Satellite image of Europe
Click for articles on the EU

Our present relationship with the European Union is untenable. As David Cameron has said, “we need fundamental, far-reaching change”.

We are now in a Parliament which will deliver an in/out referendum on our membership after a renegotiation by the Government.

The following three points must be achieved if any renegotiation is to be successful:

  1. A sovereign Parliament. The elected representatives of the British people must have the freedom and power to determine the law which governs life in the United Kingdom.  Today, EU rules account for 65% of UK law: those rules must be under clearly-accountable democratic control.
  2. Freedom to trade. Our great country is an outward-looking, internationalist trading nation. Of course we should trade tariff-free with the nations of Europe but we must have the freedom to trade with the whole world too.
  3. Power over our own borders. It is abundantly clear British voters expect their Parliament to determine our immigration policy. Complete freedom of movement is incompatible with state provision of welfare, health, education and other public services. British immigration policy must be made in Britain.

Who doubts we need peace, free trade, the rule of law and fundamental liberties in Europe? That is not in question. Whether our Parliament and the people it represents are sovereign, if we may trade freely with the world and the origin of our migration policy are to be decided.

In the fog of detail and clash of personality which will ensue, a successful renegotiation of our relationship with the rest of Europe rests on these three: a sovereign Parliament, freedom to trade and power over our own borders.


  1. We were told initially this was a trading bloc with no threat to sovreignty. Then Heath tells a tv programme years ago ” The British public should have understood that fiscal and political union is inevitable,” Bit different to what we were fed. I think it’s time for an amicable divorce from the EU and we have a trade only relationship. It didn’t help when some idiot signed a treaty giving EU law primacy over the laws over our own elected Government

  2. Wendy Brooker

    Please explain , David Cameron wants change with our relationship with the EU,
    Even if he manages to get some of our demands , do we really need to be in this very expensive club.
    I can’t see any reason why we should continue to be in any way part of this unelected group, can you give me any reasons why we should need to be in a reformed EU.

    • I just wonder… Who appoints the UK Commissioner to the EU in Brussels?. Isn’t the Appointing Authority (government) democratically elected?.
      Yes, the UK should leave the EU

  3. annie harrison

    Before “we” go any further, I would like a CONCRETE answer on two points:1]Is it true that we lose our option to leave the EU EARLY in 2017? and 2] Is it true that even if we DO manage to leave, we still, as Norway and Switzerland to keep paying enormous dues to the EU for the “right” to trade with them? Please answer these questions.

  4. Steve – how will the amount that we pay into Euro coffers be affected if the PM is actually successful in negotiating those key points you mentioned?

  5. Points 1 and 2 are debatable, but #3 is total nonsense. You cannot be part of the EU (or even have market access as Norway/Switzerland do) without accepting freedom of movement of workers, period. I don’t see why anyone would want to return to the times of hour-long immigration queues in the first place. Probably only someone nostalgic for the Berlin Wall would want this.

  6. Putting aside the EU never agreeing to the UK having all three of those, let’s suppose a simple in/out referendum is held and UK citizens vote Out, with EU residents here not getting a vote. Won’t it be a repeat of referendums for joining the Euro in other countries? As soon as the first economic downturn comes along it will be blamed on leaving the EU and those wanting a referendum to re-join, which includes the majority of politicians, will ask us to vote again, and again, until the answer is In. It’s like Hotel California; we can check out, but we can never leave.