Birmingham Organiser Paul Hickman took his team to Yardley Wood on Saturday, to set up the ''EU Referendum Now'' table top stall. Along with Black Country Organiser Rob Weale, and his fellow activists, the teams stood outside shops on the main road, and before the stall was even set up properly, people were asking to sign what looks to be one of the most popular campaigns in recent years.
Before long, a hive of activity was seen at the stall. The two things that stood out almost immediately, were the amount of women signing the petition, and the fact that many people were incensed at the extra years they or their husbands now had to work, whilst millions of immigrants were able to continue arriving here, without putting a penny into the system. One lady told the team that: ''I've been told I have to work three extra years now, and my pension and other plans were all worked out for retirement at 60, it's a flipping disgrace.''
Another lady was fuming at her husband's position, where she described him having to work for a decade longer, adding: ''Yes, I'll sign the bloody petition, because that lot in Brussels have created this debt, and now we're having to pay for it all.'' The fury of people was quite overwhelming at times, with the two set of activists having to almost fight off the numbers grabbing forms, and loudly protesting their loathing of the system, it wasn't long before that old chestnut, ''industrial demise'' reared its ugly head.
Approximately 150 signatures were collected and the weather held out.
A well known Birmingham Mail letter writer signed the petition and chatted to our Acocks Green candidate Kevin Mc Hugh.
On their journey to the area, the Black Country delegation noticed a large number of derelict factories along the way. One of the main topics for locals, was the destruction of industry, and the fact that we have to pay upwards of £60 billion per year for so called membership of the EU. Another gripe for locals, was that the EU was responsible for, in one lady's words: ''the bloody amount of foreign aid we keep forking out for.'' With just one shower of rain in the early part of the campaign, the day warmed up with not just sunshine, but words of encouragement for the party's efforts in ''doing something'' for the people of Britain.
One elderly fellow said he'd served in the ''York's and Lanc's'' regiment, and thought it great that the team were displaying the Union Flag and St George's Cross. In another surprise, two youngish men rode up on cycles, one in his 20's, and the other, an older man in his early 40's, who said his father was from the West Indies. He suggested to Francis, a lady activists from the Birmingham branch that, the British National party: ''Should be proud of what they are doing, and should not be afraid to tell the truth about what is going on''. Adding that: I'm mixed race, but your party and the British people are being oppressed, and you ought not to back down, because that means you are weakening any chance of being an alternative to that bunch of B------S in the EU, and London''.
All in all, if that is what people feel like, it certainly makes a mockery of UAF/Lib-Lab-Con lies about us being bigots, racists, and nuckle-dragging thugs etc. The angry feelings of resentment felt by both our activists, and the general public, including some ethnic minorities, could not possibly show itself in such civilised and intellectually stimulating ways. Finally, we'd like to thank the lady, who we think was possibly from Spain originally, for an interesting discussion about China's role in becoming a serious power on the world stage. She displayed a very good knowledge of the debt problem, and what it means for Britain and Europe's indigenous population, and emphasised the need to withdraw immediately from the EU. To have such debates from the general public shows that the party is on the right track, and can offer principled and respectful arguments on all subjects dear to everyone's hearts.
Youngsters were given free 'English and proud' wristbands and many surplus VOF's and Identy magazines were well received by the locals.