A second Brexit referendum would only cause more suffering

Farage said he might be tempted to back a second Brexit referendum: Reuters

Many politicians and letter writers argue for a second referendum on Brexit: some want to test public opinion on the terms of Brexit, others want to stop it altogether. Now Nigel Farage, tongue in his sceptical cheek, says he might be convinced of the benefit of a second referendum, although he quickly denies he really meant it.

A referendum is a blunt instrument that should be used sparingly and with great care. The process draws out the worst in people; polarising opinion and oversimplifying complex issues. Much damage can be done in getting a result, and unless the outcome delivers 60 per cent or more support to one side, the other is tempted to think one more push could win the upper hand.

I have been on the “winning” side of an independence referendum in Scotland and on the “losing” side of the UK’s EU referendum. Yet given the aftermath of both, we all appear to be suffering.

Please, politicians – show some real leadership and work with the results delivered to you in everyone’s interests, rather than resorting yet again to a referendum process that can so easily do more harm than good.

Keith Howell

West Linton, Scottish Borders

I fail to see the point of a second outing of the Boris Johnson £350m bus. Unless a second referendum delivers a decisive result (60-40 or better), the squabble will run and run. Let MPs earn their salaries and sort it out in our sovereign Parliament.

Bernard Cudd


Nigel Farage may not be getting his way, but I can’t say I feel bad about it

I was almost inconsolable when I read that those pesky EU people are going to reduce by half the salary of our national saviour, Nigel Farage! If Nigel could let me know which food bank he intends to use in his penury I shall gladly pop along to give him support and pointers for the next referendum. Maybe we could also invite Katie Hopkins as I understand she is also short of a few bob and needs a jolly good day out!

Robert Boston


Any decision that disappoints Nigel Farage is surely the correct one. Just because other countries suck up to Donald Trump’s America, usually for financial reasons, we don’t have to ignore our principles and join the crowd.

Trump is not welcome.

Michael Pate


The leaders of the Leave faction have stated their opposition to the UK paying any money to the EU as part of our negotiated exit. Money which, we are told, includes a sum to pay the pensions of EU politicians. Why not reduce that sum at a stroke by refusing to pay for the pensions of Ukip MEPs? We have already been paying them large salaries over the years when all they have done is sought to insult the European Parliament and disrupt its proceedings. As a first step it is good to see the EU has reduced Nigel Farage’s salary by 50 per cent in order to recover the misuse of EU funds.

Geoff Forward


Boris should look in the mirror

Consider these three men: Boris Johnson, Donald Trump and Sadiq Khan. Which, if any, do you think could reasonably be described as “some puffed up pompous popinjay”? There. That wasn’t difficult, was it?

Sorry to have bothered you, Mr Khan.

Beryl Wall

Address supplied

Oprah 20/20

The US President is obviously unstable; he is not only a danger to others but also to himself.

I dream for the day Donald Trump sees Oprah Winfrey as President.

Trudy Millar

Address supplied

John Humphrys should go… and perhaps the rest of them, too

It’s a disgrace that the BBC is being managed and represented on a daily basis by people who are unsuitable for their roles. If John Humphrys was any good as an interviewer it might be a reason to keep him, but he is not. He is obviously biased and self-interested when it comes to equality of pay.

We would all be far better off if the arrogance and failure to guide by the BBC director general and his coterie of jobsworths was explored by the Select Committee for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport – as a precursor of major change for all concerned.

Bill Thompson


Come on England, be better

For all the talk of banning plastic bags etc, I have seen no mention of the mountain of plastic that comes through our letterboxes every week. I am increasingly frustrated by the innumerable organisations – who should know better – sending out their literature in what I have been told is non-recyclable plastic. The National Trust, the Royal Horticultural Society and the RSPB are regular offenders, amongst very many others. Most holiday brochures arrive wrapped in plastic as do brochures from clothing companies, charities and so on. What is wrong with an A4 paper envelope and why is no one else raising this issue?

Joanna French


I run a convenience store in Scotland and we have a flat law that says everyone pays 5p per bag. We have just come to the end of the third year and every year we give the money taken for these bags less what we paid for them to local good causes – approximately £500 has been donated so far. Plus, the number of bags used is down by around 40 per cent.

In my opinion it is a win-win situation. Local causes get a bit of money, the environment is helped, and for once the retailers save on expenses, not to mention the the “feel good factor” for customers and retailers. If all of the UK did the same, it would have an immediate effect on plastic waste.

Bryan Currie

Ecclefechan, Dumfries and Galloway