The Wokingham Paper

BREXIT: Almost 15% of electorate signing Article 50 petition

EU St Patrick's Day Brexit Protest on Loddon Bridge on a very windy Saturday.

TODAY more than a million people are expected to converge on London in a call for a second referendum on Brexit – a campaign called the People’s Vote. And now almost 15% of local voters have signed a petition calling on the country to stay in the EU.

As we reported on Thursday, the digital petition calling on the Government has attracted millions of signatures in the wake of Theresa May’s address to the nation on Wednesday night. While there are fears that some of the names and addresses are faked, open data tools enable tracking to be set up to show who has voted where.

These tools were launched partly because the Government’s petition website kept crashing due to the sheer volume of people logging on and checking to see how many had signed.

As we wrote this article, the website is being updated every half hour or so, and 3.9 million people had signed it.

The Petition Map on Unboxed Consulting shows how many people have signed the petition in each constituency.

There are four parliamentary constituencies that cover Wokingham borough:

  • Reading East is the area where the largest number of people have signed. At the time of writing, it had received 10,753 signatures – 14.68% of the electorate
  • Wokingham is the next highest, with 9,312 – 11.96% of the electorate
  • Theresa May’s Maidenhead constituency is next, with 11.78% signing and 8,741 names
  • Bracknell, the only area to vote Leave in the 2016 referendum, has the lowest signatures – 6,438 or 7.92% of the vote.

It should be noted that anyone can sign the petition, they do not have to be of voting age. While some people have been gaming the system, posting videos of signing as Donald Duck, participants have to register a UK postcode and confirm their email address before signing.

So while some of the overall 3.9 million figure will be bogus, the constituency data is closer to reality.

Members of Berkshire in Europe will be taking part in today’s protest march in London, called Put It To The People.

Organisers of the grassroots campaign argue that this new plebiscite is necessary to break the parliamentary deadlock and also because “nobody voted for a deal that makes you poorer and offers less control”.

It argues that the Brexit deal arranged by Maidenhead MP Theresa May “delivers the exact opposite of what was promised: the UK would lose all its rights as an EU member – with less trade, fewer opportunities and lower living standards – while suffering the biggest loss of sovereignty and control in British history”.

Today’s march in favour of the UK staying in the European Union is contrasted by March To Leave, which set off from Sunderland last week and aims to arrive in London on March 29, acting as a reminder to Westminster politicians that 17.4 million people voted to leave the European Union in the 2016 referendum.

While it aims to mimic the Jarrow marchers, it has not been successful numerically, with reports that the number of marchers down to under 100. It has been impossible to verify the exact number as Leave Means Leave are not publishing figures.

The Wokingham Paper is not aware of any local people who are taking part in the Leave Means Leave march, but would love to hear from them if they are. They can email


Today, Wokingham MP Sir John Redwood, has published a new blog post arguing for the country to leave the European Union next week.

He wrote: “We need to leave to create an independent democracy in our islands.”

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Tony Delliston

Your headline about the percentage of the electorate signing the petition is incorrect. The petition asks you to confirm you are a citizen of the UK not if you are a registered voter….a big difference. So it cannot be compared with the original vote three years ago.

John Prysky

Exactly right. The whole thing is misleading as anyone can go on and say they are a British citizen. What about the vote for leaving the eu , how many has that ?

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