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Leave voters in Nottinghamshire’s Brexit heartland say it has been “mismanaged” nearly three years on

People in Nottinghamshire’s Brexit heartland say the UK’s exit from the European Union has been “mismanaged”, but that it could still be made to work. Whilst some of those living and working in Mansfield blast Brexit as the “biggest mistake we ever made”, others argue that it was a good idea in principle that needed handling with more “care.”

When the 2016 referendum on leaving the EU was held, voting mostly took place by parliamentary constituency and Mansfield gave the strongest backing for Brexit in Nottinghamshire. Around 70% of those who voted in the town voted to leave the EU, with Rushcliffe being the only area of Nottinghamshire to vote for Remain.

The referendum vote eventually triggered a transition period during which the UK negotiated its withdrawal agreement with the EU, with Brexit officially taking place at 11pm on January 31, 2020. Almost three years on, the UK has been through a coronavirus pandemic, seen two changes in Prime Minister, mourned the death of Queen Elizabeth II and is still experiencing a cost of living crisis.

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