While watching ‘Question Time’ recently it occurred to me that there is a need to engage in a wider examination of the issues that influenced Brexit. In 1973, Edward Heath signed the entry documents to the EEC, despite opinion polls in 1972 indicating that the British people were largely opposed. Some Constitutional experts believe this action was a violation of ‘Constitutional Convention’ requiring prior consultation with the people (either by general election or referendum), on any measure involving constitutional change. On assuming office in 1974, Harold Wilson promised to renegotiate terms and consult with the people by referendum. A government pamphlet produced in 1975 urged people to vote in favour. The ‘renegotiated terms’, concerned food, money and jobs; it did not address the underlying objectives of the EC. However, given the political turmoil at the time, it came as no surprise that the stated benefits and assurances about national identity, assured continued membership. Under terms of the Thirty-year rule, an internal document of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office before the European Communities Act 1972, released to the public in January 2002, revealed that issues relating to areas in which parliamentary freedom to legislate would be affected by entry to the EC, had been discussed. These concerned, Customs duties, Agriculture, Free movement of labour, services and capital, Transport and Social Security for migrant workers. Why were these important facts concealed? The Blair government, which opened our borders to ‘all-comers’ for political purposes, continued to destroy our liberty by taking us ever closer to the EU. Promises of a referendum regarding Europe were ignored. In my view, most people believed they had signed up for a limited range of beneficial arrangements. They had not signed up for loss of sovereignty and to submit to an undemocratically accountable, centralised body or to be economically disadvantaged by immigration or submit to the whims of the ECHR. The facts suggest that politicians, who adopted weasel words to conceal the impact of negotiations and the adoption of Treaties that were undermining our right of self-determination, misled them. It seems there was justification for voting to leave the EU. The underlying dangers of remaining in the EU have not changed. Do we really wish to remain part of a full-blown Federal Europe with its own government, directly elected president and legal system? It is surprising that the UK accepted the terms of an agreement with Europe, allowing the EU to set the agenda and have the final say concerning members’ departure. Surely some form of dispute resolution procedure was essential? The EU is benefitting from this omission, having made it clear from outset, that it intended to give us a hard time. With friends like that, who needs enemies? The method of negotiation leaves much to be desired. How can it be that the EU’s chief negotiator, Michel Barnier, is engaging in discussions with individuals that are not appointed to act for the UK? Another worrying feature, is that we seem to be ‘negotiating by media’ with an expectation that our negotiators expose their hand. Our negotiators need to achieve the best possible deal on our behalf: this will only be achieved by keeping their cards close to their chest and the political classes that are responsible for our predicament, keeping quiet. Neil Kelly Tredcroft Road Hove 09.03.2018