goes.” Conservative MP Jacob Rees-Mogg said: “She has to stay until Brexit is completed because obviously, it would become the most heated part of any leadership contest.” Europe believes that the UK and the EU will only agree on broad principles next year in a document to run between 20 and 40 pages which list areas that are unresolved. Under this timetable, detailed negotiations will be left until after Brexit. Cabinet ministers believe the PM should stay in place rather than there being a leadership contest in 2019 or 2020.

Speed limits

Reducing the speed limit to 20mph has caused a rise in death and serious injuries, a council has admitted, but is refusing to reverse the scheme because it will cost too much.  Bath and North East Somerset Council spent £871,000 bringing in the 13 new speed zones just 12 months ago. But one year on, a report has found that the rate of people killed or seriously injured has gone up in seven out of the 13 new 20mph zones. The review of the traffic control measures warns that this is a problem nationally, adding: “There is no simple explanation for this adverse trend but it could be that local people perceive the area to be safer due to the presence of the 20mph restrictions and thus are less diligent when walking and crossing roads, cycling or otherwise travelling.”

More deaths have been recorded in new 20mph zones in Somerset than before the speed limit was lowered. Bath and North East Somerset council said that it could not afford to reverse the speed limit change, which cost £871,000 to bring in on 13 new zones a year ago, even though the rate of people being killed or seriously injured had gone up in seven zones. The council said that the findings were part of a national trend and suggested that people were “less diligent” when walking and crossing roads in the zones because they thought they were safer. Residents accused the council of not being prepared to find the money to stop people being hurt or killed.

When councillors brought in a series of 20mph zones, the idea was to make roads safer. But, a year on, they found that in more than half the zones more people have been killed or injured – yet they don’t have enough money to reverse the policy. A report has blamed the increase on pedestrians being ‘less diligent’ when crossing the roads because they think they are less dangerous. Bath and North East Somerset Council spent £871,000 bringing in 13 of the zones. However a report has found that the rate of people killed or seriously injured went up in seven out of the 13 areas in the 12 months after they were installed. In the others the rate either stayed the same or went down. The report published by the council claims the findings reflect a national trend.

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