In Westminster, the Brexiters and Remainers continue to argue  – while both sides slate ‘shambolic’ MPs

News defence correspondent Tom Cotterill is in Westminster covering a debate on veteran suicides. But it’s impossible to miss the noisy Brexit arguments going on in the street outside Parliament. Here’s a flavour of what is happening in the capital today….

Wednesday, 3rd April 2019, 5:26 pm
Updated Wednesday, 3rd April 2019, 5:32 pm
Campaigners who want the UK to leave the EU without a deal Picture: Tom Cotterill

A SINGLE clap of thunder cracks above the House of Commons as an icy sleet begins to fall on Westminster.

Outside, people with posters and placards line the historic home of Britain’s political elite.

Scores of blue European Union flags twist in the soft breeze, their famed circle of golden stars looking crumpled and frayed.

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Passerby Hugh Buchanan talks to the protesters Picture: Tom Cotterill

The weather may be finger-numbingly cold but the debate on the pavements of Westminster is furiously heated. 

Activists from both sides of the camp - Remain and Leave - hurl insults at each other as tourists watch on, their mouths agape and cameras raised.

Both are calling the other moronic. 

Both vehement in their views that the other is wrong.

Both, however, in agreement that what is going on inside the scaffolding-clad House of Commons is embarrassingly shambolic. 

‘We have been betrayed by the very people we put our trust in - the politicians,’ says Keith Murray-Jenkins.

‘I have lived and worked in 17 different countries, 13 in the EU. I’m not a racist - I speak many languages, some not so well. 

‘But I voted to leave to give Britain its freedom back.’

The staunch Brexiter was in a heated debate with his opposite number, a Remainer who calls himself Jeff Rees - not his real name, he insists, claiming he was ‘too fearful’ of repercussions from the far right.

‘Brexit has been an utter disaster,’ he says, while holding a sign ‘Brexit Mess’.

‘This was an inevitable car crash since these people voted to leave.

‘Now we’re just stuck in this tortuous situation with no end in sight.’

The Hammersmith resident demands a ‘vote on the facts’ for the people to decide whether they want to go through with Brexit or not.

Others on the worn cobbles of Westminster are furious with such talk.

Robert Wright was with a gaggle of fellow Brexiters, who were parading signs with slogans like ‘Treason May’.

‘It’s all the remainer MPs who have got us into this mess. It’s treacherous,’ he says, adamant the UK must leave the EU and that there should be no public vote on the terms.

Passerby Hugh Buchanan confronts Mr Wright as he is mid-flow, saying: ‘Britain has done fantastically well being in the EU.

‘It’s quite extraordinary that these fools have got us into this mess.’

A second clap of thunder rings out over the capital.

Not far from Westminster, embattled PM Theresa May is desperately trying to negotiate terms with Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn to get her deal through the Commons.

Perhaps the turn of weather is a sign of things to come. Perhaps not.

Regardless, the lightning storm surrounding Brexit - and Westminster - looks set to continue for weeks to come.