Steve Allen 4am - 7am
Brexit: What will MEPs miss most when we leave the EU?
28 January 2020, 12:13 | Updated: 28 January 2020, 14:32
Britain's MEPs will leave the European Parliament on Friday, some after being there for over 20 years. LBC asked them what they will miss the most - and their responses may surprise you.
Brexit will finally happen on Friday at 11pm after Boris Johnson's Withdrawal Bill was given Royal Assent and signed into law.
LBC travelled to the EU Parliament in Strasbourg to speak to MEPs from all parties to see what they will miss about the European Union.
Daniel Hannan (Conservative MEP)
My federalist friends here, and I do have them, are not bad or insincere people. They genuinely think that the best thing for Europe is to merge all its countries together into into a bigger country. So I'll miss their company and I'll miss our arguments, but I'm as convinced as I ever was that Britain's best days lie ahead.
Seb Dance (Labour MEP)
The fact that you are in an organisation where you're working with people from 27 other countries with huge array of experiences and background, some of them lived under dictatorships when they were growing up. There was a former commissioner, just left office, who was born in a gulag, in a Soviet gulag who became a Lithuanian commissioner. So there is a huge range of experiences and ideas that you just don't get just from Westminster. And I worked in Westminster- there's some great ideas, great people, really passionate but ultimately that range of experience doesn't exist anywhere else. And when I walk through the door here, I think how unbelievably lucky I am to been part of this and to share that experience with all those people.
Nigel Farage (Brexit Party MEP)
I won't miss Brussels one little bit. The city, socially, is deteriorating in the most extraordinary way. Crime on the streets- I mean I've been mugged three times there- it's just it's horrendous. But I will miss ironically Strasbourg. Not getting here, because that is a nightmare. It takes about seven or eight hours, I mean I can get to New York more quickly. Getting here is a nightmare, but there are things I will miss. This building actually. Look at it, it's light, it's open, the architecture is quite interesting, the chamber itself, it's an amazing room, it's an amazing room. I'll miss the city because it's a beautiful city. For those that haven't been, it really is worth coming here and the wine tour in the Voges mountains. It really is worth visiting. Alsace is lovely. The food. I love regional food, seasonal food, all of that's wonderful. And I've had great fun socially. I mean, it's nearly always a 13-hour day in here but in the evenings, going out it's been jolly. What I'll really miss is the theatre and the drama in there. The one-to-ones with Barroso, the one-to-ones with Juncker, the one-to-ones with Martin Shultz, with Guy Verhofstadt. That I'll miss enormously, because you can't replace that with whatever you do.
Geoffrey Van Orden (Conservative MEP)
I've spent 30 years as a soldier. I've spent much of my life overseas. I've always enjoyed the international environment. I have a lot of friends and colleagues from right across the parliament, different political groups, many different countries, all of that. So one will miss all of that.
Alexandra Phillips (Brexit Party MEP)
Everyone, the people, my family has I call them. And we really do love each other. I mean, seriously, you look at other political parties and the in-fighting- I know we've had some people leave- but the core group we've got left is so tight knit, we're so diverse, such different personalities but we really really do care for each other and I think that's going to last a lifetime.
Claude Moraes (Labour MEP)
I think in this building, I always felt, you know, with all its faults, it is a really beautiful parliament and sometimes I wish you could take this parliament, take it to Brussels which is far less beautiful, put it there and then just bring it closer to people in Britain. and just them having a few of the added value things we did. That was always my daydream, you know this beautiful building in Brussels, easy to get to. I miss what it is, it's been my workplace for 20 years and not one where I've really shown it to enough people back home in London.
Richard Corbett (Labour MEP)
The fact you learn something new every day and the fact that you're working across different parties and different countries to try and find a workable solutions on those issues where countries are interdependent and, whether we like it or not, we've got to find common solutions to common problems. Not doing too much at European level, if you can do something at national level, leave it at national level, or local even better. But to the extent that we are interdependent and we need to find common solutions, this is the place where they tend to get worked out.