WITH just a one day to go until Britain goes to the polls to decide the fate of Britain’s place within the EU, politicians in Stroud have offered a final impassioned plea to voters.

With a recent study showing that up to 15 per cent of people will only make up their mind on polling day itself, every single vote counts in what looks set to be a close-run referendum.

In a final bid to sway these undecided voters, SNJ has asked two politicians who back Brexit and two who want a Remain vote to put forward their best case.

We’ll start with Debbie Young, Conservative district councillor for Chalford. She is supporting a Brexit.

Stroud News and Journal:

TOMORROW is the day, we, the British people get to decide on the way our country will be governed.

This is the first time that we have ever been able to do this, the last time we voted on Europe was in 1975 and this was to vote on joining the EEC.

A Free Trade Area was what we signed up to, now we have political union with an unelected bureaucracy telling everyone of us what to do, how to do it and micro managing every bodies lives through increasing numbers of centralised edicts.

We are now being asked to choose how we will be governed, do we what to be governed by an unelected EU Commission, who we cannot vote out or do we want to vote to take back control, to be governed by a Government who we elect?

To know that even if we don't like their political colour we have the potential to get rid of them at the next election.

Do we want to be one of 28 equal voices or do we want to be an independent country, making our own decisions and making our own way as the fifth biggest economy in the world.

If the Remain camp has you undecided just a few comments - Peace in Europe has been maintained by NATO, we will still be part of NATO - Europe is a continent we will still be part of Europe.

The EU is an artificial organisation created by an elite - workers’ rights are enshrined in UK law, maternity pay, equal pay, discrimination law are all there on the statute books.

We cannot know everything that will happen if we leave the EU, but what we do know is that we will have control of our borders therefore controlling immigration, our Parliament will be sovereign and we will make and interpret our own laws.

What we also know is that if we remain we will be subject to increasing political and economic union.

Britain is a great country and can make its own way in the world, we are no longer the sick man of Europe as we were when we joined the EEC, we are the fifth biggest economy in the world and people want to trade with us.

There has been much talk about figures from both sides, all I know is we pay more in than we get out, and that money could be used to spend on what we as a country want not what Europe wants us to spend it on with all the forms and box ticking.


Stroud News and Journal:

Next up for the Brexit side is Stuart Love, chairman of UKIP Stroud.

AS the hour approaches for the most important decision any of us will make in our lifetimes, not solely for ourselves, but for this country, and her people’s future.

Disadvantages of staying in the EU:

Ever Closer Union. Probably becoming the United States of Europe within 10 years, and the UK relegated to 12 regions.

Destruction of UK Democracy, with all substantial powers transferred to the EU. Reducing our parliament a sub-committee to rubber-stamp EU laws and directives.

The UK Legal system and Common Law to be replaced by Napoleonic Codified law. Out goes innocent until proven guilty – in comes guilty until you can prove you are innocent.

Elimination of UK control of our Military and Police. The EU Army has been on the table for many years with EuroPol.

Greater regulation of small businesses; ideal for the larger corporations as it eliminates competition.

More UK ‘under the counter’ bailouts for Greece and other failing EU economies.

Annual increases in the UK’s EU contribution, coupled with more unaudited accounting practices.

The loss of the UK’s seat on the UN Security Council; the EU plans to take it away.

The EU is the only Trading Block in the world with its own flag, anthem, parliament, courts, legal system, Police Force, Border Force, a soon to be EU Army/Air Force/Navy.

Advantages of Voting to Leave the EU:

More control of the UK’s Security and Foreign policies. We will continue to support NATO who have kept the peace in Europe, and we will not be dragged into the EU’s flawed foreign policies or an EU Army.

Free Trade with the whole world (which currently accounts for 63 per cent or our exports), and regain our seat on the WTO.

Currently we can exercise our democratic right and vote out a bad UK government every five years. With the EU commissioners who are an unelected and un-dismissible elite, this is impossible.

Individual Liberty restored; retention of Habeas Corpus, goodbye to Corpus Juris.

Controlled immigration to benefit the UK with skilled workers from across the world.

Proper subsidies for the farmers, and restoration of our fishing industry.

And of course retention of the millions of pounds currently given to the EU, to be spent on our country’s infrastructure.

A Vote to Leave the EU is not just about money, immigration, security, it is about the ability to choose our own destiny, in short freedom.


Stroud News and Journal:

Arguing the IN side is Doina Cornell - a Labour district councillor for Dursley, and deputy leader of her party on Stroud District Council.

She has put forward her argument for a ‘Remain’ vote on June 23:

SEVENTY years ago Europe lay in ruins and the people and politicians who fought and lived through that horror of war wanted no more of it.

They saw that peace and prosperity were the only way to liberate our bloody continent from the chains of hatred and fear.

It was out of this that the European Union was born. Seventy years on, it is not a perfect project. But are all our problems actually because of the EU?

Is it not the neoliberal ideology that has seduced our ruling political parties for the last twenty years that is the real problem?

Rising inequality, precarious jobs, the slow and insidious move from public to private services - and at the same time, the rise of an ever richer and more powerful elite that squirrels its money away in offshore tax havens.

Many ordinary people feel uneasy in this world. And along comes the EU referendum - a chance to make a protest, to kick the elite and the Establishment.

But if we vote to Leave - will it actually make a difference? Will it solve anything? I can’t see how.

Leave campaigners say the EU is done for and we’ll trade with the rest of the world instead. But UK businesses who already trade in the EU will still want to do so.

That will almost certainly mean paying to access the market and accepting free movement of labour. No change there then. Except now we’ll have no say over the rules.

‘Take back control, get back our sovereignty’, say Leave campaigners. But on our own, we will never control the freedom of international finance to cross borders to where it pays the least taxes.

And our national government seems to have plenty of sovereignty when it slashes help for the disabled, raises tuition fees, forces councils to sell off social housing, takes away trade union rights and invades other countries.

The EU is not perfect. But if we try to walk away, we’ll find that all the problems you’d hoped voting Leave would solve, are still there.

My Labour membership card states ‘by the strength of our common endeavour we achieve more than we achieve alone.’ I want our country to be more equal and more prosperous and to be a leader in Europe not a leaver – to help make Europe, and the world, more equal and prosperous too. That is why I am voting to remain.


Stroud News and Journal:

And last but not least is Martin Whiteside, leader of the Greens on SDC and councillor for Thrupp. He is also arguing for Britain to Remain.

FOR some, the idea of leaving the EU and going it alone, of closing our borders and only taking care of ourselves, is an idea that resonates in a time of anxiety and fear.

But the global challenges we face require us, as people and as a nation, to work together with our European partners.

Massive challenges like building peace in the Middle-East, containing Putin’s nationalist ambitions, combatting the spread of nuclear weapons and finding solutions to the global refugee crisis, need countries to work together.

The threats our environment faces – from climate change to cross-border pollution and overfishing in our seas – don’t respect national borders, meaning that solutions must span the divide between nation states too.

Green MP Caroline Lucas recently wrote, “If we fail on climate, we lose the very capacity to shape our destiny that makes sovereignty worth having.”

The agreement that came out of Paris last year was stronger because of the efforts of a united EU (guided by a British civil servant) whose leadership gave activists from Africa, the Americas and Asia the tools to push their own countries to do more.

We cannot close our borders to air pollution. Sometimes our actions (or lack thereof) affect our neighbours and sometimes theirs affect us.

In the 1970s the UK was known as the Dirty Man of Europe. Pollution from our coal-fired power stations was causing acid rain, killing forests here and across Europe.

As a result of EU directives, sulphur dioxide emissions dropped 94% by 2011. An estimated 46,000 premature deaths were prevented between 1990 and 2001.

It’s hard to believe now, but in the 1970s we used to pump untreated sewage directly into the sea.

The 1976 EU Bathing Water Directive forced the UK to clean up its act and now 95 per cent of our beaches are clean enough for swimming. Good for our health, but also good for tourism and the economy.

The EU is accountable to us as a member state and through our elected MEPs. Member states can veto EU laws as they are being developed, so we retain our sovereignty.

We actually gain influence by being a member, but sadly our Government has not always used that influence wisely.

I urge voters to think about the sort of world we want to leave our children and grandchildren.

Try to imagine being able to achieve positive and lasting change without international cooperation and collaboration. It would not be easy. Perhaps not even possible.