After 847 days rallying against Britain leaving the EU, Britain’s staunchest Remainer has finally admitted defeat and is hanging up his megaphone for good.
Steve Bray, whose bellows of “stop Brexit” have been part of the soundscape at Westminster over the past three years, has now accepted that Britain will leave, following the Tory general election landslide.
The 50-year-old, who wore a grey top hat and cape at Parliament as MPs returned to Westminster, claimed there was “still hope” of staying in the EU despite Boris Johnson’s victory.
He said: “The majority of people, 53%, voted for Remain parties including Labour, Lib Dems, Greens and the Scottish National Party. That’s 1.2 million more people who wanted to remain than leave.
“That’s why we desperately need a system of proportional representation. If we had a referendum tomorrow, we’d win it.”
Mr Bray, who sold a chunk of his coin collection to fund his marathon protest, vowed to carry on campaigning and said that the focus will be on how to get back into the EU once the “proverbial sh*it kicks in.”
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The activist, who heckled the prime minister on Tuesday, booming ‘B******s to Boris”, added: “We haven’t left yet. There’s a tiny chance of staying in, so as long as we haven’t left, there’s still hope…
“Our future campaigning will be about holding government to account. Looking forward, to when the proverbial sh*t kicks in, we will look into how we can get back into the EU.”
Speaking to Leavers, he said: “I don’t blame those people that voted to leave after being promised the earth, but the sad fact is that we are all going to end up in hell after Brexit happens.
“Every single think-tank including the government said that we are going to be worse off with any form of Brexit.
“We may have a high level of employment, but they are not quality jobs. They are zero-hours jobs.
“The financial sector is the crown jewel in terms of tax revenue. Now the bankers are moving to Germany and France. Our standing in the world is gone.”
Addressing fellow Remainers, he said: “We haven’t given up and we are not going to give up. We need to take this time to reflect about how we campaign and how to become a force to be reckoned with. As it stands we are the only effective opposition. We have to persevere.”
Bray conceded the election result was “devastating” and said the focus now needed to be on how to “pick up the pieces”.
Asked whether he ever thought his anti-Brexit campaign would succeed, he said: “There are no winners in this. Whatever happens, we are all losers.”