Stronger In or Vote Leave: The view from the school mums

In the first of a new series, Lucy Ashton gauges the views of people outside of the political bubble, on the EU referendum. This week, its school mums.

The young children in this Sheffield gymnastics class are blissfully unconcerned with politics as they flip over bars and cartwheel along crash mats.

But their mums are starting to give the referendum some thought, although they feel there’s not enough information out there yet.

“I am moving towards voting for us to stay in Europe because it’s a fear of the unknown,” says Dawn, as she watches her daughter handstand in the sports hall.

Perched on a wooden bench, she adds: “I will vote but it does worry me that the general public get to decide something which is much bigger than us – this is why we elected a Government, to make these decisions.”

Her view on the referendum will resonate with those who campaigned for devolution in the UK.

“My concern is that the politicians are very focused on London and the impact that remaining with or leaving Europe will have on the City,” she adds, glancing at her tumbling daughter.

“The politicians all talk about it from the point of view of the City, they don’t look at how it would impact on me as a teacher in Sheffield, or a coal miner in Wales or a small businessman in Scunthorpe.

“They seem so far removed from us and Westminster is a world away from what is reality for a huge amount of the population.”

Dawn is adamant she will mark her X though. “I teach my girls about Emmeline Pankhurst so I will definitely vote.”

Her friend and fellow mum Sharon takes a different view.

“I want us to come out of Europe as I don’t believe people in Brussels should be deciding what we are doing in Britain,” she says, sitting crossed leg on the sports hall floor.

“I will definitely vote but I don’t think there has been enough information about the referendum.”

With divided views such as this, the politicians will have to jump through a few hoops of their own between now and June.

Lucy Ashton is a journalist and former Political Editor

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3 Responses to “Stronger In or Vote Leave: The view from the school mums”

  1. Mike Stallard says:

    “there’s not enough information out there yet.”

    Sharon is right: we are better off out.

    Here is how we do it: Negotiating our way out of Europe is going to take years – yes, years. We are joined at the hip to Europe: airspace, computers, phones, railways, farming, fishing, law, banking…
    We badly need to know what will happen over those years of negotiation.

    The EU has promised us Associate Membership because everyone – from M. Juncker down – realises that the British are not fitting in. And never have. We will never be part of a greater Europe based and run by the Eurozone. The piece of paper which Mr Cameron brought back is right on this at least.

    We should accept Associate Membership but only on these terms and only while the negotiations are going on:

    Continuing membership of the European Economic Area (aka the Common Market with all the immigration stuff as well while we are negotiating only).

    Apply for membership of European Free Trade Area along with Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein but only while the negotiations are in place.

    That way the transition will be painless. There will be no jobs lost. No money will be lost. Everything will continue just the same as usual. So all these scary figures and numbers being bandied about will not be necessary.

    Please would you relay this important information to Dawn and ask her to take a look at the following website?

  2. John P Reid says:

    Well said mike

  3. Tafia says:

    Careful Mike – you’ll destabilise Project Fear.

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