The following letter was sent to local media on 24 February 2016
The Prime Minister has secured a historic reform deal which now paves the way for a referendum on Britain’s membership of the European Union as promised in the Conservative’s 2015 manifesto.
The Cameron package has put the UK in a unique place; and it is a good deal for Britain. We have full membership of and equal access to the largest and wealthiest single market in the world bigger than even the USA. We do not have to join the Euro and our taxpayers will not have to pay for Eurozone bailouts. We are not members of the Schengen zone; that means we are under no obligation to accept refugees, migrants or third country nationals unless we choose to do so. We have legal recognition that the UK is an independent sovereign country in charge of its own destiny; our parliament has a stronger role and we are not committed to ever closer union.
Far too often this debate is about emotions and not facts. The ‘out’ campaign has not offered any credible alternative, and it is not simply enough to say leave for leave’s sake.. Why step out of the world’s largest, wealthiest single market, putting industry, jobs and growth at risk for a leap into the dark?
I support the Prime Minister’s reform deal and Britain will be stronger, safer and better off remaining a member of the European Union.