2015 – 056 EU wants to merge UK with France

EU wants to merge UK with France
Tuesday, 12 May 2015 13:26
FURY erupted last night after a European Union plot to “carve up Britain” by ­setting up a cross-Channel region was exposed.

EU chiefs have been quietly pouring around 1billion a year of taxpayers money into the regions

EU chiefs have been quietly pouring around £1billion a year of taxpayers’ money into the regions

Senior Tories condemned plans to merge southern England and northern France into a territory called “Arc ­Manche” complete with its own flag.

Brussels chiefs have already earmarked millions of pounds for lavish projects designed to give the zone its own “identity”.

Schemes include a £7.6million “cross-Channel” network of cycle paths, a £2million travelling ­exhibition of “contemporary” ­artworks and even a ­bizarre ­international tour by ­circus clowns costing £5.5million.

Tory Cabinet Minister Eric Pickles yesterday revealed details of the plan inherited by his Whitehall department from the previous Labour government.

The Communities Secretary said: “Labour ministers have been caught red-handed conspiring with European bureaucrats to wipe England off the map and replace our historic ­boroughs, counties and cities with transnational Euro-regions.

“Massive amounts of taxpayers’ money are being wasted on vanity projects. I intend to fight these plans, stop this waste and protect England’s national and local identities from EU empire building.”

There are fears the outrageous plan could spread to affect other parts of Britain.

Meanwhile, the Daily Express crusade to get Britain out of the EU has won massive support. We delivered a petition of 373,000 signatures from readers demanding a referendum on Britain’s membership of the EU to 10 Downing Street earlier this year.

Reacting to yesterday’s news, Tory backbencher Douglas Carswell, MP for Clacton, said: “This is quite simply an attempt to carve up Britain. As long as the country remains a member of the EU, we will never be free of this nonsense.”

UK Independence Party leader Nigel Farage said: “The Arc Manche is the perfect Euro project. Nobody wants it, nobody called for it and nobody knows what it’s for.

“Its proudest boast is a logo that wouldn’t have won a Blue Peter badge, and cross-Channel cycle routes.”

Charlotte Linacre, of the TaxPayers’ Alliance, added: “This billion pound vanity project is a complete waste of taxpayers’ money. It’s madness that the EU keep dreaming up ways to spend, given the economic disasters some countries are facing and the UK is trying to avoid.”

Arc Manche was formally launched six years ago to forge closer links between local councils in southern English counties with their counterparts in northern France.

It is one of 12 cross-border regions set up under the EU’s “Interreg” initiative – criticised as an attempt to erode national identities.

The name “Manche” – meaning sleeve – was taken from the French name for the English Channel

EU chiefs have been quietly pouring around £1billion a year of taxpayers’ money into the regions.

Now they want to significantly raise the profile of Arc Manche, which already has a ruling “assembly” of councillors and bureaucrats headed by a French Socialist Party “president”, Alain Le Vern. At a cost of thousands of pounds, EU officials have commissioned a new “transnational emblem” to be rolled out across southern England. Designers describe the emblem as a “series of concentric circles symbolising the flow of projects and stakeholders” and to “represent so many bridges between territories”.

However, one Whitehall aide yesterday ­rubbished the emblem as “a bid to subvert the St George’s flag and the Union Jack”.

Among the projects designed to promote the Arc Manche is a series of cycle routes seeking to link northern France and southern England.

Maps of the proposed routes show cycle lanes stopping at the Channel and re-starting at the French side. And in an even more surreal twist, a troupe of acrobatic circus clowns is due to spend up to a year touring the Arc Manche region in a ­“transnational street theatre”.

Details emerged just days after Eurocrats pleaded for more taxpayers’ cash for Brussels coffers. Under a proposed new EU budget, Britain’s annual contribution to Brussels will rise by £682million next year.


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