Sir George launches local petition on EU Referendum
24 Oct 2003
Sir George announced the launch of a petition across North West Hampshire, demanding that local people be given a say via a referendum on the proposed European Union constitution. The petition will be presented to Parliament and is part of a nationwide campaign to put pressure on the Government.

Launching the campaign Sir George said:
“I am delighted to support the Parliamentary petition calling for a referendum on the proposed EU Constitution. Despite what the Prime Minister says, this Constitution would make a fundamental change in the way we are governed and could affect the daily lives of every single person in North West Hampshire."

“Referendums on the Constitution are already going to be held in other EU countries including Ireland, Denmark, Portugal, Spain and Luxembourg. They are likely in the Netherlands and in France. Other member countries are seriously considering holding them. Britain is the only country ruling a referendum out. Local people across must be able to have their say. We call on people across Hampshire to sign our petition so that local residents can be given a democratic voice.”

Copies of the petition are available from the North West Hampshire Conservative Association, 2 Church Close, Andover, Hants SP10 1DP

Rt Hon Michael Ancram MP, the Shadow Foreign Secretary, added,
“This Government has held referendums on everything from devolution for Scotland and Wales, to regional assemblies in England and elected mayors up and down the country. Thirty-four referendums since 1997 with one still pending on the single currency - if the Government ever summons up the nerve to hold one. It is downright hypocritical not to hold one on the most serious constitutional issue of the European Constitution itself. And if it is because they fear losing a referendum on this issue, then they shouldn't be going down this constitutional road against the wishes of the British people in the first place.”

The petition will be presented to Parliament and states:

“The proposed European Constitution with which Her Majesty's Government has agreed in principle involves grave and significant constitutional issues that affect democracy in the United Kingdom, self-government, and the national interest and makes a fundamental change in the relationship of the United Kingdom with the European Union. The Petitioners therefore request that the House of Commons passes legislation to authorise a Referendum of the electorate on the European Constitution at the conclusion of the Intergovernmental Conference.”

Two House of Commons Library briefs on the proposed Constitution are available online at: and

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