As veterans, we know how fragile peace in Europe can be, and how crucial a Final Say on Brexit really is

More than 100 former services personnel lend their voice to calls for a new referendum as D-Day commemorations continue

Thursday 06 June 2019 06:28 BST
Normandy American Cemetery
Normandy American Cemetery

Seventy-five years ago, 156,000 brave international troops, including 61,000 Britons, were taking part in Operation Overlord – the largest seaborne invasion in history. Their aim was to secure a foothold on the coast of Normandy and begin the task of freeing mainland Europe from Nazi oppression and persecution.

By the end of D-Day, ten thousand of those soldiers were injured or dead. Remembering their efforts and sacrifices in order to liberate Europe, will be an important and poignant moment.

In the aftermath of the Second World War, as much of the continent, including Britain – lay in ruins, it was Winston Churchill himself who urged European countries to come together in order to find lasting peace, through “the creation of a European family".

His words helped inspire the creation of the common market, later to become the European Union, with one main purpose – to create lasting peace, by entwining our economies and societies together on a continent once ravaged by war.

Nato does not keep the peace in Europe – it keeps peace FOR Europe. It is the EU that keeps peace IN Europe, because when you trade, you do not fight.

As former members of the armed forces and veterans of more recent conflicts, we have served alongside soldiers from other European nations, supporting each other while under fire or facing danger.

We have learnt that war stinks, that peace is the natural goal for civilisation, and that Europeans are our brothers in arms.

But that peace and friendship is now threatened by Brexit.

Peace in Europe is not something that should be taken for granted.

We should be proud to lead in Europe, proud that our friends respect us and can rely on us.

That’s why we, as former members of the armed forces, all support a people’s vote on Brexit.

Ayo Adebiyi

Richard Aixill

Derek Andrews

Hugh Atwood

Nick Balsdon

Richard Bardsley

Linda Barrett

Richard Bateman

John Bellamy

Ian Bennett

Patricia Bennett

Roger Bishop

Pritam Biswas

Anthony Bohan

John Bradshaw

Richard Browne

Clifford Capel

S.F Carnson TD

Mick Carter

Andy Cartwright

Henryk Chabrowski

Michael Chaloner

Dr Nigel Clarke

Harriet Clough

Sinead Connolly

Robert Davis

Nick Dawson

Steve Dean

Mike Dickinson

Clive Earby

Tony Ellingham

Catherine Ellison

Dave Evans

Jed Falby

Peter Flynn

Simon Frost

Matt Furey-King

Steve Gavin

Geoff Gibbs

Helen Godsall

Stephen Goodall

Alex Gordon

Miles Greenford

Jocelyn Gronow

Julian Gronow

Tim Guy

Chris Hall

Aiden Handyside

Michael Harvey

Nick Hawkins

Matthew Heap

Gary Hemming

John Hillcoat

Duncan Hodgkins

Dave Holden

Richard Holding

Paul Houghland

Michael Hughes

Graham James

Chris Johnson

Patricia Johnstome

Maurice Philip Jones

Philip Kerrison

Murray Kirkby

Pete Knight

Steven La Pensée

Stuart James Lawrence

Richard Lines

Harry Lomax

Steve Lyons

Simon MacMichael

Tim Malburn

Phil Martell

Maureen McGee (now Shaw)

Scott McIntosh

Geoff Morris

Andrew Morrison

Thomas Murphy

Nick Murray

Robert Mutch

Colin Noble

Mark Nuttall

John O'Connell

Matt Ottaway

Marc Owen

Mary Palmer

Terry Patrick

Christopher Pelley

Mark Pendleton

Rob Possnett

Peter Radford

William Rathouse

Brian Reff

Michael Rickard

Michael Ritson

Katherine Robinson

Andrew Rowlands

Bernard Rumbold

Dave Scott

Nick Senior

Stuart Sessions MBE

Neil Smallman

Eddy Smerdon

Les Snell

Ray Souter

Don Steele MBE

Tom Stewart

Sue Storey

Ian Tebby

Gareth Thomas

Stuart Thomson

Michael Thorne

Colin Trevelion

Roy Venables

Bernard Wakefield-Heath

David Wayland

Simon Webb

Jim Westlake

Raymond White

David Williams

Ranks and service dates supplied

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