Under sunny skies, Bath for Europe hosted its second “Pulse of Europe” event on Sunday 2nd April, an upbeat gathering of some 160 pro-European supporters whose passion for the EU remains undimmed in the wake of the triggering of Article 50 on 29th March. After short speeches by local residents and singing next to Bath Abbey, participants formed a colourful procession through the busy pedestrian centre of Bath. They waved banners and EU flags, chanted and engaged with the public. Fellow EU supporters from Bristol for Europe and Swindon turned out in solidarity.
“Pulse of Europe” is a pan-European movement celebrating the EU values of peace, democracy, tolerance and human rights in the face of rising populism. Pulse of Europe originated in Frankfurt with thousands gathering at 2 pm on Sundays linking hands in a chain of support. The movement has spread from Germany to France, the Netherlands and Belgium. Bath is the only UK city to host Pulse for Europe events so far.
Speakers Olivia Leydenfrost and Marie-Louise Jensen shared their personal experience of living and working in other European countries and highlighted the positive contributions that EU membership has brought the UK. Speaker Bryn Jones explained, “As far as Brexit advocates are concerned, particularly the hard-core in the Cabinet, the triggering of Article 50 means there is little more to be done, apart from finalising trade agreements. But nothing could be further from the truth. Brexit is by no means over. EU negotiations could falter or fail. In such circumstances, there is enough opposition in Parliament and throughout the UK to maintain our strong links with the EU.”
The event’s organiser Wera Hobhouse said, “We will continue to stand up for what we believe in and we will grow this movement. The more we make ourselves visible and heard, the more pressure we will put on the government to listen to us. We are the people, too.” Bath for Europe’s next Pulse of Europe event will be held on Sunday, 7th May at 2 pm.