Government containment and euphoria ‘brexitera’, so London said goodbye

Some say they have waited decades to see the United Kingdom leave a European Union in which it had never finished fitting, while for others, on January 31, 2020 it was a day of mourning, but what is indisputable is that the officialization of Brexit It has already been an appointment for history that both sides will remember from opposite watchtowers.

Despite Boris Johnson's credentials as sponsor of the exit, the Government was aware of the gap that divorce still generates in the street, so there were no celebrations on Friday. The prime minister took Sunderland, the first city that had certified the victory of the exit in the 2016 referendum, to celebrate an extraordinary Council of Ministers with which he wanted to pay tribute to the bastions of northern England that made the possible break and, incidentally, chisel his commitment to the voters who last month gave the greatest victory tory since 1987.

But if there was a risk that Downing Street wanted to avoid was that of an excessive triumphalism, so the only public intervention of the prime minister was an address for the whole country from the official residence. In it, he appealed to the unit and to close wounds to what he described as “the dawn of a new era”, although he acknowledged that the United Kingdom is not “in the end, but in the beginning.”

The consequences

The only license granted Number 10 came in the form of a clock projected on its walls, to mark a 60-minute countdown that, once it came to an end, gave way to a light assembly to “symbolize the fortress and the union “of the four nations that make up the United Kingdom, a declaration of intentions before a divorce turned into a threat to British territorial cohesion, given support for the continuity of both Scotland and Northern Ireland and the consequences for this The latter will have the withdrawal agreement agreed by Johnson.

Thus, although he served as a host for friends and members of the Government in Number 10, his environment stressed that it was a mere informal meeting and not a party. Of course, the Executive made sure that central London was adorned for the occasion, with Union Jack flags in Parliament Square, the political heart of the capital, and along the great avenue The Mall, which unites Trafalgar Square with Buckingham Palace. Also, at sunset, the public buildings of Whitehall, the artery that brings together the headquarters of the main ministries and that ends precisely in Westminster, were dyed blue, red and white.

As a consequence, the true celebrations were assumed by civic platforms, with the pressure group Leave Means Leave as the main protagonist. Its central act, in the Parliament Square, had the intervention of heavy weights of Brexit, such as Nigel Farage, and the high point, as expected, took place at 11 pm, when the official departure was marked by the God Save the Queen, the British national anthem, sung by a band and the voices of the thousands of congregates.

The only frustration of the night is that, finally, Big Ben did not commemorate the historic moment, since the Westminster authorities ruled out reinstalling the bell at the Isabelina Tower, currently under construction, just to please the Brexiteros. Hence, they had to settle for replicating the recorded sound and limit the fireworks to the generosity of the neighbors that allowed them to launch them from their roofs, due to the refusal of the City Council, which also imposed a veto on alcohol.

This, in fact, confirmed again, in case there were any doubts, his europhile vocation with an open day at the old town hall to offer community citizens advice on the procedures to stay in the country, as well as “emotional support” before the breaking off. Those who preferred to drown their sorrows, or on the contrary, celebrate their joy, did not have it difficult yesterday to find a party.

Thousands of pubs across the country promoted initiatives and not a few beers were made for the occasion. The Wetherspoon chain, with more than 900 establishments throughout the country, organized the Let's Stay Friends campaign, an initiative promoted on the occasion of the departure that offered discounts on up to ten British and mainland drinks, including Estrella Galicia.

The return to the penny

In addition, the divorce could be commemorated even with the simple fact of paying, since three million 50 pence coins entered into circulation yesterday that, with the motto Peace, prosperity and friendship with all nations, mark the end of a marriage of 47 year convenience. It is complicated, however, that some were used to pay the 90 pounds (107 euros) that the cutlery cost for the dinner organized by the pro-Brexit collective The Bow Group, which featured as speakers with some of Maastrich's rebels, is say, conservatives who had made life impossible for John Major in the early 1990s.

Faced with this brexitera euphoria, the Remainers – EU supporters – wanted to set the counterpoint and make their voice heard, at least, before the pro-Brexit hordes flooded Westminster. In the afternoon yesterday, a procession flooded Whitehall with community flags, the same ones that at night led to the vigil convened outside the Europa House in London.