Postal vote means I haven’t had to pay much attention to campaigning

Princess Beatrice
Princess Beatrice
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At last, the week is here. Just three short days until voting closes and the EU referendum is finally over.

We’ll be able to open our front doors again after a long day at work without facing a mountain of propaganda on our doormats or people wanting to persuade us to vote a certain way.

Should it really be a violent death that makes everyone pause?

We’ll be able to watch television news again without being assaulted by increasingly erratic claims by the Remain and Leave camps.

And we’ll finally be able to consign the ridiculousness of Bob Geldof and Nigel Farage comparing the size of their vessels as they battled for supremacy of the Thames while the opposing referendum campaigns get increasingly Cutthroat Island.

Because it has been ridiculous, hasn’t it?

And the tragedy from last week, of MP Jo Cox murdered after one of her constituency surgeries, only served to throw the increasing histrionics into stark relief.

It was right that both sides of the campaign suspended hostilities as a mark of respect.

But truly, should it really be a violent death that makes everyone pause?

For the past week or so I’ve been in the lucky position of having already cast my vote, having taken advantage of a postal vote for the first time in my life.

I wish I’d done it sooner.

It’s not that I’m not interested in the facts of either side, it’s just that as time has marched on both sides seem to be using the same ‘facts’ to prove that their argument is the right one.

I’ve also been getting increasingly tired of hearing that, if we stay, the whole population of Turkey will descend on us in the middle of the night and evict us from our beds.

Similarly, I doubt very much whether house prices will truly plummet through the floor if we leave.

By casting my vote early, I haven’t had to pay too much attention.

It’s enough to make me want to sign up for postal votes all the time, especially if this referendum has set the tone for how our general elections will be played out in years to come.


I never thought I’d be writing about Princess Beatrice other than talking about her fashion sense.

But she’s been visiting a school along with Richard Branson’s daughter Holly to talk about challenges they faced while growing up.

Buckingham Palace and Necker Island are a far cry from the inner city streets.

But the pair are co-founders of Big Change, a charity that helps pupils learn outside of the curriculum.

I’m still fairly sceptical of what exactly they could learn from these two.

But joining them was former gang leader Karl Lokko, who challenged himself to learn 10 words a day to get a ‘proper’ education.

Three very different backgrounds, but together they speak with a loud voice.


I was hoping that, by the time I had to write this column, I wasn’t going to be able to talk about the violence during Euro 2016.

I was hoping it was all going to be over – a large stain on the beginning of the tournament but which could be put behind the fans, the players and UEFA.

Last week, the main concern was whether the games would be a terrorist target, not an opportunity for an organised far-right, Kremlin-backed fan group to carry out orchestrated attacks on England supporters.

But it seems like, in a year in which fans were finally able to throw off the stigma of Hillsborough and the relatives could at last publicly lay blame at the door of the authorities, the dark days of hooliganism seem to be rising once again.