Thousands in Central Bedfordshire sign Article 50 petition

Thousands  in Central Bedfordshire sign Article 50 petition
Thousands in Central Bedfordshire sign Article 50 petition

Thousands of people across Central Bedfordshire’s parliamentary constituencies have signed a petition calling for the Government to revoke Article 50.

But Theresa May has ruled out cancelling the Brexit countdown despite the petition soaring past 2.5 million signatures.

As of 10.30am today, Friday, 2,293 people in the North East Bedfordshire constituency had signed the petition – 2.0% of the population.

That rate was not quite so high in Mid Bedfordshire, where 1.9% of the population had added their names to the petition – 2,070 signatures.

In South West Bedfordshire, 1,782 people had signed (1.6% of the population) and in Luton South 934 (0.8%) people had signed.

The petition, which had attracted more than three million names by 1pm today, Friday, reads: “The Government repeatedly claims exiting the EU is ‘the will of the people’.

“We need to put a stop to this claim by proving the strength of public support now for remaining in the EU. A People's Vote may not happen – so vote now.”

The Prime Minister said she did not believe in halting the deadline after the EU offered a delay plan, adding: "I do not believe that we should be revoking Article 50."

With the highest sign-up rate on record, more 2,000,000 people had pledged their support by the time she fielded questions from reporters in Brussels on Thursday.

Asked by the Press Association whether she thought the public's view had shifted towards revoking Article 50, Mrs May said: "If you look back to what happened in the referendum, we saw the biggest democratic exercise in our history.

"And there was a clear result that we should leave the European Union.

"We said here's the vote, what is your decision, and we will deliver on it.

"And I believe it's our duty as a Government and as a Parliament to deliver on that vote."

The Petitions Committee said nearly 2,000 signatures were being completed every minute over Thursday lunchtime, crashing the website because of the unprecedented number of visitors.

On Thursday, EU leaders said Brexit could be delayed from March 29 to May 22 - but only on the condition that MPs vote for Mrs May's deal next week.

If it is rejected in the third "meaningful vote" then the UK would have until April 12 to tell the European Council a way forward.

An extension could continue for several more months if Britain agreed to vote in May's European Parliament elections.