James Heappey Weekly Column

Last week's local election results are rather hard to interpret and my inbox makes it no easier. Parties that are determined to keep us in the EU did very well in the Wells Constituency taking every seat in Cheddar, Wells, Glastonbury, Street and Shepton Mallet as well as in some of the surrounding more rural wards. Even in Burnham-on-Sea and Highbridge, where the leave vote in 2016 was overwhelming - the anti-Brexit parties made a few gains. It is no wonder that constituents who have corresponded with me for many months about their opposition to Brexit are now even more determined. These results at first glance appear to vindicate their position. 

However, my inbox is equally full of people who want to make sure I've registered their protest about our inability in Westminster to do as we promised and deliver the result of referendum. I've heard from many people who decided to vote for our principal opposition - even if that party's position on Brexit was the complete opposite of their own - simply because they wanted to make sure the Conservative candidate was defeated and the Prime Minister could see their dissatisfaction. I'm deeply sorry that this has cost so many hard-working Conservative councillors their position. 

So what will I conclude? My instinct is that the electorate continues to divide into three camps. There are those who passionately object to us leaving at all, those who want us out right now, and the remainder, perhaps even the majority, who are less motivated by Brexit but loathe that it is becoming such a long-term distraction for our Parliament. My resolve is to continue to push for Brexit to be delivered as quickly as possible so that we can get on to other things and start to bring this country back together.