Immigration was key issue for older people who voted for Brexit according to chairman of Northampton Pensioners' Forum

The chairman of the Northampton Pensioners' Forum says he believes immigration was the key factor in older people in the town voting to leave the European Union.

Friday, 24th June 2016, 12:43 pm
Updated Thursday, 25th August 2016, 7:53 pm
EU referendum debate

Results of the EU referendum show that 58 per cent of voters in Northampton supported a Brexit, while 42 per cent wanted to Remain.

National analysis of the different age groups in the country showed 58 per cent of over 65s voted to Leave the EU. In contrast, 64 per cent of people aged 18 to 24 years old voted to stay in the EU.

Councillor Brian Oldham (Con, West Hunsbury), who chairs the Northampton Pensioners’ Forum, said the vast majority of the older people in the town had been in favour of Brexit.

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He said: “I think it was always going to be close. There were only a few people I spoke to who wanted to vote Remain, the majority of middle age and older definitely said they were voting out.

“I think immigration was a key factor and most people voted because they wanted to cut it and get it under control.”

Hazel Tuttle, aged 81, a spokesman for Pensioners Voice, which folded last December, said older people had also voted for Brexit because they wanted to get rid of the cost of the European parliament.

She said: “There was only one person I spoke to he wanted to stay was a German lady, everybody else wanted to vote out.

“I think with the older generation we remember the war and we don’t like the Germans telling us what to do.

“Many people wanted to leave to get back the money that it costs us to have all those MEPs.”

Mrs Tuttle said she did not think immigration had been the most important factor although pensioners in the town had expressed concerns about Turkey joining the EU.”

In contrast, on the Chronicle & Echo’s Facebook page a number of young voters expressed their dismay at the referendum result.

Kit Messenger, aged 20, said: “I saw no reason to leave. Attitudes and prejudice are a bigger problem than immigration. There was also no chance that I would vote to support a campaign that was pushed from a stance of xenophobia, fear and lies.”

Lydia Prince, aged 22, said: “I was largely undecided for most of the campaign, but having done extensive research and watched several of the debates televised I came to the decision to vote to remain.

“I feel that our economy did not need any further strain or jeopardy forced upon it, having only just about recovered from the previous recession. I also feel that the leave campaign included no real promises of what would happen if we did leave, as it is guess work.

“As things have transpired Farage has already gone back on his NHS promises. Leaving seemed like a big risk for an unsure outcome. I am worried about how long it will take for the UK to recover and how difficult it will be for me, as a graduate, to get a job now.”