RESIDENTS in West Wiltshire are being urged to lobby their MPs for a ‘People’s Vote’ on the decision of whether the UK should stay in the European Union or leave.

The call came from Jason Hunter, one of the guest speakers at a talk on Brexit in The Trinity Church in Trowbridge last Wednesday.

Mr Hunter, a former international trade negotiator, said: “We need you to lobby MPs to ask for a People’s Vote on the final deal. It’s a case of here’s the deal: do we stay in Europe or leave?

“I don’t think any of us know the potential damage to households here in the UK. None of us know what will happen and that’s why we need to demand a vote on the final deal.”

Audience members were also urged to attend a People’s Vote March for the Future in London on Saturday, October 20.

A panel of experts explained to an audience of more than 180 people what leaving the European Union on World Trade Organisation rules would actually mean.

The meeting was organised by Trowbridge International, a pro-EU group headed by Cllr Stewart Palmen, of Trowbridge Liberal Democrats, and Chris Hoar.

Guest speaker, Stuart Brown, a policy implementation consultant who lives at Hilperton, warned that everything would stop at 11.01am on March 29 if the Government walks away with no deal from the negotiations with the European Commission.

He warned of dire consequences, saying it could take between four and ten years to negotiate trade deals with other countries under WTO rules.

He claimed the Government has failed to conduct risk assessments on what will happen if the UK comes away with no deal, and that business and industry and the public sector would be forced to implement a damage limitation exercise.

“For each risk, the Government has to put in place a viable contingency plan or explain to people what happens if the risk goes wrong.”

Mr Hunter said that, following a hard Brexit, the first industry sector to be hit would be the UK’s agricultural sector.

Food produce and animal exports could be halted at the ports, ships turned away from European docks, and aircraft refused permission to fly over European airspace.

UK police forces would be unable to log into 32 different European databases they are currently able to access, he said.

Thousands of small firms supplying UK exporters could collapse within months if larger firms were no longer able to continue selling their goods and services into Europe, he claimed.