Government’s Communities Fund just a drop in the ocean compared to the cost of Brexit - People's Vote

Government’s Communities Fund just a drop in the ocean compared to the cost of Brexit

The Government is announcing £1.6 billion will go to “communities” outside London as part of their drive to get the Prime Minister’s Brexit plan passed.

Only £1 billion of the money will be allocated via a “needs-based” formula meaning up to £600 million could be allocated at ministerial discretion – leading to suspicions the money could be spent not to deliver economic improvement but to secure the passage of the Government’s Brexit plan.

In any case the money is substantially less than funding that the Government’s own forecasts show will be lost to local economies as a result of Brexit.

Analysis from the People’s Vote campaign shows that in just 36 constituencies alone the cost of the Government’s Brexit plans will be an estimated £1.1 billion annually. 

People’s Vote also published polling data today (Sunday) which shows that Labour voters in the party’s so-called heartlands of the English North and Midlands overwhelmingly support Labour’s new approach of backing a People’s Vote on Brexit.

The polling (attached) showed:

  • No less than 75 per cent of Labour’s heartland voters who expressed an opinion said they supported the policy. And more than a third - 35 per cent - said it made them feel more favourable towards the party, compared to just 14 per cent who said it made them feel less favourable.
  • If there is new vote on Brexit, Labour’s heartland voters would support staying in the EU by 76 to 24 per cent. That margin of victory would rise even higher – 81 to 19 per cent - if the choice on the ballot paper is between staying in the EU or leaving on the terms negotiated by the Government. 
  • In a warning to a minority of Labour backbenchers who have said they are tempted to vote for the Prime Minister’s Brexit deal, just 14 per cent of the party’s heartland voters said they wanted their MP to back the proposed terms for leaving the EU. 


Commenting on the Government’s plans, Alex Sobel, Labour MP for Leeds North and leading supporter of the People’s Vote campaign, said:


“This is a drop in the ocean compared to what we now know will be lost if the Prime Minister’s Brexit plan goes ahead.


“The People’s Vote campaign has shown how the annual loss to local economies will be more than enough to wipe out any potential return from this scheme..

“And the People’s Vote campaign has just published new polling evidence of just how popular Labour’s shift to supporting a new public vote on Brexit is with the party’s voters in the North and Midlands. Labour MPs should bear that in mind when considering this latest desperate piece of Downing Street scheming.

"The North and the Midlands cannot afford to suffer the second deindustrialisation the Prime Minister's Brexit plan will bring. With all the promises made in 2016 being broken, it's only fair that instead of being ignored, the people should get the final say on Brexit in a People's Vote.” 




Notes to editors 



A total of 36 opposition MPs are either reported to have been targeted by Downing Street or rebelled in key votes to help the government inch forward its Brexit plan. But the consequences, based on the Treasury’s own figures and research from the LSE, for those seats could be:


  • £970 million in lost economic output
  • £30.5 million in lost European investment in structural funds
  • £88 million in lost EU agricultural subsidy.


And, even if ministers do inject some temporary cash, it will not offset the £895 million cut from local authority funding in these areas by the same government. 




£1.1 billion annual cost of Brexit in 36 opposition seats targeted by Downing Street’s cash offer.





Lost economic output from Brexit

Lost structural development funding

Lost agricultural funding

Brexit bill

Blackley and Broughton

Graham Stringer

North West





Blyth Valley

Ronnie Campbell

North East






Dennis Skinner

East Midlands





Bolton North East

Sir David Crausby

North West





Bradford South

Judith Cummins

Yorkshire and The Humber





Crewe and Nantwich

Laura Smith

North West






Paula Sherriff

Yorkshire and The Humber





Don Valley

Caroline Flint

Yorkshire and The Humber





Dudley North

Ian Austin

West Midlands






Ian Mearns

North East





Great Grimsby

Melanie Onn

Yorkshire and The Humber






Derek Twigg

North West






Mike Hill

North East





Hull East

Karl Turner

Yorkshire and The Humber





Hull North

Diana Johnson

Yorkshire and The Humber






Stephen Hepburn

North East






Joanne Platt

North West






Yvonne Fovargue

North West





Oldham East and Saddleworth

Debbie Abrahams

North West





Oldham West and Royton

Jim McMahon

North West





Poplar and Limehouse

Jim Fitzpatrick






Rother Valley

Kevin Barron

Yorkshire and The Humber






Sarah Champion

Yorkshire and The Humber





South Shields

Emma Lewell-Buck

North East





Stoke-on-Trent Central

Gareth Snell

West Midlands





Stoke-on-Trent North

Ruth Smeeth

West Midlands





Swansea East

Carolyn Harris







Kate Hoey







John Spellar

West Midlands





West Lancashire

Rosie Cooper

North West






Lisa Nandy

North West





Wythenshawe and Sale East

Mike Kane

North West