Sky Data Brexit poll: Half of Britons happy about EU divorce process starting

Beth Rigby, Senior Political Correspondent

Across the country, emotions ran high during the EU referendum campaign - but there is little sign of Bregret from voters as Theresa May triggers the start of Brexit.

A Sky Data poll found one in two people were happy or very happy about the triggering of Article 50, while only 36% said they felt sad about leaving the EU.

That suggests that there has been little voter remorse for the referendum decision last June to quit the EU, when 52% of the population voted to leave while 48% voted to remain.

Sky News travelled to the East of England to take the Brexit temperature in one of the most eurosceptic parts of the UK.

Like many parts of the country, city dwellers were at odds with those living in neighbouring towns and villages.

University city Norwich was the only place in Norfolk, Suffolk and Essex that voted remain, with 56% of local residents opting to stay in the EU.

Locals in Norwich told Sky News they were feeling ambivalent and sad about Theresa May pulling the trigger on Brexit.

As one market stall worker said: "I don't feel right about it. When unions break apart, it never ends well."

Leave the city centre and the surrounding towns and villages tell a very different story.

Just 20 miles away in Great Yarmouth, nearly three in four adults voted to quit the EU - making this seaside town the fifth strongest Vote Leave area in the UK.

Locals on the seaside promenade told Sky News they were happy with the result: they hope Brexit might bring some benefits for their seaside town ravaged by decades of neglect.

One local man, Carl, said he had voted to leave the EU and hoped Brexit might mean more attention; that Government funding might flow into the town where he was born and bred.

He said: "People have had enough. Hopefully it'll mean we can concentrate on the UK."

Great Yarmouth, like many other coastal towns, suffers from high rates of teenage pregnancy, social deprivation, low educational attainment and higher than average levels of unemployment.

Support for the UKIP has surged in Great Yarmouth, with the anti-EU party picking up four councils seats in last year's local council election - making it the second biggest party in local government behind the Tories, with 12 councillors.

A desire for change in a town with little to lose, Sky Data suggests voters up and down the country are braced for some sort of economic hit from Brexit - but are also undeterred.

In a Sky poll, 42% of respondents said they thought Brexit would be bad for the economy, while 36% thought leaving the EU will benefit the economy. The rest didn't know.

Chris Hanretty, lecturer in politics at the University of East Anglia, told Sky News there was little reason for people to feel Bregret at this stage of the process.

"There hasn't been much evidence at all of Bregret or remorse or people changing their minds, just because, well, they haven't seen much change - so far."

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