“On 23rd June 2016, Independence Day, the British public turned out in droves to stick two-fingers up
to the Political Establishment by voting to leave the European Union. It wasn’t just national
Government that they held in contempt, but our ‘establishment’ on Coventry City Council.
On 26th May 2016 the City Council held an extraordinary meeting to decide which way we should
‘recommend’ to our residents how they should vote. I was pleased to make my maiden speech at the
meeting and to advocate that we should leave. In the end I was one of only three Brexiteer
Councillors to support ‘Leave’, with the vast majority voting Remain. But, as usual the Council was
totally out of tune with our residents who voted by 56% to Leave. As the joint campaign co-ordinator
for Vote Leave in Coventry there was never any doubt in my mind how our residents would vote; I
spoke to many residents on the street and on the doorstep.
Now our own ‘Cabinet Member’ for Finance, Cllr John Mutton, says that the residents have made a
mistake; that they have voted to support Coventry receiving less funding, because we get money
from the EU to fund certain projects. What he fails to realise is that the money we get from the EU is
OUR OWN MONEY we’re getting back. The European Union doesn’t own money, it is given to them
by the member states and we pay in far more than we get back. Of course we would be getting even
less back had Mrs Thatcher not got us a rebate in 1984, a rebate that the European Commissioners
were loathe to accept.
Imagine giving someone ten pounds, then that person promises to give you five pounds back with
conditions on how it should be spent and by when it should be spent. Any reasonable person would
conclude it’s far better to keep the ten pounds and spend it howsoever you wish.
This was one of the main reasons the British public wanted to leave. To have our own democratically
elected Government deciding how to spend our money. This may of course include giving money and
investment to Coventry, in spite of our spendthrift Council! If they don’t, we can always vote in a
So in spite of what Cllr Mutton says, I would like to say ‘thank you’ to the residents of Coventry for
voting to Leave and for them to be assured that some Councillors respect their decision.”
Cllr Glenn Williams
Bablake Ward, Coventry City Council
This was a piece submitted to us by Independent Councillor, Glenn Williams. Want to get your voice heard? Email us! @ email@example.com.
Please note: All opinion pieces are those of the writers and do not reflect the thoughts of any other contributor to The Coventrian.